Sunday, October 21, 2007


Microsoft Popfly is a cool new toy to create what MS calls a Mashup. A Mashup basically is a new way to create a web-app that consumes content from other sites and presents them in a visually attractive form using the MS Silverlight technology. Currently it is in a beta state and completely free. For example we can search for images with a particular keyword and present them in a photo-sphere (a very interesting way of showing a lot of images moving within a sphere). You can try one out here. It was made by me following the basic tutorial that the site offered and tweaking it a little bit. All this is done without using a single line of code on my part. MS has provided a gr8 web-UI for creating these MashUps. The interface needs MS Silverlight to run and can be used by drag-and-drop alone !! There's plenty more to Popfly than just showing pretty images. You can obtain conten from a plethora of site for local information, maps, RSS feeds, online shops and social networks. The presentation technologies are a feast on the eyes. What previously could only be done using complicated flash effects can now be done by people without any coding knowledge what-so-ever. However for coders like us, there's the added features like adding custom HTML and a bit of further tweaking. Moreover one could also create new effects (called blocks) and submit them for others to use. However everything is not so green. For many of us Google users, its bad to see that MS has not provided any native support for Google group of sites .... Google, Blogger, Orkut, YouTube. Their absence is not well looked upon by many. Next comes the issue of having the Silverlight plugin installed in your browser. Thankfully even if you don't have it, the download is a simple 1.4MB file. However it will take a bit of time before Silverlight is as standardized as Flash. You could get more information on Silverlight on it's website and overview pages. I'll keep adding links to my new creations on this page. So check out later for some cool stuff. Meanwhile do post your feed-back and any of your creations here.


  1. AlchemyPoint from Orchestr8 is another mashup platform worth checking out. It works with any website, not just partner sites, and offers visual website copy-and-paste capability.

  2. Hi Ellitot, thanks for the recommendation. I went to the AlchemyPoint site and signed-up for the tech preview. The webcasts are really cool. I can't wait to get my hands dirty with it.


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