Microsoft pulls the curtain on Silverlight 3

Developers are getting a lot of love this week. Access to iPhone 3.0 has come to iPhone devs, and Nvidia PhysX has come to PlayStation 3 game makers. Now, Microsoft has unveiled developer beta 3 of its Silverlight runtime.

Offering a host of audio and video improvements, Silverlight now supports 720p full screen HD playback and MPEG 4-based H.264/AAC audio. 3D graphics rendering and animation has been improved, and more than 60 controls with source code have been added.

A major improvement in Silverlight 3 is the ability for apps to run outside of the browser without the need to download any additional plug-ins or runtimes. This will allow the user to pull a Silverlight app out of the browser, install it on his desktop, and run it in the future without re-launching a browser.

Visual Studio developers looking to install Silverlight 3 beta tools are warned that once the beta is installed, it cannot be used to develop Silverlight 2 apps. This is because Visual Studio 2008 SP1 does not support multi-targeting for Silverlight applications.

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