Well that was fun! It was really exciting to share with the world what our team has been working on in designing and developing over the past few years with regard to Windows UI platform advancements. Build 2017 was a culmination of a lot of efforts across the company in various areas, but for UI it was the introduction of our evolution of design, the Fluent Design System. This represents a wave of UI innovations over time, with Build 2017 showing the first views of Wave 1. There was a lot of great buzz about Fluent, but for a great introduction be sure to check out my colleague Paul Gusmorino’s session introducing the design system:
Of course as developers sometimes we wince at the word ‘design’ because we don’t have the skills, maybe don’t understand it, or want to ensure we can achieve it with maximum ROI of our own developer time! We agree! In defining the Fluent Design System, we ensured that a lot of these new innovations are ‘default’ in the platform. Starting now with the Fall Creator’s Update Insider SDKs you can start seeing some of these appear in the common controls. When you use the common controls as-is, you will get the best of Fluent incorporated into your app. James Clarke joined Paul later to explain and demonstrate this in practice showing how the new (and some existing) common controls take this design system into account and help you get it by default:
In addition to what we are doing *now* we also wanted to share what is on the horizon. I was able to join Ashish Shetty at Build and talk about what is new in XAML and Composition platform areas for developers. We shared more of the ‘default’ that is exhibited in the common controls but also explained some of the ‘possible’ in the platform that you can achieve with great improvements to our animation system. We also shared the vision for the future in this space around semantic animations and vector shape micro-animations. Check out our session on this area:
We had so much to talk about that I wasn’t able to show the simplicity of enabling the pull-to-refresh pattern in the new controls area. Not wanting you to feel ripped off, I recorded a quick demo of a few of the things we weren’t able to demo. Take a look here at my impromptu demo insert for you!
There is a lot of great new things coming in the Windows UI platform area for UWP:
- Improved text APIs: CharacterRecieved, CharacterCasing, IsTrimmed
- Improved input APIs like PreviewInput
- Implicit animations
- Connected animations improvements for ListViewBase
- Advanced color and HDR for Image
- SVG support for Image
- Keytips support for XAML
- ContentDialog and MenuFlyout improvements
- Context menu support everywhere
- UI analysis and Edit-and-continue in Visual Studio
- Narrator developer mode
- and more!
It is so great to be a part of this latest release and continue to deliver value (hopefully) to you, our developer customer. Please be sure to let us know how you are using these new improvements and the Fluent Design System. Share your creations with us at @windowsui so we can share with others as well!
We also announced a vision for defining a common dialect for UI everywhere around XAML. We call this XAML Standard and are drafting a v1 specification now. We will want your input on this and have established an open process to encourage community collaboration. Please join the conversation at http://aka.ms/xamlstandard. This is at very early stages but with your help we will establish the right fundamentals first and evolve over time. Getting the core right is critically important…you can’t unify on a set of control APIs if the foundation isn’t solid and makes sense. In addition to this, .NET Standard 2.0 for UWP was announced as well and is a HUGE advancement for .NET developers writing apps for UWP. Oh no big deal, just about 20K more APIs you have access to now. Yowza. Listen to Scott Hunter, Miguel and myself talk about these areas on Channel 9:
I’m excited to see the creativity unleased by our developer community. Thanks for letting me be a small part of it!