PC Magazine: Microsoft ‘Longhorn’ preview shows ‘an Apple look’

“The first day of WinHEC 2004 (the Windows Hardware Engineering Conference) in Seattle had, as expected, a major track on Longhorn. It focused on the new user interface and what Microsoft is planning for its next-generation operating system,” Richard Fisco writes for PC Magazine in his article, “Longhorn Tastes the Apple.”

“Demonstrations of the new GUI showed it to be much more animated than Windows XP. 3D effects, animations of icons, and test boxes that can vary from transparent to opaque will all make for a livelier user interface,” Fisco reports. “Microsoft’s demonstrations were interesting and somehow familiar. After looking at some images and icons that grew bigger or flipped when chosen, I couldn’t help but think of the dock on Apple’s OS X. There’s more to Longhorn, of course, than just that dock. Microsoft is looking to have applications add useful, related information in bars alongside open documents, like upcoming appointments and related cases if you’re in a law program, or favorite-show information if you’re in a TV search tool. Overall, though, Longhorn still had an Apple look to it. I suppose imitation is a form of flattery, after all. It’ll be years before Longhorn launches, but it should be fun to watch it develop.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We expected nothing less from Microsoft. Same old, same old. Moo.


  1. one requirement baffles me though: 1 Gig ethernet. What is going on? Is Microsoft foreseen weekly security patches of 500MB each till next major release of Windows (code named MadCow)

  2. twelveightyone: I completely agree with you. Writing “phrases” on the side-bar requires a larger width, and it is mostly useless.

    I still haven’t seen anything nice other than the user interface itself. For example, one of the nice things that Apple has in Mac OS X is that you can cut and paste graphics as you please across applications. I always do that between OmniGraffle and Keynote. The cool thing is that it copies as PDF (I think) and the resolution is not affected irrespective of how much I increase the image. Does Microsoft even have this basic thing in it?

    Why is all this fuss about a 3-D looking UI? It should inherently allow for something nice and in my opinion, MS hasn’t shown how somthings that users wanted can be done using their latest developments which cannot be done using windows XP UI.

  3. MacOS: Aqua GUI
    Longhorn: Aero GUI (hot air?) How innovative! And WTF is Aero Glass supposed to mean?
    Wow, somebody really had a brainstorming session to come up with those names.

  4. How much do you want to bet that MS will totally over-do the animation, etc. in Logjam? They’ve always copied Apple, but never well. Pogue said of Sonny Connect, “The whole thing feels put together by accountants, not music lovers.” Windows GUI has always looked to me like it was put together by blind programmers, while the Mac was designed by the descendants of DaVinci, Michangelo, & Van Gogh (and maybe a touch of Dali).

  5. Question: Can Apple actually sue Microsoft for copying their OS? If it is so blatantly obvious, can they? I’ve only been a Mac addict for 2 years now, so I’m not familiar with what the Apple Vs. Microsoft case from years ago was about.

    I just hate it when Apple Innovates and Microsoft (and the rest of the world, Dell, Gateway, etc…) copies….

  6. Don’t forget the MS implementation of “Sparkle” – the self-proclaimed Flash-killer that’s being rolled into Bonghorn. No one is immune from MS’ “embrace and extend.”

  7. Am I the only ones who thought the banner ad served up by Google for this page was funny? Ads for cattle farms. You know, I come here for the Mac news, but now I’m kinda in the mood to buy some cows.

    Maybe I’m too easily amused. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

  8. please don’t forget: MS has been successful in part because of its grandiose hardware requirements. what’s the point of putting out software upgrades that don’t require hardware upgrades? all the chip and computer makes won’t make any money! MS is not alone in this. it’s the whole mafia of software + hardware makers who feed off each other. by setting the requirements for Longhorn high, or artificially high, people will be induced to upgrade … to a point, then they will maybe really upgrade – to Apple! the thing with having small market share is you have to make sure you can’t alienate too many of the established user base by releasing unoptimized software or feature bloats that require hardware upgrades. thank goodness for Apple yet again.

  9. I don’t understand why some people are so up in arms about the hardware requirements. Just 5 short years ago I bought my first PC with a 500mhz processor. Now there are processors running almost 7 times that. In two or three years, when Longhorn is projected to be released, who in here doubts that 4-6ghz processors won’t be the norm? Maybe even faster.

    So what if the computer you bought two years ago won’t be able to run Longhorn. My 500mhz couldn’t handle XP. Get over it. You’ll have found the $500 to buy a new computer by then anyways.

  10. Apple should do a take on the old Wendy’s commercial, “Where’s the Beef” but showing two old lady’s waiting on line at a burger shop showing the date 2004, then finally they get their burgers with the date showing 2007 and one lady says to the other, “Hmmm, taste like yesteryear’s apples”.

    TagLine: Why wait to buy the cow tomorrow when you can have an apple today”

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