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What about "classic" Desktop Applications?

    General discussion

  • I see all this new cool technology at build (WinRT, XAML+C++, HW accerlated graphics..) and they only work for full screen metro style apps. On the Desktop (yes, these things still exist and will continue to exist!) what do we have from the UI perspective?

    - Windows Forms (old, no eye candy(fluid animations), no "delighting" UI, etc.)

    - WPF/SL (SLOW, buggy, bad for C++ applications)

    - Reinvent the wheel and render everything manually (I could also cut myself but why should I?)

    I think this is a very sad status quo and somebody at the windows team should reconsider what the desktop UI tooling will be like.

    I am the only one who thinks this?

     

    Edit: Some MVPs have already shown that, technically, it is possibly to use WinRT stuff in the desktop mode. However, wheater MSFT sees this a valuable addition to the Windows platform is a totally different story.

    Source:

    http://twitter.com/#!/jmorrill/status/115637584440459265

     


    Monday, September 19, 2011 11:31 AM

All replies

  • Well no, you're not the only one.
    But they have made changes to the UI. (Aero theme etc).

    I still like Metro, but I don't have a problem with the normal UI either, I just think they should put some more "care" in it.

    Regards,

    Dylan Meeus


    0x2B |~ 0x2B Blog : www.it-ca.net/blogdylan
    Monday, September 19, 2011 12:46 PM
  • I am also quite disappointed how Microsoft ignores the desktop world.

    My impression, still not disproved sufficiently, from Build was that the only new thing in Windows 8 from the developer perspective is just the Metro UI while completely abandoning the desktop like it is obsolete. I have noticed just one indirect and unclear notice about the desktop in Build; just showing changing size of a window by touch, so nothing really impresive for developers.

    And as before, they are still hardly separating each technology from the rest, so the application could not share much code for different worlds.

    Monday, September 19, 2011 3:03 PM
  • Quite simply, I feel WinRT should be extended to also be available for desktop applications.

    Yes, this would kill WPF (in the long run).

    I don't give a rat's ass.  I'ld still be doing C# + XAML.  But at least I'ld be freed from that ugly win32 code and be able to embrace the magic and total 1337ness of WinRT.

    I got excited with every new feature of WinRT I saw being demoed.  I absolutely LOVED it.

    Then I understood that it would only be available in metro.

    Then my excitement turned into bitter dissapointment.

    Monday, September 19, 2011 3:12 PM
  • Exactly, WinRT should be extended to the desktop as a successor of WPF. I think this would improve the performance issues of WPF a lot. But please, make the sandbox optionally on the desktop. I like the freedom of desktop apps, please don't kill that to bring WinRT to the desktop.
    Monday, September 19, 2011 5:45 PM
  • Then I understood that it would only be available in metro.

    Then my excitement turned into bitter dissapointment.

    I had the exact same reaction.  I followed up on this with various Microsoft developers, and they all said they are hearing this a lot (except for Harry Pierson, who was a complete jerk and instead of answering the question kept insisting that we could re-write our CAD tool in Metro.  When I asked him when the Metro version of Visual Studio was coming out, he got downright insulting).  Apparently there is nothing to preclude adding support for WinRT from desktop apps in general, but it isn't likely in Win8.  Also, apparently the new XAML stack is particularly problematic to make available to desktop apps.  Several developers suggested that feedback would be the key to getting WinRT on the desktop, that we need to make our voices heard on Connect, etc. 
    Monday, September 19, 2011 6:55 PM
  • But please, make the sandbox optionally on the desktop. I like the freedom of desktop apps, please don't kill that to bring WinRT to the desktop.

    I agree completely.  The requirement that all Metro apps be distributed through the App store, along with the dependency on Internet based cloud servers for basic functionality like Notification, effectively make Metro useless for enterprise apps on a private cloud (aka limited or no internet connectivity).  If they tried impose that kind of muzzle on desktop apps, they would kill off Windows in businesses.  I did get comments from several Microsoft developers that the enterprise story is not totally ironed out yet, and they have not yet decided whether to support some sort of alternative deployment model for enterprise apps.  Like the WinRT on desktop issue, we need to make our concerns heard.
    Monday, September 19, 2011 7:02 PM