Sunday, March 16, 2008

Silverlight Blueprint for SharePoint

The Silverlight blueprint for SharePoint is being released by Microsoft to make it easy for SharePoint developers to figure out how to embed Silverlight in their portals. The link to the blueprint site is here: http://www.ssblueprints.net/sharepoint/. It contains a variety of examples of how Silverlight code might be used with SharePoint.

Although it's still embryonic, there's definitely a lot of potential here. Of the examples, the ones that jumped out at me were the Content Types (you can have dynamic sliders for example) and the video How To, which would be useful for user self-training. The examples that made the most sense were video- or picture-related since this obviously plays to Silverlight's strengths.

Some of the examples seem like a fair amount of effort to duplicate functionality that works perfectly fine out of the box. What may be a more compelling use for this kind of graphical technology (Silverlight or, say, WPF) is building a completely immersive interface and only using SharePoint behind the scenes as a (hidden) repository and framework.

Anyone who wants to play around with Silverlight can get free hosting at Microsoft's site, Silverlight Streaming by Windows Live (http://www.microsoft.com/silverlight/overview/streaming.aspx).

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