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The slides, which first popped over the weekend on the Italian blog Windowsette, are stamped "Microsoft Confidential" and "Under NDA".
Each slide contains a footnote that states, "Windows 8 Discussion, This Is Not A Plan of Record." They indicate Microsoft may be eyeing a Windows 8 release sometime in the 2012 timeframe.
Microsoft has not confirmed their authenticity.
If real, they would appear to show that Microsoft may be looking to mimic rival Apple's success in developing products that provides users with a more intuitive computing experience. For instance, one slide describes a scenario in which a gamer, armed with a tablet-style device, pauses to answer the doorbell.
"His game is interrupted by a knock on the door. He looks away, and the game pauses. Eric stands up and walks to the door," the document states. "Although the game is paused, the Lap PC adjusts for the change in light. Soon he's outside showing off his new Lapp to the neighbors."
The documents, if authentic, also indicate Microsoft is focusing on portability in Windows 8 from the ground up. They describe built-in support for motion-sensing accelerometers, ambient light sensors, GPS units, wireless networking, and cameras.
Microsoft also may be planning to mimic Apple in other ways, as another document supposedly reveals plans for a Windows "App Store."
With each new operating system release, Microsoft hopes to further erase memories of Windows Vista, which debuted in January 2007 and quickly thereafter was chided by many as the worst OS release in Microsoft's history.
Users complained about Vista's horsepower requirements, incompatibility with older apps, and intrusive security requirements.
The software maker appears well on the road to recovery with Windows 7, which launched last October to generally favorable reviews. Microsoft last week announced that it has sold more than 150 million Windows 7 licenses, making it the company's fastest selling OS ever.