Back in October, I had an opportunity to talk Microsoft Surface with Interknowlogy CEO Tim Huckaby. Tim and I were both at the DevReach conference in Sofia, Bulgaria and he had just completed a video which showcased some of the applications his team had been building. We took a few moments to sit down and I recorded the conversation for my new video series Edge Of Dev.
I hope you will be pleasantly surprised when you see some of the applications that Interknowlogy has put together. Personally, as cool as the video is, you really have to get hands-on with the Surface to appreciate what it has to offer. In November, while in Los Angeles for PDC, I had a chance to see these applications first hand with a couple of the developers from Interknowlogy. A very sharp group of guys who enjoy their work, I might add. It is a very different experience when you are working with the Surface. I will say that several of us made a conscious effort to confuse the Surface and make it hang up, but the system handled it well. I know, a bunch of developers trying to break someone else's code is hard to believe, but trust me it happened.
The Surface certainly has great potential to change how we think of building applications from the multi-touch perspective. You are probably thinking that you will never have to worry about building multi-touch into your applications though, right? Well, you might be surprised. Microsoft was talking up multi-touch at PDC when discussing Windows 7. The keynotes included several demonstrations of this functionality on the HP TouchSmart system which was recently featured on DotNetRocks.
Think about this for a second. If Microsoft starts to build their own applications to support multi-touch, it won't be long before your users start complaining that your applications don't have that capability. So many applications follow Microsoft's lead when it comes to incorporating features into their applications. Just think about how many applications now have a ribbon bar instead of the old menu | toolbar interface. I don't think the Surface will be replacing your desktop, but Surface brings things to the table, pardon the pun, that will undoubtedly impact it.
Oh, it was 3 a.m. after a long day when I recorded that intro. Upon first viewing Todd Anglin said "you are -way- more serious/furious looking in your video intros than you ever seem in person. It's hilarious!". Lesson learned if you don't want to look like a scary person, do your video in the daytime after a good nights rest.