The C++ team gave me a heads up about a neat new initiative called Hilo. Here's a quick description:
“Hilo” is a series of articles and sample applications that show how you can
leverage the power of Windows 7, Visual Studio 2010, and Visual C++ to build
high performance, responsive rich client applications. Hilo provides both source
code and the written guidance that will help you design and develop compelling,
touch-enabled Windows applications of your own.
The articles are on MSDN - the first is there now - and the code is on Code Gallery.
I like this section from the article:
The rich user experience of Windows 7 is best accessed through a powerful,
flexible language, and that means C++: by using C++ you can access the raw power
of the APIs for Windows 7. To build the Hilo sample applications, all you need
is Visual C++ Express and the Windows SDK for Windows 7, both of which are
available as free downloads.
Hilo applications show how to design and develop an application for Windows
7. But while the code showcases the APIs for Windows 7, it is not wedded to any
particular application framework. Instead, Hilo implement a lightweight common
application layer that directly uses and highlights the APIs rather than
obscuring them. This common application layer is used to support all of the Hilo
applications. It illustrates the best practices for developing Windows
applications, and while it is not complete—it was designed simply to provide the
features needed by the Hilo applications—it does show the best practices used in
designing re-usable frameworks and can be extended to provide additional
Looking forward to reading more!