APC has a speculative piece on the future of the Windows 7 interface (Windows 7 is the successor to Vista, which should appear some time in 2010). According to the article, the Windows 7 interface will incorporate a "markup-based UI" built on XML, potentially similar to the ribbon and jewel interface of Microsoft Office 2007. The article infers this from a job advertisment posted by Microsoft, which is looking for a new UI developer.
Not everybody, of course, is a huge fan of the Office ribbon. Let's hope that if Microsoft does incorporate elements of the ribbon into the core Windows UI, that they do some work to clean it up. And please, give those of us who like our drop-down menus the option to keep them. [apcmag.com]