Showing off Windows SideShow – screencast

Windows SideShowTodd Bishop, Robert McLaws and even I have been keeping a close eye on Windows SideShow, one of the last remaining features in Windows Vista yet to be thoroughly explored. Largely due to hardware constraints, not many people have seen SideShow devices let alone play with one. So apart from the infamous Channel 9 video, a few screenshots and concept art, we really don’t know much about the experience. Or should I say, until today.

Today, Microsoft published “Getting Started with Windows SideShow (C++)“, a Hands-On-Lab tutorial for developers to help understand and develop for the SideShow platform. This HOL however brings an interesting gift to enthusiasts like myself. A working SideShow emulator even with device drivers. This is no interactive demo. This is as closest as it gets to the real thing without touching one.

I’ve put together this screencast giving an overview of the SideShow experience including navigation, using gadgets, adding gadgets, changing UI themes and more.

Windows Vista SideShow screencast
Click image to view video (H.264, 2:57min)

Or alternatively, if you are Quicktime impaired, view the low-bandwidth MSN Soapbox flash version.

It would be important to note that this video does not accurately represent the final interface or experience of Windows SideShow. As Todd Bishop‘s article’s accompanying picture shows, the UI has already been refreshed to include the Aurora yet this emulator has not. As well as, it will be ultimately up to OEMs to decide on what the interface will look like, as they will have control over the styling of interfaces with their own SideShow devices.

11 insightful thoughts

  1. OH!? So this is SideShow? Thanks! This is an emulator, how will this be improved over the RTM around the public? See to be honest, I never knew such a program exist…

    PS, first ¬.¬

  2. This looks good, but where’s the hardware compatibility? I like the picture of Asus laptop with detachable slideshow screen.

  3. I really don’t see the point to that. Everything you just did could be done via the SideBar. Of course, if I keep my dual monitor setup with my new Vista PC, i might have a use for it, otherwise….?

  4. @Chad: Windows SideShow is an actual device you have on the lid of your laptop or take seperately. Some of these features will be available even when your laptop is in standby.

    This is only a software emulator that is displayed on the desktop.

  5. ^
    | lol.

    Thanks Long. You always do great screancasts!
    I think you need to win some sort of blogging award. Who else agrees?

  6. lol its funny when people dont even understand the system…

    sideshow is the hardware equivilent of gadgets, yes it will be detachable lid components for laptops… but theirs other ones to.. remote controls, and other stuff like that …

    the first device is set to be the asus laptop set for manufacturing in january (one of first vista laptops)

    No there isnt any hardware out yet… but then again why would their be??? VISTA ISNT OUT TO THE CONSUMERS YET!!!!!!

    Just like the hybrid drives… there not out cause vista consumer isnt out yet … there good features there just not on the market yet… kinda like dx10 cards (besides the 8800)

  7. The interesting thing is that while in the linked photo, there is Aurora in the background, the icons for Windows Mail and Windows Media Player are pre-RTM.

  8. I think windows sideshow is a great idea but it didn’t take off well. I think it should have been enabled as an Instant Start Solution because you shouldn’t have to get an auxillary screen to quickly check notes or emails

  9. That would definitely be a great application of Windows SideShow. But, what you’re talking about is more of a hybrid-pc scenario. SideShow gets data via the Windows PC. If Windows isn’t running, then you’d only be able to show cached content from the last time the OS was running.

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