Yesterday, at ESC Silicon Valley in San Jose, Kevin Dallas, General Manager for the Windows Embedded Business, presented the Industry Keynote, with Mike Hall (Windows Embedded Architect), and Ilya Bukshteyn (Director of Windows Embedded Marketing at Microsoft).
That keynote presented the vision of Microsoft for the Embedded market and the plans around smart, connected, service oriented devices. I won't go through the whole messages, but prefer to show some parts of the keynote and it's backstage.
One of the main announcements made during this keynote was about the "Spark Your Imagination" program. This program is targeted at the hobbyist and academic community where Microsoft will make available the full version of Windows Embedded CE 60 R2 tools at no cost with low cost hardware boards from 5 select manufacturers. The new board and software package offerings will be available for order from the hardware manufacturer sites next week. More info...
Another announcement was about Windows Embedded family products renaming. This renaming will occur on next releases of the different products. Here is the mapping of the new names :
Do not hesitate to react on this renaming, we'd like your feedback.
Another couple of announcements where made. The first one concerning developers: there will be a certification for Windows Embedded CE developers through the Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) program. And the other one is about BSP Certification that uses to cost $1,500 and is now free.
Here are now some pictures of the Keynote preparation:
Mike and Dion Hutchings (Windows CE Technical PM) preparing hardware for Mike's keynote demo:
Distributed application scenario using a couple of VIA Artigo pico-itx boards running Windows XP Embedded and CCR/DSS runtime, and the Visual Programming Language environment usage:
Nick McCarty from Adeneo then presented one of his own projects: a distributed home control system. This is the back of the thing ;-):
And Ilya ended in presenting along with Jon Rauschenberger from Clarity Consulting the line of the future, a Windows Embedded for Point of Service innovation showcase :
Not only in embedded world, but why Microsoft renames its product names so often? Believe that developer community doesn't like these continuous renamings at all...
I don't like the new naming scheme.
Each time I talk about Win CE in a seminar, conference or training the first thing I say is that Windows CE is not a "porting" of Windows "desktop" versions on smaller devices, it's a completely different OS that shares more or less the same API with its desktop "cousins".
Also persuading people that Windows Mobile 6 is based on CE 5.x and not on CE 6 wasn't that easy...
Now CE and XPE share the same name, and that will make things even more difficult :)
I understand that this new naming scheme is more clear and coherent from a marketing point of view, but it's somewhat confusing from a technical point of view. Like calling "SQL server CE" and not "Jet CE" a file-based mono-application SQL engine :)
I've been talking at the RTECC here in Italy (Milan and Rome) and a lot of people approached me saying "how it can be realtime? It's windows!" and it was not so easy to show them that CE is realtime (and I mean hard-real time!).
Luckily I can show them the shared sources and so they understand that it was no "Windows" in the way the used to know it :)
You certainly have heard about the Windows Embedded family renaming. If not, take a look at this post