Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Developers face Windows 8 conundrum

  1. #1

    Posts : 22,577
    64-bit Windows 10

    Developers face Windows 8 conundrum

    Microsoft faces a challenge convincing developers its upcoming Windows 8 operating system (OS) is worth investing and building software for, since many are already busy on iOS and Android apps. Market analysts say the challenge is compounded when developers would have to consider developing apps for either Windows 8 on x86 devices, or Windows RT for ARM-based devices, or both.

    Read more at:

    Developers face Windows 8 conundrum | ZDNet

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  2. #2

    Posts : 636
    Windows 7/8

    The comparison to the old DOS/ WIndows3.1 days is apt. Both for developers AND users. Users have to decide if they want this app or that, get it for Metro and use it on desktop machine and tablet (if that's allowed) or this other better app for desktop mode only... It really is like introducing an entirely new OS. We now have OSX, Windows, Metro and for some Linux and maybe even some day Chrome OS.

    Starting to remind me of the horrible Z80/6502 days where you have 10 different incompatible platforms. Which one(s) to you develop for? Which one(s) do you buy? I want platform X but that program I can;t live without only runs on platform Y but I also want to play games on platform Z. Bleh.

    I'm the kind of person that'll end up with one of each but what a needless PITB.
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  3. #3

    Posts : 5,707
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    I think existing developer's will stay and support app development on Windows 8 because that's just what has always happened in the past. xp had lots of programs built for it which vista didn't support well all the time. People began to make the vista compatible programs, which work usually just as well in 7. In 8, it's the same story. The greater thing is that there is a HUGE potential for developers that do what they do for a living. They have a regulated marketplace to upload their metro apps, and they have another platform that they can easily build on for Windows Phone 8. Probably next year with the new Xbox that will have the same shared core, there will be another platform for game developers to build upon a popular console system and potentially port that game for Xbox onto Windows and possibly a game build for Windows Phone. That to me sounds like developer heaven...

    But yeah, there are the ios and android developers. Chances are that when the Windows ecosystem grows, they'll come. Microsoft's trying to promote that too. And I would bet an android developer would make the switch to Windows quicker simply because there isn't the degree of fragmentation in Windows as there is in android.
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  4. #4

    Hafnarfjörđur IS
    Posts : 4,376
    Linux Centos 7, W8.1, W7, W2K3 Server W10

    Hi all
    maybe I'm getting too old but if you use decent OO principles (Object Orientated) then surely so long as you have the correct Class libraries development on ANY platform is a doddle.

    for example you want a popupbox with a message.

    If the libraries are decently set up all the application coder needs to do is say something like this

    Lv_message =>send_message_box( text = 'Please enter zzzzzz' ).

    the class send_message_box would bring in whatever library the guy is coding for (windows / or whatever).

    I can't understand what the problem is with a lot of this stuff --you only need ONE version of the actual application code -- the platform on which it's running would resolve the right class library.

    Perhaps I'm too much of an old fashioned engineer --but don't modern developers ever use "Meta" and "re-useable" code - so they can develop stuff for a "generic" platform and the class libraries / SDK will convert the stuff into the correct format for the OS it's running on.

    Probably with all the Offshoring -- each team is given a different 'spec so it's horrible not only for the "Off shored" teams but also for the system specifiers.

    A bit of Back to basics probably would sort a lot of this out.

    Just my "Non I.T" and Engineers observation.

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  5. #5

    I'm fairly sure your "Non I.T" and engineers observation just described Java
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  6. #6

    In the Microsoft world, there are multiple platforms. Each has its own API. WinRT has it's own API, distinct from other MS platforms, not to mention non-MS platforms. Back in the 90s, there were utopian ideas about such code sharing. I've never seen anything like it remotely come to reality.

    I do most of my coding on the MS .NET Framework in the C# and VB.NET languages. Yet with WinRT, I get to keep using those two languages, but the technology under the hood is COM based. That means there is a extra layer to utilize the .NET languages I am familiar with.

    Then there is the issue that WinRT (Metro UI) apps have a difference way of UI layout than regular Windows desktop apps. In the popup message example, it wouldn't even have the same library, let alone the same method name.

    Bottom line: to port any existing Windows app to WinRT is a major retooling. The only code that might salvageable would be non-visual, non-IO code. And that assumes the same libraries can be used. MS has stated an app could be rejected from the Windows Store if it uses the wrong APIs. This follows Apple's policy in their App Store.
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  7. #7

    Quote Originally Posted by constantG View Post
    I'm fairly sure your "Non I.T" and engineers observation just described Java
    I was going to mention Java. I have a favorite open source program (FreeMind) that is Java based. While I use the Windows version, there are also Mac OS and Linux versions available. I'd have to check the source code, but I suspect the IO code differs between the three versions. Each OS has its own graphics engine. And certainly the menu definitions aren't portable...
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Developers face Windows 8 conundrum
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