TechDays 2008: Silverlight Samurai Skills

Tech Days CanadaThanks to everyone who came out to my Silverlight Samurai Skills presentations this morning in Toronto, and to Microsoft Canada for inviting me to present at this event. When the Canadian team does events, they do them really big – and really well!

I hope you found the sessions useful and engaging.  They certainly provided a lap around a whole lot of the core features in Silverlight 2. I promised to provide code and links so you can follow-up, get connected with the community, and find out more.

The Code

As promised, click here for all the source code from the presentation, including start, end-of-part-one, and completed versions. Import the .vssettings file into Visual Studio to get the code snippets.

I’ll post the slide decks soon – I’ve been asked to hold off a little bit on those.

The Links

Note – this list is far from exhaustive, it just points to some things I’ve found really helpful.

Silverlight.NET – Get Started section has all the bits you need

Additional Silverlight Controls and Themes

Silverlight Toolkit (Microsoft, MS-PL)
Silverlight Contrib
(Third-party, MS-PL)
see also
Blacklight, which comes from the Patient Journey Demonstrator

Layout

Silverlight Layout Fundamentals (DevDave)

VisualStateManager, Parts and State Model

Parts and States Model with VSM (scorbs, 4-part series)

IsolatedStorage

IsolatedStorage quickstart (wildermuth)

Browser DOM Integration

Forward-Back Browser Integration (webjak)

More Links [update 12 Nov]

Qixing and Laurent have also put together a FAQ based on feedback from the Montreal version of Silverlight Samurai Skills.

The P.S.

My consultancy, Carrington Technologies, specializes in Silverlight and WPF consulting and training, and we’re based out of Toronto. If you’re interested in finding out more, please drop me a line via the contact page, or through rob at robburke dot not.

p.p.s. Silverlight Streaming has now been updated to Silverlight 2 RTW, so the Deep Zoom FractLOL should now work. [Updated November 2nd]

final p.s. [update] I am greatly indebted to Microsoft’s Mark Rideout, whose excellent TechEd 2008 session on Silverlight 2 formed the basis for the core demo I used in these sessions. I’ve updated his demo to highlight some of the features added to Silverlight 2 between Beta 2 and RTW (including additions to the IsolatedStorage API, and an allegedly more compliant browser history implementation).

LOL+Arts Exhibit in San Francisco

I’m delighted to hear that the FractLOL, which blends Deep Zoom and LOLCats into a mosaic of hilarity, is going to be exhibited at LOL+Arts, a cross-media exhibit of artworks inspired by the LOLCat phenomenon. The exhibit will be open in San Francisco on October 23rd, and will benefit Partners in Reading and their work on adult literacy.

To celebrate, I’ve updated the FractLOL to Silverlight 2 RTW, and fully intend to subject you to it again. Here. Right now.

Note: Silverlight Streaming has now been fully updated to Silverlight RTW. The FractLOL can be viewed on the Mac or PC, so long as you install the lightweight Silverlight 2 plug-in from Microsoft. [Updated on the 2nd of November.]

I’ve also updated the FractLOL page on this blog with a bit more information about how this came to be.

Here are links to the LOL+Arts Site, curator Marianne Goldin’s blog, and the announcement on icanhascheezburger.com.

I love this image they used to promote the event on icanhascheezburger, and wish I had a high-res version for my desktop wallpaper:

OMG Fulla Starz

If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the past few months, it’s that if you want to drive traffic to your blog, technical articles can be pretty good, but you should really just save yourself the time and energy and just add cats.

LOLCats, akshuly.

It’s a Photosynth kind of day: Synths from The Temple Bar Pub, Dublin, Ireland

PhotoSynth is the Microsoft Research / Seadragon / UWashington technology that can process a collection of photos and turn it into a scene that can be navigated in 3D.

At this year’s Siggraph conference, there’s an interesting paper from the University of Washington and Microsoft about finding more intelligent paths through collections of photos like the ones produced by PhotoSynth.
Here’s the video that accompanies that paper:

(Click for direct link to YouTube)

When I was working for Microsoft in Dublin, I experimented with what was then an internal tool for creating PhotoSynths.  I ran around Dublin taking photos of some famous places.

Two of my favourite Photosynth collections were shot in the early morning quiet at The Temple Bar Pub.  Now, with the public release of PhotoSynth, I can publish these to the web!

Temple Bar (Front Bar), Dublin, Ireland

(Click for larger view on Photosynth site)

If I could go back and shoot these again, I’d put more time into taking close-ups of objects and memorabilia of interest. Photosynth shines in scenes where the viewer is interested in navigating the scene to discover and examine points of interest.

Temple Bar (Back Bar), Dublin, Ireland

(Click for larger view on Photosynth site)

I also have Synths of Newgrange and the Liffey River which I will post when I have a chance to find the original photos.

Congratulations to the PhotoSynth team, and please send me a link if you ‘Synth something cool!

I maded you a FractLOL…

… and then I Silverlit it!

Is alternately a LOLQuilt, a ROFLMosaic, or a Deep LOL! :)

Here is the full screen version.

Click, drag, shift-click and use the mouse wheel to see that the image is made of over 10,000 LOLCats (there are 2,442 unique images here).

How this came to be?

The kittehs are from the very awesum icanhascheezburger.com which I love and will link to again because I hope they will also find this awesum and not tell me to make it go away.

The photomosaic was generated using AndreaMosaic, a utility for making fun images like this one.

The output of AndreaMosaic got processed by Deep Zoom Composer and turned into a Silverlight app.

And then uploaded to Silverlight Streaming which lets me host these kittehs on the intarwebs without bringing mai wee server to its knees (i hope i hope i hope).