Silverlight's developer benefits
A good reason to believe in Silverlight's longevity is that Silverlight shines in line-of-business applications, and Metro applications will not replace these, says Doomen. He also expects Silverlight to top Metro -- the new UI and mobile-oriented Windows 8 application mode -- for use on the desktop. "It's still a wise choice for Silverlight developers to continue investing in that technology," he says.
Doomen cites video streaming and 3D capabilities as pluses for the upcoming Silverlight 5 platform. Version 5 narrows the gap between Silverlight and Microsoft's Windows Presentation Foundation technology, he says, and developers can be more productive when Silverlight applications versus Web applications.
Champion favors Silverlight's rich UI, its separation of the UI from the XAML front end, and its cross-platform support: "It allows you to design separately from your back-end code, and it's been a big help in a lot of projects." For example, designers can work independently of developers, he says.
These attributes help explain why Silverlight is "excellent" for health care applications, Hollis says. "It gives us the ability to provide interactions and visual feedback and stateful management of the UI" that can be difficult or impossible to match with HTML, he says.
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