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Surface.com ( Microsoft.com/surface ) uses flash

So I just watched all the videos on Microsoft.com/surface. It really looks like great stuff. This is the technology you might have played with if you've visited the Microsoft Museum on campus in Redmond.

After looking at the nice site, and some rounded/moving video, I thought --- oh great. A perfect use of Silverlight. To my surprise, I right click and see it's flash player.

I don't get it. So many people at Microsoft have had access to Silverlight for many many months. Obviously some of these people were privy to the surface project.

Why not use Silverlight for this? Lack of adoption? Would it be considered bad practice to launch a product (surface) and have the home page force a Silverlight download? I guess I can see both sides, but my initial reaction, was disappointment.

Comments

ScottGu said:

The Surface product itself is built in WPF (which is a kind of a cool scenario of it being used).

The promotional web-site still uses Flash because Silverlight hasn't released yet (and some enterprise shops bad installing beta software on client machines).

Once Silverlight ships 1.0 later this summer you'll see Microsoft properties shift over to using Silverlight instead.

# May 30, 2007 1:35 AM

rajbk said:

Sliverlight is in beta (Don't expect the average user to download a beta/unknown product).

Flash is older and more popular.

Raj

# May 30, 2007 1:39 AM

rajbk said:

Scott, you beat me to it!

# May 30, 2007 1:42 AM

Scott said:

Don't assume that all of the sites at microsoft.com are created BY Microsoft. A lot, actually most, of them are created by vendors FOR Microsoft. Which is why you'll see a lot of Flash used and the tech isn't always cutting edge.

Plus, Flash is ubiquitous, Silverlight is not. Isn't that the reason we're always given when choosing to develop on the Microsoft platform?

# May 30, 2007 11:57 AM

timheuer said:

devils advocate: why isn't mykb product using silverlight? likely for the same reason -- you're along a path of development...interrupting that particular iteration might not be feasible at this time. i'm sure the surface team (like most at msft) have been working on their branding strategies, etc. for a long time, likely when silverlight was still in december ctp form...which for them would not have been feasible. additionally, most internal teams/properties are customers just like you -- they will investigate and put into their timelines. sure, we'd love every msft property to switch immediately...and i think there is this assumption that it will always naturally happen...it is a big company, and with that comes some natural big company problems. i bet you think everyone at msft new about the surface announcement before yesterday as well...riiight.
# May 30, 2007 12:50 PM

scott cate said:

Tim, the question isn't why doesn't mykb use silverlight, but would be fair if we didn't use a "myKB Knowledge Base" to support our customers, which of course we do.

I understand (as stated in the original message) both sides of this argument. I also understand the Beta (with a Go Live) statements ScottGu said, and the lack of Dev Time to launch a site.

Finally Tim; of course I don't think everyone at MSFT knew about Surface (also stated in the original message). That's just silly talk.

# May 30, 2007 1:54 PM

scott cate said:

Brady,

I don't see this as a negative message against Microsoft. I was just trying to post my surprise that the site was a perfect match for the technology.

I fully believe in Silverlight, and I'm very excited for it as a technology. I'm really anxious to see it come to life in a full fledged project.

# May 30, 2007 1:57 PM

John C. Bland II said:

Scott, I was caught off by it not being Silverlight as well but all points made above are my thoughts as well (specifically, ScottGu and core point of Tim's). SL will be rockin' here soon. :-D We can only just wait. Until then it is still a Flash world.
# May 30, 2007 7:10 PM

Brad.Net said:

MS Basher. Ha! JK of course. Go Brady... Go Brady. As to Surface it self.. very cool. It's everywhere today. Co-workers picked up a tech journal article, Wall Street Journal, etc. And Gates and Jobs appearing together tonight on stage. hmmm. Set to roll out late this year... I wonder about the price points?
# May 30, 2007 7:46 PM

scott cate said:

Brad.net - I read in the paper today the price point was $5-10K per unit. Of course this is for openers (aimed at retail giants), and who knows how accurate.

This is going to be like plasma TV's were. 5 years of OMG high prices, and before you know it, your fridge, hall wallpaper, TV, coffee table, wrist watch, and PDA will have "surfaces".

# May 30, 2007 11:20 PM