Sinofsky Finally Speaks on Windows 8

The notoriously silent-running Windows chief emerges from stealth mode to give his first comments on Windows 8.

Some Microsoft bosses like to develop out in the open, letting us follow almost every move (IE team, anyone?). Then there's Steve Sinofsky, former head of the Office team and now leading up Windows. In addition to his penchant for dressing like Steve Jobs, he tends to operate as secretively as Jobs as well.

So when Sinofsky breaks his silence, you listen. On Monday he launched a new blog, Building Windows 8, to discuss the development process for Windows 8, similar to the way he had a blog for Windows 7.

"Blogging allows us to have a two-way dialog with you about design choices, real-world data and usage, and new opportunities that are part of Windows 8. Together, we will start the unique adventure of bringing a major product to market. We’re genuinely excited to talk about the development of Windows 8 and to engage thoughtfully with the community of passionate end-users, developers, and information professionals," he wrote.

Sinofsky admitted that Microsoft has heard some "frustration about how little we've communicated about Windows 8 so far." That's the truth. After a brief video demo at D9 in June that left people with more questions than answers, there's been nothing but silence. Even the recent Worldwide Partner Conference came and went with no new information.

I'm wondering how much weight to give to Sinofsky's phrase "Windows 8 reimagines Windows." If I take him seriously and literally, then what he's saying is that Windows 8's changes will be largely cosmetic. Thus far, what we've seen in Windows 8 has been cosmetic changes.

Windows 7 introduced some nice new visual features, particularly the task bar revamp, but there was a ton of work done under the hood to address the horrible resource mismanagement of Vista. I don't need a Windows facelift. If I want to pretty it up I'll use Omnimo for Rainmeter.

Build is rapidly approaching, and hopefully there will be more blogs from Sinofsky articulating exactly what's going on under the hood.

Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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