As one might guess, Microsoft’s development process never really stops. Similarly, now that we’ve shipped Windows Vista, work now begins on the next version of Windows.
There was a great article on APCMag’s site on what’s known about the new effort. There are three things that make me excited:
- The project is being led by SVP Steven Sinofsky, the exec who led the highly successful Office 2007 team. Sinofsky is very sensitive to UX issues – Jensen Harris, a UX Program Manager for Office 12 noted that “It [the Office 12 UX] originated with Steven Sinofsky… Steven had certainly noticed, like we all had, the growing interface clutter around the core Office apps, and he thought we should put a set of people together and at least think about this. But I sometimes think that he didn’t really expect us to actually replace the entire UI!”
- Sinofsky has said that all bets are off when it comes to the UI of Windows 7
- Julie Larson-Green (lead behind the Office 12 redesign and “Ribbon Interface”) has been named the Vice President of User Experience. She worked for Sinofsky and was the driving advocate for the Office Redesign. She was, in Harris’ word “a staunch advocate for rethinking the way Office worked and, more importantly, that way users wanted it to work”
Yes, three years is a long time to wait, but if Office 2007 is any indication, it will be well worth it!