[dojo-contributors] Silverlight testers needed

Eugene Lazutkin eugene at lazutkin.com
Sat Sep 6 03:19:08 EDT 2008

Hash: SHA1

For Dojo 1.2 the Silverlight renderer was considerably improved.
Following the latest Microsoft advise it doesn't use any 3rd party
JavaScript files, and can be turned on by selecting a proper renderer.

How to select a renderer? There is a special parameter in djConfig:
gfxRenderer. It should be a string, which lists renderer names separated
by commas in the order they should be tried by the gfx prologue. The
current default is: "svg,vml,silverlight,canvas". It means that on all
major browsers (except IE ans Safari on iPhone/iPad) SVG will be
selected, VML will be used on IE, and Canvas will be used on iPhone/iPod.

I plan to change the default to: "svg,silverlight,vml,canvas" after we
ship 1.2. In practice it means, that SVG is still the preferred renderer
for non-IE browsers, but Silverlight will be probed on IE and selected,
if it is available, using VML as a fallback option.

Why? Silverlight is much faster than VML and it is a much more accurate
renderer meaning it produces pictures that are much closer to SVG
visually than VML's ones. For example it allows to use the alpha channel
in gradients, and it supports proper radial gradients. Of course it has
some restrictions too that are mostly different from VML. You can read
all gory details in our docs: http://docs.dojocampus.org/dojox/gfx

But in order to make the change (planned for releases after 1.2) we need
to test Silverlight renderer. How to do it? Use following string to
include Dojo and you'll get it automatically on IE:

<script type="text/javascript" src="../../../dojo/dojo.js"
djConfig="isDebug: true, gfxRenderer: 'svg,silverlight,vml,canvas'">

Test it when Silverlight is present and when it is not (to see that the
fallback works as expected). Get it here: http://silverlight.net/. Don't
use Moonlight because it still has problems with the browser integration.

How do I know if gfx uses Silverlight? Two ways to ensure that:

1) It says so in the Firebug Lite console: "gfx renderer = silverlight".
Of course you can see it only if you enabled debugging.

2) Right-click on the picture (the surface) and you will see a totally
different menu, which comes from Silverlight.

Happy testing! We count on your help. If something is out of ordinary,
and nobody filed a bug for it --- please file it. You can see the list
of open bugs here:


Thank you in advance,


PS: It is possible to use Silverlight with Firefox on Windows, and with
Safari on Mac, and even with Firefox on Linux, but why? These browsers
have excellent SVG renderers. I don't expect you to test Silverlight on
these platforms, do it on your own. Only IE is going to be officially
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Comment: Using GnuPG with Mozilla - http://enigmail.mozdev.org


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