I always look forward to new releases of Windows. It's fun to poke around MSDN® and the SDK documentation looking for the latest innovations to play with and build upon, to amaze friends and coworkers and-if you're lucky-your employer. Windows Vista™ contains a lot of goodies in this regard. I've been particularly looking forward to getting my hands on this release ever since I heard that it integrates a 3D/compositing layer into the desktop. I've written a ton of 3D applications over the years, and one thing I always found annoying was being able to provide cool user-interface eye-candy in a 3D application but not in a non-3D app. With Windows Vista and the Desktop Window Manager (DWM), this is starting to change (see Figure 1).