C# REPL in Silverlight Soon Possible?

By Nick Hauenstein

I was looking over some of the industry news this morning, and spotted this gem from Miguel de Icaza’s blog:

We are also porting our C# compiler to work with Microsoft’s Reflection.Emit to enable us to run our C# Interactive Shell in Silverlight applications and to allow .NET developers to embed our compiler in their applications to support C# Eval.

For those that typically shy away from penguins: Miguel is heavily involved in the Mono project. Mono is a project under the wing of Novell to create an EMCA-334/335 compliant implementation of C# and the CLI. The project includes much of the base class library found in the .NET framework, and also includes more project specific classes. The big selling points for me are binary compatibility with existing .NET assemblies, and availability on multiple platforms.

This is certainly exciting technology (just look at the reaction Anders received demoing very similar functionality at PDC2008). Now imagine that same type of experience in the browser (minus the Windows Form popping up out of no where, since no one likes pop-ups anyway). Imagine games that can be scripted in-play, or instantly extensible rich client applications.

Naturally there will be security considerations, and testing considerations, but for now it is what it is: fairly awesome.

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