Tuesday, October 28, 2008

LIVE from PDC 2008 Keynote 2 (Sinofsky, Guthrie, Treadwell)

Welcome back for another live blow-by-blow account of a PDC 2008 keynote. Today's keynote promises to be much more interesting and developer friendly than yesterday's as ScottGu, Steven Sinofsky, Ray Ozzie, and David Treadwell take the stage. We're in our seats and things should get started soon, so settle-in and get ready for the updates. 8:29: Things are about to get started. They're making the announcement and dimming the lights. 8:32: Here we go. Exciting .NET and Windows video is playing. Much higher energy than yesterday already! Video is showing-off a lot of MS partner apps built using .NET, WPF, WF, etc. 8:35: Video's over, Ozzie is taking the stage. Already promising some "surprises" today. Also reviewing what was introduced yesterday and reminding us of yesterday's announcements. Calling yesterday a look at MS "backend" innovations, today will be a look at "frontend" innovations. 8:37: Ozzie is reflecting on how important "personal PCs" have become to everyday life and business. Starting to build the case for how WIndows has always been able to flex and adapt to the times. Saying Windows is ready to adapt to the Internet focused era. 8:40: "It's our objective to make the connection of the PC, Phone, and Web more valuable than the sum of their parts." Ozzie is now describing the advantages of PCs for delivering applications. Says real value has been delivered b/c PCs enable people to combine their apps for increased functionality. "The advantage of the PC will always be it's ability to enable consumers to richly create and consume information." 8:42: Now moving on to describe the advantages of the web for delivering applications. "The web's unique value is it's ability to assemble the world's people...and enable people to connect and share." 8:43: Finally, the advantage of the phone. "The phone is always with you and ready for your spontaneous actions." "The phone's most unique value is it's ability to handle your spontaneity." 8:45: Ozzie is saying the next gen MS services and platforms will tie all three platforms together to deliver a better unified experience. "We're investing to make Windows the best way to build applications for PC, Phone, and Web." Talking about Windows taking on a more "appliance like behavior" for downloading and handling applications. 8:47: Saying we're going to see today how MS is going to make web apps "installable" and enable devs to take web apps offline. That should be cool. "We're proud of where our Windows platform is going." Ozzie is wrapping-up his intro and getting ready to hand-off to the other keynote speakers. 8:50: First up, Windows 7! Steven Sinofsky is now on stage. Showing us the outline for his segment. Includes path to RTM at the end. Stay tuned! "We're going to show you how Win 7 brings you a personalized experience, how it's enables you to find and organize data, and then how it enables you to connect to devices." 8:51: Julie Larson-Green is now on stage with Steven to do the first demo of Windows 7. Everybody just perked-up! 8:53: Julie is showing us the new Windows taskbar and new way Windows manages windows. Similar to VS toolbar docking but for actual application windows on the desktop. You finally have the ability to re-order applications on the taskbar! Finally. 8:55: Now showing the new Windows Explorer. Content is now organized in "Libraries." Libraries can span USB drives, external drives, other computers, internal storage, etc. Explorer more tightly integrates search (looks a lot like Firefox inline search). 8:57: New networking tech called "Home Group." Enables all Win 7 and printers in your house to automatically connect. Just connect to your network and you'll be automatically connected to all devices on the network. Sounds a bit like Bonjour from Apple. 8:58: One observation: searching for files is happening lightening fast. Not the same search and wait experience of Vista. Wonder if that will be the case with "real" non-demo files. 9:00: Julie is now showing us some integration between a Motorola phone and Win 7 using the new "Device Stage." It's like the Vista "Welcome to Vista" window customized/tailored for specific devices. Explorer now shows unique icons for each device type (like showing an actual Motorola ROKR icon in the explorer). 9:02: Showing new theming mechanism for Win 7. Just an enhanced version of what exists in Vista. Also adds support to save and export themes to share with others. 9:04: Next, System Tray. Win 7 gives you complete control over System Tray. Only icons you put in Sys Tray will be displayed. You can rearrange, remove, etc. Pop-up alerts now all routed to Windows Action Center. You control which alerts you want to allow to be displayed in System Tray. 9:05: Now showing Windows 7 touch support. Using an HP Touchsmart PC. Win 7 automatically translates touch in to mouse features for programs that don't understand touch commands. Programs that are programmed to recognize gestures can do more with touch commands. IE 8 supports touch "flicks" for navigation, for example. The new Windows 7 Paint (the one with the RibbonBar) also supports touch for "finger painting." 9:10: Showing the globe multi-touch app (seen before on Surface). Looked very jumpy. Not sure if that's the HP fault or if Win 7 is still struggling to accurately process multi-touch. Guess we'll find out soon. 9:11: Julie is done. Back to Steven. Introducing the new Windows Live Services concept. Guess we'll hear more later from David. 9:14: Sinofsky is starting to talk about the transition from Vista to 7. "We got a lot of feedback at the RTM of Vista. A few blogs. Some news. Oh yeah, and some commercials." That got a light chuckle from the audience. 9:15: Still defending that MS was pleased with progress of VIsta, but acknowledging they've learned some key lessons: Ecosystem readiness (didn't give 3rd party enough time to prep for Vista)- not a problem in 7 b/c it's compat with Vista Standards- Talking about work MS has done to embrace standards in IE8, WordPad (OpenXML), etc. Compatibility- Talking about UAC. Says MS went too far (at least as far as developers are concerned). Says even though transition was hard, it moved the ecosystem forward. Scenarios- Trying harder in Windows 7 to make "key scenarios" better (like home networking) 9:20: Listing new features in Win 7 for developers: Ribbon UI, Jump Lists (right-click menus in new taskbar area), Libraries, Multi-touch/Ink/Speech, DirectX (what Sinofsky calls MS' modern view of GDI) 9:24: Time for a video! Showing Autodesk case study and how they've used multi-touch to enhance their software. Pretty short. Pretty bland. Just showing reverse-pinch zoom and multi-touch rotation. 9:27: Windows 7 is focusing on "fundamentals." Decrease memory footprint, disk I/O, and power consumption. Increase speed, responsiveness (especially in Start menu, Taskbar), and scale (ability to use up to 256 processors). Steven is now going to do his own demo. Starting by showing us he can run Win 7 on a net tablet (note: demos are not running on the PC he showed). 9:31: Can now use BitLocker protection on removable memory sticks. Showing that you can create VHDs natively from within Windows Disk Manager (that got a big applause from the audience). Can even mount and boot from VHDs (again natively) with Win 7. 9:33: Improved support for managing multiple monitors and high-DPI screens. Very tepid audience applause. You can now use shortcut to zoom Windows (similar to ZoomIt utility). Improved support for connecting to projectors (via WindowsKey + P shortcut). Support for multi-monitor Remote Desktop (huge applause for this feature). 9:37: Time for path to RTM talk! First, pre-beta for everyone in audience today. Pre-beta is "M3" build. Path from M3 is M4, Beta, RC, RTM. Beta is going to ship early next year (2009). Will be broadly distributed. Will be looking for lots of feedback (via Feedback tool). 9:41: Sinofsky is not committing to -any- new info about when Win 7 will ship. Just repeating "3 years after Vista GA." That's a bummer. Wrapping-up the Win7 talk now. Leaving us with the "Window's 7 Seven Calls to Action." 9:45: That's all for Sinofsky. He's handing things of to The Gu who is now taking the stage. 9:46: Starting with interop talk. Saying that they're making it easy to blend managed .NET code and native C++ code. Releasing an update for MFC in Win 7 and better support for large code bases and parallel processor programming in VS 2010 (now the official name). 9:48: Reviewing the .NET 3.5 SP1 and what that shipped. Saying .NET 3.5 SP1 will be built-in to Windows 7. Not .NET 4? 9:50: Scott is now doing a demo. It's a photo viewer application (a la Picasa). He's going to add more functionality to it taking advantage of Windows 7 features. Starting by adding a ribbon (this is a WPF app, by the way). MS is shipping a new WPF RibbonBar control this week, too. Not sure how this is Win 7 specific. Really just looks like a WPF demo, so should work in Vista or even XP. 9:53: Okay, here's some Win 7 specific functionality. Adding "Jump List" support. Simply requires defining tasks in your App.xaml file. The tasks show-up when you right-click your program in the Windows Taskbar. Seem very easy to implement. Just as some contextual short-cuts for your app. 9:54: Now showing some WIndows multi-touch. Again, multi-touch looks very jumpy. Starting to look like multi-touch (at least on the HP) is not nearly as smooth as on the iPhone or on Surface. Just showed multi-touch support working in photo app. Didn't show any code for how you handle custom gestures. Simple gestures (like finger clicks) work for free. 9:57: Shipping new WPF toolkit today. Includes a WPF data grid (finally!). RibbonBar shipping this week will be CTP. Will work on XP, Vista, and Win 7. 9:59: Starting to talk .NET 4. Going to ship Deep Zoom support for WPF (didn't see that coming). Going to enable you to run multiple versions of CLR code at the same time. More talk about strong interop support in .NET 4. A nod to MEF (the Managed Extensibility Framework). Finally, much improved tooling in VS 2010. And for those that haven't yet heard, VS 2010 will be built in WPF and support multi-monitor setups. 10:02: Scott is going to do a VS 2010 demo now. All PDC attendees are getting a VS 2010 CTP this week. Demo is showing how you can leverage new VS 2010 WPF rendering to create a richer visual experience in the code editor. By simply creating a class, he can extend VS with WPF to make the formatting of code comments much richer. Pretty good audience reaction to the comment formatter (or "ScottGu Mode" as he's now dubbed it). People are loving this new customizability of VS. 10:05: The extensibility framework that makes the extensibility of VS 2010 possible will be part of .NET 4 (MEF). Can be used in your own apps. 10:07: Time for a partner demo. Nick Lansley from Tesco (a large global grocery company) is going to show a "Next Generation Grocery Shopping" experience. Demo is running on HP Touchsmart PC again. All touch interaction. 10:09: It's really not (just) a grocery shopping app. It's being described as a "family hub" application. Share calendars, notes, -and- build grocery lists. Showed how you can use the web cam to scan a product bar code and find products. While it looked a little demo slight of hand, people loved the idea and gave it huge applause. 10:13: ScottGu is back on stage. Talking about improvements coming in IE8 and ASP.NET. Most of this you've already seen or heard about (like Dynamic Data, MVC, jQuery, and REST support). He's spending a little time now talking about jQuery. Announcing the official release of the jQuery Visual Studio IntelliSense support. Download it today. 10:15: Talking next version of ASP.NET. Most of this was covered in yesterday's ASP.NET 4 break-out session, and most of this content is not new. You've seen a lot of this online before (like the new ability to control ControlID, improved ViewState handling, better CSS support, etc.). Says the Velocity distributed caching support will be provided in .NET 4, too.

10:18: On to Silverlight. Announced this morning a new IIS feature called IIS Smooth Streaming (a video feature). Netflix launched today their new Instant View feature running on Silverlight that works on both Mac and PCs (good news for all you Netflix users out their on Macs). Shipping Silverlight Toolkit this week, too (includes Chart, Treeview, and about 10 more basic controls).
10:21: WYSIWYG Silverlight editing coming to VS in VS 2010. Scott also just dropped the bomb that they're about to show (later today) how you can run Silverlight outside of the browser (start the Adobe Air comparisons).
10:23: And with that, Scott is done. David Treadwell is now on the stage to talk about Windows Live Services (which I think will really focus on Live Mesh). He's starting with an overview of what Live Services are and the different Live Service types (like Identity, Directory, Search, etc.).
10:27: David's content is dragging a bit (especially after the excitement of Steven and Scott's presentations). People are starting to stream out of the keynote. Plus, it looks like the keynote is going to run long (supposed to be over in 2 minutes). We'll stick through it all to bring you full coverage.
10:32: Finally we get to Live Mesh. Says this week MS will start talking a lot about how devs can use Mesh Services to enhance their own applications (basically providing sync support). Today they're also announcing the "Live Framework," the way you'll access all Live Services (including Mesh). David's inviting Ori Amiga from Live Services team at MS to show us a demo of enhancing a Windows app (same photo app from the GuNote) with Live Services.
10:35: Ori is showing some C# code for using Live Services. Seems straight forward enough. Even showing some LinqToLiveServices. The root is a reference to an instance of the "LiveOperatingEnvironment" class. People are mildly impressed with the demo.
10:37: Showing how syncing automatically syncs data between two PCs (in this case, changing some meta data on a photo object) and from his phone to the PC (in near real time). Pretty cool- audience was pretty impressed. Ori definitely saved this segment of the keynote.
10:39: Next up, Anthony Rose, Head of BBC Online Media is taking the stage to show us how to "Live Enable" a web application. Showing the BBC iPlayer and a new proof of concept version that uses Silverlight and Mesh to deliver media content to all your devices automatically.
10:42: iPlayer using integration with Live to get Live Messenger friend list and Mesh infrastructure to deliver content, share preferences, notify friends of new content you're watching. Basically, Mesh enables BBC to focus on the content experience and leaves the complicated networking tasks of distributing content and notifications to MS and the Mesh layer. Mesh will even remember how much of a video you've watch on your phone and sync the video on your PC to that point so you can resume watching. People liked that idea.
10:45: BBC is done. David is back. Keynote is now running 15 minutes late. David is quickly wrapping up. Download the Live Framework CTP later today at http://azure.com. Mac version of Mesh client launching today, too.
10:47: Another (!) demo. This time a guy from the MS Office team. Going to show us how Office 14 is using Live Services to enhance the Office experience.  Announcing today that MS will be shipping Office Web apps with Office 14. Will be lighweight versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoin, and OneNote.
10:49: Office Web Apps will make it easy to view and collaborate on Office docs online. Changes made in Office (proper) automatically sync (again in near real time) to the Office Web version.
10:52: It's not clear if Office Webs will enable you to create new content. Also not clear what they're using to build Office Web Apps (Silverlight? ASPNET AJAX?). Office Live Workspace look a lot like Google Docs dashboard (and SharePoint). And some clarification arrives- they -are- using Silverlight and they are enabling (at the very least) document editing online.
10:55: The Office Web Apps really do look a lot like the desktop counterparts. Pretty impressive.
10:58: Office Web App demo is done. Ray Ozzie is back to wrap things up and end this fun (but long) keynote.
I think that's most of what's going to be covered today. I hope you enjoyed the coverage!