Next Gen Apps: Really Good or RRRReally Bad !

I installed MAX today, a new app running on the WPF RC1 runtime, mostly cos of the hype I read on a few blogs. Is it great? Well I dont know. Its…different. A lot of things glow. A lot of things have drop shadows. There are some tweens. But is that what I am looking for in an app that manages my photos and my blogs? Its kind of hard for me to say this but I dread the new world of ‘cinematic apps’. Why? Cos its so easy to get them wrong. The biggest complaint against Flash used to be that every Flash site had to be learnt. The newer sites seem to be doing a better job of information architecture but thats come after years of learning from bad apps. And now the desktop is open to similar abuse with application developers flexing their new-found freedom from traditional controls.

WPF’s prize demo is the Northface application that shows users videos overlayed on 3d planes and videos overlayed on video. I am completely blah’ed by it and couldnt care less. Nor do I care about the photos rotating 360 degrees before coming into view. Actually for a desktop app, I cant think of any place I would use 3d anyway. I still want Flash to come up with native 3d but thats cos I would like to make a game or some interesting new UI for a site but I dont think for an app like an rss browser.

Maybe I lack imagination and maybe I am just getting old (26 years !!…shudder). Maybe I will revisit my fears when some new apps come out. I still think MAX is interesting, but I doubt it’ll replace my RSSOwl

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