Rob Smyth

Wednesday 10 October 2012

The WinRT / Windows 8 crux

Windows 8 looks like it is a crux were Windows desktop application developers no longer have an exclusive desktop/web differentiation. The boundaries are now blurred. With Windows 8 users will now come to expect a 'Metro' style look and feel meaning that WPF/Winform developers will either need to roll the own or move towards WinRT.

Perhaps it has never been about technology but about look and feel?

I like the idea of a technology change driven by user demand for look and feel. It does not feel as fundamental as the DOS/Windows crux of the late 80s but it does look like a tsunami.

1 comment:

Duncan Bayne said...

The main problem is that Microsoft is locking down software distribution (at least for the new Metro apps); they want to be a gatekeeper just like Apple.

Check out the in-depth coverage of this issue in The Next Twenty Years:

No, you cannot distribute Windows Store apps without going through the Windows Store. The exception to this is for enterprise apps (see this blog post). Developers can, however, create and offer desktop apps the same way they always have - through their own site or distribution point. - Waggener Edstrom Worldwide on behalf of Microsoft Developer Relations

So if you want to distribute an application using the new look and feel, you'll have to sign up for a developer licence with Microsoft, abide by their rules & regulations for content (e.g. no R-18 games), and pay them a cut.

Is this really the way forwards for computing?