This is a work of speculative fiction; the following post is not a leak or preview just a wild guess.
You’ve been warned.
So you may be caught up in the euphoria, or horror, of Windows 8 and imagining a world of smudges on your screens. Well I want you to delve deeper into the pool and imagine the next version of Windows, lets call it Windows 9 (because it comes after 8).
Imagine the next Build and Steven Sinofsky comes out on stage; he goes through the number of Windows sold and the number of Metro applications in the Windows Store. At some point they put on a video showing the various apps and games. The video ends and Sinofsky’s back; he begins to talk about the changes brought about by Windows 8 and the power of a No compromise solution. Now he talks about what’s next (and if you’re following a live blog they’ll repeat the rumors of coming features); the stage lights dim…….
Windows 9 will be about finishing and reimaging what Windows will be in the 21st century. It will be about bringing together Metro and the desktop together in a way that’s seamless. It will not be a rebuke of Windows 8 (as some would dearly hope) but about almost eliminating the idea of a start screen or desktop metaphor (think WebOS but with serious teeth). Windows 9 will see a change in the creation of desktop and Metro applications; with traditional programs now being allowed onto ARM devices. Windows 9 will also give users more control over Metro applications in terms of tiles and windowing .
So let’s begin
Desktop Programs on Windows RT
Drawbridge brings the ability to recompile any Win32 application to run on WinRT. Drawbridge also brings the first major redesign to Win32 and brings it up to par with WinRT in terms of battery management and security. Drawbridge Win32 applications will require a redesign to fit the new desktop (more in a minute) so they will look a lot like Metro apps with the ability to be resized on the desktop and full screen (Metro like) versions. There are also new guidelines for icon designs.
The Desktop (Finally Re-Imagined)
Remember WebOS with its open desktop metaphor, well the Windows 9 desktop will have a similar look. The Charms Bar will take over as the replacement Start Menu with users having the ability to add functions for quick access; universal search will be enhanced and the taskbar will be clear but have the same functionality as always and the ability to pin Metro apps. The other big news here is that this function will apply to WindowsRT2 and Windows9.
WinRT2 (Now with more Power)
Windows RT will see an increase functionality on all fronts; for XAML users will get functions previously found in WPF and HTML/Java Script users will see support for HTML5. Windows RT2 will see the introduction of DirectX12 and the ability to write games for Windows, Windows Phone 9, and Xbox. The Big news will be the ability to fully access legacy applications with the new Drawbridge Win32 and the ability to make full use of the desktop environment.
Metro will see changes that bring it in line to make it more accessible for gestures/mouse/keyboards; the ability to run them on a desktop and the ability to resize tiles (like Windows Phone). The Start screen will see more customizations including background images. The Lock screen will also now allow for more customizations including allowing you to see snippets of information without opening up an app.
And that’s it. The light goes up, the people clap and the presentation goes into how you make the new apps or transfer old programs into the new run times.
But this is all if Windows 8 goes well and I’m leaving out the new book/education platform created with Barnes and Noble. So TTFN.
Images: Office Labs, Microsoft
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