Wednesday, August 31, 2005

What's in Store : Bored with computers

What's in Store : Bored with computers "Hi, my name is Peter Spiro. I'm the General Manager in SQL Server responsible for the WinFS team and I've been bored with computers and software in general.
A few years back Ray Ozzie came to Microsoft to speak at an internal workshop we have called WHiPS (Workshop on High Performance Systems). Ray talked about Groove. It was a pretty cool app trying to be a platform (tough to do for a small company). As we were talking after his presentation he described how he had to first build a platform on top of the operating system, which then enabled him to build the app that he had envisioned. He said he needed storage beyond just a file system; he needed synchronization capabilities to share information between different machines/users, he needed advanced security mechanisms, he needed a way to model his particular schemas in the storage system, he needed to search on the information. So he built a richer storage system that incorporated these types of concepts and then he built the Groove app on top of his platform. His comment to me was that Microsoft should build such a platform and stop selling the same old operating system and storage capabilities that we as an industry have been polishing for 20-30 years. He felt this richer platform would create a new ecosystem that allowed a variety of new apps to be developed.
He was right; and I told him we had already started on it, and that it was called WinFS."

Read the rest of the post for more WinFS historical context

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