October 31, 2003
Wallent slays Win32 UI; not many dead
Michael Wallent in this morning's Longhorn UI panel: "We want to make existing applications look like DOS applications when they run on Longhorn."
His point was actually that Longhorn applications will exhibit not just different visual style but different behaviour. It is not a matter of applying Avalon chrome to an existing application. The actual interaction must change to fit the Longhorn Way. That means WinFS integration, shell visualisations and so on.
This emphasises the need for developers to ensure that their core application functionality -- what we do -- to be kept separate from the presentation layer -- how we deliver that to the user. Expect to ship a design upgrade in the Longhorn timeframe, and expect it to involve a major if not complete redesign of your existing presentation layer. You don't want to be having to unpick your presentation and functionality in that same effort.
The advice is to track the Longhorn user experience as the builds evolve. They hope to issue these on the Win95 model -- regular builds available to developers -- so that we can develop our new presentation layers during the Longhorn prerelease cycle, and be ready to RTM at the same time as Longhorn.
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Tracked on Nov 1, 2003 6:10:24 AM