My first Silverlight animation using Expression Blend
A few days ago I downloaded the May-preview of Expression Blend 2. I wanted to have a look at the Silverlight-options it offers. I was surprised to see that this download took not more then 26 Mb. After I installed it I had a first look at the darkgrey, industrial-looking interface. Except for the use of the grey colours it reminded me about Macromedia Flash. I played around a bit with Macromedia Flash several years ago and I guess that for designers who have experience using Flash, Blend will be very easy to use. It's quite intuitive once you get used to the collapsing panels and the lack of rightmouse-context menu's.
After previewing this 30-day trial of Blend 2 I decided to get the full-version of the current Blend version as well to create my first Silverlight application. I should have known that Silverlight is not an available projecttype in "Blend 1", it only offers projecttypes "Standard application (.exe)" and "Control Library". So if you want to create Silverlight animations you should have a look at the trial of Blend 2. I must admit that I did not have any difficulties creating animations using the timeline, but adding interactivity is a hurdle I have to overcome in the next few days. I think it has something to do with limited functionality in the preview: the controls-pane does not show any button-controls, where the "regular" version of Blend has a much more extended assetlibrary (one of those assets is the button control).
My first creation is attached to this post (it's a WMV-file, wrapped in a ZIP-file and it should show you a web-banner animation). I will probably work on some other Blend-projects in the next weeks so I will post those creations (or links to them) if it all works out well. Any hints on creating Silverlight projects are welcome!