Back in 2004 when Microsoft was still confused about what build numbers to use for Windows Codename Longhorn, it was like puberty for concept art and codenames: dribble on Aero, draw with Avalon, talk on Indigo, store in WinFS and wrap around WinFX. Everything aside, I think the best thing that came out of WinHEC 2004 was this picture. When I first saw that picture, I went “Wow. Longhorn looks amazingly polished.” Of course I didn’t know it was one of many Macromedia Director demos showcased. Nevertheless, time moved on.
September 2006. Windows Vista RC1 released. Bit of a bummer in the UI area. Better than any Vista beta, but worse than any Longhorn concept art. And just to demonstrate, I mocked up what I would have hoped as the “Longhorn-standard” for Windows Mail.
The Windows Vista UI is an evolution, not a revolution. Oh well. All bets are off for Codename “Vienna”.