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853 silverlight 5 in action

IN ACTION
Revised Edition of
Silverlight 4 in Action

Pete Brown

MANNING
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Silverlight 5 in Action
PETE BROWN

MANNING
SHELTER ISLAND

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For online information and ordering of this and other Manning books, please visit
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ISBN: 9781617290312
Printed in the United States of America
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 – MAL – 18 17 16 15 14 13 12


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Jeff Bleiel
Thomas MacKearney
Liz Welch
Elizabeth Martin
Marija Tudor
Marija Tudor


brief contents
PART 1

PART 2

CORE SILVERLIGHT ...................................................... 1
1



Introducing Silverlight 3

2



XAML and the property system

3



The application model and the plug-in

4



Working with HTML and browsers

5



Out-of-browser applications

6



The security model and elevated trust 114

26
47

73

95

CREATING THE USER INTERFACE .............................. 125
7



Rendering, layout, and transforming

8



Panels 160

9



Human input 180

10



Text fundamentals

11



Editing plain and rich text 225

12



Control basics and UserControls

13



Animation and behaviors

199

iii

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272

247

127


iv

PART 3

PART 4

PART 5

PART 6

BRIEF CONTENTS

14



Resources, styles, and control templates

307

15



Extensions, converters, custom controls, and panels 337

WORKING WITH DATA AND SERVICES ......................... 365
16



Binding 367

17



Data controls: DataGrid and DataForm

18



Input validation 433

19



Networking basics

20



Working with SOAP services

21



RESTful services with the ASP.NET Web API

22



Working with XML, JSON, RSS, and Atom

23



Duplex, sockets, and local connections

410

460
491
520
549

575

2D AND 3D GRAPHICS .............................................. 601
24



Graphics and effects

603

25



Working with images

630

26



Introduction to 3D

27



3D lighting, texturing, and animation

649
679

MAKING THE MOST OF THE PLATFORM ..................... 709
28



Pop-ups, windows, and full-screen applications

29



Navigation 734

30



Working with files and directories

31



Printing 798

32



COM, Native Extensions, and p-invoke

711

761
832

BEST PRACTICES ...................................................... 867
33



Structuring and testing with the MVVM pattern 869

34



Debugging your application

35



The install experience and preloaders

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913
929


contents
preface xxi
acknowledgments xxiv
about this book xxvi
about the cover illustration

PART 1

1

xxxi

CORE SILVERLIGHT .......................................... 1
Introducing Silverlight 3
1.1

A Silverlight primer

4

Silverlight and the web 5 Silverlight and WPF
Types of Silverlight applications 6


1.2

A brief history of Silverlight

6

8

Features for business and client applications 8 Media and
graphics enhancements 10 User interaction 11 Text 11




1.3



Getting started with Silverlight development 12
Setting up your development environment 13

1.4



Helpful sites

Building your first Silverlight web application

14

Project setup 15 User interface 16 Calling Twitter
search 18 Parsing the results and binding the ListBox 19
Making the ListBox contents more meaningful 23






1.5

Summary

25
v

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13


vi

CONTENTS

2

XAML and the property system 26
2.1

XAML basics

27

Objects 28 Namespaces 29 Properties 32
Dependency properties 33 Attached properties 35
Events 36 Commands 38








2.2

Object trees and namescope
Object trees 39

2.3
2.4
2.5

3

39

Namescope 42



XAML type converters 43
Loading XAML at runtime 44
Summary 46

The application model and the plug-in 47
3.1

The Silverlight application model

48

Application startup process 49 XAP 50 The application
manifest file 51 The Silverlight application object 52
Application dependencies 55 Assembly caching 56








3.2

Creating the Silverlight plug-in

58

Using the object tag 59 Using the Silverlight.js utility file
Creating an instance of the Silverlight plug-in 61

60



3.3

Integrating the Silverlight plug-in

62

Relating the Silverlight application to the HTML DOM 62
Clarifying the initial experience 64 Handling plug-in
events 68 Sending initialization parameters 70




3.4

4

Summary

71

Working with HTML and browsers 73
4.1
4.2

Silverlight and the HTML DOM 74
Working with the web page from managed code

75

Navigating web page contents 76 Working with element
properties 77 Handling CSS information 78
Accessing the query string 78




4.3

Working with the hosting browser window

79

Prompting the user 79 Navigating the browser window 81
Discovering the browser properties 81


4.4

Bridging the scripting and managed code worlds
Calling managed code from JavaScript 82
from managed code 85

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82

Using JavaScript


vii

CONTENTS

4.5

Hosting HTML in Silverlight
Hosting the WebBrowser control
WebBrowserBrush 92

4.6

5

Summary

86
87



Using the

94

Out-of-browser applications 95
5.1

Implementation specifics
Process and hosting

5.2
5.3

97



97
Capabilities and restrictions 98

The end-user experience 98
Creating out-of-browser applications

100

The out-of-browser settings file 100 Controlling the
experience 102 Customizing icons 105 Updating




5.4
5.5



Alerting the user with notification toast
Controlling the host window 107

105

106

Basic window properties 108 Changing window
chrome 109 Minimizing, maximizing, restoring, and
closing 110 Moving a window 111 Resizing 111






5.6

6

Summary



112

The security model and elevated trust 114
6.1
6.2
6.3

Code classifications and the transparency model 115
User initiation and consent 117
Elevated trust 119
Creating elevated trust applications 120 Enabling in-browser
elevated trust applications 122 Detecting elevated trust
mode 124




6.4

PART 2

7

Summary

124

CREATING THE USER INTERFACE ................... 125
Rendering, layout, and transforming 127
7.1

The UIElement and FrameworkElement
Properties

7.2

128



128

Methods 134

The rendering process

135

Clock tick 137 Per-frame rendering callback
Rasterization 138


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CONTENTS

7.3

The layout system 144
Multipass layout—measuring and arranging 144
The LayoutInformation class 146 Performance
considerations 147


7.4

Render transforms

148

RotateTransform 149 ScaleTransform 150
SkewTransform 150 TranslateTransform 151
TransformGroup 151 CompositeTransform 152
MatrixTransform 153






7.5

3D projection transforms
PlaneProjection 155

7.6

8

Summary



155

Matrix3dProjection 157

159

Panels 160
8.1

Canvas

161

Setting the offsets 162

8.2
8.3

The StackPanel 165
The WrapPanel 166
Vertical wrapping

8.4

Setting the stack order 163



167



Horizontal wrapping 168

The Grid 169
Arranging Grid content 170 Positioning Grid content 172
Spanning cells 172 Sizing it up 173 Working with the
grid programmatically 176 Customizing cell
boundaries 177








8.5

9

Summary

179

Human input 180
9.1

Capturing the keyboard

181

Understanding focus 181 Handling keyboard events
Dealing with modifier keys 184


9.2

Mouse input 185
Mouse movement events 186
Using the mouse wheel 191

9.3
9.4

Mouse button events 188



Using multitouch 193
Collecting ink drawings 194
Creating the InkPresenter 195
Styling the ink 197

9.5

182

Summary



198

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Collecting ink

195


ix

CONTENTS

10

Text fundamentals 199
10.1

The text system 200
Subpixel text rendering 200 Text hinting 201
formatting 202 Text rendering 203




Text



10.2

Displaying text 204
Font properties 204 Flow control
properties 209 Spacing 212


208



Text



10.3

OpenType font support 215
Ligatures 216 Stylistic sets 217 Font capitals 219
Fractions and numbers 220 Variants, superscript, and
subscript 221






10.4
10.5

11

Embedding fonts 223
Summary 224

Editing plain and rich text
11.1

225

Handling basic text input

226

Enabling multiline text support 227
selection 228

11.2
11.3
11.4
11.5

12



247

Control 248


Tab navigation and control state 249

ContentControl 251
The ContentPresenter 252

12.3

242

Summary 245

Appearance 248
Templating 250

12.2

Working with selected

Free-form text layout

Control basics and UserControls
12.1



Multicolumn and free-form linked text 241
Multicolumn text 241

11.7

Mastering text

Understanding input method editors 228
Copying text with the Clipboard API 231
Collecting sensitive data 232
Entering and displaying rich text 233
Formatting and inline elements 233
text 237

11.6



Button controls 253
The Button 254 The HyperlinkButton 255
The RadioButton 255 The CheckBox 257




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x

CONTENTS

12.4

ItemsControls

258

The ListBox 259
TabControl 262

12.5



The ComboBox 262



The

Creating UserControls 265
Defining the appearance 266 Defining behavior of a
control 267 Calling the control 270




12.6

13

Summary 271

Animation and behaviors 272
13.1
13.2

Animating a value over time 273
Mastering the timeline 275
What type of property are you animating? 275 Where are you
starting from and where are you going? 277 How long should
the animation run? 280




13.3

Storyboards 283
Understanding the storyboard 283 Storyboard target
Controlling the Storyboard 287 Resources 289


284



13.4
13.5

Keyframing 291
Interpolation 293
Linear interpolation 294 Spline interpolation
Discrete interpolation 296 KeyTime 296


294



13.6

Easing functions 297
Using easing functions 298
function 301

13.7

14

Creating a custom easing

Behaviors, triggers, and actions
Using existing behaviors
behavior 305

13.8



303



302

Creating your own

Summary 306

Resources, styles, and control templates 307
14.1

Being resourceful 308
Declarative resources 308
Bundled resources 315

14.2



Accessing loose resources 314

Giving your elements style 317
Defining the look 319
Implicit style definitions



Explicitly keyed style definitions 321
322

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xi

CONTENTS

14.3

14.4

Creating templates 323
Building a control template
templates 328

323

Dealing with visual states

329



Creating reusable

Understanding the components 329
VisualStateManager 331

14.5
14.6

15

Sharing your visual states
Summary 335



Leveraging the

335

Extensions, converters, custom controls, and panels 337
15.1

Markup extensions 338
Creating a simple custom markup extension
parameterized markup extension 340

15.2



Creating a

Custom type converters 342
Creating the converter

15.3

339

342



Creating a custom panel

Using the converter

343

345

Project setup 346 The OrbitPanel class 346
Properties 347 Custom layout 350 Enhancements




15.4



Creating a custom control

354

355

Choosing the base type 355 Properties 356 The control
template contract 357 The default template 359
Visual states 360 Visual states in template 361








15.5

PART 3

16

Summary 363

WORKING WITH DATA AND SERVICES ............. 365
Binding
16.1

367

Binding basics 368
Mastering the binding syntax
mode 371

16.2

369



Choosing a binding

Understanding your binding source

373

Binding to a property 374 Binding to an object 376
Binding to a UI element 378 Binding to an indexed
element 381 Binding to a keyed (string indexed)
element 382 Binding to an entire collection 383
Deciding when to update binding 385







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xii

CONTENTS

16.3

Binding to dynamic properties

386

ICustomTypeProvider overview 387
classes 387 Using the helper class


16.4

Customizing the display



Creating the helper
390

395

Formatting values 395 Converting values during
binding 395 Providing default fallback values 399
Handling null values 399




16.5

Creating explicit data templates 400
Using a DataTemplate with a ContentControl 400
Rendering an ItemsControl with a DataTemplate 402

16.6
16.7

17

Creating implicit data templates 403
Summary 409

Data controls: DataGrid and DataForm 410
17.1

The DataGrid 411
Displaying your data 411
Sorting items 417

17.2



Editing grid data

417

The DataForm 418
Displaying your data 419 Binding to lists of data 421
Customizing display 424 Customizing edit, add, and display
templates 425 Finer control over editing and committing
data 427






17.3

Annotating for display 428
The Display attribute 429

17.4

18

The Editable attribute 430

Summary 431

Input validation
18.1
18.2



433

The validation example source and UI 434
Exception-based property validation 438
Handling exception validation errors 438 Custom
validation code 439 Validation error display 440




18.3

Synchronous validation with IDataErrorInfo

441

The IDataErrorInfo interface 441 Simple validation with
IDataErrorInfo 442 Cross-field validation with IDataErrorInfo 443 Combining exceptions and IDataErrorInfo 445






18.4

Asynchronous validation with INotifyDataErrorInfo
The INotifyDataErrorInfo interface 446
interface 447 Binding support 448


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446

Implementing the
Building the WCF


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CONTENTS

web service 448 Adding the client service code 449
Property modifications 450


18.5

Annotating for validation

451

Validation attributes 452 Annotating your entity 453
Calling external validation functions 454 Creating custom
validators 456




18.6
18.7

19

Comparison of validation approaches
Summary 458

457

Networking basics 460
19.1

The web request/response pattern
WebRequest and HttpWebRequest
HttpWebResponse 463

19.2

462

WebResponse and

Simplifying the request/response pattern with WebClient 465
String operations 465

19.3

461




Stream operations

Asynchronous communication

468

469

When async methods attack 470 Saving your sanity
with Rx 471 Simplifying with tasks 474




19.4

Trust and cross-domain network access 476
Structuring the cross-domain file 477 Other cross-domain
policy files 479 Locating your cross-domain policy 480




19.5

The browser HTTP stack 481
Connection count limit

19.6

481



Cookies 482



Caching

482

The client HTTP stack 483
Manually creating the client stack 483 Automatically using
the client stack 484 Automatically setting the HTTP Referer
and other headers 484 Authentication credentials 485
Managing cookies with the CookieContainer 486 When to
use the client stack 488








19.7
19.8

20

Checking the network state 489
Summary 490

Working with SOAP services 491
20.1

Introducing ASP.NET SOAP services using ASP.NET
Silverlight-compatible SOAP services 492 Service
references 495 Receiving data with the proxy 495
Sending data using the proxy 499




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492


xiv

CONTENTS

20.2

Using WCF services and complex data types

500

Creating the Silverlight-enabled WCF service 501 Sharing
type definitions 505 Adding the service reference 508
Using the service 509




20.3
20.4

Using the configuration file 511
Error handling with WCF 513
Using an out parameter 513 Exposing exception information
for debugging 515 Error handling with WCF SOAP
faults 516




20.5

21

Summary 518

RESTful services with the ASP.NET Web API 520
21.1

Creating a RESTful service using the ASP.NET Web API
Solution setup 523 Creating the services 525 Testing the
service using the browser 530 Adding the Silverlight
project 531






21.2

Consuming REST services
REST service GET operations
POSTing to the service 544
DELETE 546

21.3

22

539
540 Updating resources by
Removing resources using




Summary 548

Working with XML, JSON, RSS, and Atom 549
22.1

Parsing plain old XML
LINQ to XML

22.2

550



550

XmlSerializer 554

Working with JSON 558
JsonObject and JsonArray

22.3

559



Working with RSS and Atom
Reading syndication feeds 566
items 569

22.4

23

DataContractJsonSerializer

566


Working with feed

Summary 573

Duplex, sockets, and local connections 575
23.1

WCF polling duplex services

576

Creating the project and callback contract 577 Creating the
service 579 Creating the service logic 582 Managing
client subscriptions 584 Using the duplex service 585








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522


xv

CONTENTS

23.2

Connecting to sockets 589
Serving the policy file 590 Opening the connection 591
Handling the response 591


23.3

Multicast sockets 593
Any-Source Multicast/Internet Standard Multicast 593
Source-Specific Multicast 594

23.4

Connecting to other local Silverlight applications

595

Creating the receiver 596 Creating the sender 597
Putting it all together 597


23.5

PART 4

24

Summary 599

2D AND 3D GRAPHICS .................................. 601
Graphics and effects 603
24.1

Shapes

604

Lines 605 Rectangle 605
Polyline 607 Polygon 608




Ellipse 606



24.2

Geometry 609
Simple geometries 609 Path geometries
Composite geometries 612


24.3

Brushes

611

613

SolidColorBrush 613 LinearGradientBrush 614
RadialGradientBrush 616 ImageBrush 618
VideoBrush 619




24.4

Effects

620

Using built-in effects

24.5

25

620



Creating custom pixel shaders

Summary 629

Working with images 630
25.1
25.2

Basic imaging 631
Creating images at runtime

632

Creating from existing images 633 Creating from UI
elements 634 A Mandelbrot fractal generator 636




25.3

Deep Zoom 638
Showing an image 639 Zooming in and out 639
Managing the viewport 641 Deploying multiscale
images 643




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xvi

CONTENTS

25.4

Dealing with dead space

643

Filling the space 644 Uniform sizing 645
area 646 UniformToFill 647




Fill the



25.5

26

Summary 647

Introduction to 3D 649
26.1
26.2

3D—a natural way of interacting with information
The Silverlight/XNA 3D API 652
Rendering pipeline

26.3
26.4
26.5

652



650

Project templates 653

Detecting capabilities with the GraphicsDeviceManager
Using the DrawingSurface 658
Project structure: the scene and objects 659
The scene 660 Renderable scene objects 663
The camera 665


26.6

Vertices

667

Building a triangle using vertices
the scene 670

26.7

668



Adding the triangle to

Primitives 671
The TriangleList primitive 672 The TriangleStrip
primitive 673 Tessellating a sphere 674 Rendering the
sphere with primitives 676




26.8

27



Summary 678

3D lighting, texturing, and animation 679
27.1

Lighting and normal vectors
Lighting the scene 681
Indexed vertices 684

27.2



680

Sphere normal vectors

682

Applying a texture 687
The ContentManager 687 Texturing the sphere 688
Adding and texturing a background 691


27.3

Coordinate spaces and matrices

695

The three coordinate space conversion matrices 696
The Matrix class 697

27.4

Keyframe animation 698
The KeyFrame and KeyframeAnimation classes 698
Using animation 703

27.5

Summary 706

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xvii

CONTENTS

PART 5

28

MAKING THE MOST OF THE PLATFORM 709
Pop-ups, windows, and full-screen applications 711
28.1

Showing pop-ups and child windows

712

The Popup control 713 Displaying a dialog box with the
ChildWindow control 713


28.2

28.3

Creating native windows

717

Creating a normal window
chrome 723

718

Running in full screen

730

Normal full-screen mode 731
mode 732

28.4

29

Customizing window





Elevated trust full-screen

Summary 733

Navigation 734
29.1

Browser navigation background 735
Browser journals 735
Back and forth 737

29.2



Anchor hashtags

736

The Navigation Application template 738
Creating a navigation application 738 Adding a new
page 740 Changing the application theme 742




29.3

Navigating to pages

744

The Page class 744 The NavigationService class
Frames and URIs 748 Caching pages 751
Navigating to pages in other assemblies 753


746



29.4

Navigation out of the browser 755
Providing custom navigation controls 756

29.5

30

Summary 759

Working with files and directories 761
30.1

Using the file open and save dialogs
Working with the OpenFileDialog
SaveFileDialog 767

30.2

Working with directories

763

762


Saving files with the

770

Getting directory timestamps 772 Checking for directory
existence 774 Getting the directory root 774 Creating
and deleting directories 775 Listing directory contents 777
Accessing special folders 778








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xviii

CONTENTS

30.3

Working with individual files

780

Creating a file 784 Writing to a file 785 Reading from a
file 787 Getting and setting file metadata 789
File utility functions 790






30.4

Storing data in isolated storage

791

IsolatedStorageFile: the virtual filesystem 792
writing files: the isolated storage way 795

30.5

31

Reading and

Summary 797

Printing
31.1



798

How Silverlight printing works

799

The PrintDocument class 801 The PrintPage Event 804
Converting to PostScript 807 Rasterization 807
Forcing bitmap printing 808 Forcing vector printing 809






31.2

Printing onscreen information

810

Printing the content as is 810 Reparenting the elements
to fit 812 Scaling content to fit 814




31.3

Multipage printing dedicated trees 816
Prerequisites 816 Printing line items 820 Adding
multipage support 825 Adding a header and footer 827






31.4

32

Summary 830

COM, Native Extensions, and p-invoke 832
32.1

COM automation 833
Detecting COM automation availability 834 Using COM
automation to make Silverlight talk 835 Accessing GPS data
using COM automation 836 Automating Excel 837






32.2

Native Extensions for Silverlight 839
Accessing an accelerometer 840 Integrating with the
Windows taskbar 849 Runtime automation server
installation 855




32.3

P-invoke for API calls 857
Setting up the printer application 857
interface 860

32.4

Summary 865

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The Win32 API


xix

CONTENTS

PART 6

33

BEST PRACTICES .......................................... 867
Structuring and testing with the MVVM pattern 869
33.1

Project setup and traditional code-behind approach
Project and service setup 871
solution 875

33.2



Model-View-ViewModel basics

A typical code-behind

878

Myths about MVVM Model-View-ViewModel 881
simple: a basic ViewModel implementation 882

33.3

Factoring out reusable code
Business rules and logic
calls 890

33.4

888

870



Keep it

887


Better separation from the UI

Data access and service

892

Using commands 892 Using the CallMethodAction
behavior 896 View-specific entities and ViewModels 898
Interfaces, IoC, and ViewModel locators 903




33.5

Testing MVVM applications 906
Introduction to the Silverlight Unit Testing Framework
Testing the ViewModel 910 Testing asynchronous
operations 911

906



33.6

34

Summary 912

Debugging your application 913
34.1

Debugging basics

914

Using the Debug class 914 IDE breakpoints 916
The good old MessageBox 918


34.2

Binding debugging 920
Viewing binding errors in the output window 921 Debugging
with custom value converters 922 Using XAML
breakpoints 922




34.3

Troubleshooting network operations

923

Installing Fiddler 924 Monitoring and logging traffic
Inspecting individual requests 926


34.4

Summary 928

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xx

CONTENTS

35

The install experience and preloaders 929
35.1

Handling the ‘Silverlight not installed’ scenarios
Creating your own install experience

35.2

Using a custom preloader

930

931

933

Creating the appearance 934 Integrating the custom splash
screen 936 Monitoring the load progress 936




35.3

Summary 937

appendix A Database, connection, and data model setup
index 945

939

online appendixes
appendix B
appendix C
appendix D
appendix E
appendix F

Media basics
Raw media, webcam, and microphone
Introduction to WCF RIA Services
WCF RIA endpoints, security, business logic, and decoupling
WCF RIA Services and WVVM

Online appendixes available as a free download from
www.manning.com/Silverlight5inAction

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preface
Coding on the client is fun. I started on the Commodore 64 in seventh grade in the
1980s; later moved to DOS with dBASE, QuickBasic, and C++; and eventually began Windows programming using C++, Borland Delphi 1.0, PowerBuilder, Visual Basic 3-6, and
.NET. I like the ozone smell of making my CPU work for a living. I like being able to tap
into the power of the local machine. I want to be able to hear the individual bits moving
across the bus.
I like client application development, and I really like XAML. I like Silverlight, WPF,
and Windows 8 XAML. I even like working in the WPF subset on the .NET Micro
Framework and Gadgeteer boards I own. Sometimes, when I’m feeling especially dangerous I’ll write some C++, or C, or even a little assembly. It’s all about the power.
A year and a half ago, Manning published Silverlight 4 in Action. As proud as I am of
that book, I’m even more excited to bring you this updated version. Not only because
of the work involved in bringing you this edition, but because of how far Silverlight
has come in that time. With Silverlight 5, Silverlight has the power.1
What a difference a year and a half makes! Silverlight 4 saw significant uptake
among business application developers, and those same developers helped drive the
features that made it into Silverlight 5. These developers are writing the types of
bread-and-butter applications that leverage Silverlight for its simple deployment and
great validation and data binding capabilities.

1

And now, you have C&C Music Factory’s “I Got the Power” looping in your head. You can thank me later.

xxi

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xxii

PREFACE

Figure 1

Adoption of Adobe Flash vs. Microsoft Silverlight in 2012

General adoption of Silverlight is up too, as you can see in figure 1. These unofficial
third-party charts, reformatted for print from http://riastats.com data obtained in
early 2012, show Silverlight and Adobe Flash adoption taken from a large segment of
the general internet population. They reveal overall Silverlight adoption at a hair over
75 percent with version 4 at a bit over 67 percent and overall flash adoption around 96
percent, with Flash 11 at a hair over 70 percent.
I’m not a marketing person; I’m a developer. Although such a blunt numbers comparison between the two competing products may look dire at first glance, adoption
numbers like these aren’t at all bad, considering Silverlight was a far more recent
introduction and didn’t benefit from either the late 1990s boom in website intro apps
or bundling with Internet Explorer 6. You can do a lot with 75 percent of the PCs out
there. It’s my goal to help you do it.
2011 was also a rocky year for Silverlight and Flash developers, with confusion over
what Silverlight is to be used for and where it fits into the development strategy at
Microsoft and in the web as a whole. The Apple position on Flash didn’t help Flash or
plug-ins in general. Flash definitely had a reputation for websites, whereas Silverlight
evolved to more of a browser-delivered client technology. There were as many, if not
more, out-of-browser apps as in-browser apps written in Silverlight.
With HTML5 (and JavaScript and CSS3, all of which I’ll lump into “HTML5” just as
the media tends to) having picked up serious speed, especially on the media and
casual games front on the public web, I think it’s a sure bet to become the way forward
for broad-reach, public-facing website content. There’s so much momentum behind
HTML5 that to fight it would simply land you behind others. HTML5 will suit you just
fine, especially for run-of-the-mill, non-digital rights management (DRM), nonsmooth-streaming media like what you see on YouTube.
But for many, HTML5 isn’t a realistic choice. Either you can’t count on browser
support for key features, or you have a behind-the-firewall (or other controlled network) application scenario that makes it easier for you to use technologies you’ll be

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PREFACE

xxiii

more productive in. Two key points rise above any trendy discourse and well into the
realm of GSD (Getting Stuff Done):




Know your audience —Develop in what your users can use (behind the firewall
has more choice and control than the public web).
Know your skills and requirements —Develop in what you can be most productive
in—what will meet the project requirements with the least amount of fudging.

Without a doubt, most .NET developers are more productive in Silverlight when building business applications. There’s so much there, right in the box, that makes it easy
for you to quickly create stunning, feature-rich apps. Not only that, but the added system integration features of Silverlight 5 (like COM and p-invoke) make it even more
compelling as a platform.
As a developer, or manager of developers, you must choose technology based not
only on the longevity of that technology, but also on what makes it possible for you to
deliver the best possible application for the most reasonable cost.
Regardless of where Silverlight goes in the long term, you already know that XAML,
C#, and Visual Basic are all here to stay. In addition to continued desktop support for
Silverlight and WPF, Microsoft is using XAML in Windows 8 Metro and on the Windows
Phone. I believe in XAML strongly enough to have written this book (around 1,200
pages if you include the downloadable content) while working at Microsoft, as well as
a book dedicated to XAML on Windows 8. Given the resources dedicated to XAML
development and tools at Microsoft, I’m glad to see they believe in it too.
Ultimately, it’s good to have a choice. I choose XAML. I choose Silverlight.

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acknowledgments
A book of this size and complexity takes a large number of people to write (and to
lift). Though my name is on the cover, there’s no way I could’ve completed this without the support and hard work of many others. I’d like to thank:










Chad Campbell and John Stockton for creating such an excellent first edition.
Without their hard work covering Silverlight 2, I’d never have thought to create
a Silverlight 4 edition or this Silverlight 5 edition.
The Silverlight product team for their continued help in digging into the
details of the runtime. There were too many helpful people to list here.
My stalwart tech reviewer Tom McKearney. I appreciate most that he didn’t just
die on the spot when he was told the 800 pages he had to review were actually in
the 1,200 neighborhood.
I’d like to thank my friends at Manning. People like Mary Piergies, Liz Welch,
Elizabeth Martin, and others worked tirelessly to get this book published in
time. Michael Stephens, Maureen Spencer, and of course, Marjan Bace all
worked with me to help ensure that you, the reader, get all the text I wrote,
without them having to print a multivolume set. I thank them and the rest of
the folks at Manning.
Unique in this thanks is my development editor, Jeff Bleiel. A good editor can
make the difference between a horrible authoring experience and a good one,
and for the second time, Jeff definitely made that difference. He was my interface with Manning and my continued mentor as an author. Jeff made a positive
contribution to this book and to my writing in general.
xxiv

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