Microsoft's Silverlight 3 already available ahead of launch

Software giant is set to officially launch the multimedia technology at an event on Friday

Microsoft's Silverlight 3 technology, which adds offline capabilities to the company's rich Internet application platform, already is available for download on the Web, ahead of Friday's official launch event.

Silverlight 3 itself is available on Microsoft's Web site; the SDK can be accessed as well. An official launch event for Silverlight 3 and the accompanying Expression Studio 3 design toolset is set for Friday in San Francisco. A release candidate for the Expression Blend 3, for interactive design of user interfaces, also is available nd features SketchFlow for rapid prototyping of Web sites.

[ The upcoming HTML 5 specification could be a killer for technologies like Silverlight and Adobe Flash. ]

Silverlight is Microsoft's answer to the established Flash platform for multimedia experiences on the Web. Other features of Silverlight 3 include improvements in audio, video, and 3-D graphics. Better data-binding and more controls have also been slated for Silverlight 3.

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