With the enhancements to Silverlight that are being made with the next release, we realized that naming it Silverlight 1.1 would not properly reflect the amount of work that is going into it. Specifically, we are renaming Silverlight 1.1 to Silverlight 2.0!
Expect a Silverlight beta with a “Go Live” license to be out sometime in Q1 of 2008.
Here is a quick update to the feature set that we expect to be out:
WPF UI Framework: The current Silverlight Alpha release only includes basic controls support and a managed API for UI drawing. The next public Silverlight preview will add support for the higher level features of the WPF UI framework. These include: the extensible control framework model, layout manager support, two-way data-binding support, and control template and skinning support. The WPF UI Framework features in Silverlight will be a compatible subset of the WPF UI Framework features in last week’s .NET Framework 3.5 release.
Rich Controls: Silverlight will deliver a rich set of controls that make building Rich Internet Applications much easier. The next Silverlight preview release will add support for core form controls (textbox, checkbox, radiobutton, etc), built-in layout management controls (StackPanel, Grid, etc), common functionality controls (TabControl, Slider, ScrollViewer, ProgressBar, etc) and data manipulation controls (DataGrid, etc).
Rich Networking Support: Silverlight will deliver rich networking support. The next Silverlight preview release will add support for REST, POX, RSS, and WS* communication. It will also add support for cross domain network access (so that Silverlight clients can access resources and data from any trusted source on the web).
Rich Base Class Library Support: Silverlight will include a rich .NET base class library of functionality (collections, IO, generics, threading, globalization, XML, local storage, etc). The next Silverlight preview release will also add built-in support for LINQ to XML and richer HTML DOM API integration.
Of particular excitement is the new input controls. Texbox, checkbox, radiobutton, etc…. Originally, those were not planned for the release and many of us had to dig up, or roll our own input controls. Phew, thank goodness I don’t have to deal with that anymore! That just means that now we can get down to the serious work of building real business solutions on top of Silverlight 2.0 in the very near future.