Silverlight 3 is released

Silverlight 3 was released on July 9, 2009, a day earlier than expected. (You can download Silverlight 3 from TechRepublic’s Software Downloads directory.) Since so many of the details were talked about at Mix 09, there isn’t anything new here in terms of what we know, but it is nice that it is available.

I think Silverlight — in 18 or so months and in three quick versions — has done what other systems took much longer to achieve. Microsoft can move fast and accurately when given motivation.

Microsoft promises not to sue alternative C# and CLI implementations

ZDNet blogger Mary Jo Foley reports that Microsoft is moving to put C# and the CLI under its “Community Promise.” In a nutshell, this means that Microsoft won’t sue anyone for implementing either, regardless of the licensing terms of the implementation. In theory, this should make people worry a lot less about using Mono; in reality, many people will still worry about Microsoft yanking the rug out from underneath them.

XHTML 2, we hardly knew ye

The W3C has decided to cease work on XHTML 2 and put its full resources behind HTML 5. The trade-off is the HTML 5 Working Group will produce a version of the HTML 5 spec that is pure XML.

Microsoft Thrive looks to help advance your career

Microsoft has launched a new portal called Thrive, which is focused on helping developers get jobs and learn. It collects job postings, training resources, and message boards — all for developers.

Azure pricing predicted to lowball the competition

As ZDNet blogger Mary Jo Foley reports, analysts predict that the upcoming announcement of Azure pricing will have it priced far less than the competition. It’s definitely an interesting thought, and I suspect that this will be the case. Microsoft has always been good at being extremely competitive on price compared to other closed source vendors (SQL Server vs. Oracle is a great example).

Azure expands beyond .NET

ZDNet blogger Mary Jo Foley is on a tear; she also reports that Microsoft is working hard to make Azure useful to PHP, Java, and Ruby developers.

Lunascape releases version 5.1, claims it’s faster than Firefox

Lunascape, the Web browser that uses three engines, has released version 5.1, its first official release. In addition to the flexibility that incorporating three major engines affords, Lunascape claims to edge out Firefox in JavaScript speed and in startup speed.

Great article on analyzing “big data”

The ACM’s Queue publication has a great article on analyzing large data sets. It’s mandatory reading for anyone who needs to run reports or other aggregate operations against data that originated in a transactional database.

uTest awards prizes for Twitter app bug finders

uTest recently held a contest to find bugs in popular Twitter apps, and proving the utility of its service, more than 300 bugs (20% considered “show stoppers”) were found. In the process, uTest handed out hundreds of dollars in prizes to the top testers. Great work, guys!


Disclosure of Justin’s industry affiliations: Justin James has a working arrangement with Microsoft to write an article for MSDN Magazine. He also has a contract with Spiceworks to write product buying guides.


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