Archives / 2008 / April
  • Silverlight - The Song

    About 6 months ago my good friend Spike Xavier and I got together on a Saturday to work on a new song since we like to get away from programming now and then and mess around with music for fun.  It'd been awhile since we released our last song titled No More DLL Hell and we decided that we needed to write a new song about one of our favorite new application frameworks....Silverlight.  After a few hours we came up with some patterns and riffs we liked but we weren't happy with the overall melody.  We shelved it, got busy with other work things and didn't do much related to music. 

  • Pushing Data to a Silverlight Client with Sockets: Part II

    In Part 1 of this two part series on socket support in Silverlight 2 I discussed how a server could be created to listen for clients using classes in the System.Net.Sockets namespace.  In that post the TcpListener class was used to listen for client connections and the client stream was accessed using the TcpClient class's GetStream() method.  In this post I'll cover how a Silverlight client can connect to a server using sockets and receive data pushed by the server asynchronously.

  • Pushing Data to a Silverlight Client with Sockets: Part I

    Silverlight 2 has built-in support for sockets which creates some interesting possibilities.  If you've ever worked on a client-side application that needed to receive up-to-date data then you're probably used to solving the problem by polling.  With polling the client contacts the server on a consistent, timed basis to see if any updates are available.  ASP.NET AJAX provides a Timer control that makes this process easy and straightforward.

  • Silverlight 2 Networking Options

    image I've been spending my nights working on a new book covering Silverlight 2 and have been focusing on the new networking features that are available in the System.Net and related namespaces.  Silverlight's great at animating objects, performing transformations and collecting data with all of the new controls that are available, but at some point you'll need to retrieve data or send data to a service.  There's great support built-in for calling WCF services, ASMX services as well as other services.  Support for  calling REST APIs is also very good and easy to implement using classes such as WebClient and HttpWebRequest/HttpWebResponse.  Asynchronous requests can be issued and handled quite easily once you figure out the pattern (which is quite consistent throughout the different networking classes).

  • Using Silverlight 2 ItemsControl Templates

    Building Silverlight 2 applications reminds me of the first time I built an ASP.NET application.  There are so many new features and controls that it takes a little time to get up-to-speed with what's available and how it can be used.  It's definitely fun but at times you just want to throw the monitor out the window when something doesn't work like you think it should (disclaimer:  I've never actually thrown a monitor anywhere...but I'm definitely guilty of wanting to do it).  The good news is that the learning curve flattens out pretty quickly once you grasp a few key concepts which probably makes my monitor feel much better.  :-)

  • Video: Silverlight Rehab

    I just watched a new video called Silverlight Rehab that's pretty dang funny (heard about it through Adam Kinney who's on the Silverlight team).  Even my wife laughed which is saying a lot since she doesn't typically appreciate "geek" humor much.  I'm not sure who put it together or came up with the idea, but it's definitely creative.

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