Last week's Read/WriteWeb poll asked what you thought of Silverlight, Microsoft's newly improved rich internet app plug-in that was launched to (unusually) rave blog reviews at MIX on Monday. Some people even said that Silverlight leaves Adobe's Flash technology in the dust, which is a big claim to make given that Flash is still extremely popular with designers - and for users it's a slick rich media browser plug-in. Also the days of usablity 'gurus' complaining about Flash splash pages is mostly gone. Nowadays Flash is used to create compelling multimedia browser experiences. So to my mind, Flash still reigns supreme - until such time as we see similar ubiquity and/or outstanding browser experiences from Silverlight.
Also let's not forget that Adobe has been in this game for far longer than Microsoft, so it seems odd that Silverlight is being pumped up as a Flash killer. Don't get me wrong, Silverlight is very promising. From a technical standpoint, it would be difficult to argue against Nik Cubrilovic's detailed review. But let's not call it a Flash-killer just yet, until we see some actual web app evidence that it's better than Flash. Will designers take to Silverlight like they adopted Flash on masse? That is probably the key question.
In any case, our poll suggests that most people are indeed impressed by Silverlight. 23% rated it "awesome" and 32% "promising". So over half give it the thumbs up. 25% of respondants rated it "meh", but only 9% said it's terrible. Also there's a little confusion out there about what Silverlight is and does, with 11% not sure what it is. We'll look to address that this week with an explanatory post about Silverlight.
I'm curious to know if Read/WriteWeb readers think that Silverlight is a 'Flash killer'. If you think it is, tell us why in the comments. Or if you think Adobe has this covered, please elaborate too.
Question: Microsoft announced on Monday a raft of new features for Silverlight, its web development platform. What do you think of it?
It's awesome! 23% (116 votes)
It looks promising, but need to test it out more 32% (163 votes)
Meh 25% (124 votes)
It's terrible! 9% (44 votes)
I don't get what it is... 11% (55 votes)
Total Votes: 502