We all know that Windows 7 is on its way, planned for release somewhere late 2009 or early 2010. We already know it will have a multitouch framework, no major kernel and/or driver framework changes, and a new taskbar people at Microsoft are not supposed to talk about right now. The firs two milestone releases didn’t appear to be very exciting, but now there is – supposedly – a milestone 3 (build 6780) release, and there is a screenshot, and more information on UI changes. According to Microsoft blogger Stephen Chapman, the ribbon will make its way to Windows 7.
He claims to have seen this third milestone build of Windows 7, and claims that certain default Windows applications such as Paint and Wordpad have received the ribbon overhaul. “Yes, both Paint and WordPad have finally received the royal treatment. Via permission given to me to remotely access build 6780 to play around a bit, Paint and WordPad both look great and have much-needed updates.” Not only the interface has been overhauled, but the feature set of both applications have been improved and modernised as well.
It’s not very surprising to see the ribbon making its way to basic Windows applications, seeing the driving force behind this user interface widget, Julie Larson-Green, came over from the Office 2007 team to work on the user interface of Windows 7. While the interface changes are nice, it remains to be seen whether or not a ribbon interface makes sense for applications with relatively limited feature sets.
Personally, I’m more excited about the new features, seeing Paint and WordPad were practically useless to begin with.