Whoa. Too excited to NOT post this: Windows Phone 7 Interface: (emphasis mine)

Microsoft's approach is completely different. Instead of becoming another me-too cellphone, like Android and the rest, the Windows Phone 7 team came up their own vision of what the cellphone should be. In the process, they have created a beautiful user interface in which the data is at the center of user interaction. Not the apps—specific functions—but the information itself. At some points, in fact, it feels like the information is the interface itself.

Out of the box, this information is organized into areas called hubs, which follow the user's areas of interest. Accessible through live tiles in the home screen, the Me (the user), people, pictures and video, music, and games—plus the omnipresent search—hubs give views into several data sources, connecting and presenting them into an interweaved panoramic stream. These hubs dig heavily into many databases, both locally and into the cloud.

YES YES YES YES YES. GOD, YES! While I am very impressed with what Apple pulled off, I want to accomplish something far more with MindTouch. A platform which lends itself to the creation of different applications, all centered around the same data. The model that Apple used, where each app itself performs a specific function, is not going to work well when you need to be productive. If anything, the fact that Apple apps are not productive is a positive thing - most people just want to kill time (and look important at the same time).

If intranets are either people-centric or project centric, it would be a wise move for the underlying platform to provide expansive coverage on both ends, and then allow VARs to take those pieces and remodel them for their specific use cases.

A single system, for me, that would allow me to manage internal documentation (with a formal review process around them), tap into sales/marketing metrics to help inform product direction, while keeping an eye on the user activity streams of my direct reports would be incredibly empowering. And the possibilities around applications are endless - you could plug and play any type of solution that involves data mashups.

The hardest part is "guiding" partners to build the tools the way you want them - they have to buy-in on the fact that the overhead of development and the UI will be worth it.

And this is why the Microsoft model (if it's true) is so exciting (and provides a big relief, as I feel like I've been the only one really formulating thinking along this line) - if we take a data centric approach to application building, it's easier to guide developers away from thinking of their applications as single silos of user interactions, but forces them to take a more holistic view of developing on the platform within their realm of specialty.

Currently feeling: excited as a pig in ....
Posted by roy on February 18, 2010 at 02:30 AM in MindTouch | 2 Comments

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Comment posted on February 18th, 2010 at 02:53 PM
Somebody has to do something innovative. Every phone maker out there is trying to make a phone better than the iPhone, but they are all essentially the same, adding a flash to the camera, or a higher resolution isn't enough. I don't fault Apple though, you can't be innovative every time out.