Stephen opens up the new UX Evangelist blog with some info about Windows 7:
Component Delivery Platform: Also known as CBS, this is the core infrastructure utilized for defining Windows SKUs, optional components and for the setup and servicing of Windows. The current plan of the CBS team for Windows 7 is to provide aggregation, installation, and servicing constructs for Windows elements (components, drivers, etc.), including a set of interfaces that can be used by internal and external customers for a wide variety of operations ranging from SKU construction to install, uninstall and servicing of Windows features. This infrastructure will be leveraged by Windows partners to build their features and optional components for Windows 7.
Data Protection and Encryption: In Windows 7, substantial investments are being made in Bitlocker and EFS to drive toward Microsoft’s vision of data being encrypted all the time, everywhere, so that customers know their data is always secure regardless of said data being located on a local hard drive, company server, or portable device.
ClickOnce: Microsoft is working to solve core problems in network application deployment and declarative system extensibility by designing the next generation application deployment framework required to advance smart, “friction free” client application deployment to the next level. The technologies focused on by the Windows Application Deployment team are packaging, management, installation and servicing for applications in both online and offline environments.
StrongBox: One of the biggest challenges is the impact of all the different kinds of applications on each other and the Windows platform itself. The results are growing frustration with desktop applications, higher cost of ownership, and customers’ apathy to try new applications. Microsoft has assembled a small team in the Core of the Windows Division whose primary task is to gain control of this problem and, over a series of releases, begin to alleviate it. The evolution of the application platform - deployment, configuration, state management, and servicing - all fall under this team’s focus.
So is it "real"? He's a reliable source, and this is all vague enough to make sense. It also plays nicely with a little nugget that we heard about Windows 7 yesterday at the Windows Server 2008 Reviewers Workshop. I didn't think much of it, but Steven Bink posted about it:
Microsoft IT (the internal IT organisation) is currentlt running a pilot called "Direct Connect". Direct Connect is like Outlook Anywhere where you connect to the internal Exchange Server from outside the corporate network without a VPN connnection but through RPC_over_HTTPs) Direct connect uses IPv6 and IPSec to build a tunnel from outside the coprporate network to any resource that needs to access internal network (fileshares, LOB applications) This pilot will end up as feature in the server edition of Windows 7. It will require a trusted identity like smartcards.