During his keynote speech at the Microsoft Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC), Bill Gates outlined what he believes will characterise the third decade of Microsoft Windows. He said that 64-bit computing, together with new Windows operating systems such as Longhorn and Blackcomb, will "ignite an era of industry-wide innovation." (How on Earth does he keep coming up with these phrases?!)

"The next decade will bring about a new wave of innovation in the technology industry through the increased security Latest News about Security, greater reliability and faster performance enabled by 64-bit computing and continued advances in Windows," Gates said.

"Longhorn and the new x64-bit versions of Windows are the best foundation for a new generation of faster, more powerful hardware and software that expands the possibilities for computing and transforms the way we work and play."

Gates went on to describe how future versions of Windows will provide the user with superior security, deployment and manageability. He said that Longhorn will come with integrated antimalware to help shield PCs and their users from adware, spyware, phishing scams and other threats, and that protected user accounts will be designed to help reduce the threat to users' systems. He also outlined the advantages of a single code base and hardware abstraction layer for all versions and languages of Longhorn, and talked about how an image-based setup will replace manual installation of programs.