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Microsoft pitches the Web 2.0 crowd

Microsoft posted the agenda items for its upcoming Mix '06 conference, a step in the company's efforts to go after graphics designers and "Web 2.0" developers. The company also said that Tim O'Reilly - the man who coined the term Web 2.0 - will interview Microsoft chairman Bill Gates on stage following Gates' keynote.

Tim O'Brien, a group manager platform strategies at Microsoft, said a theme at the conferences is scaling up Web 2.0 applications. "When you look at Web 2.0 companies out there, they have user bases on order of 300,000. The question is when the base goes to three hundred million, how do you deal with that?" he said.

Other topics of discussion will be the forthcoming Internet Explorer 7 browser, an important release for the company in the face of growing popularity of Firefox, and applications that use RSS, O'Brien said. To provide developers some thoughts on when to build Web apps versus Windows-native applications, Microsoft is asking developers to demonstrate cutting-edge Windows Vista apps, he added.