Microsoft is not ready to let Silverlight loose against Canvas

Microsoft is honest in the recent blog post about using one platform to build another by saying that "some people have gone as far as to suggest HTML 5 could eliminate the need for Flash and Silverlight". Yes, we do want to go that far and we don't want Flash or Silverlight addons / plugins (call them however you like) in our fully capable, HTML 5 compliant web browser! I mean, why should we want them if Canvas is perfectly capable of achieving the same task ? Well, one of the answer is due to Microsoft's own Internet Explorer: as of version 8, it still doesn't support the Canvas element. And Microsoft's solution is pretty funny: we don't support the Canvas element but look, our own Silverlight can do it. There is no way you won't install Silverlight now, right ? Wrong !

Even if the implementation is pretty cool, Microsoft is not taking the right direction. And this is understandable as Silverlight is a great way for them to promote their "cross-platform" technologies such as their Windows Media Video codecs. They also have a competitor to Adobe's Flash platform. And they have a huge user base with Internet Explorer which lets them do pretty much whatever they want with standards as long as some are somewhat respected. Let's remember how long it took them to finally handle semi-transparent PNG images to imaging how long it will tak for a full Canvas support... this is sad.

But the great news is for us, developers: we can happily develop our Canvas graphisms now and provide a Silverlight download for those Internet Explorer users who still won't / can't switch. But, wait, then we are working toward Microsoft's plan don't we ? Well, what could we do except help user switch...

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