HTML5 and Silverlight (It’s been a long summer)

Ever since Microsoft unveiled an early build of Windows 8 in a video back in June, there has been rampant speculation on what the emphasis on HTML5 and Javascript means for the future of software development in the Microsoft world.  Specifically, what happens to Silverlight?  What happens to .NET?

There has been commentary from just about every corner:  from toolset makers such as Telerik, to ex-Microsofties, such as Scott Barnes.

And of course Microsoft has been pretty silent on all this.  The BUILD conference is coming up in about 2 weeks, but we’ve been waiting all summer, and it’s quite fun to practice Kremlinology anyway, right?

There seem to be several main theories on Microsoft’s plans:

  • .NET and Silverlight are going to wither on the vine.  The future is HTML5, Javascript, and C/C++.  The Windows division has taken over and they never appreciated .NET.
  • .NET and Silverlight will continue to exist, but they are going to be lesser stars in the MS galaxy.
  • .NET and XAML are at the heart of Windows 8 and something called Project Jupiter.  They’ll get to play on an even field with C++ at last.
Since the evidence is so scarce, we should focus on what Microsoft has actually said.
  • The future of the web is HTML5
  • SharePoint is big, and it’s going to the cloud with Office 365
  • Office 15 is on the way and SharePoint is the nerve center of Office
Okay, no point in belaboring it.  HTML5 is going to be a big focus.  SharePoint is a HUGE business for Microsoft, and it’s founded on .NET.  Throw in Dynamics and a bunch of other MS products.  .NET is not going away.
I’m excited to see what Microsoft unveils at the BUILD keynote on the 13th.
Next post:  What I HOPE Microsoft is thinking about.
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