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Silverlight 2 Unleashed 1st Edition

3.9 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0672330148
ISBN-10: 0672330148
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Full Color Code samples appear as they do in Visual Studio and Expression Blend! Printed entirely in color, with helpful figures and syntax coloring to make code samples appear as they do in Visual Studio and Expression Blend! Silverlight is Microsoft's new web-based User Interface (UI) technology, based on Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), which is introducing many revolutionary concepts in the world of UI development. Silverlight uses XAML, with tools like Expression Design and Expression Blend, to create astonishing UI effects (such as gradients, compositions, and animations.) In addition to the richness of the UI elements, Silverlight 2 allows the use of C# or VB in addition to JavaScript to automate web pages. With Silverlight, you have the power of .NET on multiple platforms (IE and Firefox on Windows, Firefox and Safari on Macintosh, and Firefox on Linux). The author brings you up to speed very quickly with numerous hands-on examples.
  • Use XAML to create state-of-the-art user interfaces
  • Create XAML transforms and animations
  • Design compelling user experiences with Microsoft Expression Blend
  • Integrate media into your rich Internet applications
  • Program Silverlight with both JavaScript and .NET languages
  • Deploy Silverlight content to web pages
  • Encode videos with Expression Media Encoder
  • Make the most of Silverlight elements, resources, and styles
  • Use templates to quickly change your application's look and feel
  • Efficiently debug Silverlight code
  • Use design tools to create graphics that import seamlessly into Silverlight
Laurent Bugnion has been a software engineer since 1996. He has worked with many programming languages and environments, including C, C++, Java, HTML/CSS/JavaScript, and, since 2002, the Microsoft .NET platform. He has been honored twice as a Microsoft MVP: first for ASP.NET and now for Client Application Development. He blogs about Silverlight and related technologies at http: //blog.galasoft.ch. ON THE WEB: Download all examples and source code presented in this book from informit.com/title/9780672330148 Category: Microsoft Programming/Web Programming Covers: Microsoft(R) Silverlight 2 User Level: Beginning-Intermediate $49.99 USA / $54.99 CAN / 31.99 Net UK

About the Author

Laurent Bugnion works as a senior software developer and architect in Switzerland, where he lives with his wife, Chi Meei, and his two daughters, Alise (2001) and Laeticia (2004). Originally an electronics engineer from the Engineering School of Yverdon (Switzerland), his interests quickly moved to software, and he achieved a post-graduate degree in software engineering in 1999 in the Engineering School of Rapperswil (Switzerland). Currently, his interests are very much set on WPF, Silverlight, and other .NET 3.5 technologies, which he helped introduce, teach, and coach at Siemens for the past three years. Prior to that, he first wrote embedded C/C++, and then moved to desktop computers in Java, JavaScript, and eventually .NET (WinForms and ASP.NET). After more than 12 years spent developing various software products at Siemens, Laurent is employed since December 2008 by IdentityMine, one of the world’s leading firms in WPF and Silverlight development and design.


Privately, Laurent has also been active, developing websites and web applications in HTML, JavaScript, CSS, ASP, and currently ASP.NET. He has done his best to contribute to various developers communities, first in the JavaScript newsgroups, and then in Microsoft’s forums related to ASP.NET, C#, WPF, and Silverlight. He blogs regularly on http://blog.galasoft.ch and publishes articles, prototypes, and demos related to the mentioned technologies. Laurent became a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) in 2007 for ASP.NET and then in 2008 for Client Application Development. In 2008, he also earned an MCTS for Windows Presentation Foundation.



Product Details

  • Paperback: 608 pages
  • Publisher: Sams Publishing; 1 edition (October 25, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0672330148
  • ISBN-13: 978-0672330148
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,542,738 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm a developer who is intimiately familiar with C# and the .NET platform in general. I've also been playing with Silverlight 1.1-2 betas/rc's and was hoping that this book would fill in the gaps that I'd gotten through just playing with it.

But in general, the book seems to be pitched toward a less technical audience- for example, he spends a paragraph telling us how to comment out XML, another area explains how to install Expression Blend, page 68 explains to us why we've got F's in our numbers (it's hex, duh), the diff between raster and vector graphics (this was necessary?)

Chapter -8- finally gets us into some code, and it's JavaScript- but the whole point of V2 was to get us out of JS and let us use other langs for more complex apps than just adding Flash-like abilities to our .NET sites.

Even THEN, we get told that, "JavaScript ... and other C-based languages are case sensitive!", and apparently (in the next para), "...JavaScript uses -variables- (text has it in italics) to store data." Oh my!

Chapter -9- is "Understanding .NET" and finally gets into VStudio.

At page 488, you get 10 pages on calling WCF servers.

If you're a .NET developer with some familiarity with WPF/XAML and a little WCF, you're probably better off waiting for other books. This should have really been called something similar to "Beginning Silverlight 2, mostly with Javascript".

If there were any other reasonable books specifically on 2.0, I'd send it back, but there aren't yet.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As is the case with some of the other books in this series (the WPF book comes to mind), it seems organized as a stream of consciousness with constant sidebars, and doesn't get into some of the more important concepts when I think it should. Dependency properties in particular are so critical to understand, and had I not been also reading a WPF book, I wouldn't know enough about them.

The book tends to be somewhat designer focused, and doesn't go far enough to explain why you code things a certain way. It's not a cookbook, mind you, but as most programmers would tell you, understanding the underlying reasons for doing things ultimately leads to better understanding and more solid implementation of what you learn.

Perhaps the biggest issue for me is that there's an expectation gap. I think if you were a Flash designer with some basic C# knowledge, you'd appreciate the style of this book. It seems written more for that audience. As an experienced .NET developer, you may feel that this is too basic or flowery. There are a great number of pages dedicated to finding a Web host and using FTP. Simply be aware of those expectations before buying.
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Format: Paperback
I previously purchased 'Introducing Microsoft Silverlight' by Laurence Moroney, and it was fine for its time before Silverlight 2 was released. However, do NOT buy any book not based on the release version - way too much has changed from Beta 2 and you will be quickly frustrated.

This was an excellent book! But...first the bad. I think it was a little too basic in parts, particularly when it tried to teach me how to program in C#. One book should not try to be both a beginning tutorial and address advanced topics, which this does - I would have much preferred a lot less basics and a little more in-depth explanations. It was obviously rushed through to production because the graphics did not match the text in many cases, and there were obvious bugs in the examples that would have never compiled, much less work correctly. However, it all got the point across very well. I am not a great fan of 'let me show everything with examples' - I would rather have more meat and explanations. This book is BIG on example code, though - which is good in the advanced topics where you can have exact syntax to copy and play with.

Now the good - this book is very thorough, although it occasionally leaves out simple subjects (how do you upload a file to a server???) The examples are thorough, and Bugnion talks through most lines of code. He also covers almost all of the controls available in 2.0, and he even discusses the object hierarchy, which is invaluable when creating your own controls.

Expression Blend is thoroughly covered, as well as significant tutorials in how to code in Visual Studio 2008. This book is meant for a C# programmer who is interested in building n-tier Silverlight applications, not simple eye-candy.
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Laurent has made a special contribution to the Silverlight world with this book: this is something that anyone with some web development can pick up to get started learning about this great new platform. Not a reference book, this is a good overview.

Before this guide, a lot of Silverlight knowledge was held solely by early adopters, and nearly off-limits to casual web developers looking to extend their knowledge from AJAX and the Adobe stack to what Microsoft has to offer.

This book is full of so many short topics that you'll come away with a great idea of what the possibilities are.

In Silverlight 2 Unleashed there's info on the tools, the highlights and promise of the platform, and get started exploring Silverlight for your next project. The book moves from XAML to an intro on .NET, C# basics, data binding overview, working with XML, and even unit testing.

If you've read Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed (WPF) (Unleashed) or Pro WPF in C# 2008: Windows Presentation Foundation with .NET 3.5, Second Edition (Books for Professionals by Professionals), you won't find the technical details you might expect.

So, let's be clear: this is targeted at those new to web development on the Microsoft stack OR new to everything Silverlight OR those looking for the highlights. If you're new to these things, this is one of the few books that you don't need knowledge of the last 6 years of Microsoft's platform to get going. And that's great!
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