You'll no longer need to buy a Surface device to get the SDK, allowing more of you to get started writing touch-based apps platform. The Surface SDK will be made available at Professional Developers Conference next week. Jared had talked about this in his blog entry, Surface at PDC.

Coupled with a piece of table top-like hardware that has cost about $15,000, Surface applications respond to touch, natural gestures, and physical objects. Interactivity is enabled. Objects placed on the display can be recognized and trigger digital responses.

Once the SDK is release, you'll be able to use a simulator to run Surface applications on a PC and leverage Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF). Developers will no longer need to buy Surface hardware, although we'll offer a 10 percent discount on the hardware for a developer unit and five licenses.

Featuring an Intel CPU, the Surface device has five cameras taking pictures at a rate of about 60 frames per second. Images are then filtered for identification.

ISVs are expected to create amazing new interfaces in all kinds of collaborative solutions. More details will be available during PDC.