Is your place dusty?
I used to wonder why a thin film of dust accumulated on window ledges and horizontal surfaces where I used to live in Portland and to a lesser degree, in my Bellevue apartment. I found out why.
Rarely do I see a TV commercial for a new product and buy it the next day. But I did with a new Dyson vacuum (Dyson Slim DC-18, lightweight upright vacuum). The commercial showed some smaller upright vacuums pushed back and forth accompanied by an annoying squeaky sound. It then showed the Dyson model with a soft but powerful sound proclaiming it was the one that really had the power to clean and was easy to maneuver.
I looked up this vacuum on Amazon and 20 customer reviews -- mostly from housewives who are serious about their housekeeping -- almost all commented that they couldn't believe how much dust this vacuum picked up even after they had just used their old vacuum on a section of rug.
I get these 20% off anything-in-the-store coupons From Bed Bath and Beyond and use them when I want to make an expensive gadget purchase for an item not generally discounted. Still, the $450 ended up costing me about $400 with tax included.
Some of my ideas turn out to be not as good as hoped for, but after letting my Roomba loose on the living room and hallway, I assembled the Dyson and ran over those areas to give it a true test. Sure enough, I ended up dumping maybe half a cup of fine powder it picked up (and because it has a HEPA filter, did not shoot back into the air). This must have been the stuff I used to stir up by walking around that settled on everything.
Now I realize you may have a spouse or significant other who takes care of the cleaning and general household maintenance, but try this little test: take a moistened paper towel and fold it over several times. Wipe on top of an opened door or that little piece of wood that forms a ledge over where the door closes. If that's the only dusty place in your abode, get a few paper towels and do all the door tops and door top ledges. But if you or your spouse notice a lot of dust that seems to come from nowhere, you might consider investing the $450. If you have respiratory problems, as I do, it's a priceless thing to have cleaner air to breathe.
I bought Microsoft's Expression Blend and downloaded some training videos, and will post my thoughts on a more technical subject in the next few days. My preliminary thoughts (as someone who explored Flash previously) are that designers will grudgingly absorb enough knowledge of WPF after using this application to do some nice UI design work, but developers will still need a rock-solid foundation in WPF for the coding side of things.