Silverlight 3 debuts ahead of Friday's launch

Microsoft has posted the final version of its Adobe Flash rival, with the product's formal launch a day away.

The final version of Silverlight 3 has been released to the Web, a day ahead of the product's launch event in San Francisco.

The release, noted by enthusiast site Neowin, marks Microsoft's latest effort to take on Adobe's Flash.

Microsoft detailed Silverlight 3 at the Mix09 event in March, releasing a beta version of the software.

Among the product's new features is technology that allows the software to utilize a PC's hardware to accelerate graphics processing. It also allows for programs that run outside a browser on both the PC and Mac.

NBC has said it will use Silverlight to broadcast the 2010 Winter Olympics from Vancouver. The technology will allow the Games to be broadcast in 720p HD quality as well as provide a TiVo-like ability to pause and rewind a live stream.

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