The Great Asynchronous Learning Experiment – Day 1

In this diary of a learning experiment, I am taking the role of an experienced .NET programmer who knows little or nothing about Silverlight, but who wants to become proficient, first in Silverlight 1.0 and then in all subsequent versions. My buddy suggested I start at

Upon arrival I find the landing page offers me news, a few blog headlines, some information about hosting, a great big invitation to go to the Learn page, and a menu that offers two interesting choices: "Get Started" and "Learn."  After some indecision I choose Get Started – great choice because the Get Started page has numbered steps. It is clear that what I am to do is (1) watch the Getting Started video, then (2) download the tools I'll need and then (3) Learn from the samples and documentation (which includes the Quick-starts, gallery, forums, and documentation. 

 Not sure yet how this relates to the big Learn Page with "more videos and samples" but that can wait.  Time to click on step 1.

Yow! Great intro video, but it takes a while to dawn on me that Scott is talking about 1.1. This is a bit of a surprise because I'd have thought we'd start with 1.0; but the good news is that 1.1 is wicked cool, and this is a great video.

Because I'm now a bit confused about 1.0 vs. 1.1 I stop the video half way through and do a quick check of the site to see if I can find out the difference between the two versions.

My first try is Learn->White Papers -> Getting Started, but while this looks like a great white paper, it is beyond what I need now and doesn't immediately answer my question.  Learn->Videos has sections on 1.0 and 1.1 and there are Getting Started videos, I bet I could watch the 1.1 Getting started and it would explain the difference, but I hate starting a second video when I'm in the middle of Scott's.  Hmmmm…

Went to the forum where I found a "how do I get started" question. The answer included a link to an MSDN page, which itself had two links, one of which took me right back to the Silverlight landing page. The other, however, took me to the ASP.NET Developer center which had a bunch of links, none of which seemed to answer my question and so I gave up and went back to Scott's video, figuring the answer would become clear sooner or later

 Note: The principle differences are that Silverlight 1.0 is more mature (Release Candidate with a Go-Live licence) and is programmed with JavaScript. 1.1 is in Alpha and incorporates a subset of the CLR and thus can be programmed with managed code languages such as C# 3 and VB9.

Note to self: Need clarification on the first page: Silverlight versions.

 Back to Scott's video…

 [to be continued]



About Jesse Liberty

Jesse Liberty has three decades of experience writing and delivering software projects and is the author of 2 dozen books and a couple dozen online courses. His latest book, Building APIs with .NET will be released early in 2025. Liberty is a Senior SW Engineer for CNH and he was a Senior Technical Evangelist for Microsoft, a Distinguished Software Engineer for AT&T, a VP for Information Services for Citibank and a Software Architect for PBS. He is a Microsoft MVP.
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