typer at typer at
Fri Mar 12 14:27:38 EST 2010

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This year's Mix trade show won't be the first time that people hear about Internet Explorer 9 or Windows Phone 7 Series, but it is the event where developers will get enough information to start creating products targeting the new browser and mobile operating system.

The three-day Las Vegas event kicks off on Monday, with Windows Phone executive Joe Belfiore talking about the new phone operating system. On Tuesday, Internet Explorer head Dean Hachamovitch is slated to talk IE 9 and I would not be surprised at all if actual code is offered up this time. Microsoft offered a brief glimpse of IE 9 in November, highlighting its ability to use hardware acceleration for improved text and graphics rendering.

On the phone front, Microsoft has already tipped its hand on the basics of writing software for its new mobile operating system, confirming last week that XNA and Silverlight will be the means of developing software that works on the Windows Phone 7 Series devices that start shipping later this year.

There are more than a dozen sessions on the topic and Microsoft has promised that--although existing Windows Mobile apps won't naturally run on the new phones--Microsoft wants to make it as easy as possible for developers to start writing code for the new operating system.

Although Microsoft hasn't gone into much detail about the tools needed to write Silverlight apps for Windows Phone 7 Series, the company did say at this week's Game Developer Conference in San Francisco that writing XNA games for Windows Phone will require the new version 4.0 of the XNA Game Studio. The company also confirmed that games can be hardware accelerated, connect to Xbox Live and bring in a user's gamertag, achievements and avatar.

More broadly, Mix remains Microsoft's event centered around design and once again attendees will hear from Microsoft researcher and design expert Bill Buxton, who is speaking on Tuesday.. Expect to hear a little bit more on Microsoft's Windows Azure-based cloud efforts, but I'm hearing we will have to wait a little longer to hear about Windows Live Wave 4--the next version of Microsoft's consumer Web services. And we'll probably have to wait longer still to hear anything about the next version of Windows or even when Microsoft plans a significant update to Windows 7.

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