I have mixed emotions about all of this. Some may say that it’s like putting lipstick on a pig, but in fact I don’t think Windows 7 is a pig at all. It beats any other desktop OS, bar none, and no, I don’t want to hear it from the Mac crowd (see my previous post). For me, it feels like putting an enhanced Windows Phone 7 wrapper on the desktop OS. This is great news for the upcoming Windows 8 tablet user and market. For me, for now, it feels like my phone UI is getting in the way of my desktop UI. I’ll probably get used to it later, but for now it just feels strange.
In any case, the press release and the little demo video seems to answer three primary and critical questions. Here are my first impressions and a few key frames from the video to tease you into watching it.
What is a Windows 8 App?
The touch enabled Start Desktop
What is Windows 8?
Aside from assumed improvements in the kernel, driver infrastructure, etc., we learn from this demo that the primary target UI is the touch interface with cool split thumb-friendly touch keypads for all platforms. Of course support for the 20th century input devices formerly known as the keyboard and mouse continues to be available. Behind the new touch enabled "Start screen" with smart app tiles, the old "Start button and menu" and desktop interface can be found underneath the covers. So you can have your touch-cake and eat your mouse and keyboard driven app-cake too. Smart.
Dragging the next desktop pane into view. Note the distinctly non-Windows 8 Word icon.
What Should a Developer Know About Windows 8?
Tweet in your Windows 8 App while balancing the budget in your mundane Excel spreadsheet.