The diagram represents a spectrum of application development approaches and technologies/platforms with increasing reach on one end, and increasing capabilities on the other. Applications have distinct scenarios and correspondingly gravitate toward a sweet spot. Some apps lie squarely on the left, with the need to first and foremost prioritize universal reach. At the same time, some apps have experience or functionality as the high order bit, where it is necessary to leverage a more capable platform, even if it means somewhat reduced reach. Still, the best apps will probably be those that leverage multiple front-end options to follow the user, with a common back-end.
Why RIA App – Silverlight
With Silverlight you get cross platform (almost all browsers on Mac and Windows) .NET runtimes.Silverlight is a powerful development platform for creating engaging, interactive user experiences for Web, desktop, and mobile applications when online or offline.
Silverlight is different. It is an immediate win if you have desktop .NET apps which you would like to convert to web applications, or ASP.NET apps for which you would like a richer client. Why Silverlight and not WPF? For one thing, cross-platform, essential for public web applications and very useful internally as well, with all those Mac-using designers (and now the CEO wants a Mac too). For another thing, lightweight deployment. When you install or upgrade the .NET runtime on a Windows box, you hold your breath as it updates a gazillion system components and hope that no bizarre error code appears. When you install Silverlight, you just click OK to a browser dialog, and it works.
The contradiction in the title of this post is that both Silverlight and WPF use XAML, so in learning one you are to some extent learning the other. Nevertheless, I now believe that Silverlight will be a more significant platform than WPF
WCF RIA Services
Microsoft WCF RIA Services simplifies the traditional n-tier application pattern by bringing together the ASP.NET and Silverlight platforms. RIA Services provides a pattern to write application logic that runs on the mid-tier and controls access to data for queries, changes and custom operations. It also provides end-to-end support for common tasks such as data validation, authentication and roles by integrating with Silverlight components on the client and ASP.NET on the mid-tier.
As of this writing, WCF RIA Services is still in beta. however, in it’s current form, it clearly demonstrates that it allows dramatic reductions in development time. This is accomplished by providing a framework that greatly reduces the amount of code needed to communicate between a Silverlight application and the web server hosting it.Silverlight WCF RIA Services promises to bring greatly improved user interfaces with less development costs. Without writing any special code you will have a pageable, sortable, Grid that is bound to a Data Form. The Grid even allows for the headers to be dragged and reordered. Basic, client-side validation is also provided.
HTML – Replaced by XAML – Very very powerfull (vector graphics) for rich UI
Web services – Replaced by WCF RIA service – Fast and robust development.
You can see the differences and that’s the future of developers technology – Next generation of applications..