Every time I hear another announcement on what Longhorn will implement or what new tricks it will learn to perform, I have the feeling that I’m watching a show where the magician pulls rabbits out of a hat.
Microsoft’s strategy of releasing bits of information on Longhorn is understandable considering that December 2006 is far away and that hardware producers, software developers and users must be kept alert.
This strategy’s downside is that at some point Microsoft might give the impression of being unsure of what exactly is expecting from the software.
If you read all the announcements made by Microsoft so far regarding the functionalities implemented in Longhorn, you’ll start thinking that somewhere in one of the laboratories from Redmond, someone is constantly looking for the coolest technologies on the market and is integrating them in the next operating system, whether they were in the plan or not.
Microsoft’s ambition of developing an operating system that will last as long as Windows XP and even more is normal, but the way in which it will achieve this is somehow uncertain.
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I was saying the same thing myself. The company keeps on adding and separating certain technologies from Longhorn. The 3 pillars, WinFS, Indigo and Avalong plus the new API, were all expected to be Longhorn features only, but are downleveled to support Windows XP and Server 2003. RSS, IE 7 and Longhorn is another example of Microsoft adding, yes its wonderful, but why wasn’t this figured out as a top priority making it a core feature of Longhorn at the platform level? Basically, this is telling me the feature set for Longhorn has not been frozen or whatever they are targetting for Longhorn will actually be add-ons after it is released.