A developer lost in the mountains

Silverlight and Sharepoint working together: event receivers in Silverlight

In this article we will become familiar with the Sharepoint event receivers, a cool feature which allows the user to be notified about various events occurring inside a Sharepoint environment. An example is the possibility to receive the notification of an item added to a list. Unfortunately, the mechanism works at server side and that means that there is no “out of the box” possibility to use the feature directly in a Silverlight application.

Nevertheless, we will find a way to make the event receivers available in a Silverlight web part in order to give a new dimension of interactivity to a Sharepoint solution.

As an example we will create a small application to invite our colleagues to a coffee break and get a close to real time answer. This will involve the creation of a wcf service with a service contract for a Sharepoint solution and a service contract for a Silverlight web part. Both contracts are duplex service contracts. Now you may be like “all this mess for a silly application to get someone together for a coffee break?” In fact, it may sound useless but it is not. Event receivers are a great feature of Sharepoint and exporting them into a Silverlight web part opens a very interesting perspective.

Let’s suppose we want to create a small application running in a Sharepoint site (a kind of widget) to quickly organize a coffee break with colleagues. We want to be able to select a time and send an invitation to our user’s group. The other users should be notified quite immediately and they should be able to accept or turn down the invitation. Eventually we should be notified about all the confirmations received from our colleagues. All this without the need to refresh any page.

 The image below sums it all up:

Full story on my article on silverlightshow: