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Silverlight content is discoverable by search engines, Microsoft

Earlier this week, when Adobe, Google and Yahoo announced that content stored in its Flash file format would be more easily indexable by Google’s and Yahoo’s search engines, Microsoft was nowhere mentioned, “when comparing Silverlight to Flash, had touted before that Silverlight content was easily discoverable by search engines, and not just Live Search’s.

Mary Jo Foley, when I asked Microsoft for verification and received the following statement from a company spokeswoman on July 2:

“Microsoft designed Silverlight from the beginning to be easily accessible by search engines.  Because it is simply a ZIP archive, a Silverlight application packaged in a XAP (the Silverlight application-package file extension) file is easily accessible to search engines without a special software development kit (SDK). And because XAML is W3C-compliant XML, any static textual XAML content can be easily parsed by search engines.  Furthermore, any metadata embedded in the ZIP file is easily indexed by search engines as well.  Silverlight applications also support “deep linking” as they easily consume the URL they were loaded from, and use information on the URL query string to rapidly load and display appropriate data.  Finally, the Silverlight DOM itself can be easily inspected to detect all text, links and images that are being visualized by the control.

“So does this mean that Silverlight offers customers superior search engine optimization (SEO)? Yes.  Not only was Silverlight architected to offer superior searchability, but Silverlight excels at enabling dynamic content published from content management systems to be easily indexed by search engines.  By publishing dynamic content to Silverlight via XAML and XHTML mirroring, users are able to dramatically reduce the time it takes to optimize content for search engines.”

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