PDC phone deal a false flag or a f***up?

Scoble is saying that the phone deal at the PDC (a super-high-end phone for $149) was a real screw-up and not the trickle-feed that I was sure it was. At JavaOne, they always play the same game of saying on the first day “Oh, we ran out!” and then on the second day saying “Well, we found another couple hundred,” and then on the last day “You know what? We love you guys so much, we’re going to give you all one!” I was absolutely certain that it was the same with the phone deal, but Scoble says, nope, it was a screwup. If so, it’s a really, really stupid one.


Contention at “Future of the user experience” panel

They have these special presentations in the press room in which certain topics are presented to a group vastly smaller than the general sessions. Generally, these are pretty mellow. At one this afternoon, though, the press made it clear that they are very skeptical that the Avalon / Windows Presentation Foundation technologies are in any way “the right thing.” Jerry Pournelle pulled a total Zell Miller, going on at length about the way that help works in Windows and then, having made his point, stomped out of the room. Other questioners were more sane, but still, it was clear that most journalists remember the early days of desktop publishing, Websites, etc… and the pain that happens before new standards are established.

Plug in Memory Stick – Expand Memory

At yesterday’s keynote Allchin demonstrated a forthcoming capability that allows a Flash-RAM memory stick to be used for system memory. Tom Murphy pointed out the killer application for this capability: “gen up VPC images that could just boot on install.  You would jack in the memory, it would boot the image and use that memory for all the VPC memory leaving your machine OS running in the machine ram.” Yeah, that’d rock.


Workflow is the second big announcement at PDC

Yesterday belonged to LINQ, today belongs to Workflow. This is a new namespace / API within WinFX that provides a fundamental atom of Activity. An Activity can be:


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Additionally, Activitys can be combined into composite activities. With that, and an underlying execution engine, they can model control-flow. With that, and a graphical deisgn surface, they suddenly have a visual programming high-level programming language. Naturally, they call this Windows X Foundation where, in this case, X = Workflow. It’s very cool.