Former Microsoft Silverlight Product Manager Scott Barnes has posted a series of tweets following a visit to Microsoft:
Right now there’s a faction war inside Microsoft over HTML5 vs Silverlight. oh and WPF is dead.. i mean..it kind of was..but now.. funeral.
Barnes positions it as a fight between Windows/IE9 backing HTML5, and the developer division backing Silverlight. He also suggests that Microsoft is contemplating a classic “Embrace and extend” strategy for HTML:
HTML5 is the replacement for WPF.. IE team want to fork the HTML5 spec by bolting on custom windows APi’s via JS/HTML5
He says further that Microsoft has “shut down the designer story” – I am not sure what that implies, though I can imagine that a lot of money has been sunk into the Expression tools without drawing significant market share from Adobe’s Creative Suite.
Since we are also on the eve of launch for Windows Phone 7, which Microsoft has flagged as a strategic product and which uses Silverlight as its app platform, it seems unlikely that the technology will be sidelined; but rumours of internal divisions on the subject do not surprise me.