Breaking down BUILD

Patrick Hynds
September 21, 2011 —  (Page 4 of 9)
Doug Seven, vice president at Telerik, put things very clearly regarding how the CLR is leveraged both in and outside Metro in Windows 8. In a post entitled “A bad picture is worth a thousand long discussions,” he discussed the “Boxology” slide presented during the first-day keynote (see the image below). This is a great slide for introducing us to the concept of WinRT, but it really does need lots further explanation, which has yet to arrive officially.

Windows 8

Doug’s post goes a long way to filling in the blanks especially in regard to how the .NET Framework fits into the architecture. I expect most of that information to come from the community as Microsoft works on the next round of public disclosures. In other words, I do not expect the control over information disclosure from Microsoft to change anytime soon from the precedent that BUILD has created.

Risky business
The risks of these bold moves by Microsoft are still there. If the final release of the Metro interface of Windows 8 is not incredibly intuitive, then even the already great touch performance will be for naught.

The .NET revolution was where Microsoft established its dominance of the enterprise. Metro, and by extension Windows 8, is a very consumer-oriented play. The risk is that the change in focus risks the enterprise dominance. If .NET had been declared at end-of-life or hobbled, then this would be a real possibility.

Again, this is not what has happened and there is no reason to think this misstep will be made between now and final release. There are reasons to be confident that Microsoft is on the right track, but we need to remember that there have certainly been missteps by Microsoft in the past, and the most preventable ones, in my view, had to do with failing to make things easy enough to really take off.

The demonstrations of Visual Studio 2011 helped allay the fears that this would be the case with the shift to WinRT-based development. In spite of those efforts, there were hints that porting existing Silverlight and .NET applications to WinRT will not be trivial in most cases, and several attendees told me they thought as much.

Related Search Term(s): BUILD, Metro, Microsoft, .NET, Windows 8

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