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Sure the Consumer Electronics Show has all the latest gadgets – but if you don’t need a new phone, camera, or TV it is mostly just a bunch of noise.

But questions on my mind lately have been: When will Silverlight 2.0 actually ship to production? and How are they going to convince a whole bunch of people to install it so that development can be as seamless as Flash is today?

How about this – 3,000 hours of live and on-demand video from the 2008 Summer Olympics brought to you by NBC Universal using – you guessed it – Silverlight 2.0.

This is really brilliant.  One thing everyone agrees Silverlight has over Flash is video quality.  Add do this the interactive features in 2.0 for what should be a portal for the Olympics that people will remember for a long long time.  This will either be the crowing moment for Silverlight or when people decided it was “jut another technology” that didn’t deliver what it promised.  This is a bold “line in the sand” from Microsoft which really shows that they are committed to publicly supporting the new web technologies.  I imagine a bunch of people today just got their assignments for the next 4-6 months.

I’m glad it wasn’t some political site – talk about video you wouldn’t want “on demand” in any case.  But the hockey semi-finals that were on at 2:00am, or some biathalon event that wouldn’t make the regular channels.

donniea2: Silverlight wins the Gold at the 2008 Olympic Games