Monthly Archives: May 2008

HP HDX 31 Days of the Dragon Contest by Geek Central

If you are into technology and browse a lot of Windows Enthusiast websites and have not heard about the HP HDX 31 Days of the Dragon giveaway then you probably have been living under a rock throughout May. Not to worry, there are still a few contest left to go and Geek News Central started theirs just a few days ago, you should go check it out.

The contest itself sponsored by Hewlett Packard and coordinated by BuzzCorps is giving away super impressive All One System that is sure to please anyone interested in computers, whether you are a gamer, student, business or just like really powerful computers. I have participated in about 19 of the contest so far, but it seems luck has not shined upon me ‘yet’. Below are a list of sites that are still running contest:

You can learn more about entering here

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New Dock Like Taskbar Coming in Windows 7?

Some personse have noted a difference in the appearance of the Windows Taskbar in yesterdays demo of Windows 7 by Julie Larson-Green at the D6 | All Things Digital event. But I am not sure if its anything new except for a resizing of the present Windows Vista style Taskbar. Thom Holwerda over at OS News thinks otherwise:

Quote:

"The final interesting part was the rather odd-looking taskbar – assuming it even was a taskbar. The bar was twice as high as an ordinary taskbar, and lacked text, using what looked like icons or thumbnails instead. It reminded me of the RISC OS icon bar, mostly. Apparently, Larson-Green was not at liberty to discuss it, because when Mossberg asked her about it, she replied: "It’s something we’re working on for Windows 7 and I’m not supposed to talk about right now, today…"

Read the entire article here

Well, it certainly looks different with more transparency and bigger button icons when an active application is selected on the Taskbar. Then again, its very early in Windows 7’s development, what we might have seen was just a temporary ui inconsistency that will be fixed in later builds. Even in an official video on Microsoft’s Windows Vista blog, the Windows 7 demo uses the traditional slim Windows Taskbar. Then again, for users with stuby fingers, the usability of the Windows UI might need to be improved for a Touch experience which gives reason to the enlarged Taskbar.

You can achieve a similar look now in Windows Vista. Right click your Taskbar > click the ‘Lock the Taskbar’ option on the contextual menu (if its checked), now right click an area within the Quick Launch buttons, (try not to right click a button itself) > you will then see a another contextual menu with different options > select ‘View’ and click ‘Large’ icons, there you have a ‘Dock’ like Taskbar.

Its definitely a given that there will be months of speculation to come on Windows 7’s UI and Microsoft over time will continue to change and apply different looks and feels as the development of the operating system progresses. If you went through the Longhorn up’s and down’s you should definitely remember all the different UI’s the OS tried out, Plex, Slate, build 5048 released at WinHEC 2005 used a different UI before beta 1 which was different and changed again to the now familar look first introduced in Windows Vista build 5270.

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Joe Wilcox the misunderstanding Microsoft and Windows as usual

Joe Wilcox over at Microsoft Watch is on the rampage again about Windows Vista being a failure and the lack in transparency from the Steve Sinofsky interview at CNET. Here’s at what he had to say:
 
Quote:
"Steven Sinofsky’s motto should be, in the spirit of Memorial Day: "Loose lips sink ships." Office development proceeded with scant disclosure under his tenure. Little has changed since he assumed the role as Microsoft’s senior veep for the Windows and Windows Live Engineering group. Open disclosure and dialogue punctuated past Windows development—not that the process did much for Vista.

Now Steven is talking Windows 7 to CNET News.com. But he’s not saying much. There’s even a Microsoft "Communicating Windows 7" blog post, credited to Chris Flores, defending the say-no-more interview.

Microsoft seemingly has plenty of reasons to keep mum about Seven, starting with freezing Vista sales. The company claims 140 million Vista licenses shipped. But that number is deceptive. Based on interviews with analysts and enterprise IT managers, the majority of licenses are on new PCs where Vista is never deployed. Most businesses are stripping off Vista and using downgrade rights to install Windows XP."

Read the rest here

Joe, sometimes I think there is a bottle of whiskey sitting beside your monitor. Because you utter so much garbage its unbelievable. You speak with such lack of understanding it shows throughout your entire writing when it comes to talking technology.

First of all, Windows Vista is not a failure, 140 million licenses sold (recently bumped to 150 million) is not a failure its actually astounding. Next, how do you know that the majority of those licenses have not actually been deployed? Did you check every business in America and around the world to come to that foolish conclusion?

Building Windows 7 on the solid foundation of Windows Server 2008 SP1 means reassurance to customers who have invested heavily in Windows Vista can have the confidence to deploy their existing infrastructure on Windows 7 when its released. This means existing hardware and applications will work on Windows 7 without any alteration. Windows 7 will use the same driver framework as Windows Vista. How in heavens name is this wrong or risky????

Building a new kernel from scratch is the stupidest idea I have ever heard from you? What solution will this offer Windows developers and customers? Re-engineer applications for a new platform that will take years, incompatibility with existing investments in hardware and software? Just because you think the idea of a modular Windows client is better? Windows is already modular in a significant way, the different Windows Vista SKU’s offer customers the choice they need and the features they want. How is Windows Server 2008’s roles based approach going to be relevant to a client OS? Come on, think before you speak.

You say that Windows Vista is causing certain customers to downgrade to Windows XP? What is the catalyst for this? The only one I can think of is compatibility, yet you say that they need a brand new kernel to fix Windows. You talk ridiculous crap without reading it, it seems. As Steve clearly noted in the interview, Windows 7 will bring compatibility forward. The evolution of Windows 7’s kernel will insure that.

Quote:
"But we’re actually going to bring forward the compatibility, and we’re going to make sure that there’s a lot of value for everybody who’s a customer of Windows 7." – Steven Sinofsky

The silence on Windows 7 is important, its the right approach and other company’s are doing it, look at Adobe with the next release of Creative Suite, they are releasing information in a timely relevant manner.

Other reasons to consider, over discuss Windows 7 now what does this say about Vista, that Microsoft has lost faith in the product and admitted defeat? Also, Windows Vista was just released world wide a year and a half, Windows 7 won’t be here until at least early 2010. Why would they want to jump the gun so early and start shooting themselves in the foot like they did with transparency of the Longhorn project?

Joe, this is the most disturbing, disappointing, pointless, hotheaded, sensationalist article I have read from you.

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Looking into Windows 7’s Prediction Pool

Mary Jo Foley over at All About Microsoft is reinspecting the possibility of when Windows 7 will hit the market. Here’s a snippet of what she had to say:
 
Quote:
"It sounds like Microsoft is aiming to get Windows 7 out earlier than it promised — at least if you believe the company’s CEO.

During his fireside chat with Chairman Bill Gates at the D6 conference on May 27, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer acknowledged that Microsoft was aiming to deliver Windows 7 in late 2009."

Read the entire article here

My Thoughts:

I am sticking to my prediction of February 2010. Microsoft will certainly give a Developer Preview of Windows 7 to attendees at the 2008 PDC for them to start getting ready with their applications as soon as possible. Microsoft has really straightened out their priorities when it comes to releasing Windows. As Steven Sinofsky mentioned, Windows Vista’s unpredictability in addition to the reset kind of made IHV’s and ISV’s hesitate to start messing with Windows Vista, when they should have been getting their code ready from build 5048 released at WinHEC 2005, they actually waited until Vista RTMed in January 2007.

Speaking of IHVs, WinHEC 2008 will be a week later, which means possibly the same build of Windows 7 released to Microsoft’s various hardware partners to start working on those device drivers or improve on existing ones to have a smooth release for Windows 7 RTM. One partner already is doing so (nVidia) by looking for a QA manager to ensure device driver quality. Details at Long Zhengs blog.

The next question is when is the beta going to start? Looking at a familiar pattern to past Windows releases, the most similar is actually Windows XP which was first previewed in July of 2000 and then went into beta 4 months later (October 2000), Vista might follow a similar part with a beta as early as February 2009. In fact, both Windows 7 and XP are minor releases from an architectual standpoint but possibly radical in features and UI. Microsoft of course will probably have a shorter beta cycle compared to Vista which was 15 months, I’m betting on 11 months for Windows 7, with RTM in December and GA as I previously noted in February 2010. The reason why I chose February is THE actual preparation needed to launch it world wide. The gap between Vista RTM and its General Availability was 3 months.

I do hope Microsoft pulls a surprise out of the hat and make Windows 7 available in time for the holiday seasons since this will definitely bring a boost to sales. Hey, if they can do it by August 2009, that would be even better for the back to school party.

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Hello everyone!

It’s been a long, long time since I blogged here. But a lack of time because of my studies has prevented me from investing in my Live Space as I would like to. But this blog post is not about closing or anything like that, far from it! I have invested too much as a Windows and Technology Enthusiast to do that. Especially for my readers it would be a disservice and I am sure there are many of you out there who continue to check back from time to time to see if I have updated.

Now moving forward and thinking about how I continue to invest enthusiasm and interest in my blog for my readers, I believe personally it’s about starting the conversation around the next release of Windows, currently codenamed “Windows 7”. I have talked about Windows Vista for a long time, since December 2004 and I will continue to do so. But there needs to be change and I am a person who admittedly is wondering about what comes next.

Microsoft has been silent on Windows 7 for a number of reasons and rightly so. Windows Vista was released at the end of January 2007 worldwide. The Company considers this its best version of Windows yet and wants to market its advance capabilities now. Discussing Windows 7 would be unproductive, marketing blunder, confusing and of no relevant benefit to anyone outside of Microsoft. Even businesses that depend on a roadmap from Microsoft to see where there technology investment and infrastructure is heading would not need any concrete information on Windows 7.

But, the time has come personally for me to really look at where Microsoft is taking the platform. There has been a lot of rearranging since Vista’s release, slip of the tongue and a mention here and there about Windows 7 from cult figures in the Company such as Bill Gates. I believe early admissions are a sign too that the Enthusiast community needs to start building interest in what comes next. There are a few I must mention so far, All About Microsoft, Istartedsomething.com and Paul Thurrott’s ever popular WinSupersite that have ignited the interest. There is also a thriving community building around the next release, if you do a simple search for Windows 7 news you won’t fail to find numerous sites dedicated to it.

Coincidentally, Microsoft has begun communicating Windows 7 when I started writing this post on Sunday May 25th, although I just decided to post it today. Below are links from Microsoft’s Steve Sinofsky and Chris Flores discussing Microsoft’s approach to Windows 7.

CNET: Windows chief talks ‘7’

Windows Vista Blog: Communicating Windows 7

D6: Windows 7

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