Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 7th Apr 2014 22:17 UTC

It looks like the Internet of Things could be the next big computing battleground, and Microsoft seems willing to sacrifice a few battles in order to win that war. Facebook is chasing virtual reality; Google wants home automation, smartwatches, and internet-connected glasses. More than 200 billion devices are likely to be connected to the internet by 2020, a huge example of the way the technology industry will shift and new battles will emerge. Satya Nadella believes the future isn't Windows desktops, Windows tablets, and Windows Phones. It's not Windows everywhere, it's Microsoft everywhere, offering software and services for every device - including an entire world of interconnected devices that have yet to be built.

The speed with which is doing this u-turn makes it quite clear that people within the company wanted to do this for a long, long time (otherwise it could not have been done this quickly), which implies that Ballmer may have simply held these changes back.

The elephant in the room here is that while people talk about Microsoft as if the company is down and out, it's still hugely profitable and has consistently been posting great financial results. It's just that Microsoft's money isn't coming from sexy products like smartphones and tablets, but from enterprise and backend stuff - stuff the technology press either can't write about, doesn't understand, or both. It's very similar to all those articles claiming Apple no longer innovates and disrupts, even though the company sent shockwaves through the microprocessor world.

In any case, it seems like Microsoft finally found the right direction in this new world.

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RE: Yup
by dpJudas on Tue 8th Apr 2014 03:14 UTC in reply to "Yup"
Member since:

if (mouse_detected == ture) {
etc, etc.

Even modern apps look different, depending on whether you're running them on tablet or phone.

Classical developer abstraction thinking. It all seems so simple until you realize that a keyboard + mouse driven application works best with a completely different UI than fat sausage fingers with on-screen keyboard and 9" of screen area.

Take a look at the Cocoa vs Cocoa Touch API's and ask yourself this one simple question: why did Apple create a complete new set of Views and Controls for mobile when both API's at the higher abstraction level are nearly identical?

Once you find the answer you will understand why universal user interfaces will never work. Metro is probably one of the best examples of the type of problems you run into when you try.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[2]: Yup
by WorknMan on Tue 8th Apr 2014 04:04 in reply to "RE: Yup"
WorknMan Member since:

That's fine, you can have a different UI if you need to, but at least you can keep 80-90% of the underlying code the same across all platforms. No need to rewrite the entire app.

And anybody who says 'web apps' is getting stabbed in the eye ;) Why have we done all this work over the course of a few decades to build nice, stable operating systems, only to end up running all of our apps in a f**king web browser?

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[3]: Yup
by kwan_e on Tue 8th Apr 2014 05:01 in reply to "RE[2]: Yup"
kwan_e Member since:

Why have we done all this work over the course of a few decades to build nice, stable operating systems, only to end up running all of our apps in a f**king web browser?

Why have we done all this work to make every computer self contained only to end up going back to "cloud"?

Reply Parent Score: 8

RE[2]: Yup
by The123king on Tue 8th Apr 2014 10:52 in reply to "RE: Yup"
The123king Member since:

And that's why MS created Metro. It's just internal politics turned something that could have been revolutionary into something everyone hates. Had they released Windows RT without the classic desktop and Windows 8 with Metro as an optional download, Windows 8 wouldn't have been such a flop.

Reply Parent Score: 3