On [not] being what's next [yet!]

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2011/10/12 07:01 -04:00, original URI: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/michkap/archive/2011/10/12/10223697.aspx

Over in the Suggestion Box, long time reader and friend Ted asked:

Metro/Windows 8 - actually I'm kinda surprised that neither Metro nor WinRT show up here yet (at least when I use the search).  There must be something interesting relating to i18n to talk about in these areas.  At least that's what it looks like (judging from the BUILD conference). 

Well then how about Visual Studio vNext for Win32 desktop - like in msvcr110 they've finally moved to using locale names instead of locale IDs internally.

Thinking back to the earlier days of this Blog and how there were so many things I talked about here first before anyone else, it may seem odd that I am taking a back seat now as Windows 8 is now available in the form of the Developer Preview.

Okay, maybe it is a little odd.

But since then I've grown up a bit!

Perhaps it's a subconscious reaction to the fact that I had received mail from Frank Shaw  (VP in charge of corporate communications) since then. Nothing accusatory or anything, which might have been cause for a freak out I suppose. But even worse, it represented intelligent questions. This is worse because it implies I am a little on the radar, which makes being a little less of a cowboy a responsible idea.

Or maybe it is that Chris Capossela who I first knew back in 1997 when he was a junior program manager (and he owned the Access Setup Wizard, which I was the dev on) is now the company's Chief Marketing Officer -- and Frank's boss. No directives once again, but the idea of being a little more responsible just comes to mind because I'd rather not be mucking in the message and randomizing him or anyone who works for him.

More likely there are good explicit reasons to stand back and let things unfold as my division President Steven Sinofsky is blogging himself and there aren't necessarily good reasons to be writing about things before there is enough to write about that people can use. I mean, I'm hardly against sliding in the mustard, but I need some context in which to slide it.

Another big difference -- we aren't talking about slow platform evolution like adding a new function or even a few new functions - we are talking about a new platform whose best practices are best to talk about after people are confident they have a good first cut of what is best.

Not to mention we are in that phase that DCRs and such can easily happen as small gaps in scenarios are identified. While such gaps might be natural for me to cover here ordinarily, it would require me to be a jerk to use the Blog as a way to try to force DCRs to happen in a certain way. And pehaps I really would like to not be a jerk if I can avoid it.

I have had a role in Windows 8 related to locales and keyboards, and at the upcoming Internationalization and Unicode conference in Santa Clara, I'll be talking about some of those things -- things that are available now if you have the Developer Preview though I'll be able to discuss things in as more focused way since there isn't much of an externally available roadmap.

I won't be talking so much about Metro or WinRT since that's pretty far afield of my topics, but there are many things that are natural results of the way things have been working and how things should be working.

Everyone else is excited about that new platform -- and they should be. It is pretty cool! But even these "nominally less cool" pieces are pretty interesting.

I'm pretty excited about all of it, because some of it is really cool stuff. Perhaps not cool compared to modern touch based apps, but cool from the point of view of things I think are important. And that some of you probably think too....

There are even some potential lessons for those who use and/or contribute to and/or manage the Unicode CLDR project, from their older brother who was doing this before they were even an idea -- lessons that in some cases we learned the hard way. Perhaps we can spare them some extra pain.

But Metro and WinRT are largely topics for the future, as the final shape of both of them and of their best practices are defined and it makes sense to start putting my spin and take on things.

So stay tuned. And if you will be at the IUC say hi and let me know this blog was one of the reasons you came! :-)

Quppa on 12 Oct 2011 8:12 AM:

I was just about to ask what the point of the new Language Bar seen in the Windows Developer Preview was, but then I realised that the reason it had seemed almost entirely useless was that I'd installed the Microsoft Office 2010 IME for Japanese, which apparently is not designed to work with the new system.

So, instead of complaining, I'll take the time to congratulate Microsoft on finally making the Language Bar fit in a bit more with the rest of the Windows UI (standard menu appearance!).

The Japanese IME Pad is still a mess, though. Tooltips and menus have a pre-XP appearance, and the buttons have no hover animations (not even the 'close' button). Still, any progress is good.

Does WinRT support vertical CJK text?

Ted on 6 Mar 2012 7:14 PM:

How about now? We are still hoping for some fresh WinRT stuff.  

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