Well folks, we saw this comming a mile away!
In the brave new world of the Web2.0, RIAs (Rich Internet Applications) there is no room for slackers, and now we can enjoy not one or two but three choices to develop and deliver (and why not: ENJOY) Internet in a new and sophisticated way.
My personal Favorite.
Microsoft Silverlight is a versatile cross-browser, cross-platform, and cross-device plug-in for delivering the next generation of .NET based media experiences and rich interactive applications for the Web.
Silverlight Runtime – Feature Matrix
|Cross-Browser Support for Firefox, IE, Safari, Opera|
|Cross-Platform Support for Windows and Mac (and Linux through the Moonlight Project)|
|2D Vector Animation/Graphics|
|HTML DOM Integration|
|Canvas Layout Support|
|Silverlight ASP.NET Controls (asp:media, asp:xaml)|
|XAML Parser (based on WPF)|
|Media – 720P High Definition (HD) Video|
|Media – Audio/Video Support (VC-1, WMV, WMA, MP3)|
|Media – Image Support (JPG, PNG)|
|Windows Media Server Support|
|Support for Visual Basic.NET and C#; Common Language Runtime (CLR) based languages|
|Support for IronPython, IronRuby, Managed JScript, and other Dynamic Language Runtime (DLR) based languages|
|Rich Core Framework (e.g. Generics, collections)|
|Layout controls including StackPanel and Grid|
|Full suite of Controls (TextBox, RadioButton, Slider, Calendar, DatePicker, DataGrid, ListBox, TabControl, and others)|
|Managed Control Framework|
|Visual State Manager|
|Deep Zoom Technology|
|Media – DRM Powered by PlayReady|
|Media – Windows Media Audio 10 Professional support|
|Media – MediaStreamSource for managed code media file parser and protocol extensibility|
|High quality resizing|
|Media – Basic SSPL Support|
|Cross Domain Network Access|
|Easy access to server-side data via Web Services|
|Direct access to TCP sockets|
|Interoperability with SOAP and REST services, including support for XML, JSON, RSS and Atom data formats|
|LINQ (including LINQ to XML, LINQ to JSON, and LINQ to Entities)|
|Duplex communications (“push” from Server to Silverlight client)|
|ADO.NET Data Services|
|Managed HTML Bridge|
|Managed Exception Handling|
|.NET Framework Security Enforcement|
|Type Safety Verification|
|Enhanced Keyboard Input Support|
|File Upload Support (via WebClient API)|
|Remote Debugging (PC and Mac)|
Silverlight’s support for .NET, High Definition video, cost-effective advanced streaming, unparalleled high-resolution interactivity with Deep Zoom technology, and controls, businesses can reach out to new markets across the Web, desktop, and devices.
Let’s not forget that the brand new Silverlight 2.0 is also integrated on the SURFACE project (Multi-tactile GUI)
Adobe® AIR™ runtime lets developers use proven web technologies to build rich Internet applications that deploy to the desktop and run across operating systems.
Adobe AIR offers an exciting new way to engage customers with innovative, branded desktop applications, without requiring changes to existing technology, people, or processes.
In essence, Mozila Prism is an application that lets users split web applications out of their browser and run them directly on their desktop.
(A plus side of this, is that it lets users add their favorite web apps to their desktop environment and when invoked, these applications run in their own window)
They are accessible with Control-Tab, Command-Tab, and Exposé, just like desktop apps. And users can still access these same applications from any web browser when they are away from their own computers.