Kevin Schofield -- Tour of Microsoft Research's VIBE group (large screens/multiple monitors)

Play Kevin Schofield -- Tour of Microsoft Research's VIBE group (large screens/multiple monitors)

The Discussion

  • User profile image

    Holy crap! Wow! Thanks alot for the video guys! That dragging part rocks! good bye mouse! Do any of you here on channel9 from MS use that in your offices?

      You guys releasing that group art project anytime soon? It would be great to use it at this time.
     By the way, the video got cut off before I could see the last group. Sad
     Another great one!!! MS research seems really exciting...!!!

  • User profile image
    Awesome. Where is the second video?? Smiley
  • User profile image
    The Channel 9 Team
    Actually, there are five videos that I did. This was the fourth. The fifth is coming tomorrow. Tomorrow I'll link to all five again.
  • User profile image
    I love that shortcut thingy for the big screen. I'm not so sure about the other two, they look kind of experimental.

    Good video! Smiley
  • User profile image
    The last one was very interesting, because it's better than using virtual desktops such as linux or Nvidia ones, because you can restore environment you used a few days ago.
    So i don't think this sort of tool is only experimental, it can become very useful when you work on different stuff every day.
  • User profile image

    I'm from Russia. If Channel9 Team 'd like to show this video not only in US/UK/Canada, Microsoft translaters should have a work. =)

    Thank you for this website.
  • User profile image
    Very cool video.. glad to see some of the innovative forces behind the next gen MS UI products. MS has in some cases shocked the industry (ala optical mouse) and it is a great feather in yourn cap to continue that trend. Thanks for giving us an inside view on it.
  • User profile image
    Great! I was just saying on my blog the other day how great VIBE's stuff is.

    *claps for the vibe team*
  • User profile image

    I love these unedited walkabouts of labs. You bump into interesting people all over around there.

    Can't wait for part 5.

  • User profile image
    That task based window grouping would be so awesome at work.
  • User profile image
    I've been saying for ages that we should have more control over the grouping and arrangement on buttons on the taskbar (drag drop rearrangement, break apart  auto grouping on demand), but this goes far further than I'd even imagined!

    So, for me, the most interesting part of that demo was the 'groupbar', but the elastic pick and pop style interface looked cool - though I wonder how useful it would be in real world situations with windows scattered across your desktop (as is likely in multiscreen setups - like mine right now Wink ). Also, to be honest, the 'sticky note' style interface didn't look very useful, I'm constantly clearing clutter off my desktop anyway.

    But really, I would love that groupbar functionality integrated into my XP taskbar right now; though I imagine the earliest we'll see it in production is with Longhorn. Then again this sounds like a Sourceforge project waiting to happen! 
  • User profile image
    The Channel 9 Team wrote:
    Actually, there are five videos that I did. This was the fourth. The fifth is coming tomorrow. Tomorrow I'll link to all five again.
    How soon? Smiley
  • User profile image
    It'll be up in a few minutes.
  • User profile image
    The thing where the window shrinks down into a thumbnail on the desktop instead of to the taskbar ("scalable fabric"?) - isn't there something like that in the latest Mac OSX?

    As for the dragable taskbar - I've wanted to drag the buttons on the taskbar since the Win95 days.  I thought we might have got it in Win2k as you could drag start menu items and quicklaunch buttons, but still no taskbar button dragging...

    And the thing to save and restore app windows - Borland had a program called Dashboard for win3.1 back in 93/94 that did just that (among other things). It suffered from the program though that asside from the cranky old OLE compound document interfaces, there is no standard way to get an application to persist the state of it's user interface in Windows (or any other OS I'm aware of). Sure we can see what programs are running, save their window sizes/locations and try to work out for certain common apps what documents are loaded, but as a general purpose solution it's a bit of a pipe-dream.
  • User profile image
    Cool Spider Man trick Wink amazing...Kudos to MSR...

    The Channel 9 Team wrote:
    The tour of Microsoft Research continues. In this visit you get taken into the VIBE group (Visualization, Interaction, Business and Entertainment).

    Think large screens. Multiple screens. There you'll meet Patrick Baudisch, researcher, who'll show you through the lab and give you some cool software that is designed to help with large and multiple monitors.

    Other people you'll meet in this video:
    Greg Smith
    Duke Hutchins
    Bongshin Lee
  • User profile image
    Cool Spider Man trick Wink amazing...Kudos to MSR...

    That is genius !  - it's not the "drag and pop effect" (boooring), it's the "Spidey drag" !!

    Writing this on the Tablet PC I can see how useful that feature could be. 
  • User profile image
    m j
    I WANT THE APP THAT SAVES AND RESTORES MY APP WINDOWS! The "snapshot" feature for GroupBar. Tasked based work is a huge part of my daily routine, and I am constantly switching. Even if I did have to close all the apps out and restart everything it would be better then how I do it now. I'm not entirely sure about the GroupBar itself, but I haven't used it, and I can see how it might be useful, but I'm primarily interested in the snapshot feature.

    rhm wrote:
    And the thing to save and restore app windows ... there is no standard way to get an application to persist the state of it's user interface in Windows (or any other OS I'm aware of). Sure we can see what programs are running, save their window sizes/locations and try to work out for certain common apps what documents are loaded, but as a general purpose solution it's a bit of a pipe-dream.

    rhm makes a good point though, if you were able to save the state of an app that would be HUGE! Just like the hibernate feature in windows, if we could do that for individual apps that would make it even better to switch between tasks you were in the middle of and didn't want to take the time to save everything then all the time to open everything back up and remember where you left off again.
  • User profile image
    Add some form of rubber-band spring back animation and you've a sure winner. Right now, trivial though it may be, it's a little dissapointing that the icon and band just dissapear like that.
  • User profile image

    When using group art, does Alt Tab also show groups and/or let you manage them?  Some sort of full screen mode for this would be great for the people who open many windows.

  • User profile image
    While the demos were interesting, to me, the most valuable part of this video was Kevin talking at the end about the need to share the work in research with others. That is the scientific method at work. Long may it continue.
  • User profile image
    I can't wait until some of this stuff gets released.

    Imagine having 3 monitors hooked up to one desktop.  The first 2 would be the traditional side-by-side dual monitor configuration and the third being the massive wall-like display.

    You could have a pen device similar to the one used for Tablet PC's.

    Instant Whiteboard!  Only MUCH more flexible.  The wall could be a huge version of OneNote or Visio for Enterprise Architects.  I could do all my UML in a design meeting and SAVE it instead of transcribing from my legal pad sheets.

    Keep going!  This stuff is awesome!
  • User profile image
    How difficult would it be to do the glove devices as seen in "Minority Report"? and integrate it with the massive wall display?
  • User profile image

    The last example of the group bar really caught my attention - I showed it to a few of my close friends and they just went 'Wow! I want it'.

    We did a bit of on-the-spot brain storming and decided it would be cool to use the idea's behind the group bar + the concepts shown in the next media groups video (

    We decided that windows-tab was a useless key combo, and that it instead should turn all open windows into thumbnails, like in the media browser. From there, you can either click on an application to bring it to the front, or you can .. drag it to a group (known as a bin in media browser - just sounds a bit funny when dealing with applications). Once that is done, the group is automatically assigned a colour (just as in the group bar.. but you can also assign a more meaningful name) .. You can then drag other applications into its group.

    Switching between groups is then just a matter of pressing windows-tab (tapping tab switches groups, holding tab down (no tapping) keeps the group bar up (not really a bar now is it Wink).

    I also think this would work well for those who massively multi-task, and would display many applications well, just as media browser displays many photo's well.

    (as a final note, just as you can display all photos in media browser, you could also display all applications (no group\colour filtering), and thus it would also work as another form of alt-tab.

    Going off on a tangent now, the ability to rehydrate applications ... umm, is it possible to have windows always load off a hibernation file? If you used a *fresh* hibernation file (i mean hibernating windows as soon as it has just finished start up, and then booting off that file always (except when a restart is needed)) to reduce start up time, and then rehydrating apps so you would have many of the benefits of hibernation (short start up and working from where you stopped).

    I guess with longhorn, and its push for two power states, hibernation will be come increasingly more common, so that kind of thing would have very little value.

  • User profile image
    When watching this video, I noticed on the last demo the it seemed they were using dual monitors with the taskbar going across to monitors.

    This has been implemented in LongHorn (WinHEC build)...

    Is there anyway we can do this now......please, do I really have to wait until Longhorn comes.....

    Oh by the way this vide rocked, all good stuff.... liked the big screen icon selection.


    30 July 2004

    Found this....this will do this fine until LH is RTM!

    UltraMon is a utility for multi-monitor systems, designed to increase productivity and unlock the full potential of multiple monitors.

    • efficiently move windows and maximize windows across the desktop
    • manage more applications with the Smart Taskbar
    • control application positioning with UltraMon Shortcuts
    • multi-monitor support for desktop wallpapers and screen savers
    • mirror your main monitor to secondary monitors for a presentation
  • User profile image
    I think this video is the one that have impressed me the most so far. The 3D media application is very pretty, but this is some really good down to earth productivity enhancements. The task oriented way (as opposed to document centric) of working is something I look forward to and I think it will make the everyday work much smoother. I'm also impressed by the openess. It's clear that they are concerned that someone else could rip of their inventions and still they show it and accept it as part of the game. Now that is a real change to the way I picture the "old" Microsoft. I like this very much indeed. Good work. And thanks for sharing.
  • User profile image
    Wow.. cannot believe the drag and pop concept... even the snapshot thing.. you can restore back...

  • User profile image

    Jus few days ago I download GroupBar from MS Reseearch site. You can try it too here >> Another interesting invention is SideShow - not to be confused with Vista's SideShow. I didn't really used it GroupBar much, though the snapshot feature looked really useful. As for the minimized apps on the desktop, I have seen that idea some time ago. It's also available with some Window managers. And as for the dragon drop Smiley (that's what I heard at first - makes a cool name) I think I have seen it in a game before but it's really cool to see good ideas leak to software we're going to use everyday. I  don't want sound like I don't respect the VIBE guys, on the contrary, I'm their fan and I'm really looking forward to what they are going to do in Blackcomb.

  • User profile image

    Using multi monitors ? the Software at can be really helpful

  • User profile image

    excellent videocongratulations

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