Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

Summary: Microsoft has 35 different feature teams building Windows 8. The list provides some new official confirmation and additional clues on what to expect with the next Windows release.

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Microsoft Windows President Steven Sinofsky is continuing to trickle out introductory posts on the new "Building Windows 8" blog. In the August 17 installment, he shared -- as he did three years ago with Windows 7 -- a list of the feature teams building the next version of Windows.

Sinofsky blogged that Microsoft has 35 different feature teams, each with 25 to 40 developers, plus testers and program managers -- in the Windows 8 organization. The word "feature" may mean an area or a component in Windows. Here's the Windows 8 feature-team list:

App Compatibility and Device Compatibility App Store Applications and Media Experience App Experience Core Experience Evolved Device Connectivity Devices & Networking Experience Ecosystem Fundamentals Engineer Desktop Engineering System Enterprise Networking Global Experience Graphics Platform Hardware Developer Experience Human Interaction Platform Hyper-V In Control of Your PC Kernel Platform Licensing and Deployment Media Platform Networking Core Performance Presentation and Composition Reliability, Security, and Privacy Runtime Experience Search, View, and Command Security & Identity Storage & Files Systems Sustained Engineering Telemetry User-Centered Experience Windows Online Windows Update Wireless and Networking services XAML

So what's new and different here?

First, because the Softies have shared so few details so far about Windows 8 (even though there's been lots of hacking and speculation about what's inside, thanks to leaked slides and builds), many things that Microsoft pundits consider to be known about Windows 8 still haven't gotten the "official" nod.

As of today, we now know for sure that there will be an App Store in Windows 8 (something we've expected since June 2010). "Hyper-V" seems to confirm that Hyper-V will be built into the client and server versions of Windows 8. And the inclusion of XAML -- developers of which were reorg'd into the Windows division earlier this summer -- may give those with .Net and Silverlight expertise another glimmer of hope that the Windows 8 development story won't be just about HTML5 and JavaScript.

For some guesses on my part: "In Control of Your PC" could mean a lot of things, possibly even that Windows 8 will include built-in support for the Kinect sensor. "Search, View and Command" also could be Kinect-related, given Microsoft's recent demos and pronouncements about Tellme voice support being built into Windows 8. "Windows Online" has me most intrigued, especially given that it is listed separately from "Windows Update."

For comparison's sake, here's a list of some of the feature teams that Sinofsky provided in August 2008 when he first began blogging about Windows 7:

Applets and Gadgets Assistance and Support Technologies Core User Experience Customer Engineering and Telemetry Deployment and Component Platform Desktop Graphics Devices and Media Devices and Storage Documents and Printing Engineering System and Tools File System Find and Organize Fundamentals Internet Explorer (including IE 8 down-level) International Kernel & VM Media Center Networking - Core Networking - Enterprise Networking - Wireless Security User Interface Platform Windows App Platform

Windows 8 sleuths: What else do you glean (if anything) from Sinofsky's latest blog post? One of my Twitter chums, Martin Anderson, notes that it looks like Media Center has disappeared from the feature list with Windows 8, which may surprise some, but seem like a sad confirmation to others.

Topics: Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software, Windows

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

    Nice, can't wait.
    techiegz
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @techiegz@...
      +1
      Ram U
      • But... 35 teams? They could make tasteless mess and they will not be able

        @Rama.NET: ... to cut through the sh*t.<br><br>At Apple, people who have "vision" like Jobs can always come and threw away as many features as possible to make a clean, consistent features and user experience instead of over the top thing.<br><br>WP7 is an attempt to follow in this direction; lets see if Microsoft will be able to continue it with Windows 8 -- 35 teams is too much for that. While teams have their own roles, in reality they all ask for UI features in lesser or bigger degree.
        DDERSSS
      • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

        @DeRSSS - <i><b>"At Apple, people who have "vision" like Jobs can always come and threw away as many features as possible to make a clean, consistent features and user experience "</b></i>

        ...then please explain Lion - unquestionably one of the biggest hodge-podge mix-in desktop OS' to date.
        bitcrazed
      • Nothing is perfect, including Lion, but no one seriosly claimed this OS is

        @bitcrazed: ... under the burden of conflicting features, excessive UI elements and non-consistent navigation.
        DDERSSS
      • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

        @DeRSS - you REALLY think that the shoe-horning of iOS's grid of icons UI metaphor into Lion doesn't fall under "excessive UI elements and non-consistent navigation"?

        And how about the inversion of the touchpad by default, the forcing of auto-save, iPad-ification of Mail and Address book, etc.

        Lion is a dog's dinner - a messy hodge-podge of OSX and iOS features with little rhyme or reason to their design.

        I guess we're starting to see the results of Steve (sadly) spending less time directing efforts at Apple.
        bitcrazed
    • Windows 8 &quot;Portal&quot; screen

      The new Start screen is a huge improvement over desktop shortcuts and toolbar icons... plus the full Start Menu is underneath so we can still get to everything. I can't wait to have my customized dashboard greet me when I login every day!
      scH4MMER
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      [i]Nice, can't wait.[/i]

      I can.
      ScorpioBlue
  • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

    @chetbr
    They did...in 2009. It's called "Windows 7".

    You can bing it if you like...
    reklissrick
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @reklissrick That post is so full of pwnage. Nice job, sir!
      Lamerz
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @Lamerz Nice about what? @chetbr was being sardonic.
      ScorpioBlue
  • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

    @chetbr
    you have been away from Windows too long to say that, top notch reliability .. it would be hard to sell over 400 million copies of unreliable OS in these market
    ninjacut
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @ninjacut Say what ?? Tell that to both Windows7 came installed on my laptops, one intel i7 with 8Gig Ram, and one mini-notebook (LG) dual core... Ive lost too many work on the i7 to keep count due to crashes and just locking up. My XP runs more reliable that this Windows7 ....
      antonfh
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @antonfh - If you're having lockups and crashes on your systems running Windows 7 then there's something very wrong with those systems and it's *NOT* Windows 7. What software are you using? Is it Windows that's crashing (BSOD, if so then look failing hardware {new computers can come with bad hardware} or badly written drivers for marginal hardware) or the software that's crashing? If it's the latter, how old or new is the software? Was it written for Windows 9x or at the start of the Windows XP product cycle?
      PollyProteus
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @antonfth, if that's really the case, which I doubt, you should quit buying the open box specials that have been dropped and played with in the store for a year before you get them. I've built a LOT of Win7 machines for very inexperienced users, and none have had any such issues, they run well and smoothly for all. Either you're buying junk machines, or you're incredibly inept and would blame your car for running into a brick wall when you steered it there.

      Bogus post, antonfth, try posting something halfway believable.
      garyleroy
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @antonfh: Then you better look at whatever software you are installing, at the websites you frequent, or at the hardware you purchased. I have a Dell 8400 I purchased in 2004 that had XP on it, and I upgraded it to Win7 about 6 months ago. The machine itself is original hardware except for a cheap Geforce 210 I put in to replace the original vid card I had after the cooling fan crapped out on it. I leave the machine running 24/7 and I've never had a single crash, bsod, or even minor hiccup. I didn't experience that with XP either with SP3, but Win7 installed flawlessly, I didn't have to go download ANY drivers after the fact at all, and it runs just as well if not a little better than XP did on this machine.
      waterhzrd
  • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

    @chetbr It's reliable for me. Maybe you just have some junky hardware?
    CobraA1
  • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

    @chetbr
    Sounds like a user issue.
    kstap
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @kris_stapley@... Beautiful
      andy88488
    • RE: Microsoft Windows boss shares more hints on Windows 8 features

      @kris_stapley@... PBKAC (Problem Between Keyboard And Chair)
      jquinnjr