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Windows 8 In Full View

As I expected, Microsoft not only released new details of Windows 8 at its Build Conference, but also gave out working code to developers.

As the sneak peak screen shots that have kicked around for months demonstrate, Windows 8 is probably the most radical Microsoft OS change since the move from DOS to Windows.

Win 8 looks more like a phone or tablet OS than is does a PC operating system. In fact, for those of you that use Windows Phone 7 (there must be at least a couple of you out there) Win 8 will look very familiar.

Win 8 also offers a new development paradigm (Redmond just loves to change its development paradigms, doesn't it?), with many new apps to be written in XAML, HTML 5 or JavaScript. Hard core apps, though, I'm sure will be built the old fashioned way. Hey, look how long it's taking to get developers to move from VB to C#!

Windows 8 will also run on a new range of ARM-driven devices, but not all older x86 apps will necessarily follow. Instead a new class of apps will be built mainly in HTML5. These apps are referred to a "Metro-style", as opposed to existing x86 programs which are now as they have always been called "desktop apps." It's nice to see Microsoft using an older, well-understood term rather than inventing new nomenclature.

Metro apps can be driven by pen or touch, and the interface is scaled down just as with a smartphone.

Are you ready for a new interface? Your thoughts welcome at dbarney@redmondmag.com.

Posted by Doug Barney on 09/14/2011 at 1:18 PM


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