The long road to Longhorn: Salon has an extremely intelligent article about Longhorn and what it’s going to mean for Microsoft and the computing world in general.
…if Longhorn is too radical a break with the past there’s always a chance that Microsoft’s two key constituencies — “end users” like you and me and the “ISVs” (independent software vendors) who produce the programs that run on top of Windows —will balk. The years between now and Longhorn’s due date will provide Microsoft’s only remaining competitors, at Apple and in the Linux universe, with a real chance to seize the high ground and capture more customers.
Including is an interesting note about how blogs are going to play into this:
The company has OK’d, even encouraged, many of the developers working on the project to post their thoughts in public blogs. […] This effort has already reaped tangible results for Redmond, and not only in generating a flood of Longhorn-related information on the Net. It has succeeded, in a way that no millions spent on Waggener-Edstrom P.R. and trade-press shmooze-fests could, in transcending the Evil Empire stereotypes that inevitably cling to Microsoft…
This is Salon, so you’ll either need a subscription or sit through an ad for a day pass.