Windows 8

Topics: Getting Started
Jun 4, 2011 at 2:09 PM

Hi Rob,

Any insights into Windows 8 and their direction for WPF/Silverlight?  A lot of us developers are starting to get worried that Microsoft is making WPF and Silverlight second-class citizens in the next version of Windows.

You only make (by far) the best application framework for the best widely-used development platform that exists... so here's hoping that your connections have more tidbits of information than most of us are privy to.  It seems Microsoft has not been very forthcoming with their direction for Windows 8, other than throwing their weight behind HTML5 and Javascript apps.

Frankly, just the thought of porting my enterprise apps from C# to Javascript makes me want to vomit.  But I don't want my apps to have the "Excel" experience that was portrayed in the intro video... I'd rather them integrate directly in the tablet interface, both the apps and the tiles, rather than being usable only from the classic mode.

Thanks for any info you have!  Oh, and did I mention that you've made (by far) the best, most useful application framework for WPF and Silverlight?  :)


Jun 4, 2011 at 4:45 PM

Thanks for the compliments! Unfortunately, I don't have any more information than you do. I can say that *I* will have an Html/Js framework that will be similar to Silverlight/Caliburn.Micro so that will be a new option. It will be relatively easy to transfer your SL and CM skills to that framework. I'm working hard on that. But, I don't really know anything about Win8 other than what was announced the other day. I'd be surprised if Silverlight wasn't a first class citizen. Somehow I doubt WPF will be, but since SL runs in-browser it would seam like an easy win for MS to enable it in their new app platform. Who knows? We'll have to wait and see. I know a lot of people have gotten very upset over the news, but I would withhold any final judgments until we all have more information. Currently, I'm trying to make some deeper connections inside Microsoft so that whatever they do, I can provide a compelling solution to CM users. Perhaps a good thing to do in the mean time is to let Microsoft know just how much you love Silverlight as an app platform and tell them how compelling Caliburn.Micro makes it for you.

Jun 5, 2011 at 4:11 AM

Yeah, after some thought, I would have to agree... it seems that at least Silverlight could have a place.  After a few discussions on forums here and there, I'm starting to wonder if the tablet interface is even going to be the "main" interface for Windows 8.  It is obviously useful for widget and information apps, and simple apps like Twitter.  But Microsoft has built their empire on top of business and productivity applications, and their lock-in strategy has been very effective... in 20-40 years from now, upgrading businesses from Windows will be the equivalent of moving away from mainframe systems today.  It'll keep Microsoft afloat for decades.  Abandoning all that in the name of a good tablet UI is just unrealistic.

So I guess I'm not that worried.  I'm getting the taste that this will be more of a sidebar-done-better, instead of a complete replacement of what we have equated the word "PC" with for the past 20 years.  I guess we'll see.