Coffeehouse Thread

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is scoble right

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  • User profile image
    Jaz

    http://radio.weblogs.com/0001011/2004/06/07.html#a7713

    Saw this on scobles blog today, and i feel he's right. 

    What needs to happen in MS to shake up everything, what needs to bring them to the forefront,and i'm not accepting open source code as an option.

  • User profile image
    lars

    Scoble usually is. I think Microsoft is still pretty agile. They just have a hard time outdoing themselves over and over again.

    /Lars.

  • User profile image
    AlfredTh

    Scoble is right. WHile MS is still very agile it has become so big that it can be hard to get the right people (the ones who can commit money) together with other people who have the right (or out of the box) ideas.
    Scoble likes to talk about 700 Microsoft bloggers and how execs read them. Well they do read some of them. I'm sure Scoble's gets read and talked about a lot. But I don't think too many of them are reading mine. Although to be honest mine is not the same sort of blog as Scoble's. And that is a whole other thing about blogs. They serve different purposes for different people. I would feel comfortable talking to management about my ideas but it would change the nature of my current blog to use it as a podium to talk to management.

  • User profile image
    Cider

    I think Scoble is right to a certain degree.  I personally think a lot of the problems boil down to what I'd define as process of information.  In a way, it comes down to the way that Channel 9 and the like NEED to work.

    OK, example.

    At the start of this year, thanks to a VERY high level of student demand, there was a requirement at my place of work (a University) to install MSN Messenger 6.1 onto the lab workstations, which live in a pretty standard Active Directory environment.

    Now, in Microsoft marketing speak, that's dead simple.  Microsoft, by policy, produce installers as Microsoft Installer packages (MSI), you then assign that to a group policy in your active directory and then assign that group policy so that the workstations get that MSI and, thus, install MSN Messenger on next restart.

    Firstly, how many different teams does that simple process involve.  At a rough count, 4-6 teams.  From my experience, it would seem that if they want to make this simple Active Directory process to work, they need to realise that these 4-6 teams must work together to make sure that this simple process goes without hitch.

    Unfortunately, in this case, it didn't.  The MSI just would not install.  I debugged as much as I could, literally pulling apart the MSI file, but could not see it.  Eventually, after seeing a similar message in a public Microsoft usenet group, I opted to take my own findings there.  Very soon, Carolyn Napier (the wonderfully fantastic Carolyn Napier!) of the Microsoft Installer team got me out of a very big hole by providing the solution.  It was a shockingly acute problem, which was solved by adding into and editing the darkest internals of the MSI.  It worked, and I rejoiced.  Its a prime example of the way that Microsoft should work with its community of developers, sysadmins and users.

    Unfortunately, there's a kicker in the tail of this story.  Can you guess what happened when MSN Messenger 6.2 was released?

    Yes, the problem was still there.

    WHY?  If a member of the Microsoft Installer team had diagnosed a rather large problem with the MSN Messenger team's output, a problem which affected anyone trying to deploy MSN Messenger via Active Directory (two of Microsoft's major products), why was this not flagged as important for the MSN Messenger team to fix in its next release?

    See, this is where the biggest danger and opportunity for Microsoft's community based projects comes in.

    The danger is that this community notion is being used in a shallow manner, failing to take the comments from this sort of place and make them available to the "right people".  In which case, our comments are effectively worthless.

    The opportunity, though, is immense.  What is the open source community's greatest asset?  The community itself.  What is the open source community's greatest weakness?  Ironically, the community itself.  When dealing with common problems, easy workarounds, common misunderstandings, the community is great.  However, what happens when we get to the technical end of it all?  To keep with the example above, what happens when you talk to the higher echelons of the open source community about packaging their Windows version as MSI, giving the numerous advantages?  Its talking to a brick wall.

    It isn't so much about who is reading your blog, but more that the "right people" have the ability to make the changes possible on what they read.  Real changes to a software product based on feedback?  An opportunity for Microsoft, a pipe dream for the current Open Source Community...

  • User profile image
    rossryan

    Scoble is dead right.

    Let's throw out some similarities here:

    Microsoft:
    $280 billion market cap
    Has been declared a monopoly.
    Beginning to push out patents like IBM (they hired IBM's guy).
    Software company.
    "No one has been fired for buying Microsoft".
    No one wants to be trapped in a room with Bill Gates (he's called the Fox for a reason).
    Accused of being out of touch with customers (BOB, Clippy, Windows ME, Longhorn...).


    IBM:
    $180 billion market cap
    Has been declared a monopoly.
    Pushes out patents like no other company.
    Software/hardware company. 
    "No one has been fired for buying IBM".
    No one wants to fight the MiB (IBM's {patent} lawyers (ask SUN)).
    Accused of being out of touch with customers (Mainframes are out, clustering is in).

    What (almost) everyone wants is a return to 1999-2000. They want MS to be the company that laid the smack down on the DoJ, not the company that barely got smacked. They want killer apps, new innovations, that flighty feeling where everything is possible.

    MS used to be the darling of Wall Street: always beat the expectations, good corporate image. The recession happened, and although MS is still alive, their image is shattered: they are an EvIl monopoly.

    Guess who's taking MS's old spot? Google. The commotion surrounding that company is like when MS changed from the NasDaq to the Dow Jones. So, until they are declared a monopoly or kill a baby in front of its mother, they are the new "in". And they're holding up pretty well, going after WinFS.

    For the record, though I like MS, Longhorn has got to be a bad joke. Take away all the PR people, ask them to throw out some *real* scenarios, and you find it's actually quite useless. Avalon? Cute. Lower CPU usage, more eye-candy. Indigo? Yeah, if you're a developer. Most networks work fine now. WinFS (BG's grand vision)? Useful only if you have a criminal tendency to misplace files. The extra data is useful, but very exaggerated.

    -Ryan

  • User profile image
    jamie

    i agree that google has stolen the renegade " here's what your computer can do" crown..for NOW

    at the same time - Longhorn has got to be the most task driven - industry based OS of all time.  There is Media Center - thats now .. but soon there wil be Real Esate edition, Medical edition etc..

    so your critisisms of longhorn are unfair.

    Also many people WANT it to look good and have eye candy - hopefully better done than OSX - with the lame photo clip art

    Customers want everything that longhorn will be

    There is a bigger chessboard happening in regards to billg's vision for seemless computing/ Wintone  etc

    Your move Wink

  • User profile image
    rossryan

    My critisisms of Longhorn are fair: fair from the standpoint of a hypothetical business owner. I have 500 machines, why do I need to upgrade to Longhorn?

    Let me state this in the clear: what I am trying to get at is, what does Longhorn offer over Windows XP besides the usual?

    Saying things like: "Customers want everything that longhorn will be" is just a cover. What defines Longhorn vs. XP, 2003?

    There are three pillars to this new OS:

    Avalon-> Pretty 3-D graphics. MS makes the case that most systems have 3D graphics accelerators. Ok, so we get better graphics, and lower CPU. But what about the ### million server motherboards that are integrated with RageXL 8 MB chipsets? Or Intel (whatever they call it)?

    They cannot support even the lowest Aero experience.

    Indigo-> More secure/easy network transport. Nice, but everything (software) needs to be upgraded to take advantage of it.

    WinFS-> Single most overblown technology, ever. Yes, extra data is nice, yes, having containers & extra search items is nice. Search will certainly be faster. But put down the fanboy sign, and think. How often do I use Search? How often do you use Search? Hourly? Daily? Weekly? Monthly?

    The last time I used Search was for hunting down some header files in the \Windows\System32 directory. That was three weeks ago.

    I think Bill Gates vision tends to evolve on a daily basis. He's been wrong about a number of things (especially in his book). And it's less a game of chess than "King of the Mountain" where IBM, SUN, MS, and everyone else want a bigger slice of the pie.

    The problem MS has, is that 1.) they no longer innovate. Apple with the Ipod is a classic (if overused) example. 2.) they are telling their customers what they want. Classic mistake, results in a market backlash.

    Innovation is->>>>solving a problem, annoyance, etc.

    WinFS solves the Search problem very well. But it is not needed often: most users keep their files in the "My Documents folder", and running Search on that is just dumb. What they should do (in conjunction to WinFS) is over a preview (first paragraph) of the documents in a folder. Running Search is absolutely fantastic when you get about 50 hits, and have to open each one of them to find the file you're looking for.

    *Whistles to MS* If Google implements a feature where there is a link to a file, plus a preview of the file (image, text, etc.) below it, we all know who is going to be dragged through the hot coals.

    Avalon solves...window painting problems. Tearing, refreshing, little thing like that. I suppose if Adobe used the GPU for its image transforms, yeah, useful. But GPUs are not up for that kind of work.

    Indigo solves the sockets problem (so I hear) for developers. More secure.

    What I'm trying to imagine is this sparkling vision everyone has of Longhorn, and how this integrates into a business. What does Longhorn bring to Manufacturing? Healthcare? Education?

    I'd settle for something in the Industry/Consumer categories.

    The point I'm trying to make is that while Longhorn has a bunch of really fantastic solutions, I do not see the problem. Let me say, here and now, Ryan Ross does not see what is so great (aside from the geek factor) about Longhorn, that upon launch day, I will be running out in traffic to grab a piece of this fantastic software.

    Let me put it to you this way: when I walk into work, I'm going to tell my boss that we need to upgrade to Longhorn because it helps his business do what?

    Prediction: Longhorn launches, we throw BG a geek day parade. Like Dilbert: This is absolutely wonderful, but totally unmarketable. Thank You, I'm technology driven.

    Another Prediction: The first people to upgrade (of the non-geek culture) will be people who are buying a new PC.

    I'm out,
    RR

  • User profile image
    lars

    rossryan wrote:
    Let me put it to you this way: when I walk into work, I'm going to tell my boss that we need to upgrade to Longhorn because it helps his business do what?


    That is the real question Microsoft will have to answer. But it's a general problem for the whole industry. Why do we need faster CPUs? Or more broadband? Or yet more features in Word?

    Win98 + Office97 goes a long way towards covering the feature needs of the individual. Win2000 + Office 2000 does the same for business. Heck, some people are still happy with Windows NT.
     
    It's not hard to figure out new features. But it's harder to figure out good ones that makes the user warrant an upgrade. The new features have to be embraced by the end user in order to pay off.
    So it's a challenge both for the software vendor and the customer that implements the new versions in their organisations.
     
    Right now alot of the momentum is in security and collaboration. Enhanced security is easy to leverage to increase sales. Fear is a powerful emotion. 

    /Lars.

  • User profile image
    Jeremy W

    RR, while your analysis is keen, it seems to stem from not having 'got' WinFS. Think about how you use your computer and categorize your data. In order to 'find' information, you need to use the right app, name it the right way, store it on the right partition and in the right folder structure (often 3-5 levels deep in order to sort the volume of data we all work with on a daily basis).

    Now, while you may rarely use the Search feature, you are constantly searchING. You are trying to remember what app you used, what you called the file and where it's located. It happens as part of your internal process.

    WinFS fundamentally changes that. I'm not going to get into the whole "is changing users' processes good" debate (I have that one with Buzz B all the time, it's always fun). You asked why it's useful. WinFS is fundamentally useful because you never need to do an internal search again. You could use the wrong app, name the filename all wonky and store it somewhere useless and still get a snapshot of whatever it is you're working on.

    Want all data for your "NextGen2.0 Website"? Here you go. Instantly. Oh, look, there's a file with the schematics and process deifnition. I'd forgotten what I named that. Cool, thanks Longhorn!

    Beyond WinFS, the largest benefit of Longhorn will be the ability to tap into the more advanced features offered by Windows 2003 Server (and, eventually, Longhorn server). Windows 2003 makes a hell of a lot of sense, and Longhorn will give you the ability to interface with that seamlessly.

    Beyond that? Security, greater integration with DSI, etc are all important for your business.

    The whole innovation thing has always bothered me, personally. If WinFS isn't an innovation, how can the iPod be called an innovation? There were metatadata schemas before (WinFS) and there were MP3 players before (iPod). They were both evolutionary and, in my mind, both innovative because they both take it to the next level.

    Personally I see things like DSI, .NET, WinFS, Avalon, Indigo, VS Team System, XBox, etc as innovative. That's not even counting softer innovations in product lines. I see those as just as innovative as anything else out there from companies like Apple, Sun, Novell, IBM, Oracle, Siebel, PeopleSoft, etc.

    I don't really see a lot of "wow, that's completely new" innovations from any of the big companies. From the new companies, sure, but not from the big ones.

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    My critisisms of Longhorn are fair: fair from the standpoint of a hypothetical business owner. I have 500 machines, why do I need to upgrade to Longhorn?

    >You can't, none of the computers today will be able to run longhorn.

    Let me state this in the clear: what I am trying to get at is, what does Longhorn offer over Windows XP besides the usual?

    >Every day new advancements in hardware become available, more memory, 64-bits processors, bigger harddrives, faster networks... Maybe we also need a new operating system that can handle all this new stuff and take advantage of it.

    Saying things like: "Customers want everything that longhorn will be" is just a cover. What defines Longhorn vs. XP, 2003?

    >The pillars that you will mention under this line.

    There are three pillars to this new OS:
    >Actually there are more than 3 pillars, but you obviously didn't do your homework.

    Avalon-> Pretty 3-D graphics. MS makes the case that most systems have 3D graphics accelerators. Ok, so we get better graphics, and lower CPU. But what about the ### million server motherboards that are integrated with RageXL 8 MB chipsets? Or Intel (whatever they call it)?

    They cannot support even the lowest Aero experience.

    >Computers without 3d-hardware will go to the 3th tier experience which means the classic (win 2k interface). You forgot that Longhorn is NOT targetted at servers.

    Indigo-> More secure/easy network transport. Nice, but everything (software) needs to be upgraded to take advantage of it.

    >Like webservices, it's easier to send an automatically generated xml-file than:
    [  (B (i   (l  (l ¦  à  (d]

    WinFS-> Single most overblown technology, ever. Yes, extra data is nice, yes, having containers & extra search items is nice. Search will certainly be faster. But put down the fanboy sign, and think. How often do I use Search? How often do you use Search? Hourly? Daily? Weekly? Monthly?

    The last time I used Search was for hunting down some header files in the \Windows\System32 directory. That was three weeks ago.

    >You don't know what WinFS really is, do you?
     WinFS is used to organise some sort of library about your documents and media like: pictures, songs, movies, word, excel, powerpoint documents, tasks, calendar, mailmessages and people. For example: you place 2 items in your calendar: 1-6 july vacation. After this vacation you connect your digital camera and download some pictures of that vacation. WinFS will automatically notice that those pictures were made during your vacation and give them a title like 'Holiday 2004".
    Did I mention something about about the search-function? Not once.


    The problem MS has, is that 1.) they no longer innovate. Apple with the Ipod is a classic (if overused) example. 2.) they are telling their customers what they want. Classic mistake, results in a market backlash.
    >You don't call those pillars of Longhorn innovation? What do you call inovation?
    For (2), at the moment WE (the developers and IT enthousiasts) are telling on Channel 9 what WE want from MS.
    What did Apple innovate with their Ipod?

    Innovation is->>>>solving a problem, annoyance, etc.
    >That's problem-solving not innovation. Innovation is inventing something new that didn't exist yet.

    WinFS solves the Search problem very well. But it is not needed often: most users keep their files in the "My Documents folder", and running Search on that is just dumb. What they should do (in conjunction to WinFS) is over a preview (first paragraph) of the documents in a folder. Running Search is absolutely fantastic when you get about 50 hits, and have to open each one of them to find the file you're looking for.

    *Whistles to MS* If Google implements a feature where there is a link to a file, plus a preview of the file (image, text, etc.) below it, we all know who is going to be dragged through the hot coals.

    Avalon solves...window painting problems. Tearing, refreshing, little thing like that. I suppose if Adobe used the GPU for its image transforms, yeah, useful. But GPUs are not up for that kind of work.

    >Avalon does more than just solving this problem. It innovates too. The desktop as you know it (since win95) will be replaced with something completely new.

    Indigo solves the sockets problem (so I hear) for developers. More secure.

    >Indigo and webservices are operating at a much higher level than the socket stuff.

    What I'm trying to imagine is this sparkling vision everyone has of Longhorn, and how this integrates into a business. What does Longhorn bring to Manufacturing? Healthcare? Education?

    >Here you have some concept videos about Manufacturing, healthcare, estate stuff and soon education too.
    http://msdn.microsoft.com/Longhorn/productinfo/conceptvid/default.aspx

    I'd settle for something in the Industry/Consumer categories.

    >At the moment Microsoft isn't concentrating much on the consumers but more on developers because they are the ones that will have to use most of the new technology in lh.
    It will take awhile before commercial apps become available that take advantage of all this new stuff.

  • User profile image
    Jaz

    i'm still not down with this whole winfs and diary/email thing.  I don't use the calender to tell me that i'm going on holiday, i use it to tell me that i have a meeting,a  flat inspection or a chat coming.  otherwise i use my brain.

    the only things i search for really are emails from time to time or irc log files which are a pain to search.

  • User profile image
    jkwuc89

    >You don't know what WinFS really is, do you?
     WinFS is used to organise some sort of library about your documents and media like: pictures, songs, movies, word, excel, powerpoint documents, tasks, calendar, mailmessages and people. For example: you place 2 items in your calendar: 1-6 july vacation. After this vacation you connect your digital camera and download some pictures of that vacation. WinFS will automatically notice that those pictures were made during your vacation and give them a title like 'Holiday 2004".
    Did I mention something about about the search-function? Not once.

    But, will all of this work with the GBs of pictures and music I already have that I added to my computer prior to installing Longhorn?  In other words, Will LH with WinFS be able to sufficiently catalogue my existing data without me having to open each file and give it some contextual meta data?

  • User profile image
    Jeremy W

    That's the plan.

  • User profile image
    rossryan

    >You can't, none of the computers today will be able to run longhorn.

    http://radio.weblogs.com/0001011/2004/05/04.html#a7376
    The specs quoted are not the minimum specs.

    >Every day new advancements in hardware become available, more memory, 64-bits processors, bigger harddrives, faster networks... Maybe we also need a new operating system that can handle all this new stuff and take advantage of it.

    I'm not discounting that. But why buy the hardware (aside from SQL/developers/artists/gamers who need the additional capabilities) when Windows XP fulfills these capabilities just fine? Yes, with Longhorn you get nicer drivers, a little more glitz, but where's the killer?

    >Actually there are more than 3 pillars, but you obviously didn't do your homework.

    Aright, three main pillars, though there are more. I've done my homework, and I have a copy of Longhorn sitting a few feet away from me.

    >Computers without 3d-hardware will go to the 3th tier experience which means the classic (win 2k interface). You forgot that Longhorn is NOT targetted at servers.

    Longhorn server is derived from the same codebase, and will be out a few months later. Try again?

    >You don't know what WinFS really is, do you?
     WinFS is used to organise some sort of library about your documents and media like: pictures, songs, movies, word, excel, powerpoint documents, tasks, calendar, mailmessages and people. For example: you place 2 items in your calendar: 1-6 july vacation. After this vacation you connect your digital camera and download some pictures of that vacation. WinFS will automatically notice that those pictures were made during your vacation and give them a title like 'Holiday 2004".
    Did I mention something about about the search-function? Not once.

    To be honest, I've been trying to gain a real grasp around the technology. From what I've gathered, WinFS is a glorified metadata service, running on top of NTFS, with a few APIs that are supposed treat files as containers accessible to Outlook and a few other pograms. Search is part of that. But the question is, how many people are going to rush out and buy Longhorn with that in mind? So, in addition to a better Search, now I can have Calender download vacation photos, and put them somewhere. Time spent setting up Outlook for this: 30 secs. Time spent copying the files to your folder of choice? 30 secs. I suppose inline data added by Calender might work...

    >You don't call those pillars of Longhorn innovation? What do you call inovation?
    For (2), at the moment WE (the developers and IT enthousiasts) are telling on Channel 9 what WE want from MS.

    They certainly are innovation, what I'm getting at is worthwhile innovation. To paraphrase HHGTTG, it's all fine and dandy if your customer's want a fly that can turn off light switches. 

    >Avalon does more than just solving this problem. It innovates too. The desktop as you know it (since win95) will be replaced with something completely new.

    Sidebar? A new color scheme?

    >Here you have some concept videos about Manufacturing, healthcare, estate stuff and soon education too.

    Custom apps, that could easily be written for Windows XP or 2003 (2000 fits the bill). I think WinFS comes off best in this.

    >At the moment Microsoft isn't concentrating much on the consumers but more on developers because they are the ones that will have to use most of the new technology in lh.
    It will take awhile before commercial apps become available that take advantage of all this new stuff.

    True. But my point is that ->Longhorn comes out in 2006 (hopefully). It takes about 1-3 months for the big players to bring their products up to speed. But, with such an entrenched base, I do not see Longhorn as much of a success (keeping in mind its feature set).




     

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    But why buy the hardware (aside from SQL/developers/artists/gamers who need the additional capabilities) when Windows XP fulfills these capabilities just fine? Yes, with Longhorn you get nicer drivers, a little more glitz, but where's the killer?

    >Could you replace xp with 95? No? That's because certain programs rely on new technologies in XP. Like new theme, BITS, external desktop, text-to-speech, ...

    Aright, three main pillars, though there are more. I've done my homework, and I have a copy of Longhorn sitting a few feet away from me.

    >The problem is you're making these statements based on what you saw from this Developer Preview of Longhorn. I've worked with this preview too and every time I get the same feeling as you: "where's the killer?". The difference is that I know that this is just a preview and that all the changes were under the hood. The version that we got to see was not even beta.

    Computers without 3d-hardware will go to the 3th tier experience which means the classic (win 2k interface). You forgot that Longhorn is NOT targetted at servers.
    >Longhorn server is derived from the same codebase, and will be out a few months later. Try again?

    Server 2003 was derived from the codebase of XP, did you see the Luna style in 2003? Read again:
    "Computers without 3d-hardware will go to the 3th tier experience which means the classic interface."


    To be honest, I've been trying to gain a real grasp around the technology. From what I've gathered, WinFS is a glorified metadata service, running on top of NTFS, with a few APIs that are supposed treat files as containers accessible to Outlook and a few other pograms. Search is part of that. But the question is, how many people are going to rush out and buy Longhorn with that in mind? So, in addition to a better Search, now I can have Calender download vacation photos, and put them somewhere. Time spent setting up Outlook for this: 30 secs. Time spent copying the files to your folder of choice? 30 secs. I suppose inline data added by Calender might work...
    >As a customer you would think this is "just another feature". It sounds true, but it is a big feature for developers.

    You don't call those pillars of Longhorn innovation? What do you call innovation?
    >They certainly are innovation, what I'm getting at is worthwhile innovation. To paraphrase HHGTTG, it's all fine and dandy if your customer's want a fly that can turn off light switches.

    >I don't think we will see a revolution in computers, but ms's products will always be an evolution.

    Sidebar? A new color scheme?
    >Based on what you saw from the developer preview: yes. But when Longhorn goes RTM the whole graphical system will be changed.

    Custom apps, that could easily be written for Windows XP or 2003 (2000 fits the bill).
    >If winfs is used in an application then those apps can't run on xp or 2003. If One-click-deployment is used then those apps can't run on xp or 2003. If Indigo is used then those apps can't run on xp or 2003. Those custom apps are the reason one should buy Longhorn.

    My point is that ->Longhorn comes out in 2006 (hopefully). It takes about 1-3 months for the big players to bring their products up to speed. But, with such an entrenched base, I do not see Longhorn as much of a success (keeping in mind its feature set).
    >I think it will be a bigger success than with WinXP. Microsoft is already giving very early access to Longhorn for developers. With this in mind a lot of commercial apps will be available sooner for Longhorn.

  • User profile image
    rossryan

    >Could you replace xp with 95? No? That's because certain programs rely on new technologies in XP. Like new theme, BITS, external desktop, text-to-speech, ...

    Of course not, but then XP (NT 5.1) brings something to the table that '95 didn't: Stability. I remember beta-testing 2000: it's like 98, but has the stability of NT! That is the only reason we upgraded. And you got admit, stability is killer (after dealing with win98 for any length of time).

    NT 4.0 just didn't jingle with me.

    >The problem is you're making these statements based on what you saw from this Developer Preview of Longhorn. I've worked with this preview too and every time I get the same feeling as you: "where's the killer?". The difference is that I know that this is just a preview and that all the changes were under the hood. The version that we got to see was not even beta.

    Aright, I'll concede this point. But, Longhorn better have something killer, because at this point, MS has solved ease-of-use (95-98) and stability (2000-XP-2003).

    Server 2003 was derived from the codebase of XP, did you see the Luna style in 2003? Read again:

    Sadly enough, I have it running on the servers at work (Themes service->Luna). Who says I can't sacrifice a few processors for good looks? Wink

    >I don't think we will see a revolution in computers, but ms's products will always be an evolution.

    Indeed. But small evolution isn't cost justifiable. I do I need to use words like ROI and TCO?

    >Based on what you saw from the developer preview: yes. But when Longhorn goes RTM the whole graphical system will be changed.

    Wait, it isn't RTM? Then what was that party MS has for Longhorn a while back...

    >As a customer you would think this is "just another feature". It sounds true, but it is a big feature for developers.

    I am a developer/network admin (lot's of hats, I've worn them all). The developer side says Longhorn will be fun with all the framework in it, the network admin said says 1.) with people still using win98, developers will still need to support the others for quite some time and 2.) with that in mind (and no immediate need to upgrade) Longhorn with its new technologies will take a while to pick up.

    >If winfs is used in an application then those apps can't run on xp or 2003. If One-click-deployment is used then those apps can't run on xp or 2003. If Indigo is used then those apps can't run on xp or 2003. Those custom apps are the reason one should buy Longhorn.

    Ah, but WinFS is essentially metadata (service), like SQL. So while it isn't prefect fit, you can easily make it rely on SQL (actually for enterprise apps, SQL is better). It's that whole circular thing: developers build apps for the largest number of people. If the largest number of people see no reason to upgrade to Longhorn, developers must provide applications on the platforms that the people have.

    >I think it will be a bigger success than with WinXP. Microsoft is already giving very early access to Longhorn for developers. With this in mind a lot of commercial apps will be available sooner for Longhorn.

    Of course, and having developers on board is the reason MS trounced IBM (IBM charged for kits, funny stuff). However, and unless developers make Longhorn their exclusive platform for release, Windows 2000/XP/2003 will be around for quite some time (as people see no reason to upgrade to Longhorn, because there's no killer).

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