Windows Vista, Longhorn Lab, IE7 and Secret Squirrel....
As mentioned earlier in my blog I traveled to Seattle last week, staying in town from 19 until 23 July. The karma for this trip were very good – first I was upgraded to Business Class between Sydney and Los Angeles, then Terri and I were picked up by a black stretch limousine at SeaTac courtesy of a much loved, mutual friend, then I was upgraded to Business Class once more for the flight between Los Angeles and Melbourne – Qantas Skybeds are heavenly.
One of the reasons for this trip is that I was invited to attend an Expert Zone Featured Community event dubbed the ‘Longhorn Lab’ on 22 July. It was very interesting to put a face to some (infamous) names, and gauge other attendees’ reactions to the Windows Vista (ex Longhorn) and IE7 features that were revealed during the Lab. I had already seen a lot of the stuff that was on show that day, so was able to settle back and absorb the reactions of those around me.
The ‘Windows Vista’ name was announced while we were there, and we were lucky enough to be given some of the very first swag with the new Vista name emblazoned on it –baseball caps and wall posters :o) Anyway, other attendees at the Longhorn Lab have already shared their experiences, so I won’t repeat what has already been said elsewhere…. Let’s allow our friend Secret Squirrel out of his box.
Secret Squirrel says…. “So….what did you do during the rest of your time at Microsoft?” I am so glad you asked!
On 20 July Terri Stratton (of www.thetabletpc.net and http://themediacentrepc.com fame) and I spent a very enjoyable day with the Internet Explorer team. I can’t share details about what Terri and I saw during our day with the team but I can say this. Beta 1 (now released to MSDN and TechNet subscribers) is a work in progress – later builds are even more impressive, and there is a very clever, yet-to-be-revealed treasure (that is not in Beta 1) which absolutely blew Terri and me away. The IE team is justifiably excited, and proud, about what they have done with IE7. Some have said that the new browser is simply Microsoft’s attempt to play catch up with its competitors, but what I have seen shows me that IE7 is going to be much more than that. I am going to really enjoy watching reactions as more is revealed about IE7, and can’t wait for the final version to hit the streets.
Then, on the 21st, I had lunch with the Outlook Express team, followed by in-depth sessions with various team members about the next version of OE. Just like IE, OE is also undergoing major improvements, and just like IE, the time is not right to reveal further details. But fear not, kind readers, the minute I can share, I will…
All in all, it was a very productive, interesting, hectic, fun, exhausting trip to Seattle. My new web site will (hopefully) go live soon, and will be home-base for all information about IE7 that I am allowed to share and, if I am really lucky, a scoop or two. As for when it will go live, that I cannot answer because finalizing DNS, without which it is impossible for me to proceed, is dependent on the actions of another. I’m hoping some time over the next few days….