Microsoft will enhance the handwriting recognition characteristics of its Tablet PC operating system in an interim edition code-named Lonestar due in mid 2004. More advanced ink and personalization features are targeted for a Longhorn edition further out. At its Professional Developer's Conference, Microsoft executives tipped off developers to the planned release of "Lonestar" edition in mid 2004 and the forthcoming releases of the Tablet PC Platform Software Development Kit 1.7 due in the second quarter of 2004.
Other sources close to the company claim the Lonestar edition will support instant messaging and collaboration features. Microsoft claims the Lonestar and Longhorn editions -- as well as the new Tablet PC support in Office 2003 and 10 new tablet devices due to be delivered at Comdex - will jumpstart tablet computing into a more mainstream market, executives said at PDC 2003.
The SDK and Lonestar edition will give Table PC developers new ways to put ink controls on web pages, and do context tagging of handwritten data, company executives noted. However, Microsoft executives made clear the next major upgrade - due in the Longhorn Windows timeframe - will open up a new wave of value-added possibilities exploiting the next generation Windows' Avalon presentation services and advanced inking and customization capabilities.
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News source: CRN