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So I was reading Kevin Daly’s comment to Chris Pirillo’s response to Andre Da Costa’s rebuttal to Chris’ post about WinHEC and Longhorn.

Let’s try that again…

So I was reading something. 

As I read Kevin’s comment, this part got me thinking:

Something to consider: much of what people eventually interact with in Longhorn will be built on Avalon, but Avalon as all of us who've installed the CTPs know is not yet nailed down - so the more code you write around it now, the more you'll have to re-write.

Point taken… Now I’m no carpenter, but I bet when you’re building a house, you don’t start putting up the walls before the foundation is dry.  On the other hand, you do have a plan for how things are going to look.  And you’ve probably consulted with the people who are going to live there.  Put it this way:  You don’t wait until after the foundation is finished to ask them what the dimensions should be. 

I think OSes are the same way.  And this goes back to what I’ve said before:  Longhorn doesn’t need to be ready to live in.  They don’t even have to give out a build.  Just show us what you’re planning to do with the UI.  Ask us, “How does this look?  What should we do differently?” – don’t wait until it’s finished and say “Yeah you’re right, we could have done that better.  Oh well, too late now, code is frozen.” 

The days when that was an acceptable answer are over.  Microsoft isn’t Apple.  They can’t expect that their fans are going to love every single thing they do unconditionally.  In fact, they have quite the opposite problem.  Most people are looking for reasons to dislike what Microsoft does.

The more you involve the enthusiast community, the better off your product will be.  And not just for those power users.  It’s the power users that tell the average users what to buy.  It’s the power users that tell their family and friends all the cool shit that the other guys are doing.  Give us something to show them.  Help us get them excited about Windows again.  Remember the launch of Windows 95?  Remember people lining up at midnight to buy it?  Have you noticed how that hasn’t happened once since 1995?  It happens for Apple though.  It happened for Halo 2.  If you listen to us, it could happen for Longhorn.

Posted on Friday, April 29, 2005 12:58 PM | Back to top

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