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Microsoft

Silverlight 2.0 Released 164

Posted by kdawson
from the opposite-of-sun dept.
rfernand79 writes "Via Scott Guthrie's Blog for Microsoft, we find out that Silverlight 2.0 has been released. The blog post notes some interesting statistics, including the magnitude of video streamed during the Olympics and the Democratic National Convention (both using Silverlight). 'Hello Worlds' and educational links are included in the post."
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Silverlight 2.0 Released

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  • About time (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Aggrajag (716041) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @04:00PM (#25433649)
    As I still haven't installed Silverlight 1.0 or seen a site that requires it.
    • Re:About time (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Shados (741919) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @04:26PM (#25433905)

      Silverlight 1.0 should never have come out. Silverlight 1.0 vs Silverlight 2.0 is like comparing Flash to Flex, and make the gab between the two 5 times wider. SL1.0 was useless as hell, and even several of Microsoft's more vocal employees and public figures said that much. It was just something the marketing dep pushed when development of SL2.0 was taking too long. And that same marketing dep messed up big time.

      Fortunately, Silverlight 2.0 (which really should be SL 1.0) actually has -some- features.

      • by Ilgaz (86384)

        but it doesn't support PowerPC OS X? The platform which is supported by Adobe?

        Who runs Silverlight department at MS? I mean who is in charge of such an amazing decision? If there was a single way to prove MS can't be trusted on Mac, they achieved it. Also no, not everyone (especially design companies) upgraded to Intel Mac. MS doesn't know their product developer market at all. I am sure lots of graphics they use in PR etc. are designed on Mac G4 (not even G5!) machines.

        • by Monsuco (998964)

          but it doesn't support PowerPC OS X?

          Rumor has it, neither will OS X Snow Leopard.

          • by Ilgaz (86384)

            To understand why Snow Leopard won't be supporting PPC, especially PPC 64 bit, you need to learn some processor history and ASM basics such has registers. Don't use Apple while apologising for Microsoft's completely clueless developers and their lack of development on multiple platforms.

            Basically, PPC has same amount of registers and commands in both 32bit and 64bit mode since it was designed with 64bit in mind unlike Wintel x386. You should thank AMD for those extra registers and CPU features in 64bit mode

    • by SL Baur (19540)

      Does this mean it's time for me to burn my Fedora 9/MacOS 10.5 CDs and install Microsoft Vista?

      • Re:W00t! (Score:4, Informative)

        by Shados (741919) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @05:01PM (#25434219)

        No need :) There's even development tools that will run on non-windows platforms (funded by Microsoft mind you, but still)

        http://www.eclipse4sl.org/#features [eclipse4sl.org]

        • I think he was talking of support, though. And there is only support for one; windows (moonlight developpement is slow, and I don't know if there's a MS version for Macs...).

          • by Shados (741919)

            Yup, there is version for Mac, made by MS, and fully supported.

        • by Ilgaz (86384)

          Eclipse and Graphics Designer/UI designer in Adobe Flash sense doesn't calculate here. I asked a very advanced Flash designer about Eclipse, he asked back "Isn't that thing Java guys use?"

          I have no clue how would MS Visual Studio would work for them either.

          • by Shados (741919)

            Silverlight, as a subset of WPF, isn't made for design first. There are tools for designers for it, but they're secondary. You'll never see a "Silverlight video" made by a designer that does nothing else but animate vector shapes on screen... while you could, its not the focus.

    • by antdude (79039)

      NBC Olympics' videos [nbcolympics.com] did. I recall it gave out a v1.0 beta version. :(

      • by dreemernj (859414)
        It used a 2.0 beta version.
        • by Ilgaz (86384)

          And what kind of a huge audience did NBC lose? By using Silverlight they closed the door to portables, iPhone, millions of phones can do Youtube video, 3G playing capable devices...

          If the idiots decided that won't get fired, I can predict the 2012 easily. "Olympics will air in Silverlight 10, Moonlight users are in version 9 so they won't be able to watch it"

          • by dreemernj (859414)
            It's interesting to play devil's advocate on this one. A small team has a big task. If at least some of the developers are experienced in .NET languages and M$ approaches them with some kind of perks or support for using SilverLight for the Olympics site, it seems like an easy choice to make.

            I guess if there was a way for them to rely on YouTube that would have made more sense, but if it came down to Flash or SilverLight, they are both annoying, they are both primarily for desktop/laptop computers more
            • by Ilgaz (86384)

              You forget something. It is not a local TV event, it is the biggest deal which you can air on TV. There can't be small anything. As a person in TV industry, I must say there is no chance. Olympics and World Soccer Championship are 2 events which "blank" cheques float around.

              They used MS Silverlight just because they got sponsorship from MS, MS paid for servers, operating system structure and other stuff. They always do it. I remember MS Wmedia guys bugging us and other TV stations to implement windows medi

              • by dreemernj (859414)
                It was a pretty small team actually. A team of 25 people, 12 of them being coders, built the site in 150 days. They knew going into it the expectations were high. They saw silverlight + M$ perks as the best way to make it happen.

                Especially since that site was really designed to be the focal point during the olympics. It was built to be important for 17 days. I think if a site was being developed as the place for olympic info for a long period of time, they wouldn't have needed to develop around a pip
    • Major League Baseball (mlb.com)

      • by Ilgaz (86384)

        So what? MS paid them high amounts of money or even setup the entire hosting for free, they switched to Silverlight in cost of audience and possibly future scaling to devices, mobiles, multiplatform future.

    • by bonch (38532) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @05:47PM (#25434661)

      This year will be the Year of Silverlight on the Desktop! Just you wait!

    • by Mashiki (184564)

      I sent an email to to comedy.ca since several dozen of their videos required it, asking when they were going to switch back to flash/and or offer both.

      I never got an answer.

      • by Ilgaz (86384)

        I think they made the ultimate joke by dropping support to a plugin which is installed on 99% of computers and capable devices.

        Leave them alone. If they needed MS Sponsor money in exchange of losing audience, they are probably going out of business soon. They may sell the domain to planets first Silverlight only porn video site I tell you!

        • by Mashiki (184564)

          It's just silly really, despite the problems inherent with flv and the embed media layer issues, it's still the most commonly used right now. Nothing will replace it at least in the short term.

          I strongly doubt they need the money, they're owned by CTV. And if you don't know who owns CTV then do a bit of digging.

    • The reason people used it to watch the Olympics and the Democratic convention - there was no alternative

      If people had the choice - Silverlight or Flash video then 99% of people would have used Flash, simply because they already had it ... the people who installed Silverlight to watch these will probably never use it again (until they need to watch something else that is Silverlight only)

      There is no advantage to the user to use Silverlight (I already have Flash)
      There is no advantage to Marketing to use Silve

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Yer Mum (570034)

        If people had the choice - Silverlight or Flash video then 99% of people would have used Flash, simply because they already had it ... the people who installed Silverlight to watch these will probably never use it again (until they need to watch something else that is Silverlight only)

        It doesn't matter, mission accomplished. It's on more desktops so more developers will be tempted to use it, especially if the developer tools are half-way decent (by all accounts they are).

        Once upon a time people would have

        • by dwarfking (95773)

          Actually it may be on more desktops than just the folks that watched the Olympics. The Windows automatic updater has been including it as an update much like it includes updates of .Net. I saw it when I checked the suggested updates on my son's computer (I don't allow auto-patching).

          So chances are, it has been pushed out to many Windows users already, they just don't know it. And if they have been browsing sites that use the framework, they haven't seen any problems since it is already installed, just lik

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Ilgaz (86384)

            Go to any page at *.microsoft.com with IE, you will be amazed. They suggest people to install silverlight in a complete drive-by download fashion. Even if your system is horribly broken and you need support, you will be spammed to install silverlight. They didn't even bother to set a cookie (No Thanks is top right corner IN GRAY) so you will be prompted forever until you say yes.

            They are using trojan/spyware install tactics. They are that pathetic.

            They are very late to scene. Adobe Flash 10 will become the

  • by sakdoctor (1087155) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @04:04PM (#25433681) Homepage

    was gained.

  • The Problem (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Jephir (1379751)
    I don't know what the value of using Silverlight is over using Flash.
    • Re:The Problem (Score:5, Informative)

      by Shados (741919) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @04:21PM (#25433851)

      The value is on the developer side, not so much the user in this case. Silverlight allows one to use WPF and the .NET framework in a semi-crossplatform manner and in a browser. Saves time and money if you're a .NET shop. Not super useful for a web site thats going to be heavily public though, but nice for web -applications-, like internal apps or web apps that are heavily targeted (like say a CMS)

      • So basically it's good as a replacement to Active-X, except a bit more cross-platform from the client side.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by David Gerard (12369)
        So Microsoft decided that developer support was more important than porn site support. Uh, that was stupid. Basically, the only way Microsoft is going to get people installing Silverlight is to put up a FREE PORN site that requires Silverlight exclusively. On Windows Vista or later only.
      • by kjart (941720)

        Not super useful for a web site thats going to be heavily public though

        That's funny, I would've thought that the NBC Olympics site would've fallen into that category.

        • by Shados (741919)

          Sorry. Not useful for web sites that are going to be heavily public, that traffic is not garenteed (so you can't pull the arm of your customers to get them to install it), AND you're not paid large amounts of money to do it. The NBC Olympics site was also using a -beta- version of SL. Would you put beta stuff on your production servers normally? I think not :)

    • Re:The Problem (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Skye16 (685048) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @05:50PM (#25434689)

      Have you ever tried using Flash *heavily* in a web application?

      ActionScript is an abomination, at best.

      I'll take Silverlight over Flash for that simple reason.

      I'd still prefer neither.

      • by grahamd0 (1129971)

        ActionScript is an abomination, at best.

        Why do you say that?

        If you honestly feel that way I'd guess that you haven't tried using Actionscript in the last couple of years.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jejones (115979)

      It's a way to bind web sites to Windows, so it's of great value... to Microsoft.

      • by chrish (4714)

        Except, of course, that they've got Mac OS X and Linux versions of the Silverlight client. Hmm, according to the System Requirements [microsoft.com], the Linux version seems to have vanished, and PowerPC support on OS X is for the not-that-useful Silverlight 1.0...

        The next question is, of course, whether Mono can run the ASP.NET side of the Silverlight app or not.

  • Meh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bonch (38532) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @04:14PM (#25433781)

    I was more excited to hear Garfield The Movie was getting a sequel.

    • Microsoft today announced the release of version 2.0 its world-beating Silverlight multimedia platform for the Web. As a replacement for Adobe's Flash, it is widely considered utterly superfluous and of no interest.

      "We have a fabulous selection of content partners for Silverlight," announced Microsoft marketer Scott Guthrie on his blog today. "NBC for the Olympics, which delivered millions of new users to BitTorrent. The Democrat National Convention, which is fine because those Linux users are all Ron Paul weirdos anyway. It comes with rich frameworks, rich controls, rich networking support, a rich base class library, rich media support, oh God kill me now. Google haven't called back. My life is an exercise in futility. I'm the walking dead, man, the walking dead!"

      Silverlight was created by Microsoft to leverage its desktop monopoly on Windows, to work off the tremendous sales and popularity of Vista. Flash is present on a pathetic 98% of computers connected to the Internet, whereas Silverlight downloads are into the triple figures.

      • Full version up now [today.com]:

        Microsoft today announced the release of version 2.0 its world-beating Silverlight multimedia platform for the Web. As a replacement for Adobe's Flash, it is widely considered utterly superfluous and of no interest to anyone who could be found.

        "We have a fabulous selection of content partners for Silverlight," announced Microsoft marketer Scott Guthrie on his blog today. "NBC for the Olympics, which delivered millions of new users to BitTorrent. The Democrat National Convention, which is fine because those Linux users are all Ron Paul weirdos anyway. It comes with rich frameworks, rich controls, rich networking support, a rich base class library, rich media support, oh God kill me now. My resumé's a car crash, Google won't call me back. My life is an exercise in futility. I'm the walking dead, man. The walking dead."

        Silverlight was created by Microsoft to leverage its desktop monopoly on Windows, to work off the tremendous sales and popularity of Vista. Flash is present on a pathetic 96% of all computers connected to the Internet, whereas Silverlight downloads are into the triple figures.

        "But it's got DRM!" cried Guthrie. "Netflix loved it! And web developers love us too, after all we did for them with IE 6. Wait, come back!"

        Similar Microsoft initiatives include its XPS replacement for Adobe PDF, its HD Photo replacement for JPEG photographs and its earlier Liquid Motion attempt to replace Flash. Also, that CD-ROM format Vista defaults to which no other computers can read.

        In a Microsoft internal security sweep, Guthrie's own desktop was found to still be running Windows XP.

    • May I say how pleased I am that that comment got a +1 Informative mod. o_0
    • I can't care even if I want to since it is not available for PowerPC macs. They didn't even bother to run a basic uname -a sh script in installer on some 2.x beta and PPC users also ended up with a non working plugin in their Internet Plugins folder.

      Of course, Adobe on the other hand released Flash 10 final which does multi core/cpu processing even on G4 Macs along with GPU acceleration (in graphics sense). Lets not forget their entire creative suite (recently shipped) not only runs on PPC macs, it runs bet

  • by QuoteMstr (55051) <dan.colascione@gmail.com> on Sunday October 19, 2008 @04:30PM (#25433935)

    We're looking for a replacement for canvas in IE. excanvas sucks. We could use flash, but the Javascriptflash interface is very slow. (It serializes to XML twice.) Is Silverlight's any better?

    • by Ilgaz (86384)

      I wouldn't be surprised if your joke becomes true. E.g. Windows and IE is crafted in some way that people will have to choose Silverlight. Or a mysterious issue effecting Adobe Flash or Quicktime.

      MS is really capable of doing such stuff. See how they begun to render XHTML fine right after Opera ASA sued them. Did they code entire w3c standard in couple of weeks? No, they just removed --disable-w3c from compile flags ;)

      I can understand C and C++ people but I feel pity for anyone cancels their SVG/Flash proje

  • by AndGodSed (968378) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @04:57PM (#25434195) Homepage Journal

    From the silverlight terms of agreement:

    You may not

    Â work around any technical limitations in the software;

    There - right there - it says that if your computer is limited by this software you may not find a way to fix it!

    Oh my goodness! I am so glad I got "your browser or hardware is incompatible with silverlight" or some generic message when I browsed to the silverlight page...

    I wonder if "not allowed to work around" includes uninstalling it...

    7. SUPPORT SERVICES. Because this software is âoeas is,â we may not provide support services for it.

    So if it breaks your computer you are on your own!

    Oh dear - what a chuckle. Trusted computing my left buttock.

    • From the silverlight terms of agreement:

      You may not

      Â work around any technical limitations in the software;

      There - right there - it says that if your computer is limited by this software you may not find a way to fix it!

      That's also in the Vista terms. I break it every day; I'm sure everybody does.

  • http://www.microsoft.com/silverlight/resources/install.aspx?mode=sysreq&reason=unsupportedplatform [microsoft.com]

    Seems I am safe after all.

    (sorry for the ugly linkage...)

  • Let me see if I have this right.

    If you are developing a rich internet application and need it to work with the most possible platforms, you use AJAX. If you are willing to settle for a smaller number of platforms in exchange for more UI flexibility, you use Flex. If you are... uh... trying to watch the 2008 Olympics, you use Silverlight.

    Right?

    • by Shados (741919)

      If you're trying to save time and money by reusing your existing development tools and training by using .NET, you use Silverlight, if you're making an app where the fact that users will have to install a plugin isn't a big deal (intranet, targeted web app, etc).

      silverlight 1.0 didn't even have the above... thats why it was so stupid. It had less features than even many javascript libs like ExtJS or JQuery, it supported even less platforms than Flex (or even other more obscure ones), no one had it installed

  • Sure HTML and Javascript have gotten us a long way. But even the best DHTML/JS tree control, tabs, slider panel, etc run slower then native widgets, Silverlight, Flash/Flex.

    Get the source code for Firefox and read the code in the parser directory if you can...try not to throw up. HTML parsing is just old school...time for a real f'ing GUI library for application development. Sure slashdot and fark can get by with HTML and it's got life left, but I think there are better ways of creating a portable GUI.

    • Who is this "OOS" you're referring to?

    • by pembo13 (770295)
      What about XUL?
    • But even the best DHTML/JS tree control, tabs, slider panel, etc run slower then native widgets, Silverlight, Flash/Flex.

      Isn't Flex just a development environment on top of the normal Flash ActionScript 3 implementation? I don't know why Flex would offer any better performance than Flash. The .NET CLR/DLR in Silverlight is enormously faster than either.

  • by MMC Monster (602931) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @06:18PM (#25434937)

    My impression was that the amount of Olympics streaming using Silverlight was less than YouTube during the same time period. If so, it doesn't seem like much of a success to me.

    (Calling it a success because people installed silverlight isn't much. Afterall, the same people would have probably installed a rootkit and trojan in order to watch the Olympic streaming. They just don't care.)

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by benwaggoner (513209)

      My impression was that the amount of Olympics streaming using Silverlight was less than YouTube during the same time period. If so, it doesn't seem like much of a success to me.

      If the bar for success for video on the web is deliver more content than YouTube, than there has not been a success in web video since YouTube launched :). 9.9 million hours of video in 17 days is a whole lot of video.

      Some better metrics for success might be:
      Was it profitable for NBC?
      Did viewers get a good experience?
      Did it innovate anything new in video delivery?

      My biased opinion is "yes" in all three categories.

      I've got this blog post with some more details about Silverlight and the Olympics:
      http://on10. [on10.net]

  • by jfbilodeau (931293) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @09:29PM (#25436273) Homepage

    I'm sure that Microsoft kindly shared the specs for SilverLight 2.0 with Mono/Novell during the development so that the Mono project would not have to play catch-up once 2.0 came out. Right?

    Otherwise, Microsoft would be releasing a technology that will only work reliably on Windows and shun the other major platforms.

    Hum... I wonder why they just don't do like Adobe or Sun and release a version for Linux, Mac and Windows?

    Surely, I must be misinterpreting Microsoft's intentions with Silverlight!

    • I'm sure that Microsoft kindly shared the specs for SilverLight 2.0 with Mono/Novell during the development so that the Mono project would not have to play catch-up once 2.0 came out. Right?

      Are you looking for something like publishing the XAML spec under the Open Specification Promise?

      http://blogs.windowsclient.net/rob_relyea/archive/2008/10/14/ms-slxv-silverlight-xaml-vocabulary-2008-specification-v0-9-published.aspx [windowsclient.net].

      Otherwise, Microsoft would be releasing a technology that will only work reliably on Windows and shun the other major platforms.

      Hum... I wonder why they just don't do like Adobe or Sun and release a version for Linux, Mac and Windows?

      All versions of Silverlight have shipped day-and-date Mac/Win. Mono is doing a Linux ver

      • And where is Moonlight 2.0?

        Who is 'surprised' that Microsoft is not contributing more code/resources to a Linux version?

        Just like .NET (and so many other Microsoft 'cross-platform' techs), it will become more and more Windows centric.

    • by gronofer (838299)

      I'm sure that Microsoft kindly shared the specs for SilverLight 2.0 with Mono/Novell during the development so that the Mono project would not have to play catch-up once 2.0 came out. Right?

      Specs? If they were serious about Linux support, they would have provided source code, paid somebody to port it, and had it ready for easy installation on the launch date. (I don't consider the possibility of them porting it themselves, I don't think they have the skills.)

      I suspect their only real interest in Linux is in trying to keep it locked out from as much of the web as possible.

    • Otherwise, Microsoft would be releasing a technology that will only work reliably on Windows and shun the other major platforms.

      The version that Microsoft released works on Windows and Mac OS X.
      The "Moonlight [mono-project.com]" project is the version for "for Linux and other Unix/X11 based operating systems"

      And the other major platforms are ... ?

      • I think you know which major platform I'm referring to -- the same one that Adobe, Sun, Oracle, IBM and other players support. True, not all their products are supported on Linux, but at least it's not ignored.

        As for moonlight, I'm looking for version 1.0. What you send me is version 0.8 -- yet Microsoft is already at version 2.0.

        And here what the site says:

        "Up-to-date packages ready to _test_ are available from:

        These builds do not include media codecs (video or audio), for that, you must currently build Mo

  • by compupc1 (138208) on Sunday October 19, 2008 @11:20PM (#25436983)
    Relative to Flash, Silverlight doesn't really bring any more or less to the table from a user's perspective. But as at least one other poster mentioned here, the real power is on the development side of things. Relative to ActionsScript on the Flash side of things, and relative to some weird HTML/CSS/JavaScript combination on the "legacy" side of things, Silverlight is the best, most advanced web development platform I have seen to date, hands down. Sure, there are libraries that help with JavaScript development...YUI, the GWT, etc. But those are slow...and let's face it, the GWT, however effective it might be, is still one big hack for a set of technologies that were never meant to host full-blown applications.

    With Silverlight, you get a couple key things:
    1) Clean division between UI design and implementation. Gone are the days when the UI designer hands over an HTML prototype to the programmer, and the programmer mangles that into a JSP page, PHP page, oor whatever else. In the old world, making changes to the UI design was a mess, unless those changes were limited to CSS. Now the UI designer and developer are both on equal ground -- either can easially import the other's work for updates.

    2) You don't have to write your front-end in a crappy language -- or more specifically, in a crappy runtime. Despite all the love that dynamic languages are getting these days, if you look at it, JavaScript's lack of built in libraries, the cumbersome DOM access, and the awful runtime implementation in browers like IE make it a real pain. With Silverlight, a development shop can pick whatever language they see fit -- it could be JavaScript, it could be C#, or it could even be Python or Ruby. And they get the power of a subset of the .NET framework. There is a LOT of value here.

    3) Good tooling. Having proper tools is of critical importance. You get Visual Studio OR Eclipse on the development side and Expression Blend on the UI design side. I don't know how Expression Blend stacks up against the Adobe products, but I do know that on the development side, Visual Studio is one of just 2-3 top of the line IDEs. I love hacking in emacs as much as the next guy, but any serious large-scale development shop is unlikely to be using emacs or vi or notepad. Having the same tool you use for your back-end development apply to your front-end development is a very, very good thing.

    4) Technology that was meant for application UIs. Let's face it: HTML was meant as a document presenation language. Sure, it's been updated over the years and other technologies like CSS have greatly helped. But at its core, it's still not architected to really be an application development platform. And it will never be that, no matter how many bells and whistles you may add.

    It's easy to dismiss Silverlight because it's a Microsoft product or whatever. My background is in C and Java, mainly on Linux and Solaris. But Silverlight impressed the hell out of me. So long as they maintain the cross-browser, cross-platform compatibility, I feel it's a perfectly valid choice for developers to make. Keep in mind that competition is a good thing. Firefox was the best thing that ever happened to IE; both browsers now motivate improvements in the other. The same applies between Flash and Silverlight. It will be interesting to see whether Silverlight sees more widespread adoption going forward.
    • Perhaps its time to skip the HTML browser and create a "GUI browser" that is designed for decent GUI's from the ground up. That way we don't have to worry about whether MS will support it or not.

      • by compupc1 (138208)

        That would be great! I do hope the open source community would create such a thing -- but it would have to be on par with Silverlight and/or Flash/Flex to make a difference. I don't count JavaFX since they're so far behind.

    • Wow, a positive Microsoft post on Slashdot!

      What's it like working at Microsoft? :)

      Kidding aside, something like this is desperatly needed for the internet.

      What really worries me is that it's from Microsoft and the needs of thier OS *always* comes first no matter what happens.

      Just look at .Net, version 2 seemed to be the sweet-spot on size and features. Version 3.x included yet more libraries, the bloat is growing at an alarming rate and seems to be more Windows-centric.

      If the Silverlight technology was trul

    • I have to say, that your post, to me, honestly resembles astroturfing. Silverlight client support is Windows and Mac, and development support is Windows only.

      Based on Microsoft's past record of dropping support for any Mac software that didn't actively further Microsoft's aims, be it the WMV video player, or Internet Explorer, how long do you think that Mac users can actually count on Microsoft supporting them?

      Judging from both WMV and IE, which they purposely neglected on the Mac when the Windows versions

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