The October SDK release is now available and (if you read ZMan's blog, you already know) it includes the first beta of the Managed DirectX for the 2.0 CLR. I'm extremely interested in your feedback on this, particularly design decisions that were made, what you think should have been done, etc.
Here is the information from our "announcement" internally:
The DirectX® Team is pleased to announce the next release of the DirectX 9.0 SDK Update (October 2005)
The October 2005 update includes the first release of XInput, beta releases of XACT, Managed DirectX for Whidbey, several new samples, as well as the usual slew of bug fixes and documentation updates.
This new SDK optional component allows applications to use the Xbox 360 Controller for Windows. Controller input, vibration effects, and voice input/output are supported. Several samples are included that introduce the API and features of the controller.
XACT is an audio design tool and runtime that allows application developers and audio content designers to create vibrant sound in games. Samples are included demonstrating features such as cues, streaming, and auditioning.
Graphics Card Capabilities
A chart, in Adobe PDF and Microsoft Excel formats, containing a collection of capabilities exposed by current drivers on a wide range of graphics hardware is now available in the SDK.
This Managed DirectX sample demonstrates several basic 2D techniques including scrolling and sprites using Direct3D.
DxOps Batch Processing Tool
The DxOps tool is a command-line tool that allows you to do common mesh and texture processing using simple scripts.
Managed DirectX for Whidbey (Beta)
This is the first release of Managed DirectX with support for the Common Language Runtime (CLR) 2.0. In addition to addressing issues related to using Managed DirectX with Microsoft Visual Studio 2005, it includes new features that take advantage of CLR 2.0. Support for Direct3D, D3DX, DirectSound, DirectInput, and XInput are included in this release.