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Q&A: Microsoft's Jim Allchin touts Vista, new developer technologies

He also sees RSS moving beyond Web-based feeds

By Carol Sliwa and Heather Havenstein
September 15, 2005 12:00 PM ET

Computerworld - LOS ANGELES -- Jim Allchin, group vice president of platforms at Microsoft Corp., discussed his vision for RSS, workflow and other new technologies with Computerworld at this week's Microsoft Professional Developers Conference. Allchin also said that Windows Vista's appeal to IT professionals will rest largely in Microsoft's "improvements of the basics," which will ultimately help them save money.
Part 1 of the interview follows; Part 2 is also available online (see "Q&A: Microsoft's Jim Allchin touts Vista, new developer technologies").

Jim Allchin, group vice president of platforms at Microsoft Corp.
Jim Allchin, group vice president of platforms at Microsoft Corp.
At this week's conference, Microsoft showed lots of new tools for building consumer-focused applications. In what ways will you be helping corporate developers build better enterprise applications? First, Windows Vista alone with today's current apps will be a system that I think corporations will see great value in. And it's up [to] us to prove that, and we really haven't gone to try to show that yet. But we've invested so much in improvements in the basics, whether it be in the resilience, in the reliability or in the security work that we've done, deployment, servicing, I think all of those improvements alone will offer great value to reduce costs for the IT professional with today's apps.
Then if you have a new app, you can do all sorts of cool visualizations that I think will be very appealing to the knowledge workers. There's a saving cost in making it simple for the IT professional, making it more secure, making it faster and then adding new applications for new, richer visualizations, or making things like ad hoc meetings more productive. Those sorts of things will get excitement from the knowledge workers. So most of the work that is going to be applicable to the IT professional community will be in terms of our improvements of the basics -- just engineering excellence and attempting to save money for them.
But will Windows Vista represent a giant leap in the enterprise space, comparable to what you're talking about for the consumer space? I don't remember a release in the last 10 years other than Windows 95 that had something for all the audiences in it. Each of 'em had specific advantages. This one is sort of across the board. When you talk about enterprises, I view enterprises in terms of two buckets. One is helping the IT professional, making their jobs easier and saving money, preventing them from having to worry about more patches and making the performance of what they already have better, reducing the complexity

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