At the D9 conference today, Steve Sinofsky, President of Windows and Windows Live at Microsoft, gave the first look at the next version of Windows, currently “codenamed” Windows 8. On display was the new touch user interface: an interface designed for tablets and touch computers.
For the first time in its life, Windows will receive a true touch interface. Since Windows XP, Microsoft has tried to graft touch capabilities onto its operating system, but has consistently failed to bridge the gap between precise mouse and keyboard interfaces, and sloppy, imprecise, finger-based interfaces. Windows 8 changes that. Microsoft describes the new interface as “touch first”; it’ll work with a mouse and a keyboard, but it was designed for fingers.