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Windows 8 and you – So, what's next?

Reg readers chew the fat on Win 8 and Windows RT

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Live Chat It’s the early 2000s and Microsoft has delivered its latest versions of Visual Studio and Windows.

There’s no XML or any other internet standards, no web services, modularity, a sandboxed security model and no component-based development. There is no “Java-killer” C# and no Common Language Runtime (CLR).

The web passes Microsoft by, but at least coders – albeit a slowly shrinking number – are tied into Windows and keep right on using the old Visual Basic and C++ tools and all the well-worn skills with which they are so familiar. Until they drift away.... although this development didn’t happen because Microsoft introduced .NET.

Now, 12 years on, Microsoft is on the cusp of another major change with the official launch in October of Windows 8 and Windows RT, with apps built for Windows Runtime and served – Microsoft hopes – from an Apple App-Store-like Windows Store.

Back in 2000, Steve Ballmer said that Next Generation Windows Services, as .NET was then called, would mean breakthroughs in the programming model, user interface, application integration model and the file schema.

That time is here again, and people aren’t too happy as this time the change is even bigger: cloudy apps served to ARM and x86, with HTML5 and a touch interface – ModernUI – that wants you to forget 30-plus-years of human-computer interaction.

What will Windows 8 mean to what you build and how you built it, to your skills and to new qualifications, and to where you get a job building for Windows after 26 October?

The experience of .NET teaches us there will be significant change. Experience also tells us there will be dead ends – remember .NET My Services?

Join fellow Reg readers with Mary-Jo Foley, Tim Anderson and resident Reg careers man Dom Connor for a one-hour-long Live Chat talking about ModernUI, building for Windows 8 and 9, and what this means for skills, training and jobs.

The Live Chat takes place on 28 September at 13.00 GMT (14.00 BST, 9.00 ET, 6.00 Pacific). You can register in our Live Chat window below.

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