Microsoft 'Avalon' Framework for Longhorn

Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates has promised for years how Windows will allow consumers to access "information at your fingertips." With Longhorn, the next version of Windows due out in 2005, the company will take its first serious stab at delivering on Gates' vision. And a new application programming interface (API) framework, code-named Avalon, will be at the core of Longhorn's new information-access architecture, according to sources. Avalon is the key to the new "inductive" user interface that will debut in Longhorn, sources say. The new UI will allow users to organize and share information more intuitively, most likely using some kind of "dock," a la Microsoft Office XP, sources say. In such an information environment, files would no longer be displayed on their physical location but instead could be organized by context or in some other way set by users and/or administrators.
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There are 7 comments made. Displaying comments 1 through 7 on page 1 of 1

16:06:34 EST Oct. 23 2003 #

Working for a top 5 CRM organization i can definetely see the huge impact this will have on the future of desktop computing. It all comes down to how microsoft defines "user experience". Ive been implementing CRM for large customers (thousands of seats across 3 or more departments) for years and the highest on there list of importance is GUI. Its going to be interesting to see how the whole longhorn will pan out, will industry force microsoft to take a more conservative approach (ie continue enhancements to its IE range etc) or will it allow microsoft to completely redefine the desktop application.. interesting times ahead...

10:48:00 EST Dec. 2 2004 #

That will be a dock, like FVWM2's GoodStuff, or WindowMaker's dock, or (Gnome|KDE) Panel, or MacOS X presumably? Multiple desktops too will be a refreshing change. I always thought FVWM's were the best and used to have a 2x2x2 workspace which smoothly scrolled as I moved the mouse to the edge, and I could switch along the "z-axis" and even drag windows around anywhere using the FVWM Pager. Dragging windows off the pager onto the screen was a useful trick. That was back in the mid 90's. Things have changed so much since then. FVWM was a pain to configure, but worked well.

What does Avalon mean to people just getting to know WinForms though? Is that wasted investment in time and development? Remember - "It's always cheaper sticking with Windows", hmmm. Time for another rewrite. Keeps us in jobs though.

How can the computer press continue bemoaning small changes from Windows to modern Linux desktops as "confusing", while praising Microsoft for completely changing the user paradigm again? I get the feeling that if Microsoft invented a new input device that involved tapping morse code into the serial port, most of the computer press will praise it as the next wonderful thing in user friendlyness simply because it's Microsoft.

Meanwhile its half amusing that Windows is getting more and more UNIXy concepts (/home, /lib (you call it "The GAC"), text based config files that you can version control, and email, and back up, wow!) while some in the Linux world seem to want to move backwards to please Windows users.

Is Avalon going to have nice things like a well thought out architecture, Model View Controller, not so many inter-package dependencies or code that must be doing "if(parameter is a TypeXXX) do something different to normal that pleases most people used to VB, but confuses others as it gives inconsistencies"?

Also, what use cases have been identified that need this? I know its not impossible to invent something new. I'd not have imagined RSS before someone else did, being happy with old standards like NNTP, but RSS really does work well. Have Microsoft actually identified a need, or are they just making something new, or even (dare I say) copying some of the better ideas in Linux?

7:06:03 EST May. 29 2006 #

Remeber the 1985 lawsuit. Apple will sue you if you make it look like a mac.

7:10:18 EST May. 29 2006 #

The problem is that microsoft will be sued if you have a dock on microsft systems and the people had just cpurchased windows XP and aple had just relesed itunes for windows Xp. Steve Jobs will sue you use Apple theme or make it look l"Apple like".

7:12:06 EST May. 29 2006 #

The problem is that microsoft will be sued if you have a dock on microsft systems and the people had just purchased windows XP and aple had just relesed itunes for windows Xp. Steve Jobs will sue you use Apple theme or make it look l"Apple like".

Venu Madhav
0:51:37 EST Jun. 23 2005 #

How to access Microsoft Office Tools with Microsoft Avalon. Is there any such feature available in Avalon so that we can able to access the Word documents, Excel sheets and Outlook mails remotely.

15:16:46 EST Dec. 11 2005 #

i got window 98,2000,me,xp on my 6 computers. now you telling me microsoft will be coming out with another window operating system call avalon? when is the new system going to be offered on and when on a computer

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