HTML5, Silverlight sessions face off at Microsoft Mix '11 conference

Microsoft has opened registration, as of January 25, for its Mix '11 conference. It's looking like a Silverlight vs. HTML5 show-down could be in the cards.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

Microsoft has opened registration, as of January 25, for its Mix '11 conference. And to keep things interesting, the company is allowing the community to vote on which sessions they'd like to see at the April Mix conference.

Microsoft posted today a "best of the best" list to the Mix '11 site, and is requesting that anyone with an interest (not just Mix attendees or wannabes) vote for their top ten external sessions. Voting closes on February 4.

When perusing the proposals, I couldn't help but notice the split -- which first became apparent at last year's Mix conference -- between Microsoft's Silverlight vs. its HTML proponents.

Update: Yes -- as a number of readers have noted (thanks!), these are sessions proposed by non-Softies for inclusion alongside the Microsoft sessions. But the politics are still interesting to me....

Some in Redmond (notably, the Windows and Internet Explorer teams) are putting their mouths and muscle behind HTML5, not Silverlight. Looks like some of the community are backing their play. Check out this Mix '11 session proposal:

HTML5 and CSS3: The Future of the Web Jacob J Sanford

If you develop web applications but haven't started looking at HTML5 and CSS3, it's time. These technologies are going to change the way web applications work in the future. Things that you used to have to use SilverLight, Flash, or custom/dynamic images for, you can now do with a single line of code. Come see what's coming down the pipe, what browsers support the changes, and what you should be getting excited about. (Emphasis mine)

Microsoft's Developer Division and other varied teams, aren't throwing in the towel, however. This Mix '11 proposal shows some outside community members agree:

Semantic Web with Silverlight Rajesh Lal

Learn how Silverlight is the only tool which can provide the key ingredients for Semantic Web, the best possible performance, richest user interface, most widespread reach, hardware support, and privacy, and how it will always be better than HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript combined. Know how Silverlight distinguishes itself by delivering pixel perfect interface, 3D animations, live camera support, XML and REST based Web services, next generation Media, RIA services and cross platform support and how it is already making the vision of Semantic Web true today. (Emphasis mine)

It's not just going to be a Silverlight vs. HTML5 face-off in Las Vegas in mid-April, however. There are plenty of other Windows Phone, Azure and Surface 2.0 app-dev proposals on the tentative session list.

The keynoters for this year's Mix conference are Scott Guthrie, Corporate Vice President of the .Net Developer Platform, and Joe Belfiore, the head of Windows Phone Program Management. Many of us Microsoft watchers are expecting Microsoft to roll out at Mix '11 a beta of Silverlight 5, as well as a possible final version of the HTML5-supporting Internet Explorer 9 -- just to keep that Silverlight-HTML5 rivalry alive and well ....

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