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MIX 09: Review Day 2

Mix09TheNextWebNow

The second day was more about the tools like Expression Blend and Expression Web. Those tools are now part of the toolbox of any web developer or designer. The feature that attract more my attention are the SuperPreview from Expression Web (this allow you to compare a web page between different browser and fix any discrepancies. Also, in Expression Blend there a lot of new feature like Skecth Flow (this allow you to easily build a wire frame of your application that the end user can interact with and add feedback), the SampleDataSource which provide the ability to a designer to fill any object that require data without having to enter any data.

Keynote

  • Dean Hachamovitch
    The keynote of Dean wasn’t a surprise. But it was cool to be at the release of IE8. I’ve seen a lot of improvement. I’m still learning the new feature.
  • Deborah Adler 
    Present her showcase about the design of container to solve some labelling issues. This was very interesting, to only thing the presentation was a little bit too long.

 

Session #1 – The Future of Microsoft Expression Blend

Expression Blend will evolve as much as Silverlight 3. This tool that was at first build to target designer is now considered as premium tool for developer to build Silverlight application. In this new version, Designer are now allowed to implement action and response to event without having to implement code. On the other side developer can now code without having to switch to Visual Studio. They have implemented the code editor with intellisense. Also, Blend can now handle project under source control like TFS. Another new feature is the ability to import Photoshop and Illustrator files and convert some of the layer into controls.

Session #2 – The Best Video and Photography on the Web in Microsoft Silverlight

This session was presented by Vertigo. This presentation was good but it was more a showcase than a technology presentation. I`m not a big fan of showcase presentation.

 

Session (video) - User Experience Design Patterns for Business Application with Microsoft Silverlight 3

I’ve planned to assist at this session but it was full. So i’ve downloaded the video. One thing that kept my attention, it’s the new SampleDataSource that generate the data to help the design of the application. So there is no more need to hardcode data to be able to test a DataGrid or a DropDownList. Corrina Black also present the new control that help build great user experience like the DataGrid, the validation control, etc… This is an excellent presentation.

Other Session

There was other session that look interesting that i will look later in video. I wasn’t able to attend to those due to schedule conflict.
-When Errors Happen: Debugging Microsoft Silverlight (John Papa)
-Microsoft Silverlight is Ready for Business (Ward Bell)
-Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Web Developers (Thomas Deml)

Conclusion of Day 2

The second day was more about Expression Blend. All Blend feature are very interesting. I’ll take some time to test all those new feature. But i regret that the Sketch Flow feature is not available in the current preview of Blend 3.

Regards,
Louis-Philippe

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