As you might already know, Redmond software giant has just launched a new version of its office suite, which has an innovative interface called Ribbon. The thing is that Ribbon seems to be a huge leap forward when compared to classic toolbar/menu UI combination due to its elegance and simplicity.
So, even better news is that today Microsoft has started licensing a new Office interface to third-party developers. The license is pretty fair: you may use new UIin any applications you want as soon as it complies with the spec and does not compete directly with Microsoft’s office products.
So far it only has 16 pages of text, mostly describing Ribbon resizing routine but in the nearest future a complete version should be available.
At present time Microsoft provides no line of code for fast implementation of a new GUI, but some software developers already offer Ribbon controls which you may use to start building your next-gen interfaces right now.
I really hope, that unlike many other good ideas the concept of Ribbon would not be disconsidered and we would see its full power in the nearest future.