---- Internet Explorer 7 Beta This Summer (XP SP2 Only)
Hester - 1:45 pm on Feb 17, 2005 (gmt 0)
I'm doing everything I can to get our office switched over to Linux by the time Longhorn comes out.
I've been thinking of moving to Mac.
I can't imagine what Longhorn will be like, what with that heavy 3-D desktop and the incredibly annoying-looking sidebar hovering over everything.
I'm sure you'll be able to turn the sidebar off. Also, the 3D effects in Longhorn work on 2 levels. You can have the normal 2D Windows, or if you have a 128Mb DirectX 9 graphics card, you can switch on the 3D. This gives you scalable windows - even the calculator can be enlarged and retain its layout. I see this as a major boost for web accessibility - entire pages can be smoothly enlarged, as with Opera's zoom function. You will also probably get fancy page turns (like a book). An early Longhorn demo showed it was possible to rotate an entire window in real-time, even if it contained video! But they said that feature would be removed.
So I see Longhorn as being no different than XP or 98 in terms of desktop use. The big worry is the new Digital Rights system, which only allows certified programs (and documents?) to work. So if you upload a free program to the web, it may not run! I'm still in the dark over how this is going to work in practice, but it's another idea that will lead to frustrated users.
I read recently how someone was forced to reactivate Office on their PC, after reinstalling it. This is in XP, remember. Well after a certain number of activations, the software locked up completely! They had to call Microsoft directly to reactivate it - it was no longer possible via the net. But of course this wasn't practical due to opening hours and so on, rendering the software useless. So how bad is Longhorn going to be? How many loops will they make us jump through just to get the machine even running?