There were a number of key announcements and interesting demos at Microsoft’s MIX08 conference, which continues through Friday in Las Vegas. I won’t recount all the news in detail. Ryan Stewart has a good overview of the opening day keynote on his ZDNet blog. CNET’s News.com has a round up of the major activities and announcements.
The big news consisted of announcements of the first beta versions of Silverlight 2 and Internet Explorer 8. Downloads of both beta applications were available immediately following the announcements at yesterday’s keynote presentation.
Silverlight 2 puts Microsoft squarely into the rich Internet application space, going head-to-head with Adobe’s Flash platform.
Microsoft has positioned Internet Explorer 8 as a significant step forward in both functionality and support for existing Web standards. Explorer general manager Dean Hachamovitch stated “Browser differences waste too much developer’s time” and expressed Microsoft’s support for CSS 2.1 and parts of HTML 5.
Also announced at MIX08 were the beta of Expression Studio 2 and SQL Server Data Services, a hosted version of Microsoft’s SQL Server.
I’ll post additional thoughts as time permits. In the meantime, you can get a flavor for the keynote presentations through my Flickr photostreams.
Yesterday’s opening keynote is here:
Guy Kawasaki’s wildly entertaining interview of Steve Ballmer is here: