A new role has emerged as the result of this fusion, that Paul Alexander, a technical program manager with IdentityMine, calls the integrator:
"The Integrator understands the needs of the developer while also supporting the needs of the designer to assure that the app's UI is as compelling as it was designed, while also validating that the concepts can be realized in code from the developer."
The integrator deals mostly with XAML code and provides an interface between the developer and designer, by structuring and modularizing the XAML.
Therefore, the ideal integrator must posess strong design skills and a thorough understanding of XAML and Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) concepts such as inheritance, styles, and resource lookup.
The Designer<->Integrator<->Developer Model allows the design team to leave the XAML unattended and focus on having their assets effectively integrated into the project.
Designers can work with tools such as Expression Design, Inkscape or Adobe Illustrator and output the results as XAML.
The integrator then integrates the XAML into the project and passes it on to the developers, who need not to be concerned with design issues.
Obviously, this model also works perfectly well the other way around, and in some cases it is advisable to have the developer team establish the foundations of the project.
A recently released tool by Microsoft, Expression Blend, makes this transition even easier, by accepting and generating XAML code that can be directly imported/exported from/to Visual Studio.