Editorial

Bang On: We Need a Third Party in Operating System Politics

With the release of the Consumer Preview for Windows 8, the internet has been up in arms about the drastic interface changes as Microsoft, in a not so subtle way, shoves Metro down our throats even more. I could go into all the problems I see in the operating system, but others already have and will continue to do so. The one realization that really struck me, however, is how the world of operating systems is more and more like the world of American politics. Simply put: We need a third viable party to help balance things out.

I’m a Windows fan. Not a fanboy. I have always used the operating system and have always believed it to be the best option, partially because I was used to it but also because everything in the world supports it. Hell, I half expect the bottle of seltzer on my desk to be fully Windows compatible. While not perfect, the OS has remained consistent in how we interact with it. There’s a space on the screen and in that space you can place boxes of information and switch between them or look at them all at once. Simple enough. Windows has remained the perfect Republican candidate for years. It’s cool with the consumer, but really loves the big corporations. Its newest front runner, Windows 8, however, does seem a little bit crazy and that’s being kind about it.

On the other side of the fence we have Apple with their operating system, OS X. It has been just as consistent through its various evolutions as Windows has. Screen space, boxes of information, and access to some of it or all of it at once. OS X has grown more and more compatible over the years and I hear Apple will release their own iSeltzer next year which will make my bottle look like plain old water. Apple is the Democratic candidate that wows us with its finesse and seeming lack of insanity. For a guy like me, it probably wouldn’t work out well, but OS X has some ideas that we can all agree on. Of course, in Apple’s world, if you want to vote Democrat, you have to vote Democrat across the board from president all the way down to school crossing guard. You're either all in or you’re all out with no room to compromise. That really bad analogy is hinting at the fact that you have to buy the hardware, too, folks.

So, what about the need for that third party? Who can it be? I know what everyone is expecting me to write next. You probably want me to say that Linux is that candidate that we so desperately need. I’m not convinced that’s entirely the case, though. The problem with the current state of Linux is that, well, there are so many versions and everything is so damn fragmented. Linux is like the Green Party. There are a bunch of good ideas, but they're so poorly focused and disorganized that none of it really clicks with the general public. On top of that, none of the companies producing distributions have the connection with both the consumer and consumer electronic worlds to be able to garner enough support to release something that’s as cool as OS X but as universally supported as Windows. I don’t want iSeltzer or Seltzer+; I just want my bottle of Seltzer.

The third candidate, as much as I hate to say it because they’re already way too confident, needs to be Google. No, not with that ChromeOS nonsense that presents the crazy idea that the entirety of your PC needs can be presented by a web browser. Seriously, Google, that's a crazy idea. Instead, Google needs to step up with a viable option, probably based on Linux, and come to the market with it. Google has, in my not so humble opinion, the ability to take the crazy Green Party candidate that is Linux and turn it into something that actually connects with the general masses. Even if that new party can’t get enough votes come election time to win the race, maybe it would be enough to convince the Republicans and Democrats that they need to change a few things or at least give me back my damn windowed desktop environment!

Am I proud of the fact that part of me is begging Google, of all companies, to come and save me from the scary choice of Windows 8 and its lack of intuitiveness or OS X and its expensive hardware? No. However, when you look at the market, Google is one of the few companies with the clout to actually do something about anything. I don’t want Windows Phone on my PC and I don’t want to have to throw away some really nice hardware just to switch operating systems. I want someone to come along and give me something as good as or better than Windows 7; something that works for me and never leads me astray. However, I don’t want to waste my votes or time on a crazy Green party candidate who has no real power in the consumer desktop world. The third choice needs to be viable and useful. Ironically enough, the third party candidate needs to be to the PC what Windows Phone is to the mobile space. So, for now, I look towards Google as I take a sip from my bottle of Seltzer and pray the Republicans and Democrats don’t take the fizz out of my drink and the enjoyment out of my PC. 

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I think that Microsoft has done a very poor job of change management in this transition between Windows of the past and Windows of the future.

The vast majority of people don't like change, of any kind. It's especially worse if the reasons for the change are blatantly self-serving. Microsoft has realized that it needs to accomodate tablets and hand held computing. As a result, the "classic" desktop users of the world are to suffer. There really is no other reason to make the changes that they're making to Windows.

I disagree with this article...there are plenty of choices out there for those who are fed-up with the two big players. I don't think that we really need a 3rd player to rise to the surface.

Bottom line is, choose something that you like for getting your day to day work done and settle on it. Your choice of operating system need not be fodder for religious debate. If Microsoft has ****ed you off permanently with Windows 8, then go find a Linux distro that retains the classic desktop stuff, or, just stay with Windows 7 and get on with your life.

You hate Windows because you don't understand how to turn off the Metro menus, which are fine anyways. Wow.
Maybe you should realize that the reason Windows is big in the enterprise is because of technologies you probably don't even understand, like Active Directory, IPSEC, Group Policy, DirectAccess, ForeFront, Threat Management Gateway, Exchange. All technologies that integrate with Windows.
Through group policy I can create shortcuts on people's Internet Explorer, configure every possible registry and security setting in the operating system, establish IPSEC tunnels between servers, control firewall and antivirus settings, configure every aspect of every Microsoft program on the network, password complexity, file permissions, registry permissions, create and configure file shares, block or enable individual USB devices or entire classes of devices, block or install drivers, applications, etc, etc, etc... No other OS does this 'out of the box', though many can be configured with third party applications to do similar things.
This is why Microsoft rules the enterprise, because at this time, for that purpose, it's the best. The menu you choose programs from, does not even enter into the equation. It's not your phone or your XBOX, it's an actual enterprise operating system for doing work, making money, running businesses. And it does that exceptionally well.
Windows is to the enterprise as the iPhone is to cell phones. There are other options, but it's the best, and the market undeniably demonstrates this.
Through group policy, you can even disable the Metro start menus, amazing huh?
Read the 20 other well-informed comments here that explain other features, under the hood, of Windows OS.
I don't admin Mac OS, but I know people who do, and they, like me, are consistently amazed that Apple seems totally uninterested in the enterprise market-- but is it hurting them? Hardly, they do what they're good at, making reliable user friendly devices for home and personal use.
Really I'm more disappointed with Neowin for posting this on their front page, seriously, can't you give your readers more credit than that? I think all of us are a bit deeper into Windows than the start menu.

Google doesn't have the science or engineering talent to take on this role. When companies like Sun and many others that have a lot more advanced understanding of OSes repeatedly fail, Google on technical merit alone has little chance.

Google management also lacks the vision and understanding to put together a viable project, as they don't understand what makes a successful OS.

Using Android as the example, Google bought the pieces that make up Android, and assembled it in a way that made it worse, and still don't fully realize the massive issues that Android has as a OS technology, and has no long term viability with the fast evolution of hardware technology.

To be flat out honest, if Android was not 'easy' for licensing and free, it wouldn't exist outside of maybe a couple of Droids and the Google Phone.

Other indicators that Google doesn't get OS technology...

Google knows Android has 'some' security issues, but they don't understand the relevance and how they will grow exponentially, because if Google did, they would have addressed these issues in a serious way somewhere between v1.6 and the latest build; which they haven't.

Google knows Android has fragmentation issues, and problems with the Dalvik JVM and how the Linux kernel is poorly used, and on and on.. However, again, if they understood the importance of the issues, and the grasped the flaws in the OS model, they would have attempted to address them, which they haven't and have no plans to address them.

As for OS technology... It would be great to see a new non-GPL or other encumbered/limited FOSS licensed OS technology that employed modern and new theories and concepts based on a new OS and kernel model.

For example, the Unix OS model is ancient, and has little benefit in today's technology' The generic I/O constructs and the rigid procedural nature of how a Unix OS works no longer offers the 'flexibility' or 'performance' that it did on hardware 20 years ago. (

Even the NT designers over 20 years ago purposely avoided a Unix model as it was too rigid and they could see that the generic (universal) aspect of Unix would eventually it a point where compensating for its lack of functionality would start to require a lot more work and also start robbing system performance when dealing with complex systems and hardware technologies.

So like Microsoft did, the FOSS community needs to get behind a new OS model that ditches unix and builds from the best theories and concepts in OS engineering. The FOSS world at the VERY least needs an OS model that meets what NT offers, and hopefully far more newer constructs.

Heck even start with building on top of the NT OS Model in base concepts. (NT is a full object based OS model that doesn't deal with generics, which has few dependencies and by using the object model doesn't break old cod when adding in new technologies, as the object can represent itself as needed for any 'level' of technology, and can inquire and also inform what it does and needs.

The FOSS world also needs to start with a new kernel model, and again looking to what NT does right would be a good start or maybe use many of the newer OS kernel theories that get away from the traditional micro-kernel and monolithic kernel designs. Even OS X that 'claims' to be a hybrid kernel is still locked into kernel concepts from the 1980s. (Linux's also draws on a kernel design that is this old as well.

There is a lot of room for 'new' technologies and sadly everyone in the non-Microsoft world is STUCK with 'crap' OS theorists were scrambling to 'get away from' in the late 80s.

There is almost a cult-like view of Unix OS models and a 'belief' that simple and generic and universal constructs are best. There was a time when they did have an advantage, but with the emerging technology complexity of hardware, a generic I/O model would cause massive problems on today's computers if left unchecked. So to make it work, a ton of duct tape and 'complexity' is added on top to make it 'contextually' function properly, and this starts being a performance drain rather quickly.

A slightly more rich/complex OS model like NT that uses objects, not only works easily with new hardware, but starts to have a performance advantage, as duct tape isn't needed, as the NT OS model has always been highly contextually aware and able to deal with objects and the same concepts in various contexts.

It is time for a 'third' party OS technology to emerge, but it needs to dump the 'idolized' crap of the past, and start with new extensible theories.

It is time to look at Microsoft and specifically Windows and see what they did 'right' and why it continues to flourish and advance in ways other OSes have problems achieving. Take simple example where Windows is capable of something easily that was hard or impossible to happen on Linux or OS X.

Take the Dynamic dual switching GPU technologies, that were introduced around the time Vista was shipping. Windows inherently was able to use the technology, was able to flip GPUs on the fly without the user even noticing, and didn't require any additional 'planning' or programming from Microsoft. OS X had to log out the user, dump the GUI, and reassign and allocate the GPU drivers. Discovering why, is a major revelation of a rather important shortcoming in OS X and Linux that will become even more important over the next couple years. The FOSS world needs an OS that is this extensible, and would be able to use a new drastic technology as easily as Windows NT does.

Instead of dismissing Windows NT, it is time the world educated itself a bit or there will never be an OS that can truly challenge it. (Apple who knows with them.

____________________

And I know this sounds a bit like a rant about how awesome NT is. However, if you look closely, this is a plea to get something better than NT in the FOSS world. I keep thinking that eventually people will catch on. Instead we watch people piecing together failing OS technologies or putting duck tape on Linux and OS X just to keep them running on, and trying to work with new hardware.

Also the GPL really sucks, the FOSS should stick with truly 'free' and no-obligation based license.

thenetavenger said,
Also the GPL really sucks, the FOSS should stick with truly 'free' and no-obligation based license.

For all the badmouthing GPL gets you'd think that companies would be going with BSD instead of contributing to Linux.

First things first, if you want an OS that is like Windows 7, continue to use windows 7! they have already extended its support life until at least 2020! second I do think that windows 8 is very geared up for touch and tablets, and I think it will do very well there. I don't think businesses will be implimenting it any time soon, not just because of its UI, but because most wait until at least the first service pack. Hell my company is still using XP (well until April when we will finally be upgrading to W7). Personally I think windows 8 will be a bit like Vista, an all round good OS, but a little ahead of its time. I would look out for windows 9 though!

Android is not the answer... First it will end up looking exactly the same as what both MS and Apple are moving toward, and second googles privacy sucks, how else do you think they make their money!

I for one, would love an OS from google, such as a full android for desktop type application, as long as they knocked off this whole your data is our data bull****.

Kelxin said,
I for one, would love an OS from google, such as a full android for desktop type application, as long as they knocked off this whole your data is our data bull****.

They have made billions off of just 'using data' If they 'stopped' they would be worth nothing, as they really don't have any other business model or revenue streams.

Who would want an OS from Google, only to have them drop it in a few years - just like everything else they introduced.

Google is one of the few with the capitol to fund an OS. Obviously they would need to show a stronger commitment and it would take years for adaptation anyway.

bangbang023 said,
Google is one of the few with the capitol to fund an OS. Obviously they would need to show a stronger commitment and it would take years for adaptation anyway.

Made off of selling information about people... You really want them making an OS, especially when they did such a brilliant technical job with Android... Aka... 'FC' 'Sorry we Crashed' '***@#$#@#$ Android terminated my document I was working on because it got a text message, and it had to dump my App for memory."

SouthWest said,
That third party is called iOS, the reason why MS went crazy over Metro and WP.

iOS is OS X which is Apple. It's part of te two party system we have and not separate.

SouthWest said,
That third party is called iOS, the reason why MS went crazy over Metro and WP.

Lets see you install iOS on your desktop, oh wait .. that's right, you can't.

I can't believe I actually read this article. What a waste of time. Linux IS the third OS. You have the exact same players in the desktop OS as you do in the smartphone arena. Just because you see Linux as under-represented is not important. At the moment, Windows Phone is as under-represented in the smartphone block as Linux is on the desktop. I think it's ridiculous to pine away for yet another OS that you think we "so desperately need".

Garbage.

Linux simply isn't a viable alternative if there's no one to focus a distro and garner support from device manufacturers and app developers. It simply doesn't count in the consumer world.

If anything RIM should bring QNX to the desktop. It was built to power critical systems like fighter jets and nuclear power plants but it's now on a tablets and soon to be phones so why not desktops.

If not QNX then WebOS should be ported once it becomes open source. WebOS is the only Linux-based OS with a good user interface.

The world does not need another operating system just like it does not need another social network. You really dont know what you are talking sbout. OS will become just bare metal and apps will rule.

I think you make a good point (and thats coming from a Linux user). However, I dont see Google being the game changer. By the way, nice to see you writing again Chris.

wahoospa said,
Yes, if Win 8 goes South then MS can still sell Win 7.

It's a win-win situation for Microsoft, but not for the consumer, because we are then stuck with an older version of Windows like with XP / Vista. Not that there's anything wrong with XP, it's a great OS. but it's like the IE 6 situation, when Microsoft has a monopoly on something it tends to get lazy and things are left undeveloped for years, be that because of an experiment (as in this case with Win8), or lack of competition.

Hmm, you think businesses are going to adopt a different OS suddenly because they've seen what Windows 8 is? That's calling it farrrr too early.

Windows 7 is going to stay in the game for an extremely long time. MS can still backtrack and create/modify a separate OS if this doesn't sell well in businesses. Especially those that have a lot of desktop work.

After Win 7, MS can afford another 'Vista' if that what it turns out like....

bangbang023 said,
I'm talking for consumer use. Linux is already very viable in the business environment on the backed, at least.

There are quite a few Linux distributions that are viable for consumers as well. Ubuntu, Mint, Fedora, and many others. I use Windows 7 and Linux on a daily basis, and truthfully, both are great OS's. What Linux lacks, or did lack until Google came along with Android, was a strong desktop champion like you pointed out.

I'm still holding out hope that cannonical can be the one to push Ubuntu more into the mainstream with things like Ubuntu TV, Ubuntu for Android, and building OEM partners like Asus to pre-install Linux on laptops/PC's for the masses.

bangbang023 said,
Linux is already very viable in the business environment on the backed, at least.

If you want to use 4 year old hardware sure. If you don't want SATA 3 external raid enclosure support with port replicators. If you don't want high end Fibre or SAS support. Oh yea. Its great with aging controllers, aging processors, and aging chipsets. Try using the newest Ubuntu, CentOS, Red Hat Enterprise, Fedora, FreeBSD, Debian, SuSE, etc with any of the newer SATA 3 or SAS raid controllers and you will see how unstable, under performing, undeveloped, and pain in the ass it is to compile drivers into a kernel that have only been half tested and sent out the door. Try setting up a full IPv6 DNS / DHCP / Web Server with IP4to6 conversion on a linux box. It is still a nightmare compared to its Windows counterpart. Dependencies on top of dependencies when you finally get to what seems like the last step in the chain to find that one specific binary doesn't compile properly on your OS build. Linux is a fragmented destroyed nightmare on every front (consumer and business) unless you want slow, old crappy hardware AND software.

Kelxin said,

...

These days I get more driver/hardware compatibility problems with Windows than I do with Linux.

For instance, my Audigy 2 zs front panel headphone detection doesn't work in Windows 7, but it works in XP and Linux. I've had other problems too. No OS is immune to hardware incompatibilities because drivers are imperfect. If you think otherwise you're deluding yourself.

This editorial is absolutely stupid. It's a NEW operating system still in development. As with any new change in any aspect of life, you need to LEARN how to use it and not just assume things based on simply just testing out. If you don't like the metro side then just stick to the desktop side. You can easily unpin all the tiles you don't want, and pin your desktop apps instead. The start screen is just a cooler and more advanced version of the start menu that allows a unified experience while still having access to your desktop. Sadly, that's the "American' way of thinking these days... i.e. Sampling or simply just looking at screencaps and judging instead of thoroughly giving it a try and giving constructive feedback with examples from your experience. Remember, it is a new OS, so if you dont like change, stay on Win7.

This isn't about Windows 8 beig bad or good. It's my realization that I only have two viable choices when selecting an operating system and that choice is dictated by my choice of hardware. I'd love another choice just like Id love to see American politics work with a third party involved.

This editorial is absolutely stupid. It's a NEW operating system still in development. As with any new change in any aspect of life, you need to LEARN how to use it and not just assume things based on simply just testing out. If you don't like the metro side then just stick to the desktop side. You can easily unpin all the tiles you don't want, and pin your desktop apps instead. The start menu is just a cooler and more adv

I needed to reinstall Windows on a laptop for my parents so I asked them if they'd be interested in trying Windows 8 (otherwise I'd have had to install Vista Basic). They agreed. My Dad's response? He said it's not really that different; he only uses a computer to run applications, so he couldn't really care less that they'd changed the start menu.

I think what we'll find is that casual users will get along fine with it, especially on touch screen monitors (which OEMs will throw their full weight behind to stimulate sales). It will be modern and new to them and they'll be happy with it. Meanwhile it will be the more experienced users that will moan about it, as it means they'll have to relearn many things that they took for granted.

I really do think that Microsoft should add a tutorial, as a lot of the complaints stem from simply not being used to the new way of doing things. For instance, right-clicking on the Start screen to bring up the "All apps" prompt isn't natural for current Windows users; same with accessing the Charm bar or using the top left of the screen to switch between apps; or dragging a Metro app from top to bottom to close it. Why not simply add a Tutorial app to the Start screen? It would certainly benefit novice users and could be equally beneficial to advanced users (even if it's just so that people can post "watch the tutorial" when people make inaccurate assumptions).

If we're discussing the OS itself, then I need to state that I don't mind metro. My real issues come with the disjointed feeling of the operating system itself and how many tasks seem to take more reps to accomplish now. Of all the mobile interfaces, the only one that would work on the desktop, IMO, would be Android's but even then it would need to be adjusted.

My one major qualm with metro is the lack of ability to have more than one window visibly open at a time.

Angel Blue01 said,
Linux obviously, perhaps something with corporate support like Ubuntu for consumers and SLED for business.

Ubuntu isn't horrible, but I don't think they have enough clout with the consumer electronic manufacturers to convince them to write drivers and such.

All I read is some one crying about Metro and Linux !
Why is it so important to switch ? when you are satisfied with Windows7 then stick with it !

Am I going to be the first one to congratulate you on this amazing editorial?

I think you've describe the problem brilliantly. I'm not an American but this simile your using to describe the issue is perfect. Your idea to bring in Google is also an amazing idea too.

Well done. Brilliant read!

Thanks to both of you for the feedback. It's been a long time since I've written and, of course, it can be better. I already wish I made a stronger connection to politics before going into the discussion of who the third party could be. I'd have to compare it to the stale state of affairs in the US government where nothing gets accomplished because there are only two parties and they stick very very strongly to their own ideas without compromise. Unfortunately, that leaves the voter/consumer with the burden of compromise.

bangbang023 said,
have to compare it to the stale state of affairs in the US government where nothing gets accomplished because there are only two parties and they stick very very strongly to their own ideas without compromise. Unfortunately, that leaves the voter/consumer with the burden of compromise.

Now that's, a good point. Not that I agree that it applies to W8, but it holds true for the politics.


And also, I feel that you are a bit resistive to change. Especially major change. You don't like things to change radically, but to improve and evolve with time. Like your feelings about ChromeOS and W8. This idea is just to alien to all of us.

Though Google may have a point. A lot of people have entirely shifted to browsers, and don't need other features. And these wouldn't mind Chromebooks.

Similarly with W8. A lot hates on Microsoft's new OS style is about Metro. Like you said "shoving Metro down out throats". The criticism would be much less if this new tile interface was "Aero-fied". We have this mindset because of Apple and Google, that the way forward, is to add more pretty interfaces, gradients and details to everything. Like in icons.
But the truth is opposite. Interfaces have always become simpler to use. A more modern interface isn't one which is more complex, but one which is simpler and easy to use.


And I think the same things were said about Windows 95, iOS and Android. Especially by the techies. They hated it, but eventually it grew on them. I think most people would have much different opinions about Windows 8 in an year. They would not take anything not-Metro, and their competitors would follow suit, especially Google.

And quoting from Ratatouille, "The world is always unkind to the new."

FMH said,
I think the connection with US politics was really weak, and didn't make much sense at all.

Agreed. Plus, I think much of our political system could be improved if we switched to a better voting system like the instant-runoff method or a Condorcet method. With the OS situation, however, we need some more innovation from companies and maybe reforms in copyright laws.

The same hate was given to iPhone. People were calling it a failure, including some Neowin members.

People didn't "get" the touch-screen. And called iPhone out, in comparison with Nokia and RIM's line-up. Those same people now have a completely different view, and they won't even believe they said that stuff.

All the "analyst" and tech-pundits shrugged it off as a toy! They said that it would never be able to compete with Blackberry and Nokia. Read Gartner's and IDC old reports.
iPhone was called a device for just a small demograph, and was not considered a mainstream consumer and enterprise device at all!

Just look where is it now, and especially, what those same people are saying.


I think it's the same thing with Windows 8. Most people don't realize the implications it's design philosophy has, and are afraid of change. Like they once were of iPhone.


http://adage.com/article/al-ries/iphone-fail/117355/

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/12/23/iphone_will_fail/

http://suckbusters2.blogspot.c...but-to-flop-product-to.html

***http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/...APL:US&sid=aRelVKWbMAv0

Bloomberg: To its many fans, Apple is more of a religious cult than a company. An iToaster that downloads music while toasting bread would probably get the same kind of worldwide attention.

Don't let that fool you into thinking that it matters. The big competitors in the mobile-phone industry such as Nokia Oyj and Motorola Inc. won't be whispering nervously into their clamshells over a new threat to their business.

The iPhone is nothing more than a luxury bauble that will appeal to a few gadget freaks. In terms of its impact on the industry, the iPhone is less relevant.

Edited by FMH, Mar 3 2012, 12:36pm :

FMH said,
The same hate was given to iPhone. People were calling it a failure, including some Neowin members.

People didn't "get" the touch-screen. And called iPhone out, in comparison with Nokia and RIM's line-up. Those same people now have a completely different view, and they won't even believe they said that stuff.

All the "analyst" and tech-pundits shrugged it off as a toy! They said that it would never be able to compete with Blackberry and Nokia. Read Gartner's and IDC old reports.
iPhone was called a device for just a small demograph, and was not considered a mainstream consumer and enterprise device at all!

Just look where is it now, and especially, what those same people are saying.


I think it's the same thing with Windows 8. Most people don't realize the implications it's design philosophy has, and are afraid of change. Like they once were of iPhone.

When people called the iPhone out, they did I think because it only had this concept of "web apps", not natively running apps. It was only after the SDK that things changed drastically. In case of Windows 8, people are calling it out because an interface that does less things than the one it replaces is being forced on users. Two different things. (PS. Go read the comments on the B8 blog to see how the Start Screen is inferior).

xpclient said,

When people called the iPhone out, they did I think because it only had this concept of "web apps", not natively running apps. It was only after the SDK that things changed drastically. In case of Windows 8, people are calling it out because an interface that does less things than the one it replaces is being forced on users. Two different things. (PS. Go read the comments on the B8 blog to see how the Start Screen is inferior).

Nope, they complained about the interface too. Read the third link.

First, the iPhone ignores the main reasons that the iPod succeeded: simplicity and ease of use. The iPod is very easy to play and very easy to load, much more so than any other device had ever been.


And Tuaw actually agreed!! http://www.tuaw.com/2007/06/27/why-the-iphone-will-fail/

Some valid points to be sure and perhaps worthy of consideration.

And Tuaw is an Apple fansite.

It's still my opinion that Win8 (or Win 9) is the first MS OS since a very long time (Win 3.1), that will force the users to use something (Win 3.1=Mouse). I am very sure I know what kind of PC monitors you can buy from Dell, HP, Amazon... sooner or later, only.

Competitors (Apart from Linux & Apples)? There were enough competitors. o_O Beginning with Atari and Commodore Amiga, later Geos and OS/2. All this fails, for different reasons, but IMHO not bcause of Microsoft, not primary, in this early days.

But in the meantime everyone use MS comatible software and I think it's too late, for a new competitor (or a lot of money is needed). I mean why I should install e.g. Linux, if 80% or more of my software run within WINE?

This is why I tihnk it needs to be someone like Google who has enough of a presence to get hardware and software devs involved in and behind the product. As some others have suggested, Android wouldn't be a bad idea though it would obviously need to be tooled a bit differently for the desktop.

The reason Metro is shoved down our throats and forced on the desktop is bcoz Metro means Win8-only apps. In comparison, quality desktop apps can be written even on XP or Windows 2000.

As far as interface changes go, the third party to save our sanity and bring the Start menu back is: Classic Shell: http://classicshell.sourceforge.net/. Just wait for a few more days till it is Windows 8 Consumer Preview-compatible. It does almost everything the Start Menu did including the type to search and launch apps thingy.

xpclient said,
The reason Metro is shoved down our throats and forced on the desktop is bcoz Metro means Win8-only apps. In comparison, quality desktop apps can be written even on XP or Windows 2000.

As far as interface changes go, the third party to save our sanity and bring the Start menu back is: Classic Shell: http://classicshell.sourceforge.net/. Just wait for a few more days till it is Windows 8 Consumer Preview-compatible. It does almost everything the Start Menu did including the type to search and launch apps thingy.

if it gives me windows 7 start menu back, im will use it right now.

simrat said,

if it gives me windows 7 start menu back, im will use it right now.

Because it hooked into Explorer.exe, it broke in the Consumer Preview (was working up to Developer Preview). Wait a little while longer.

What the hell is the point in switching to a new OS when all you run is the old classic shell???

Edited by ~Johnny, Mar 3 2012, 5:39pm :

I tried to install Classic Menu (I use it on all my Windows & machines) and Windows 8 says it is incompatible. It seems to install but will not function. I wish it would though.

simrat said,

if it gives me windows 7 start menu back, im will use it right now.

ahhell said,
What the hell is the point in switching to a new OS when all you run is the ****ty classic shell???

I hate classic shell too, but i would love to use Windows 7 start menu on windows 8.

simrat said,
I hate classic shell too, but i would love to use Windows 7 start menu on windows 8.

What is the reason for your hatred?

xpclient said,

What is the reason for your hatred?

I never liked windows xp style start menu and explorer, Windows 7 style menu and explorer is perfect for me. I know shortcuts in explorer so never needed the "cut, copy, paste etc" buttons.

simrat said,

I never liked windows xp style start menu and explorer, Windows 7 style menu and explorer is perfect for me. I know shortcuts in explorer so never needed the "cut, copy, paste etc" buttons.

So you haven't tried it at all and so you hate it. Classic Shell is a mixture of the XP style Start menu with search-based menu of W7/Vista. And it adds many different things to Explorer, not just toolbar buttons which MS took out like this insane Start menu decision.

xpclient said,

So you haven't tried it at all and so you hate it. Classic Shell is a mixture of the XP style Start menu with search-based menu of W7/Vista. And it adds many different things to Explorer, not just toolbar buttons which MS took out like this insane Start menu decision.

Where i said i havent tried it? i tried it and i didnt liked it, i will use it again only if they add windows 7 start menu in windows 8, because metro start screen is a mess.

xpclient said,

So you haven't tried it at all and so you hate it. Classic Shell is a mixture of the XP style Start menu with search-based menu of W7/Vista. And it adds many different things to Explorer, not just toolbar buttons which MS took out like this insane Start menu decision.

Where i said i havent tried it? i tried it and i didnt liked it, i will use it again only if they add windows 7 start menu in windows 8, because metro start screen is a mess.

ahhell said,
What the hell is the point in switching to a new OS when all you run is the old classic shell???

Because the new OS will be optimized and have better hardware support, security, etc. than the previous generation OS...by definition.

People shouldn't have to give up all of that just so that some "wanna-be Steve Jobs jackass" at Microsoft can try and wedge a brilliant consumer/phone/touch/tablet GUI paradigm down the throats of all of the professional/desktop users.

ahhell said,
What the hell is the point in switching to a new OS when all you run is the old classic shell???

new OS >>>>>>>>>>>> new UI

excalpius said,

People shouldn't have to give up all of that just so that some "wanna-be Steve Jobs jackass" at Microsoft can try and wedge a brilliant consumer/phone/touch/tablet GUI paradigm down the throats of all of the professional/desktop users.

I guess you mean Sinofsky, but in all honestly:
Sinofsky < Jobs, hell I wasn't even a fan of Jobs in the first place^^

MFH said,

hell I wasn't even a fan of Jobs in the first place^^

No one who knew Steve personally was a fan. He was a complete *******. But a great salesman.

Oh, about the rest of this post. with more and more tablets and other touch enabled devices on the market, the third party is and will be Android. Which is something from Google based on Linux as you mentioned in the post. Strange that Android hasn't been mentioned, btw.

I'll be honest: I never thought of Android while doing it but it does make a lot of sense. It IS strange that I never thought about it until now. I pretty much danced around the obvious idea in my head and on the screen the entire time.

Unfortunately this will not happen because both Microsoft and Apple will destroy anyone who even comes close to them. Google can make a new operating system and get software companies and developers engaged to port their apps to it but the problem is that they would be attacked by Microsoft and Apple with patent lawsuits.

This is the sad reality we live in. 2 most toxic companies for innovation Microsoft and Apple now control the evolution of technology (mostly talking about OS stuff here).

Just see what's happening with Android. What do you think would happen if Google released a full blown OS running on some *nix grounds and started endangering both. Chrome OS is really not it and I don't think it's because Google can't make a proper OS, but because they will get into legal fight with Microsoft and Apple and that's just not in their interest for what?

I think what they will do is continue improving Android and eventually use that as some kind of grounds for the new OS that will also replace Chrome OS.

It's still not late though.. I think Google is going for that.. they merged Honeycomb and smartphone Android into one. As they get more support and continue dominating the market with Android devices I think they will just release in the future a version of Android that will run on desktops merging Chrome OS into Android and it will run all Android apps.

So at that point, they will have software and hardware support which is really a necessity for a new OS to succeed. I think they are thinking about that no doubt.

Boz said,
Random Google fanboy crap

Yeah, because MS isn't constantly innovating, right? I mean, Metro isn't innovation at all. What Microsoft should do is stick with the old desktop because of people like you that can't handle change and cry your eyes out.

You're right on the Android front, now that I think about it. I just wish it didn't have to be Google. They're another company that can be too big for their own good, sometimes.

funkydude said,

Yeah, because MS isn't constantly innovating, right? I mean, Metro isn't innovation at all. What Microsoft should do is stick with the old desktop because of people like you that can't handle change and cry your eyes out.

He's talking about MS and Apple keeping others from trying to innovate. Try reading his comment. And changing a UI isn't always innovation . . .

"With the release of the Consumer Preview for Windows 8, the internet has been up in arms about the drastic interface changes as Microsoft, in a not so subtle way, shoves Metro down our throats even more."

All this whining about this Metro stuff... I've been using Windows 8 know on my PC and laptop for work, studying, watching movies, listening to music, etc. etc.

So far I've used the Metro UI for two things:
- As a start menu
- To change the lock window background image

As long as one isn't using a tablet which actually depends on the Metro UI, there are but a few changes compared to Windows 7:
- The start menu is full screen and shows my calendar and the weather
- The system boots faster
- The lockscreen looks cooler
- The windows don't have rounded corners (which I quite like)

I really don't see the point in discussing this new start menu over and over again.

This (Metro that is) is a new way to use Windows 8 on touch screen devices, and it gives you the possibility to use your tablet on the go, come home, plug it into a dock and use it just like your good old Windows 7 PC. Or you could sit around in school, taking notes during a lecture, go to the lab, dock your tablet and get on working with a mouse and keyboard... etc. etc.

This is my first and last post about this topic.

99% of the positive comments about Metro are coming from Microsoft employees sent out by Microsoft to make everyone else think Metro is awesome because if Microsoft cared about anything else besides profits they would be letting Windows 7 users test IE10 without downloading massive ISO's. Wasn't Windows 7 supposed to undo ALL the damage that Vista did and now Microsoft is ignoring Windows 7.

LostInNull said,
I love windows 7
but i don't like metro UI and windows phone UI, both are dull.

+1, I think Microsoft are setting themselves up for a fall with Windows 8.