Ray Ozzie delivers with Live Mesh

Microsoft’s fans are delivered to the promised land.

For three years now I’ve wondered “what is Ray Ozzie up to?” And with this announcement you see just why he’s Microsoft’s CTO. Yeah, there are about 100 smart people working on Microsoft’s new “Live Mesh” which was turned on tonight, but this is Ray’s coming out party, as much as anything.

It also gives key insights into how Microsoft is going to keep Windows relevant and keep us all from sliding into a Web that doesn’t rely much on the underlying operating system. Will Microsoft succeed in that? Well, they better otherwise we’re all very close to washing Microsoft out of our hair: forever.

It’s very hard to explain it all in a few words. It took 1.5 hours this morning for them to peel off the covers and show me all of Mesh’s feed goodness and start to explain what’s coming. What Mesh is today is mostly some end user functionality that looks like Plaxo Pulse done right, but if you stop right there and either get excited or dismiss it, you’ll miss the point entirely.

Yes, the synchronization features that most of you will notice when you start up the Live Mesh are pretty cool. Unfortunately they aren’t even close to being finished. Mac support? Coming in the future. Nokia support? Unclear. iPhone support? Ask Steve Jobs (translation: will be very limited due to Apple’s complete control of that platform). Firefox support? Yes! Linux support? What’s that?

When you start up the Mesh you get a desktop and you can build a new folder and you can drag stuff into that folder and share it. Simple enough. Then you can add a piece of software to each of your machines (XP or Vista right now only, Mac later this year) and that folder will be automatically synced.

But if you stop right there you’ll say “isn’t that like FolderShare?” Yes, it is.

Keep looking.

There’s a Window that has news generated by the sync system. Hmm, this looks vaguely familiar. Sorta like Facebook’s news feed. With a dash of Twitter thrown in. Funny that they showed me a prototype of how Twitter and Facebook items could be shoved in there. Oh!

Let’s keep looking.

There’s a way to wrap up Web sites into a sandbox’ed app and take them offline. Oh, cool.

So, what’s doing this? MOE!

The “Mesh Operating Environment.”

What does it have? An HTTP server (aka a Web server). That lets the Mesh run stuff that’s offline.

And MOE also has handlers for many wire formats including ATOM, JSON, FeedSync, RSS, WB-XML, and POX.

Now wait a second. This thing understands feeds underneath its covers! And it’s not just one way RSS the way, say, Google Reader treats RSS. It’s a new two-way system that both receives Atom (default) or RSS feeds from other MOE’s as well as sends them out to other MOEs.

And, everything has a URI so you can subscribe to everything in the system with, say, Google Reader. Hmmm. I wonder what Dave Winer will think about this system.

We haven’t even gotten into the developer SDK. They spent about an hour showing me how to build new kinds of syncable apps on top of the Mesh in a variety of tools.

Now you’re just getting a taste of how Microsoft is going to use the Mesh to stay relevant. It is bringing its developers onto the Internet in an interesting new way.

Is this ready for mom and dad to run? I’d wait, this needs some major testing and hashing out. But developers should absolutely take a look at this.

Several Microsofties pointed out that this is only a small portion of the Mesh strategy that’ll be revealed in October at Microsoft’s Professional Developer Conference.

TechCrunch’s initial post is now up
, and that Microsoft will have several videos on its Channel 9 Website. UPDATE: Here’s the first with Ray Ozzie. Keep tuned to Twitter all night, cause we’ll discuss this in depth 140 characters at a time.

UPDATE: I didn’t even mention the identity system, er, social network underneath this.

UPDATE2: Mary Jo Foley has “10 things you need to know about Mesh.”

UPDATE3: It’s already on TechMeme, with tons of other info linked off of there.

UPDATE4: it’s fun to watch the news flow. Here’s a search for Microsoft Mesh on FriendFeed. Here’s one on TweetScan, which shows every Twitter message that mentions Microsoft Mesh. Here’s Google Blog Search, which shows all blogs that mention Microsoft Mesh.

UPDATE5: On10.net, another Microsoft video site, has a video demo that’s similar to the one I got today.

UPDATE6: the Mesh team has its own blog.

Jeff Sandquist already got things underway on Twitter.

I’m sure we’ll do some Qik videos tonight too to show off some of why I say this demonstrates Microsoft has a compelling Internet platform and strategy now.

Comments

  1. I have always been a Ray Ozzie fan since his days at Lotus Development in Massachusetts. I feel strange saying this but I am actually excited about this initiative from Microsoft. However, they do need to support Linux.

  2. Now THIS sounds interesting. Finally the blend of desktop and the Web that we were all hoping Vista would be. I’m looking forward to seeing more about this at Web 2.0 this week. Thanks for the scoop Robert.

  3. I have always been a Ray Ozzie fan since his days at Lotus Development in Massachusetts. I feel strange saying this but I am actually excited about this initiative from Microsoft. However, they do need to support Linux.

  4. Now THIS sounds interesting. Finally the blend of desktop and the Web that we were all hoping Vista would be. I’m looking forward to seeing more about this at Web 2.0 this week. Thanks for the scoop Robert.

  5. Sounds interesting. Does it have any relationship with Silverlight? Do you have a feeling as to what will be some of the killer apps which will drive the adoption of this new kinds of platforms? Finally this will hopefully push google to get a little bit more vocal about Google Gears (which was initially boxed as offline) but is really about being able to push the limits of the browsers while keeping the web open. Looking forward to the qik videos.

  6. Sounds interesting. Does it have any relationship with Silverlight? Do you have a feeling as to what will be some of the killer apps which will drive the adoption of this new kinds of platforms? Finally this will hopefully push google to get a little bit more vocal about Google Gears (which was initially boxed as offline) but is really about being able to push the limits of the browsers while keeping the web open. Looking forward to the qik videos.

  7. Thanks for the quick overview.

    Seems quite interesting. It’s refreshing to see something really new and innovating from Microsoft.

    If they can somehow quickly fulfill this vision to a multitude of devices, it might very well have a bright future.

  8. Thanks for the quick overview.

    Seems quite interesting. It’s refreshing to see something really new and innovating from Microsoft.

    If they can somehow quickly fulfill this vision to a multitude of devices, it might very well have a bright future.

  9. >It’s a new two-way system that both receives Atom (default) or RSS feeds from other MOE’s as well as sends them out to other MOEs.

    Can you explain why this is important and what it does, really.

    Don’t I have enough feeds to read that I pick without having your feeds you picked shovelled at me? or? Explain.

  10. >It’s a new two-way system that both receives Atom (default) or RSS feeds from other MOE’s as well as sends them out to other MOEs.

    Can you explain why this is important and what it does, really.

    Don’t I have enough feeds to read that I pick without having your feeds you picked shovelled at me? or? Explain.

  11. wow, online file storage with file revision history…

    somebody call gutenberg and tell him his reign is over.

  12. wow, online file storage with file revision history…

    somebody call gutenberg and tell him his reign is over.

  13. Just wait until hackers exploit the print layer to this mesh stuff, enough to grab root and start injecting python code into all of your RSS networks which execute beautifully when you need to sync this crap. HTTP ? Wonderful. HTTPS ? Yea right. I’m not going to drink this Koolaid. Neither should IT.

    100 individuals to make this POS ? How many do you think they have dedicated to security ? Web server ? We talking about expensive IIS servers that will need 10 IT people to watch it ? What does Mesh look like on the server ?

    I’m sick and tired of overinflated companies trying to force feed me the “future.” The web is dead. It’s gone. Finished. Hackers have won.

    I am ready to see the world without Msoft. I’m ready to see something better.

  14. Just wait until hackers exploit the print layer to this mesh stuff, enough to grab root and start injecting python code into all of your RSS networks which execute beautifully when you need to sync this crap. HTTP ? Wonderful. HTTPS ? Yea right. I’m not going to drink this Koolaid. Neither should IT.

    100 individuals to make this POS ? How many do you think they have dedicated to security ? Web server ? We talking about expensive IIS servers that will need 10 IT people to watch it ? What does Mesh look like on the server ?

    I’m sick and tired of overinflated companies trying to force feed me the “future.” The web is dead. It’s gone. Finished. Hackers have won.

    I am ready to see the world without Msoft. I’m ready to see something better.

  15. Interesting…not quite sure what to make of this, but I love that the pace of change is heating up. This is Microsoft responding to Google’s vision of moving everything to “the cloud.” If they are successful, it will be one for the textbooks.

    Thanks, Robert, for the Plaxo mention! Not sure I see the connection (aside from sync playing a role), but we live for a world of data portability, and we seek, as always to be a little “Switzerland” with regards the various warring factions.

    :)

  16. Interesting…not quite sure what to make of this, but I love that the pace of change is heating up. This is Microsoft responding to Google’s vision of moving everything to “the cloud.” If they are successful, it will be one for the textbooks.

    Thanks, Robert, for the Plaxo mention! Not sure I see the connection (aside from sync playing a role), but we live for a world of data portability, and we seek, as always to be a little “Switzerland” with regards the various warring factions.

    :)

  17. 100 individuals to make this POS ? How many do you think they have dedicated to security ? Web server ? We talking about expensive IIS servers that will need 10 IT people to watch it ? What does Mesh look like on the server?

    I’m pretty sure Dvorak has the whole “crazy rant” business wrapped up. FYI.

    I am ready to see the world without Msoft.

    It was called the 19th Century, and you missed it.

  18. 100 individuals to make this POS ? How many do you think they have dedicated to security ? Web server ? We talking about expensive IIS servers that will need 10 IT people to watch it ? What does Mesh look like on the server?

    I’m pretty sure Dvorak has the whole “crazy rant” business wrapped up. FYI.

    I am ready to see the world without Msoft.

    It was called the 19th Century, and you missed it.

  19. Hi Robert,

    What I said Somewhere else:

    The Inevitable future.

    Robbie Bach outlined this as part of of X-box 360/Gaming.

    What it really is, is Microsoft trying to retain it’s market as it slowly waves good-bye.

    Almost too late, in competition with open-API’S and the Symantic Web 3.0, but for the probable lazy developers who won’t have to do much work just to put everything through Live Mesh, and familiar 90% of users who mostly don’t know or care what Web 2.0 is!

    If Microsoft get this onto Windows Mobile (+ symbian compatibility) and offer a decent web-office, they might just make it game-over for the other players, but we are talking about Microsoft here.

    Yours kindly,

    Shakir Razak

  20. Hi Robert,

    What I said Somewhere else:

    The Inevitable future.

    Robbie Bach outlined this as part of of X-box 360/Gaming.

    What it really is, is Microsoft trying to retain it’s market as it slowly waves good-bye.

    Almost too late, in competition with open-API’S and the Symantic Web 3.0, but for the probable lazy developers who won’t have to do much work just to put everything through Live Mesh, and familiar 90% of users who mostly don’t know or care what Web 2.0 is!

    If Microsoft get this onto Windows Mobile (+ symbian compatibility) and offer a decent web-office, they might just make it game-over for the other players, but we are talking about Microsoft here.

    Yours kindly,

    Shakir Razak

  21. Tim,

    It’s the first big step to a web operating system. Apps residing in the cloud, with ubiquitous access from scores of nodes (“desktops”).

    If they can pull it off… wow.

  22. Tim,

    It’s the first big step to a web operating system. Apps residing in the cloud, with ubiquitous access from scores of nodes (“desktops”).

    If they can pull it off… wow.

  23. Robert,

    This is awesome news from M$ re MOE – M$ new Live Mesh environment.

    I am a MCSE: Security & Messaging and love Microsoft and have been very disappointed lately, so this disruptive RIA technology will finally get Microsoft relevant again!! Yeah!!

    Thanks for sharing the conf. call 800# and for live blogging this call and all the news streaming in by the second! very exciting!

    This new open service-oriented platform is much needed, very promising news for open collaborative apps / sharing.

    “The Mesh” is going to be BIG!!

    “Stay off my lawn!”, by Ozzie is funny!

    Susan M. Beebe, PMP, MCSE
    @smbeebe

  24. I agree, at first look this looks like something related to Groove. I always liked the underlying Groove platform although the top layer ruined it. This could end up being a great transport for applications that are usually but not always online. Really hoping they deliver on the Mac and device support!

  25. Robert,

    This is awesome news from M$ re MOE – M$ new Live Mesh environment.

    I am a MCSE: Security & Messaging and love Microsoft and have been very disappointed lately, so this disruptive RIA technology will finally get Microsoft relevant again!! Yeah!!

    Thanks for sharing the conf. call 800# and for live blogging this call and all the news streaming in by the second! very exciting!

    This new open service-oriented platform is much needed, very promising news for open collaborative apps / sharing.

    “The Mesh” is going to be BIG!!

    “Stay off my lawn!”, by Ozzie is funny!

    Susan M. Beebe, PMP, MCSE
    @smbeebe

  26. I agree, at first look this looks like something related to Groove. I always liked the underlying Groove platform although the top layer ruined it. This could end up being a great transport for applications that are usually but not always online. Really hoping they deliver on the Mac and device support!

  27. Hi,

    Just remembered that bid for Yahoo…..

    Some prescient thought: http://www.charlesarthur.com/b….._popup=989

    What’s the Bet this was timed to steam-roller the Bid!

    This is like his previous work, but If Ray Ozzy wants to forge Microsoft ahead into the 21st century, he’s going to have to do a lot more than what companies like Sproqit, and web-synchronisers have been doing for a very long time.

    They have an absolute end-to-end solution/platform (strategy/plan) here, but it will only succeed with the network effect, and why should people need to depend on any single company in the modern “open” world.

    Yours kindly,

    Shakir Razak

  28. I need to access my data on three different operating systems on different computers at my university on a fairly frequent basis. Lack of portability means epic fail; I’ll stick with web apps and WebDAV shares for now, thanks.

  29. Hi,

    Just remembered that bid for Yahoo…..

    Some prescient thought: http://www.charlesarthur.com/b….._popup=989

    What’s the Bet this was timed to steam-roller the Bid!

    This is like his previous work, but If Ray Ozzy wants to forge Microsoft ahead into the 21st century, he’s going to have to do a lot more than what companies like Sproqit, and web-synchronisers have been doing for a very long time.

    They have an absolute end-to-end solution/platform (strategy/plan) here, but it will only succeed with the network effect, and why should people need to depend on any single company in the modern “open” world.

    Yours kindly,

    Shakir Razak

  30. I need to access my data on three different operating systems on different computers at my university on a fairly frequent basis. Lack of portability means epic fail; I’ll stick with web apps and WebDAV shares for now, thanks.

  31. I find it interting and humerous that most people here and a lot of the pundits totally don’t get what Mesh is about. It is NOT about moving the platform to the Web – at least not entirely. It’s about having the best of both world’s: the power and flexibility of applications running on your PC or Mac or phone or xbox or set-top box or any other device; and the sharing/connectivity and ubiquity of the Web. If this works you’ll have your applications roam with you and adapt to the device you’re using. If you’re on a dumb terminal (aka a Web browser) you’ll get a “pure” Web experience (AJAX! WOW!). If you’re on a PC you’ll get a full-fledged PC (or Mac) application. If you’re using an XBOX or PS3 you’ll get an appliation appropriate for that device. Your data moves with you from device to device but you’re explicitly NOT moving to what I think is the most dreaded situation – everything on the Web and a lame world of AJAX and Flash and Silverlight.

  32. I find it interting and humerous that most people here and a lot of the pundits totally don’t get what Mesh is about. It is NOT about moving the platform to the Web – at least not entirely. It’s about having the best of both world’s: the power and flexibility of applications running on your PC or Mac or phone or xbox or set-top box or any other device; and the sharing/connectivity and ubiquity of the Web. If this works you’ll have your applications roam with you and adapt to the device you’re using. If you’re on a dumb terminal (aka a Web browser) you’ll get a “pure” Web experience (AJAX! WOW!). If you’re on a PC you’ll get a full-fledged PC (or Mac) application. If you’re using an XBOX or PS3 you’ll get an appliation appropriate for that device. Your data moves with you from device to device but you’re explicitly NOT moving to what I think is the most dreaded situation – everything on the Web and a lame world of AJAX and Flash and Silverlight.

  33. […] Scoble has already summarized everything you need to know about Mesh: Yes, the synchronization features that most of you will notice when you start up the Live Mesh are pretty cool. Unfortunately they aren’t even close to being finished. Mac support? Coming in the future. Nokia support? Unclear. iPhone support? Ask Steve Jobs (translation: will be very limited due to Apple’s complete control of that platform). Firefox support? Yes! Linux support? What’s that? […]

  34. @Mark Ashton – If the Developer is willing to write a gazillion different applications for each different platform. Otherwise you’ll roam alone.

    I think those unimpressed (me for one) are getting it, we just don’t think its that special.

  35. @Mark Ashton – If the Developer is willing to write a gazillion different applications for each different platform. Otherwise you’ll roam alone.

    I think those unimpressed (me for one) are getting it, we just don’t think its that special.

  36. Shakir – not sure I follow. I suppose Bill Gates has a lot more devices in his mesh :) but most people who are on the Internet have a few; their work PC; their home PC (or two); and their phone. Many of us have more devices. Some companies want all of those devices to be very expensive dumb terminals for Web apps. I’d rather actually use them for something better.

  37. Shakir – not sure I follow. I suppose Bill Gates has a lot more devices in his mesh :) but most people who are on the Internet have a few; their work PC; their home PC (or two); and their phone. Many of us have more devices. Some companies want all of those devices to be very expensive dumb terminals for Web apps. I’d rather actually use them for something better.

  38. HI,

    Not just that Mark, I was flippantly referring to the hype about Bill Gates’ house having intelligence that allowed the electronics (though probably not computing at the time) to follow him around from lighting to media.

    Kind regards,

    Shakir Razak

  39. HI,

    Not just that Mark, I was flippantly referring to the hype about Bill Gates’ house having intelligence that allowed the electronics (though probably not computing at the time) to follow him around from lighting to media.

    Kind regards,

    Shakir Razak

  40. wow… on one hand we have big companies like Microsoft trying to sell us the THE next big IT thing… eg. Mesh. On the other hand we have people like Walt Mossberg telling us that people don’t get the most basic things on their PCs sorted… eg. world wide confusion around what is broadband and what is not, on-demand video via their PC etc.

    Is it only me or is the reality of technology that (with some minor exceptions) tech companies can’t even get the most basic IT problems sorted as far consumers are concerned.

    For another example, after having been promised the mobile web for the better part of 10 years it took a little company in Cupertino to make it happen. Just look at Googles’ mobile usage stats. Was it 95% of mobile traffic coming from iPhones when they had only sold some 5 million phones? (compared to 120 million sold by it’s competitors during the same period)

    While I welcome Microsoft trying to think different for a change rather than copying everyone else baldy, I have the bad feeling that this is solely an attempt to protect their Windows/ Office cash cow.

    Yes we might see a mobile client… but it will only be for the Windows Mobile platform… maybe Symbian. That’s it. Mac support? Sure maybe in a year or two but don’t expect a full feature set. Linux? I thought only hackers use that. I know I sound cynical but Microsoft’s track record to this day hasn’t been all that great in this arena. Anyone remember the promise of a Silverlight client for Mobile Platforms? I wonder what happened to that. Oh right, Microsoft is licensing Flash Lite.

    Microsoft’s biggest problem seems to be its’ inherent dependents on Windows as a revenue stream. Until they loose that you won’t see truly innovative products that will change the world without locking you into their technology.

    Take a look at Procter and Gamble. They are about to loose the majority of their cash cow medical patents. The same goes for Pfizer Inc. . P&G decided to invite outside companies as partners in order to help them bring their ideas to market while sharing revenue. Pfizer so far hasn’t done anything to convince the market it will survive in it’s current form past 2012.

    In the world of Microsoft this would Microsoft approaching Yahoo in order to make them a parter rather than aggressively perusing a take over.

    All big things start small. A simple idea to deliver a simple solution: Google Search, Google Maps, the iPhone, Voice Telephone (the landline type), the household lightbulb and dare I say MS-DOS+MS-Basic to put a PC on every desk. They all changed the world.

    Do you feel Mesh falls into the same category?

  41. wow… on one hand we have big companies like Microsoft trying to sell us the THE next big IT thing… eg. Mesh. On the other hand we have people like Walt Mossberg telling us that people don’t get the most basic things on their PCs sorted… eg. world wide confusion around what is broadband and what is not, on-demand video via their PC etc.

    Is it only me or is the reality of technology that (with some minor exceptions) tech companies can’t even get the most basic IT problems sorted as far consumers are concerned.

    For another example, after having been promised the mobile web for the better part of 10 years it took a little company in Cupertino to make it happen. Just look at Googles’ mobile usage stats. Was it 95% of mobile traffic coming from iPhones when they had only sold some 5 million phones? (compared to 120 million sold by it’s competitors during the same period)

    While I welcome Microsoft trying to think different for a change rather than copying everyone else baldy, I have the bad feeling that this is solely an attempt to protect their Windows/ Office cash cow.

    Yes we might see a mobile client… but it will only be for the Windows Mobile platform… maybe Symbian. That’s it. Mac support? Sure maybe in a year or two but don’t expect a full feature set. Linux? I thought only hackers use that. I know I sound cynical but Microsoft’s track record to this day hasn’t been all that great in this arena. Anyone remember the promise of a Silverlight client for Mobile Platforms? I wonder what happened to that. Oh right, Microsoft is licensing Flash Lite.

    Microsoft’s biggest problem seems to be its’ inherent dependents on Windows as a revenue stream. Until they loose that you won’t see truly innovative products that will change the world without locking you into their technology.

    Take a look at Procter and Gamble. They are about to loose the majority of their cash cow medical patents. The same goes for Pfizer Inc. . P&G decided to invite outside companies as partners in order to help them bring their ideas to market while sharing revenue. Pfizer so far hasn’t done anything to convince the market it will survive in it’s current form past 2012.

    In the world of Microsoft this would Microsoft approaching Yahoo in order to make them a parter rather than aggressively perusing a take over.

    All big things start small. A simple idea to deliver a simple solution: Google Search, Google Maps, the iPhone, Voice Telephone (the landline type), the household lightbulb and dare I say MS-DOS+MS-Basic to put a PC on every desk. They all changed the world.

    Do you feel Mesh falls into the same category?

  42. Groovy. I can’t wait to see if Ray has the wherewithall to start cutting some of the MS closetful of assets and let the winners like this shine through. What of Sharepoint integration, Skydrive, Groove, how they fit? Great to see MS play their integration card more seriously these days. Anxious to see it unfold, I’m signing up.

  43. Groovy. I can’t wait to see if Ray has the wherewithall to start cutting some of the MS closetful of assets and let the winners like this shine through. What of Sharepoint integration, Skydrive, Groove, how they fit? Great to see MS play their integration card more seriously these days. Anxious to see it unfold, I’m signing up.

  44. What problem is the Mesh trying to solve? Mary Jo mentions something about it being good for sharing photos. It looks to me to be a re-packaging of .Net. Microsoft keeps wanting to redefine the web using kind of similar terms. They are running out of options.

  45. What problem is the Mesh trying to solve? Mary Jo mentions something about it being good for sharing photos. It looks to me to be a re-packaging of .Net. Microsoft keeps wanting to redefine the web using kind of similar terms. They are running out of options.

  46. I think those unimpressed (me for one) are getting it, we just don’t think its that special.

    Me for two.

    Or that they can deliver, or that the end-result will even be close to half of what promised, half features stripped to get it to ship, like they did with the “Viridian” hypervisor.

    I don’t get it, what demand is there for cloud sync? They’d be better off preaching the virtualization gospels.

    Windows development is truly broken, I think it will be a slow slide into nothing, a decade-long freefall.

  47. I think those unimpressed (me for one) are getting it, we just don’t think its that special.

    Me for two.

    Or that they can deliver, or that the end-result will even be close to half of what promised, half features stripped to get it to ship, like they did with the “Viridian” hypervisor.

    I don’t get it, what demand is there for cloud sync? They’d be better off preaching the virtualization gospels.

    Windows development is truly broken, I think it will be a slow slide into nothing, a decade-long freefall.

  48. First, great post. Truly good stuff. When I read your “get off my lawn” teaser earlier, I was eager to see the reveal, but I’ve been at the New Comm Forum thing all day without the real web (re the mobile web? It’s still not *really* here).

    As a very long time Mac guy who still appreciates what MSFT is doing in some arenas, I’m really excited about this as a possibility. I want the borders to be open, but that might (should?) come later, because if I were Ozzie, I’d want my house in order before inviting over the neighbors.

    I support the learning experience and what this will teach others who might choose to implement something based on what Mesh teaches the world.

    At moments like this, I wonder if Ozzie is speaking from him position, or from his passion. If B, this is something amazing. And I have no way to judge or know.

    Thanks, Robert.

  49. First, great post. Truly good stuff. When I read your “get off my lawn” teaser earlier, I was eager to see the reveal, but I’ve been at the New Comm Forum thing all day without the real web (re the mobile web? It’s still not *really* here).

    As a very long time Mac guy who still appreciates what MSFT is doing in some arenas, I’m really excited about this as a possibility. I want the borders to be open, but that might (should?) come later, because if I were Ozzie, I’d want my house in order before inviting over the neighbors.

    I support the learning experience and what this will teach others who might choose to implement something based on what Mesh teaches the world.

    At moments like this, I wonder if Ozzie is speaking from him position, or from his passion. If B, this is something amazing. And I have no way to judge or know.

    Thanks, Robert.

  50. Mary Jo Foleyish Addendum Infobits (Windows Device and Mobile Sync Social-Graph Platform Professional Plus Mesh Ultimate Edition 2008)

    1. Definition – “Mesh”, as vague as .Net was, bet they start slapping “Mesh For Sure” on every product, without much thought.

    2. Codenames? Irrelevant insider-baseball.

    3. Team(s) 100 or 400? And more (I’ll bet) to ‘sync’ and ‘sell’ Mesh to other Microsoft teams. Dogfood time.

    4. Buzswords. Oh oh, overload city, Web 2.0 Microsoft-style, and “social graph”, is so horrid that it deserves it’s own wing in the Museum of Vaporware.

    5. Guts. Pretty-Powerpointish Longhornian nifty architectural diagrams. Any resemblance to actual reality is purely consequential. Wishing disgrams.

    6. Sync or collaboration and more or not or less or more or something. Whatever we can toss into the casserole, everyone into the Windows ecosystem pool, please…pretty please. Trust us.

    7. Silverlight. Open to all, but some more special than others, entrance without tiokets, always getting backstage passes.

    8. Live Mesh. Control your Mesh and social graphs remotely. Feed and water the Mesh, Tamagotchi Mesh. Unified Collaborative Utopia.

    9. Consumer (a sector we always fail at), well Consumer until we ever figure out how to drive this SaaS thing.

    10. Timing. Pre-PDC hype, fluff up Windows 7. Ray has to showcase SOMETHING sometime, might as well be now.

  51. Mary Jo Foleyish Addendum Infobits (Windows Device and Mobile Sync Social-Graph Platform Professional Plus Mesh Ultimate Edition 2008)

    1. Definition – “Mesh”, as vague as .Net was, bet they start slapping “Mesh For Sure” on every product, without much thought.

    2. Codenames? Irrelevant insider-baseball.

    3. Team(s) 100 or 400? And more (I’ll bet) to ‘sync’ and ‘sell’ Mesh to other Microsoft teams. Dogfood time.

    4. Buzswords. Oh oh, overload city, Web 2.0 Microsoft-style, and “social graph”, is so horrid that it deserves it’s own wing in the Museum of Vaporware.

    5. Guts. Pretty-Powerpointish Longhornian nifty architectural diagrams. Any resemblance to actual reality is purely consequential. Wishing disgrams.

    6. Sync or collaboration and more or not or less or more or something. Whatever we can toss into the casserole, everyone into the Windows ecosystem pool, please…pretty please. Trust us.

    7. Silverlight. Open to all, but some more special than others, entrance without tiokets, always getting backstage passes.

    8. Live Mesh. Control your Mesh and social graphs remotely. Feed and water the Mesh, Tamagotchi Mesh. Unified Collaborative Utopia.

    9. Consumer (a sector we always fail at), well Consumer until we ever figure out how to drive this SaaS thing.

    10. Timing. Pre-PDC hype, fluff up Windows 7. Ray has to showcase SOMETHING sometime, might as well be now.

  52. I wonder what this will mean for developers of existing web applications? Will they be forced to learn and adopt yet another online API? Will it be a mistake not to?

    It’ll be interesting to see just how much access will be given to developers. For instance, will it be possible to integrate the online storage facility with a user account on another web app?

    I want all my data together in one place. Lots of web applications provide some kind of basic document storage. Wouldn’t it be great if this was centralised across multiple accounts on multiple tools?

    Sounds like the MOE could provide this, but it’ll depend on individual developers to adopt and integrate with it.

  53. I wonder what this will mean for developers of existing web applications? Will they be forced to learn and adopt yet another online API? Will it be a mistake not to?

    It’ll be interesting to see just how much access will be given to developers. For instance, will it be possible to integrate the online storage facility with a user account on another web app?

    I want all my data together in one place. Lots of web applications provide some kind of basic document storage. Wouldn’t it be great if this was centralised across multiple accounts on multiple tools?

    Sounds like the MOE could provide this, but it’ll depend on individual developers to adopt and integrate with it.

  54. I wonder if this’ll be tied more deeply into Windows 7–or if the antitrust regulators of the world would even let MS do that. But what I really want is to be able to sit down at any web-connected PC and log on using my Windows Live ID. 100% in the cloud, when I need it.

  55. I wonder if this’ll be tied more deeply into Windows 7–or if the antitrust regulators of the world would even let MS do that. But what I really want is to be able to sit down at any web-connected PC and log on using my Windows Live ID. 100% in the cloud, when I need it.

  56. I think I sort of understand the concept, and it sounds very innovative.

    But how about privacy? What does Microsoft know about you and your system if you want to use Mesh?

  57. I think I sort of understand the concept, and it sounds very innovative.

    But how about privacy? What does Microsoft know about you and your system if you want to use Mesh?

  58. Great post. You really tied it together in a way that details the major areas of functionality, the potentials of what Mesh can do and what it means, etc.

  59. Great post. You really tied it together in a way that details the major areas of functionality, the potentials of what Mesh can do and what it means, etc.

  60. Robert, great reporting man, I love it when you get excited about technology, this framework looks really interesting, us on the east coast are just revving up to the news.

    Thanks for the entertaining twittering last night too, I can usually tell how important thing are just by how excited you get. Sometimes I wonder if you ever wonder if Microsoft would be doing differently today had you stayed with them? One of Microsofts biggest mistakes was not paying you even half of what you should have been making.

  61. Robert, great reporting man, I love it when you get excited about technology, this framework looks really interesting, us on the east coast are just revving up to the news.

    Thanks for the entertaining twittering last night too, I can usually tell how important thing are just by how excited you get. Sometimes I wonder if you ever wonder if Microsoft would be doing differently today had you stayed with them? One of Microsofts biggest mistakes was not paying you even half of what you should have been making.

  62. “Microsoft is going to keep Windows relevant and keep us all from sliding into a Web that doesn’t rely much on the underlying operating system.”

    Yeah, what a horror show that would be. Reliance on end-point devices under the control of a single monopolistic company is the ideal in any network. I, for one, miss the days when one company controlled all the devices on the telephone network and charged an extra monthly rental fee for each device connected to the network in addition to the network usage fees, allowing me to pay $600 each over a ten year period for the use of their telephone receivers in my home (in 1970’s dollars).

    Things sure changed for the worse when we slid into a telephone network that didn’t rely much on one company’s control of the end-point devices. The commoners could then buy their own telephone receivers for 10 or 20 bucks and be done paying for them, robbing the telephone company of it’s rightfully-earned monopoly rents on those devices. Next thing you knew, they were connecting stuff the network was never designed for, like modems, and that entire Web that you warn us about sliding into without the protection of reliance on the “underlying operating system” (by which you must be referring to the OS on the end-point devices) was allowed to grow out of that. What a nightmare it’s all become.

  63. “Microsoft is going to keep Windows relevant and keep us all from sliding into a Web that doesn’t rely much on the underlying operating system.”

    Yeah, what a horror show that would be. Reliance on end-point devices under the control of a single monopolistic company is the ideal in any network. I, for one, miss the days when one company controlled all the devices on the telephone network and charged an extra monthly rental fee for each device connected to the network in addition to the network usage fees, allowing me to pay $600 each over a ten year period for the use of their telephone receivers in my home (in 1970’s dollars).

    Things sure changed for the worse when we slid into a telephone network that didn’t rely much on one company’s control of the end-point devices. The commoners could then buy their own telephone receivers for 10 or 20 bucks and be done paying for them, robbing the telephone company of it’s rightfully-earned monopoly rents on those devices. Next thing you knew, they were connecting stuff the network was never designed for, like modems, and that entire Web that you warn us about sliding into without the protection of reliance on the “underlying operating system” (by which you must be referring to the OS on the end-point devices) was allowed to grow out of that. What a nightmare it’s all become.

  64. I’m still trying to grasp how relevant Mesh is for the browser only future? I have most of the services on cloud now and it doesn’t really matter where I’m accessing those services from. Many things like feeds, music, even app development to some extent have become machine independent and collaboration is one of the core principles. About information being pushed and pulled, isn’t that what is happening with friendfeed and twitter? I think Mesh provides an alternative route to the browser only world…. Not sure if it is worth pursuing.

    Will watch out for more perspectives though.

  65. I’m still trying to grasp how relevant Mesh is for the browser only future? I have most of the services on cloud now and it doesn’t really matter where I’m accessing those services from. Many things like feeds, music, even app development to some extent have become machine independent and collaboration is one of the core principles. About information being pushed and pulled, isn’t that what is happening with friendfeed and twitter? I think Mesh provides an alternative route to the browser only world…. Not sure if it is worth pursuing.

    Will watch out for more perspectives though.

  66. And how attractive is the 5GB free usage? Would anyone start paying for more? cuz 5 GB seems too little for anyone in the non-“browser-only-world”.

  67. And how attractive is the 5GB free usage? Would anyone start paying for more? cuz 5 GB seems too little for anyone in the non-“browser-only-world”.

  68. Gubbi – if you want to live in a browser only world you would have loved the days of the IBM Mainframe or mini-computers – its’ the same thing. All of the data and processing happening on centralized machines, connecting up via a dumb terminal. The Web browser is the “modern” equivalent of a dumb terminal. We can do better. Mesh is about letting you use browser-based apps and accessing all your data when you HAVE to but also giving you the choice or running your apps locally when you CAN.

  69. Gubbi – if you want to live in a browser only world you would have loved the days of the IBM Mainframe or mini-computers – its’ the same thing. All of the data and processing happening on centralized machines, connecting up via a dumb terminal. The Web browser is the “modern” equivalent of a dumb terminal. We can do better. Mesh is about letting you use browser-based apps and accessing all your data when you HAVE to but also giving you the choice or running your apps locally when you CAN.

  70. Does this overlap at all with the home server? If I can store all my photos, docs, etc. in the cloud, and still get remote access…why do I need home server?

  71. Does this overlap at all with the home server? If I can store all my photos, docs, etc. in the cloud, and still get remote access…why do I need home server?

  72. live mesh sounds like the right idea, although joe-jane six packer may give it a head scratch, head tilt, and then yawn after about 2 seconds, isn’t that how it always is anyways, since it’s complicated.

  73. live mesh sounds like the right idea, although joe-jane six packer may give it a head scratch, head tilt, and then yawn after about 2 seconds, isn’t that how it always is anyways, since it’s complicated.

  74. Developers will get excited, then nobody will use it.
    Apple will come and make it usable, beautiful and portable.
    It is not the idea that counts, it’s the implementation.
    And we all know M$ always sucks at that!

  75. […] Scoble loves it.  A veritable toolbox of feeds going every which way.  Everything is a feed, including your, um, feeds.  I’m not surprised Scoble loves it, but his description doesn’t make it sound like the one highly differentiated must have thing that will keep Microsoft a vital part of all our lives.  In particular, if your promise is connectivity ala feeds between all things, how does that reconcile from this passage from Scoble: […]

  76. Developers will get excited, then nobody will use it.
    Apple will come and make it usable, beautiful and portable.
    It is not the idea that counts, it’s the implementation.
    And we all know M$ always sucks at that!

  77. Tell me the reasons for someone wanting to run apps locally and how Mesh helps there.

    A browser only world doesn’t have to reduce local machines to thin client. Browser can be the single place when on-the-cloud access and collaboration is required. Here users are free to store and collaborate anywhere and not put everything in a single space. Also most services are free now, what is free storage of 5GB worth?

    So I don’t see it providing better platform for online services like flickr, or youtube for content sharing. Nor is it better for collaboration than GTalk, Google docs, Zoho, twitter, etc.,

    Tell me how Mesh will revolutionize these services?

    There is another point which I don’t see mentioned. Will I have to install Mesh enabled apps separately on all my client devices? Of course I’ll have to. So, whats so better about it?

    I still don’t get it.

  78. Tell me the reasons for someone wanting to run apps locally and how Mesh helps there.

    A browser only world doesn’t have to reduce local machines to thin client. Browser can be the single place when on-the-cloud access and collaboration is required. Here users are free to store and collaborate anywhere and not put everything in a single space. Also most services are free now, what is free storage of 5GB worth?

    So I don’t see it providing better platform for online services like flickr, or youtube for content sharing. Nor is it better for collaboration than GTalk, Google docs, Zoho, twitter, etc.,

    Tell me how Mesh will revolutionize these services?

    There is another point which I don’t see mentioned. Will I have to install Mesh enabled apps separately on all my client devices? Of course I’ll have to. So, whats so better about it?

    I still don’t get it.

  79. I am afraid “suckstobems” is right. Microsoft has the ideas. But its Apple and others who get the engineering right. I think its partly because the others start out with their ideas on a smaller scale.
    The demo on on10.net showed the remote desktop to be slow and they said that it will be slower on the web interface. Its small things like these which will put off an every day user.

  80. I am afraid “suckstobems” is right. Microsoft has the ideas. But its Apple and others who get the engineering right. I think its partly because the others start out with their ideas on a smaller scale.
    The demo on on10.net showed the remote desktop to be slow and they said that it will be slower on the web interface. Its small things like these which will put off an every day user.

  81. I disagree with anyone saying Mesh “bets against the cloud.” I think it’s as much about bringing the web outside of the browser as anything else. Apps like Office still crush anything being done in-browser in almost every category but connectedness (and maybe simplicity). I see no reason why being “connected” (or even “in the cloud”) must mean staying inside the browser.

  82. I disagree with anyone saying Mesh “bets against the cloud.” I think it’s as much about bringing the web outside of the browser as anything else. Apps like Office still crush anything being done in-browser in almost every category but connectedness (and maybe simplicity). I see no reason why being “connected” (or even “in the cloud”) must mean staying inside the browser.

  83. 35 and 43 hit most of the high points.

    Ironic this is, only a day after MS announced the discontinuance of DRM music validation.

    MS has obviously gotten sensitive to the public perception that they are not open enough, don’t play well with others, etc.

    However so far, their response has only been empty promises. Yes, this will work with OS X and Linux (some day) just as Silverlight will. Only when reporters ask for status on those efforts MS makes it clear that they are being handled by third parties with whom MS developers have no apparent contact.

    I’ve asked this time and time again with respect to such promises: Wouldn’t it be easier to build compatibility in from the very beginning? If you are really serious about providing such compatibility why would you go back an add it later after writing millions of lines of code? Why would you leave such efforts up to unpaid third parties? (thinking .net and mono specifically here). These claims don’t really pass any kind of smell test.

    Actions speak louder than words Microsoft, and so far there is just no “there” there.

  84. 35 and 43 hit most of the high points.

    Ironic this is, only a day after MS announced the discontinuance of DRM music validation.

    MS has obviously gotten sensitive to the public perception that they are not open enough, don’t play well with others, etc.

    However so far, their response has only been empty promises. Yes, this will work with OS X and Linux (some day) just as Silverlight will. Only when reporters ask for status on those efforts MS makes it clear that they are being handled by third parties with whom MS developers have no apparent contact.

    I’ve asked this time and time again with respect to such promises: Wouldn’t it be easier to build compatibility in from the very beginning? If you are really serious about providing such compatibility why would you go back an add it later after writing millions of lines of code? Why would you leave such efforts up to unpaid third parties? (thinking .net and mono specifically here). These claims don’t really pass any kind of smell test.

    Actions speak louder than words Microsoft, and so far there is just no “there” there.

  85. Mark Ashton: “if you want to live in a browser only world you would have loved the days of the IBM Mainframe or mini-computers – its’ the same thing. All of the data and processing happening on centralized machines, connecting up via a dumb terminal. The Web browser is the “modern” equivalent of a dumb terminal”.

    No, because in the old days you depended on IT to write or purchase your apps, but with the Web you have countless individuals and organizations putting them up for free. If you are unaware of this difference and all the advantages it brings, then you are completely, and I do mean completely, out of touch with reality.

    “Mesh is about letting you use browser-based apps and accessing all your data when you HAVE to but also giving you the choice or running your apps locally when you CAN.”

    Google Gears already does this.
    `
    Would someone please explain again what Mesh is supposed to do that can’t be done already, or with a few additions to what Web 2.0 is already doing?

  86. Mark Ashton: “if you want to live in a browser only world you would have loved the days of the IBM Mainframe or mini-computers – its’ the same thing. All of the data and processing happening on centralized machines, connecting up via a dumb terminal. The Web browser is the “modern” equivalent of a dumb terminal”.

    No, because in the old days you depended on IT to write or purchase your apps, but with the Web you have countless individuals and organizations putting them up for free. If you are unaware of this difference and all the advantages it brings, then you are completely, and I do mean completely, out of touch with reality.

    “Mesh is about letting you use browser-based apps and accessing all your data when you HAVE to but also giving you the choice or running your apps locally when you CAN.”

    Google Gears already does this.
    `
    Would someone please explain again what Mesh is supposed to do that can’t be done already, or with a few additions to what Web 2.0 is already doing?

  87. Ohhh my head is spinning.

    Let’s review this all again in 3 years to see if it’s the real deal, or just another API to learn..

    Seriously, do we need another layer of complexity or will Google’s App Engine or Amazon’s EC2 / S3 be fine?

  88. Ohhh my head is spinning.

    Let’s review this all again in 3 years to see if it’s the real deal, or just another API to learn..

    Seriously, do we need another layer of complexity or will Google’s App Engine or Amazon’s EC2 / S3 be fine?

  89. It would be nice if they solved the problem of synching one’s personal media. If I purchase a downloaded movie, it would be nice to have it appear on all my computing devices. But this is going to be tricky as I think MCE’s TV recording files are encrypted for playback on a particular machine and not portable to other machines. Ideally your downloads would be tied to your Live Mesh identity and then any new device added to your mesh would automatically get your content library.

    Then again, if a user has a 1TB library of HD Gilligan’s Island episodes, they don’t necessarily want all of it synched everywhere. And portable devices don’t need to carry around Christmas music in the summer, so there needs to be an AI-based priority and rules system that helps sync only the content the user wants.

    There are a lot of questions about sharing Live Mesh content that will arise.

  90. It would be nice if they solved the problem of synching one’s personal media. If I purchase a downloaded movie, it would be nice to have it appear on all my computing devices. But this is going to be tricky as I think MCE’s TV recording files are encrypted for playback on a particular machine and not portable to other machines. Ideally your downloads would be tied to your Live Mesh identity and then any new device added to your mesh would automatically get your content library.

    Then again, if a user has a 1TB library of HD Gilligan’s Island episodes, they don’t necessarily want all of it synched everywhere. And portable devices don’t need to carry around Christmas music in the summer, so there needs to be an AI-based priority and rules system that helps sync only the content the user wants.

    There are a lot of questions about sharing Live Mesh content that will arise.

  91. Wow!!! Something new and ionniovative from MicroShaft, Inc… Oh, wait… My bad, it’s just another rehash of stuff that other people have done before them – typical of Microcrash’s modus operandi – see what everyone else has done and implement a half-assed version of it in their unsecure operating system. I honestly can’t wait to see how the script kiddies and spammers exploit the hell out of this!

  92. Wow!!! Something new and ionniovative from MicroShaft, Inc… Oh, wait… My bad, it’s just another rehash of stuff that other people have done before them – typical of Microcrash’s modus operandi – see what everyone else has done and implement a half-assed version of it in their unsecure operating system. I honestly can’t wait to see how the script kiddies and spammers exploit the hell out of this!

  93. > Firefox support? Yes! Linux support? What’s that?

    That is why I won’t be bothering. Seriously, you have to *try* not to support Linux. Telling me how many standards are supported is a waste of time unless they plug seamlessly into my standards compliant system (Kubuntu).

    There are 13 mentions of Windows in the article and comments, 6 of Linux, 4 of apple. MS, call me when you’re *really* ready to talk (to my desktop).

    Not to rain on Mr Ozzies parade at all. Truly cross platform, this would be great stuff!

  94. > Firefox support? Yes! Linux support? What’s that?

    That is why I won’t be bothering. Seriously, you have to *try* not to support Linux. Telling me how many standards are supported is a waste of time unless they plug seamlessly into my standards compliant system (Kubuntu).

    There are 13 mentions of Windows in the article and comments, 6 of Linux, 4 of apple. MS, call me when you’re *really* ready to talk (to my desktop).

    Not to rain on Mr Ozzies parade at all. Truly cross platform, this would be great stuff!

  95. Toph: I think it’s as much about bringing the web outside of the browser as anything else.

    Exactly. And that is why it doesn’t make much sense. Why would I want to stay within browser? Because I don’t want to install an application for each and every web service on each of my devices. I may even not have those applications ported to all my devices in their initial phases. I don’t want to bother with upgrading to latest versions. The only problem Mesh solves is synchronizing my preferences. With this solved, it still sucks to move out of the browser.

    Browser is not just another application, its a virtual machine on top of the actual machine.

  96. Toph: I think it’s as much about bringing the web outside of the browser as anything else.

    Exactly. And that is why it doesn’t make much sense. Why would I want to stay within browser? Because I don’t want to install an application for each and every web service on each of my devices. I may even not have those applications ported to all my devices in their initial phases. I don’t want to bother with upgrading to latest versions. The only problem Mesh solves is synchronizing my preferences. With this solved, it still sucks to move out of the browser.

    Browser is not just another application, its a virtual machine on top of the actual machine.

  97. This is awesome. I haven’t felt this excited since the day Microsoft launched PlaysForSure.

  98. This is awesome. I haven’t felt this excited since the day Microsoft launched PlaysForSure.

  99. Mark Ashton: “Gubbi – if you want to live in a browser only world you would have loved the days of the IBM Mainframe or mini-computers – its’ the same thing. All of the data and processing happening on centralized machines, connecting up via a dumb terminal. The Web browser is the “modern” equivalent of a dumb terminal.”

    No, in the old days of the mainframe and mini-computer, the IT department wrote your applications or purchased them, but with the web you have an endless number of individuals and organizations producing applications you can use for free. If you don’t understand that difference and why it is so beneficial, then you are really out of touch with reality.

    “Mesh is about letting you use browser-based apps and accessing all your data when you HAVE to but also giving you the choice or running your apps locally when you CAN.”

    Google Gears does that.

    Perhaps you could be so kind as to explain again what Microsoft Mesh is supposed to do that can’t already be done with Web 2.0, or that could with some additions?

  100. Mark Ashton: “Gubbi – if you want to live in a browser only world you would have loved the days of the IBM Mainframe or mini-computers – its’ the same thing. All of the data and processing happening on centralized machines, connecting up via a dumb terminal. The Web browser is the “modern” equivalent of a dumb terminal.”

    No, in the old days of the mainframe and mini-computer, the IT department wrote your applications or purchased them, but with the web you have an endless number of individuals and organizations producing applications you can use for free. If you don’t understand that difference and why it is so beneficial, then you are really out of touch with reality.

    “Mesh is about letting you use browser-based apps and accessing all your data when you HAVE to but also giving you the choice or running your apps locally when you CAN.”

    Google Gears does that.

    Perhaps you could be so kind as to explain again what Microsoft Mesh is supposed to do that can’t already be done with Web 2.0, or that could with some additions?

  101. I didn’t see any mention of you crying after seeing this. Can’t be all that great if it didnt make you cry

  102. I didn’t see any mention of you crying after seeing this. Can’t be all that great if it didnt make you cry

  103. Gubbi–

    Hm. You make some good points–the browser has its advantages. And yes, it’s a little annoying having to download the client to facilitate all this. But if it’s truly fleshed out as a platform, that should be pretty insignificant in the long run. Sometimes the power and flexibility of offline apps outweights the convenience of doing it in-browser.

    So the client is a relatively small, one-time cost. Now they just have to make it worthwhile.

  104. Gubbi–

    Hm. You make some good points–the browser has its advantages. And yes, it’s a little annoying having to download the client to facilitate all this. But if it’s truly fleshed out as a platform, that should be pretty insignificant in the long run. Sometimes the power and flexibility of offline apps outweights the convenience of doing it in-browser.

    So the client is a relatively small, one-time cost. Now they just have to make it worthwhile.

  105. Well, 24 hours later, and the collective response (minus the MVP sugary Fun-Dips) can be summed up thusly: “Huh?”

    Vague, mushy-lockbox vaporware, all without a sexy marketing hook. When you are pitching something Consumerish, and even developers are having a hard time wrapping it up, you know it’s doomed (well, the mere fact that Scoble is excited, is enough of a short-sell signal to me, but your mileage may vary).

    Over-hyped spin yet under a Sinofskyish lock-and-key, contradictions can be best-friends.

    WhydoIfeellikewehavebeenherebefore? Failstorm, Part Deuce, hey, great idea, Mesh needs a “Passport” Digital ID system. Only thing missing is trotting out Explainer-in-Chief Charles Fitzgerald to face the press and industry machine-gun fire.

  106. Well, 24 hours later, and the collective response (minus the MVP sugary Fun-Dips) can be summed up thusly: “Huh?”

    Vague, mushy-lockbox vaporware, all without a sexy marketing hook. When you are pitching something Consumerish, and even developers are having a hard time wrapping it up, you know it’s doomed (well, the mere fact that Scoble is excited, is enough of a short-sell signal to me, but your mileage may vary).

    Over-hyped spin yet under a Sinofskyish lock-and-key, contradictions can be best-friends.

    WhydoIfeellikewehavebeenherebefore? Failstorm, Part Deuce, hey, great idea, Mesh needs a “Passport” Digital ID system. Only thing missing is trotting out Explainer-in-Chief Charles Fitzgerald to face the press and industry machine-gun fire.

  107. ok, so now I have had a very good long hard look at this Mesh thing.

    My conclusion is that unless they make it easier and more transparent to use it will remain a technology only used by the 10% people that make up the Geek World… people like Scoble etc.

    I think the real problem with most things Microsoft makes these days is that they look like they where build by engineers for engineers. The Channel 10 presentation is the perfect example. I seriously doubt that Microsoft in it’s current way of doing things will be able to make this work easily for the common punter.

    Apple has tried something similar on a much much smaller scale with their integration of .Mac and Leopard. It’s easy to use and seamless in that environment yet not many people really seem to make heavy use of it.

    I think the bottom line is this is another attempt by Microsoft to cling to their Windows dominance, to make it relevant in a Web only world. I doubt there will be much support for devices or Operating systems not made by Microsoft. It also don’t think this will be very useful to people without two way broadband connection and I don’t think this will be easy to use…

    … in a nutshell this will be a real uphill battle.

  108. ok, so now I have had a very good long hard look at this Mesh thing.

    My conclusion is that unless they make it easier and more transparent to use it will remain a technology only used by the 10% people that make up the Geek World… people like Scoble etc.

    I think the real problem with most things Microsoft makes these days is that they look like they where build by engineers for engineers. The Channel 10 presentation is the perfect example. I seriously doubt that Microsoft in it’s current way of doing things will be able to make this work easily for the common punter.

    Apple has tried something similar on a much much smaller scale with their integration of .Mac and Leopard. It’s easy to use and seamless in that environment yet not many people really seem to make heavy use of it.

    I think the bottom line is this is another attempt by Microsoft to cling to their Windows dominance, to make it relevant in a Web only world. I doubt there will be much support for devices or Operating systems not made by Microsoft. It also don’t think this will be very useful to people without two way broadband connection and I don’t think this will be easy to use…

    … in a nutshell this will be a real uphill battle.

  109. This appears to be stuff we already have from other companies, but in an alpha stage, not as pleasant, and kind of mushed together in some type of anamorphic glob.

    An I agree with so many others, w/o universal support, there is no way any of it is making it into any of my networks. I run Multiple flavors of MS Windows and Linux, and everything we do also has to play well with Macs. Someone give me a nudge when this works with all three.
    Until then, I’ll continue to work in the real world w/o rose colored glasses.

  110. This appears to be stuff we already have from other companies, but in an alpha stage, not as pleasant, and kind of mushed together in some type of anamorphic glob.

    An I agree with so many others, w/o universal support, there is no way any of it is making it into any of my networks. I run Multiple flavors of MS Windows and Linux, and everything we do also has to play well with Macs. Someone give me a nudge when this works with all three.
    Until then, I’ll continue to work in the real world w/o rose colored glasses.

  111. @ Christopher Coulter.
    You’re adding ZERO to the discussion. The fact is that no matter what Microsoft did, you’d belittle it and bash it, and everyone knows that. That’s why your “input” is so tiresome, because it’s based on your hatred of Microsoft and nothing else.

  112. @ Christopher Coulter.
    You’re adding ZERO to the discussion. The fact is that no matter what Microsoft did, you’d belittle it and bash it, and everyone knows that. That’s why your “input” is so tiresome, because it’s based on your hatred of Microsoft and nothing else.

  113. Christopher Coulter — vaporware? I’m using it right now, and it’s going great.

    Tom – cling to their Windows dominance? What about the “Mac and mobile versions coming soon” part? I’d say it’s more about using all the work done on Windows in a more modern, “connected” way, instead of throwing it away just because it’s not in the browser.

  114. Christopher Coulter — vaporware? I’m using it right now, and it’s going great.

    Tom – cling to their Windows dominance? What about the “Mac and mobile versions coming soon” part? I’d say it’s more about using all the work done on Windows in a more modern, “connected” way, instead of throwing it away just because it’s not in the browser.

  115. Eduardo (and others) tried to make the point that Google Gears does what Mesh does.

    “Mesh is about letting you use browser-based apps and accessing all your data when you HAVE to but also giving you the choice or running your apps locally when you CAN.”

    “Google Gears does that.”

    Not so much. Google gears sort of kind of makes Web-based apps work when the user us offline. That’s nice…but you’re still stuck using a Web-based application. MESH is about having your apps and data move with you from device to device and up onto the Web when you want your data there. MESH means that you can use local/native applications when you’re using a PC/Mac or other device that supports the application and only forces you into using “native Web” apps when you have to or want to. Big difference.

  116. Eduardo (and others) tried to make the point that Google Gears does what Mesh does.

    “Mesh is about letting you use browser-based apps and accessing all your data when you HAVE to but also giving you the choice or running your apps locally when you CAN.”

    “Google Gears does that.”

    Not so much. Google gears sort of kind of makes Web-based apps work when the user us offline. That’s nice…but you’re still stuck using a Web-based application. MESH is about having your apps and data move with you from device to device and up onto the Web when you want your data there. MESH means that you can use local/native applications when you’re using a PC/Mac or other device that supports the application and only forces you into using “native Web” apps when you have to or want to. Big difference.

  117. Chris Coulter said..

    “I don’t get it, what demand is there for cloud sync? They’d be better off preaching the virtualization gospels.

    Windows development is truly broken, I think it will be a slow slide into nothing, a decade-long freefall.”

    I disagree with your premise that there’s no demand for cloud sync. I want it and I see dozens of scenarios where it would solve difficult programming/computing problems. But one possible reason you and others might think there’s no demand for cloud sync is that you’re already stuck in the world of using Web-based apps for most of your computing. If you’re doing that, who cares right? Your data is already on the Web. But then you’re living in a world of AJAX/Flash/Flex that turns your PC or Mac or iPhone into an expensive dumb terminal. Don’t you want to use your machine for what it was designed for? Hardware acceleration? Access to the local file system? Faster/more interactive applications?

  118. Chris Coulter said..

    “I don’t get it, what demand is there for cloud sync? They’d be better off preaching the virtualization gospels.

    Windows development is truly broken, I think it will be a slow slide into nothing, a decade-long freefall.”

    I disagree with your premise that there’s no demand for cloud sync. I want it and I see dozens of scenarios where it would solve difficult programming/computing problems. But one possible reason you and others might think there’s no demand for cloud sync is that you’re already stuck in the world of using Web-based apps for most of your computing. If you’re doing that, who cares right? Your data is already on the Web. But then you’re living in a world of AJAX/Flash/Flex that turns your PC or Mac or iPhone into an expensive dumb terminal. Don’t you want to use your machine for what it was designed for? Hardware acceleration? Access to the local file system? Faster/more interactive applications?

  119. Hit send to soon on previous. The old canard of Windows development being broken and in a long slide to death has been around for a while. If you’re talking about Win32 then you’re mostly wrong but partly right. Joe developer is not building a lot of Win32 apps using VB anymore. Those people have turned into scripters/HTML jockeys because it’s so much easier and they’re riding the rush to the lowest common denominator in app design and performance. But the biggest part of the software industry as a whole is Win32 – both on the client and the server. Look at all of Adobe’s software. Quicken. SAP. Oracle for Windows. All the big line of business applications are built using Win32/C++.

    Then a large part of the remaining developers are using .NET on Windows. A large chunk of home grown line of busines software is writting using .NET. Although Silverlight brings part of .NET to Windows and eventually Linux, .NET is fundamentally a new programming model/API for building Windows apps.

    If that’s a long slide into oblivion then I’d geuss that most companies would take it. ;)

  120. Hit send to soon on previous. The old canard of Windows development being broken and in a long slide to death has been around for a while. If you’re talking about Win32 then you’re mostly wrong but partly right. Joe developer is not building a lot of Win32 apps using VB anymore. Those people have turned into scripters/HTML jockeys because it’s so much easier and they’re riding the rush to the lowest common denominator in app design and performance. But the biggest part of the software industry as a whole is Win32 – both on the client and the server. Look at all of Adobe’s software. Quicken. SAP. Oracle for Windows. All the big line of business applications are built using Win32/C++.

    Then a large part of the remaining developers are using .NET on Windows. A large chunk of home grown line of busines software is writting using .NET. Although Silverlight brings part of .NET to Windows and eventually Linux, .NET is fundamentally a new programming model/API for building Windows apps.

    If that’s a long slide into oblivion then I’d geuss that most companies would take it. ;)

  121. Mark–“Don’t you want to use your machine for what it was designed for? Hardware acceleration? Access to the local file system? Faster/more interactive applications?”

    Yes, please. :)

  122. Mark–“Don’t you want to use your machine for what it was designed for? Hardware acceleration? Access to the local file system? Faster/more interactive applications?”

    Yes, please. :)

  123. you’re already stuck in the world of using Web-based apps

    Yeah, like Microsoft ‘Albany’, Microsoft Exchange Online and Microsoft SharePoint Online, Dynamics CRM Online. Pity that.

    But eh? The “web apps” would be news to me. Web 2.0 crashy clunky mash-ups, that’s the Bay Area and Scoble and Co. Most of my “computing” is done in front of Avid “terminals”, hardly web, and not even close to “desktop”. So I am already beyond your boxed-in character-scenario definitions. But a philosophical argument over the failing merits of markup as a platform, doesn’t automatically mean there is any cloud-sync demand, let alone a vaguely-defined non-shipping raw-concept consumer-targeted marketing-send-up. Now Server underutilization, off the charts.

    And funny, I get lots of “acceleration” on OLD hardware, with “faster/more interactive” applications, with “local file system access”, after installing Fedora. Thanks for the tip.

    The Win32 to .Net migration is a microview, look at the macro, i.e. where is .NET in comparison to the WHOLE market itself.

  124. you’re already stuck in the world of using Web-based apps

    Yeah, like Microsoft ‘Albany’, Microsoft Exchange Online and Microsoft SharePoint Online, Dynamics CRM Online. Pity that.

    But eh? The “web apps” would be news to me. Web 2.0 crashy clunky mash-ups, that’s the Bay Area and Scoble and Co. Most of my “computing” is done in front of Avid “terminals”, hardly web, and not even close to “desktop”. So I am already beyond your boxed-in character-scenario definitions. But a philosophical argument over the failing merits of markup as a platform, doesn’t automatically mean there is any cloud-sync demand, let alone a vaguely-defined non-shipping raw-concept consumer-targeted marketing-send-up. Now Server underutilization, off the charts.

    And funny, I get lots of “acceleration” on OLD hardware, with “faster/more interactive” applications, with “local file system access”, after installing Fedora. Thanks for the tip.

    The Win32 to .Net migration is a microview, look at the macro, i.e. where is .NET in comparison to the WHOLE market itself.

  125. Coulter, you don’t get it. And your holier than thou BS is tiresome. What does Exchange Online have to do with Web apps? Nothing. Exchange is a native Windows app, written in C++, delivered over the wire, mostly to users who will be using Outlook, not OWA. You may spend most of your time in front of Avid “terminals” doesn’t really matter much does it? There are about 5000 of you. Go have fun in your dark office.

    I certainly haven’t argued that “markup as a platform’ doesn’t have merit. It does, for delivering a half decent experience of delivernig data to my browser and a bit of interactivity. But if I want to do anything interesting, markup doesn’t cut it.

    If you’re referring to MESH as the “vaguely-defined non-shipping raw-concept consumer-targeted marketing-send-up” then (1) you’re way overly dependent on dashes and (2) lots of good ideas weren’t immediately understood by the average Chris…I mean Joe.

    The fact that you get “lots of acceleration on OLD hardware” is just fine and dandy. I made no refernce to new or old hardware. I just like to use the hardware I have for something other than running a Web browser.

    Lastly, what the hell does your last paragraph even mean? Why don’t you explain the “macroview” and compare .NET to the whole market. Go ahead. I’m waiting.

  126. Coulter, you don’t get it. And your holier than thou BS is tiresome. What does Exchange Online have to do with Web apps? Nothing. Exchange is a native Windows app, written in C++, delivered over the wire, mostly to users who will be using Outlook, not OWA. You may spend most of your time in front of Avid “terminals” doesn’t really matter much does it? There are about 5000 of you. Go have fun in your dark office.

    I certainly haven’t argued that “markup as a platform’ doesn’t have merit. It does, for delivering a half decent experience of delivernig data to my browser and a bit of interactivity. But if I want to do anything interesting, markup doesn’t cut it.

    If you’re referring to MESH as the “vaguely-defined non-shipping raw-concept consumer-targeted marketing-send-up” then (1) you’re way overly dependent on dashes and (2) lots of good ideas weren’t immediately understood by the average Chris…I mean Joe.

    The fact that you get “lots of acceleration on OLD hardware” is just fine and dandy. I made no refernce to new or old hardware. I just like to use the hardware I have for something other than running a Web browser.

    Lastly, what the hell does your last paragraph even mean? Why don’t you explain the “macroview” and compare .NET to the whole market. Go ahead. I’m waiting.

  127. “Developers will get excited, then nobody will use it.
    Apple will come and make it usable, beautiful and portable.
    It is not the idea that counts, it’s the implementation.
    And we all know M$ always sucks at that!”

    Because of your last sentence I’m not sure whether you’re facetious or not.. but I think Media Center is more usable, beautiful and portable than Front Row. The Zune UI is also nicer than the iPod UI.

  128. “Developers will get excited, then nobody will use it.
    Apple will come and make it usable, beautiful and portable.
    It is not the idea that counts, it’s the implementation.
    And we all know M$ always sucks at that!”

    Because of your last sentence I’m not sure whether you’re facetious or not.. but I think Media Center is more usable, beautiful and portable than Front Row. The Zune UI is also nicer than the iPod UI.

  129. And your holier than thou BS is tiresome.

    Hey, I agree. Tech rot bores even me. But if I had a blog, then my “holier than thou BS” would be a valuable conversation? Heck, every blogger slash pundit out there operates on “holier than thou BS”, and that’s the very fuel Scobleizer runs on, it’s just the Bay-Areaish “holier than thou BS”. My “holier than thou BS” runs more ‘will it play in Peoriaish’. Take as will.

    you’re way overly dependent on dashes

    Beyond guilty as charged, it works in Final Drafty dialogue-mode however. :)

    But I wouldn’t be so quick to knock those Average Joe’s, as they are CONSUMERS, the Mesh target market. But the classic “you don’t get it” is circular logic at it’s best, like a conspiracy theory where lack of evidence only proves it further, “you don’t get it” is a debate killer. And those “good ideas”, are little more than wishful thinking at this point. Possible, but not yet proven. And “good ideas” are nothing without “good implementations”.

    Why don’t you explain the “macroview” and compare .NET to the whole market.

    You expecting a book? Not taking that bait. It’s your argument, just saying comparing Win32/.Net ISP markets, says nothing about .NET Framework penetration or the scope of Java Enterprise developments etc. etc.

    doesn’t really matter much does it?

    Considering that without those 5,000 you wouldn’t have half of Hollywood and hardly any of Burbank, I’d say it matters. ;) Hollywood does have a lot of Final Cutters, but Burbank is almost all (still) Avid. And in true blogger-elitist-dogma, it’s not the SIZE of the audience, rather the INFLUENCE.

  130. And your holier than thou BS is tiresome.

    Hey, I agree. Tech rot bores even me. But if I had a blog, then my “holier than thou BS” would be a valuable conversation? Heck, every blogger slash pundit out there operates on “holier than thou BS”, and that’s the very fuel Scobleizer runs on, it’s just the Bay-Areaish “holier than thou BS”. My “holier than thou BS” runs more ‘will it play in Peoriaish’. Take as will.

    you’re way overly dependent on dashes

    Beyond guilty as charged, it works in Final Drafty dialogue-mode however. :)

    But I wouldn’t be so quick to knock those Average Joe’s, as they are CONSUMERS, the Mesh target market. But the classic “you don’t get it” is circular logic at it’s best, like a conspiracy theory where lack of evidence only proves it further, “you don’t get it” is a debate killer. And those “good ideas”, are little more than wishful thinking at this point. Possible, but not yet proven. And “good ideas” are nothing without “good implementations”.

    Why don’t you explain the “macroview” and compare .NET to the whole market.

    You expecting a book? Not taking that bait. It’s your argument, just saying comparing Win32/.Net ISP markets, says nothing about .NET Framework penetration or the scope of Java Enterprise developments etc. etc.

    doesn’t really matter much does it?

    Considering that without those 5,000 you wouldn’t have half of Hollywood and hardly any of Burbank, I’d say it matters. ;) Hollywood does have a lot of Final Cutters, but Burbank is almost all (still) Avid. And in true blogger-elitist-dogma, it’s not the SIZE of the audience, rather the INFLUENCE.

  131. Lets see the top 4 P2P applications of all times are Faroo P2P Search, MetaASO Mermaid Worldwide Multimedia Broadcast Systems, Emule P2P file sharing, Azureus BitTorrent P2P File Sharing

    None of these applications can be developed using the Live Mesh. Live Mesh is not open enough to allow the Open Source adopters to hook onto it. It is and will always be a closed source propeitary solution which will work only to further Microsoft’s commercial interests. What happened to the Free Software revolution?

    Live Mesh has a very heavy infrastructure behind it but it fails on so many counts that one cannot even think that it will succeed on the global scale. The problem lies in attempting to design a universal generic solution for everything and then failing miserably on all counts except some.

    As a developer I fail to see how I could use this?

  132. Lets see the top 4 P2P applications of all times are Faroo P2P Search, MetaASO Mermaid Worldwide Multimedia Broadcast Systems, Emule P2P file sharing, Azureus BitTorrent P2P File Sharing

    None of these applications can be developed using the Live Mesh. Live Mesh is not open enough to allow the Open Source adopters to hook onto it. It is and will always be a closed source propeitary solution which will work only to further Microsoft’s commercial interests. What happened to the Free Software revolution?

    Live Mesh has a very heavy infrastructure behind it but it fails on so many counts that one cannot even think that it will succeed on the global scale. The problem lies in attempting to design a universal generic solution for everything and then failing miserably on all counts except some.

    As a developer I fail to see how I could use this?