It’s a brave move, but I really hope people don’t fall for it.
In my opinion, WPF is a fad.
Windows Forms does what people need. Flash does what people need. WPF is trying to be the best of both worlds, but doesn’t have the reach of Flash, and the richness it offers is just too different for creating desktop apps.
I could be wrong – maybe we’ll find out a few years down the road that the WPF style markup based user interface is really that much better. But today, it just seems to be a way to create the sort of dubiously-usable, non-accessible overly flashy cool app that we’ve all be trying to keep marketing from doing to our own apps for years.
Microsoft is always showing demos of catalog applications with spinning 3D models of things like clothing, which there simply don’t exist 3D models of. Is Wal-Mart going to model all their products for their new 3D website? I don’t think so. It’d be a huge amount of effort for very little return.
Today my prediction is that WPF is basically demoware, and I’ll mark that on my Microsoft Technologies roadmap shortly.