Always a strong advocate for Silverlight development, at the SharePoint Saturday event in St. Louis, SharePoint MVP (and Women in SharePoint National Board Member) Becky Isserman (@mosslover) shared her thoughts on what people should know about SharePoint 2010 and Silverlight integration. Her comments have been added to the community video series ‘The One Thing You Need to Know About SharePoint 2010.’
Becky’s message was simple: Silverlight integration is easy, it’s a better user experience, and it is a faster development experience. As she points out, half of SharePoint 2010 is built on Silverlight, such as the Create Site and Create List user interfaces. It’s easy to deploy and manage, its compatible with most major operating systems, and you can run executables from the cloud.
Another major benefit that Becky identifies is the use of the Silverlight Client Object Model to build out custom solutions, which does not require SharePoint to be installed on the client machine. Instead, developers just need to refer to the client dlls, which SharePoint provides. People who need to build a custom solution have a much easier time using the client object model instead of building custom WCF Services as in MOSS 2007.
As Becky mentions, most topics on Silverlight in MOSS were around configuration, whereas most new content focuses on what you can do – not just how to configure it. It’s a big shift for SharePoint, and those who have started building SharePoint solutions using Silverlight tend to be very passionate about it.
Some additional resources that may be of interest to you around Silverlight development for SharePoint 2010 include: