Windows 7 Features

I have listed some windows 7 features that I plan to develop examples going forward

Windows Touch: I have always seen ATMs making use of Windows operating system and offering a touch screen support. I used to wonder when will this feature be at my computer too. Going forward,with Windows 7 and a touch-sensitive screen, you can browse online newspapers, flick through photo albums, and shuffle files and folders using your fingers. Windows 7 also provides the touch keyboard . This means no keyboard, no mouse. Will my fingers hurt if there is issue with touch screen monitor.Some Windows 7 Features that I think are towards Windows touch users are

  1. Jump Lists In Windows 7, the taskbar has been completely redesigned. A new feature is Pin Feature. You can  pin a favorite program to the taskbar, you can always see it there and easily access it with a single click. Another new feature are Jump Lists for an application.Jump Lists help users get to where they want to go faster. Jump Lists are files, URLs, tasks, or custom items that open within the application. The context of the jump List for your application can have two item categories
    1. Destinations are items that appear in the Recent, Frequent, or custom categories based on the user’s item usage. Destinations can be files, folders, Web sites, or other content-based items. Destinations can be pinned to or removed from the Jump List by the user.
    2. Tasks are common user actions performed in applications that apply to all users of the application. Task can’t be pinned or removed.
  2. Snap : Snap is a quick (and fun) new way to resize open windows, simply by dragging them to the edges of your screen. Depending on which edge you choose—top or bottom, left or right—the window will expand vertically, fill the screen, or you can even position windows side by side. Snap makes reading, organizing, and comparing windows a…well, you get the picture.

You also have new touch gestures supported like Pan(Touch and drag the page with either one or two fingers), Press and tap(equivalent to press and hold or right-clicking an item), Rotate,Zoom.For Programming,look at MSDN article Introducing The Taskbar APIs

Windows Ribbon: Ribbons are the modern way to help users find, understand, and use commands efficiently and directly—with a minimum number of clicks, with less need to resort to trial-and-error, and without having to refer to Help. All the users of  Microsoft Office 2007 applications have made use of Ribbons. Windows 7 enables your application to exhibit Ribbon controls(available in Windows Vista in future). The Ribbon architecture is based on Model-View-Controller. Please be aware that upgrade from menu bars and toolbars to the ribbon is a major overhaul of your program’s interface. Please look at Ribbon Design Process and one needs to scrutinize every feature and decide how to best use the ribbon to convey the feature’s meaning and value. There are 3 categories  of Ribbon Controls

  • Basic controls consist of one or more buttons that can be invoked by a single mouse click to perform a simple action.
  • Container controls are composed of groups of controls, menus, lists, or item and Command collections. There are two types of containers, static and dynamic.
  • Specialized controls for specific UI functionality.

Staying organized(Libraries): In previous versions of Windows, managing your files meant organizing in folders and subfolders. In Windows 7, you have concept of libraries to organize and access files regardless of where they’re stored. A library looks a lot like a folder, but it doesn’t actually store files. Instead, a library points to the locations where your files are stored so you can see them all as a single collection. You can search within a library. You can also have search filters that will filter the search results.For Programming,look at MSDN article Introducing Libraries

In addition, Windows will remember every search. As soon as you start typing, suggested terms from previous searches that are similar to your current search term will appear under the search box—sort of like a search box in a web browser.

Search in Windows 7 will go beyond local . Developers and IT professionals can enable their search engines, document repositories, web applications, and proprietary data stores to be searched from Windows 7 without needing to write and deploy client code. This enables end users to search their corporate intranet or the web as easily as they can search for their local files—all from within the same familiar Windows interface.

VHD support:  Windows 7 simplifies image management by adding support for virtual disks in the disk management tools.  You no longer need to install the Hyper-V Server role and use the Hyper-V Manager console to create VHDs.  The Disk Management console has an action to create a new VHD file, for either a fixed size or dynamically expanding VHD, which is uninitialized.

Windows Web Service : Windows 7 offers both managed-code APIs and native APIs for building and running web services. The strength of Windows Web Service that there is no dependency for web client and web service on .Net framework or CLR or COM. It does not replace WCF. You can control when memory is allocated and deallocated on the heap. More information can be seen in the blog of Nikolas. Effectively we can build a web service and web client without .Net framework and IIS and I like this.

UAC: You get more control of User Access Control settings.

Windows Sensor support The Windows Sensor and Location platform provides a standard way for device manufacturers to expose sensor devices to software developers and consumers, while providing developers with a standardized application programming interface (API) for working with sensors and sensor data. It would be nice to know that how many device manufacturer’s approach are compatible with this and that would drive its usage,

Some informative links are  The Windows 7 Taskbar ,Windows® API Code Pack for Microsoft® .NET Framework