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What I Use for Silverlight Development

Pete Brown - 13 March 2009

Three makes it a meme, right? :)

Shawn and John recently posted about their Silverlight toolkit, so I thought I’d do the same. These are the tools and products I use on a regular basis when working in SL. There are others that pop up now and again, but I figured I’d only list the things I really rely on daily. I try to keep my working set fairly small so I can stay focused.

  • Visual Studio 2008 SP1, of course.
  • Silverlight Tools for Visual Studio (it’s a pretty manual process to develop without this)
  • Expression Blend 2 + SP1 . You can certainly work without this (which I’ve really been finding out lately on a recent project where I *can’t* use Blend), but I wouldn’t want to for anything of any complexity.
  • Expression Media Encoder 2. I use this for the most basic editing of video (cropping, primarily), but mostly just to get it in a good format with good quality at a decent bitrate.
  • Adobe Photoshop CS3. I tend to mix a number of bitmap graphics into my projects, as well as use vector graphics. I have yet to work on a project where I didn’t use Photoshop.
  • Expression Design 2. I have Illustrator but just haven’t spent the required time to learn it. I find Expression Design very approachable and that “copy xaml” is a huge time saver. I use this on almost every project.
  • Fiddler 2. Most recently I used this and SQL Profiler to debug what the heck was happening in a project using Astoria.
  • Remix.kwed.org . Awesome coding music, especially if you’re into old commodore computers like I am, or just like something new and interesting.
  • Zazz seltzer water, unflavored. I go through this like, umm, water. Drinking water from a can, just doing my part for the environment ;) When in Redmond, I try and keep the habit alive by drinking the local MS flavored seltzer that’s in every fridge, from a can of course.


There’s other stuff I use sometimes like the debugging tools in FF3, graphics tools like 3ds max and Rhino, sound sound editing tools, Adobe Premier, and stuff like Fruityloops FL Studio for a diversion now and then.

posted by Pete Brown on Friday, March 13, 2009
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3 comments for “What I Use for Silverlight Development”

  1. Ben Hayatsays:
    Pete, take a look at the new (Q1) release of Telerik for SL. Several new controls but they have enhanced and matured the other controls as well. Looks very solid and clean!


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