Thanks to a single sentence in a New York Times article, a number of blogs are trumpeting the first public demonstration of Windows 8 at CES in January. It was already known that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer would be on stage to showcase a handful of slates, but would they really be running the first builds of Windows.next already?
According to the Times, a source "with knowledge of Microsoft's plans" believed "Ballmer might demonstrate a tablet and other companion devices running the next operating system, Windows 8." However, as Tom Warren points out, Microsoft is currently laying out the groundwork for Windows 8 -- planning and preparing for what Ballmer called Microsoft's "riskiest product bet."
January seems a bit soon to be showing off something your CEO thinks is your "riskiest bet," especially considering this is the same company that just tried to launch the Kin. While there may indeed be a prototype or concept device on display, there's a good chance it could run an existing flavor of Windows with a slate-specific UI on top. Windows 8 itself, however, will likely not be on display.