Gabe Newell: I learned more in three months at Microsoft than entire time at Harvard

Valve co-founder Gabe Newell has been highly critical of Microsoft in the past year, famously calling Windows 8 "this giant sadness," but he clearly still has a lot of respect for his former employer – or at least his former co-workers.

In an interview with students through Google Hangouts provided by Code.org, Newell said the amount he learned at Microsoft far exceeded what he learned pursuing an undegraduate degree at Harvard. Newell was responding to a question asking what educational experience best prepared him for his current job, and he quickly told the following story about getting his start at Microsoft:

The most valuable educational experience for me was sort of the nontraditional one. I was going to university and went out to visit my brother – he just started at this new software company, which was the third-largest software company on the east side of Lake Washington, and I was going out to visit him, and all of a sudden he was working all the time. So rather than hanging out with me and seeing the Space Needle, I was just hanging out with him at work.

Steve Ballmer, who's currently the president, got mad that I was distracting him and said, 'Well, if you're going to be spending all your time hanging out here, you need to do something useful.'

Those first three months when I was working with people like Tom Corbett and Neil Konzen and Steve Wood, was probably the most intense and valuable educational experience I've ever had. They sort of showed me how to be a professional software developer, you know, [so] it was an incredibly vast and really significant set of lessons that I learned. 

Newell went on to say that replicating his experience would be hard, but he added that actually doing tasks associated with a desired job is the best way of preparing for a career. The most important aspect, he said, was working under people who are already "really, really good at it."

At the end of his response, Newell said he didn't want to make Harvard seem bad but noted he "learned more in three months with those guys at Microsoft than I did the entire time I was at Harvard." He added, "In Harvard, I learned how to drink beer while doing a handstand in the snow. Which, ya know, is a useful skill – but not nearly as useful as how to actually develop software."

Newell went on to drop out of Harvard and work on Windows at Microsoft for 13 years before co-founding Valve, best known as the developer behind the Half-Life franchise and Steam digital distribution service. Valve will soon take on Microsoft's Xbox One console with its own Steam Machine line of consoles. Instead of using Windows, the OS he once helped develop, the consoles will use Valve's Linux variant, SteamOS.

Source: YouTube (Code.org) via Kotaku

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It is so simple/obvious why valve would hate windows 8. Windows 8 introduces the Windows Store and Xbox Games for Windows, a direct competitor to Steam. I have had so many problems with steam and steam is so buggy, valve should be #(@*ing their pants about having some decent competition. Also MS doesn't collect as much $$ as valve does from developers.

A bottle of rum + a weekend + trying to fix a project = is more useful than years of University. (The bottle of rum is not optional).

Same thing i say to everyone who approaches me regarding learning web design. I say you can learn the basics at uni but to really get to the meat you need to get in there and start building.

Hello,

I completely agree. I went to get some degree in 5-6 years and I learned more in less than a year working than I could ever working...

But to work you gotta get a degree so it is a pain...

not surprise by a bit because some of the people inside harvard apparently don't know the capital of canada. This is the future of harvard student. brainwash program.

It appears Gabe is aware of the anti-Microsoft tsunami he became a part of and is trying to slow it down before it has the potential to bury him and his company.

As I mentioned the parallels before; we watched John Carmack also find himself at the heart of a movement bigger than himself and shove his company down paths that caused problems by trying to avoid Microsoft.

John was able to stop the movement and after Doom3 and the Quake 4 platform debacle, he was able to move forward and successfully push OpenGL to embrace the Microsoft GPU architecture and DirectX 10/11 technologies.

OpenGL 4.x is still viable and at near parity with DirectX because of people like Carmack that got past the anti-Microsoft momentum.


Maybe Gabe can do the same and not become the icon for a movement that would fail without some level of Microsoft support.

I truly hope he does.

John Carmack was a great innovator back in the day.

I think he is no longer relevant because if you ever played RAGE, you would note that the game look bad with blurry undetailed environments and texture popping everywhere.

You really need to look at genuine big time players - Crysis, Battlefield, COD, Bioshock, Witcher, and Far Cry. Those games LOOK EXCELLENT. And I confident most of them use DirectX.

Gabe Newell is an idiot man child because he (1) trolled Windows users by trying to prove that DirectX is inferior because a horrible outdate Windows XP era graphics API does not compete with OpenGL - instead of a fairer comparison w/ DirectX 10+ (2) threw a rage fit over Windows 8 which gives better in-game performance and expands Windows to tablets - which means profit. (3) Focused on profits and Free To Play Model instead of developing the epic called HL3.

Edited by _Alexander, Dec 12 2013, 3:55am :

_Alexander said,
John Carmack was a great innovator back in the day.

I think he is no longer relevant because if you ever played RAGE, you would note that the game look bad with blurry undetailed environments and texture popping everywhere.

You really need to look at genuine big time players - Crysis, Battlefield, COD, Bioshock, Witcher, and Far Cry. Those games LOOK EXCELLENT.

You realise RAGE's texture streaming technology is the software precursor to what became Tiled Resources in DirectX 11.2 and Sparse Textures in OpenGL 4.4, right?

Not sure about you, but I think that makes the guy pretty damn relevant.

Athernar said,

You realise RAGE's texture streaming technology is the software precursor to what became Tiled Resources in DirectX 11.2 and Sparse Textures in OpenGL 4.4, right?

Not sure about you, but I think that makes the guy pretty damn relevant.


In RAGE it sure is an unfinished and shouldn't have made it into the final product.
The whole game looked like very 1999 resolution textures with filters applied on top. And don't get me started as how boring it is.

_Alexander said,

In RAGE it sure is an unfinished and shouldn't have made it into the final product.

It wasn't unfinished, it was a early software implementation of what is now done with hardware. Thanks to the adoption of the technique in silicon, drivers and the APIs.

Carmack laid the groundwork yet again, and you in your ignorance have the gall to say he isn't relevant?

Athernar said,

It wasn't unfinished, it was a early software implementation of what is now done with hardware. Thanks to the adoption of the technique in silicon, drivers and the APIs.

Carmack laid the groundwork yet again, and you in your ignorance have the gall to say he isn't relevant?


I hope he contributes more to DirectX's future.
But, if I were to remember a famous developer for a product, it wouldn't be RAGE it would be Quake 4.

But that goes off the topic - I doubt any Windows patriot can forgive Gabe Newell.

_Alexander said,

But that goes off the topic - I doubt any Windows patriot can forgive Gabe Newell.

Anyone that calls themselves a "Windows Patriot" is an idiot, plain and simple.

Fanboyism does nothing but harm the consumer and the author.

Athernar said,

Anyone that calls themselves a "Windows Patriot" is an idiot, plain and simple.

Fanboyism does nothing but harm the consumer and the author.


Looks like someone is not a Windows fan.

You got to take a side - Apple, Google, or Microsoft.

Edited by _Alexander, Dec 12 2013, 5:09am :

Alexander, you should grow up and stop calling respectable, very influential, very relevant and very productive people idiots. It makes you look like an idiot, and I'm not saying it to insult you (and don't try to claim that I'm insulting you). You clearly have very little knowledge, you have no idea what you're talking about, and only very little has been pointed out a little earlier about the nonsense you wrote. I'm not holding this against you, but have some respect first and it will help you personally as well.

Athernar said,

You never did get back to me on the Portal 2 on PS3 point by the way.

I didn't realize I had a stalker, should I be flattered?

I don't see a PM from you, and I have no idea what you are referring to. Not all of us can hear the voices in your head.

I have no idea what your point was supposed to be, to even offer a response. Was it about iD? Valve? Carmack? The Source Engine?


Edited by zhangm, Dec 12 2013, 6:59pm :

_Alexander said,

Looks like someone is not a Windows fan.

You got to take a side - Apple, Google, or Microsoft.


you missed the /s tag, i hope

_Alexander said,
You got to take a side - Apple, Google, or Microsoft.

No, you don't. Be pragmatic and choose the product from the manufacturer that best suits your needs. There's nothing wrong with using Google to search the internet from your Macbook running Windows.

Majesticmerc said,

No, you don't. Be pragmatic and choose the product from the manufacturer that best suits your needs. There's nothing wrong with using Google to search the internet from your Macbook running Windows.

This guy gets it. I happily use both Google and MS services running on various PC's in flavours of Windows and Linux whilst relaxing in the evening on my iPad whilst using a Android phone for work and a WP8X for personal.

We have so much choice these days and some people want to ruin it all by treating each company as a separate religion!

Mobius Enigma said,

I didn't realize I had a stalker, should I be flattered?

I don't see a PM from you, and I have no idea what you are referring to. Not all of us can hear the voices in your head.

I have no idea what your point was supposed to be, to even offer a response. Was it about iD? Valve? Carmack? The Source Engine?

You must have a faulty memory or be delusional if you cannot remember a comment thread ("Valve joins Linux Foundation as part of its SteamOS push") from mere days ago where you spewed forth the exact same conspiracy theory nonsense.

But please, go ahead and run away from reality yet again.

_Alexander said,
I think he is no longer relevant because if you ever played RAGE,

Stopped reading here.
The guy is a genius, and I'd suggest spending a few hours of the coming weeks listening to his quakecon speeches, and maybe trying to understand what he's saying.

Athernar said,

You must have a faulty memory or be delusional if you cannot remember a comment thread ("Valve joins Linux Foundation as part of its SteamOS push") from mere days ago where you spewed forth the exact same conspiracy theory nonsense.

But please, go ahead and run away from reality yet again.

I responded, just for you.

The reason I didn't remember the post, was your reference to Portal and the PS3, which is something I was NOT talking about and specifically was in agreement with you in my response about Gabe's personal intentions, which is why I overlooked it and didn't respond to it originally.

If you want to keep a conversation, at least try to retain context to the same people you are responding.

Mobius Enigma said,

I responded, just for you.

The reason I didn't remember the post, was your reference to Portal and the PS3, which is something I was NOT talking about and specifically was in agreement with you in my response about Gabe's personal intentions, which is why I overlooked it and didn't respond to it originally.

If you want to keep a conversation, at least try to retain context to the same people you are responding.

I'll reply here two both posts as not to make a mess of things.

If that was your intention, your argument doesn't really make a whole lot of sense. I'm not sure how you can think a perceived "internet movement" can push a company (especially one like Valve that isn't shareholder beholden) down any path.

ID "died" because they were never really all that great at making "games" in the first place, Carmack is a master of programming - not game design. A lack of gameplay is to blame, not that Carmack dislikes DirectX.

Athernar said,

I'll reply here two both posts as not to make a mess of things.

If that was your intention, your argument doesn't really make a whole lot of sense. I'm not sure how you can think a perceived "internet movement" can push a company (especially one like Valve that isn't shareholder beholden) down any path.

ID "died" because they were never really all that great at making "games" in the first place, Carmack is a master of programming - not game design. A lack of gameplay is to blame, not that Carmack dislikes DirectX.

I hope you are right, and I'm wrong about the parallels between Carmack and Gabe. However, here is what I see...


With Carmack's statements about Direct3D, it wasn't just an 'internet movement'.

His words influenced a large segment of the tech industry writers, and media coverage and subsequently actions within his own company, and decisions made in OpenGL advancements.

This fueled their support to make Linux a gaming platform, which is very much analogous to what is happening with Gabe and his company involvements.
(http://www.linuxjournal.com/article/2438?page=0,1)

In retrospect, you will find that Carmack has doubts about Linux as a gaming platform, and more specifically his recent comments about Gabe/Valve/Steam trying to use Linux as a gaming platform.
(http://gamepolitics.com/2013/1...steam-machines#.UqvK1mR3uwk)

There are a lot of technical discussions on what ID and his participation in OpenGL and Linux did right and wrong, and how this moved them from the biggest name in gaming to a footnote. (Which I fear will happen with Valve/Steam as well.)


As for the gameplay argument, it is valid for later titles, but coming from the era when ID was on top, it was specifically their gameplay that set them apart.

Doom was a 2D game engine, so as they ID was moving to a real 3D game engine, the world listened to Carmack as he saw OpenGL as the future of gaming and not Direct3D.

If it wasn't for Carmack and others like him, OpenGL would have been left as a non-gaming 3D framework for engineering. Ironically, Carmack's focus on OpenGL achieved what Microsoft had already tried to do with OpenGL.

Microsoft wanted to move OpenGL to gaming several years earlier and their attempts were rejected. It was their intention to merge OpenGL with 3D hardware designed for gaming, and when OpenGL rejected this direction, they created WinG and Direct3D.

As Direct3D matured and Microsoft's gaming contributions changed the GPU industry in 2000-200, the legitimate concerns Carmack had about DirectX were no longer valid with DX8.1.

This is when ID's engine was hurt by avoiding the Microsoft contributions, as it wasn't just DirectX anymore, it was defining how the GPU worked with VS/PS technology and Microsoft creation of user shader language.

OpenGL and companies dependent on it fell behind, and it took NVidia to port MS's shader language to Cg and on to be used with OpenGL.

By OpenGL falling behind hardware, this hurt Doom3 and other engine work ID was doing at the time. They were forced to adapt with Doom3, but didn't go far enough with Quake 4 and the engine failing to run well on the PS3 and Xbox 360.

At this time Linux was no longer able to offer gaming performance necessary to compete with Windows. It wasn't until NVidia and ATI stepped in to create their own proprietary layers to bypass the Linux video interface to get close to be able to support the newer hardware and gaming features.

This problem with Linux and FreeBSD still exists, and if AMD or NVidia yank support, these kernels do not have the driver or video interfaces to support modern 3D gaming, yet. (In contrast NT inherently has these interfaces, and can add on new technologies easily. - Another advantage of NT's object model.)

If you continue to follow just the OpenGL lineage, it was almost dead at version 3.x, having fallen way behind the functionality of DirectX and the needed functionality for the newer generation of GPU technology, once again.

This is where people like Carmack helped OpenGL get over the anti-Microsoft ideology, and with OpenGL 4.x they copied and used DirectX features and technologies to support the new GPU architectures and new UMA technologies.

OpenGL once again is viable and lives on because they stopped 'avoiding' Microsoft based technologies.

I just see too many parallels between Carmack and Gabe and becoming part of something bigger than they anticipated, and Valve/Steam repeating the same mistakes that ID, OpenGL, and the Linux gaming movement made all based on the early words of dissent from one person about early Direct3D technologies.

Steam/Valve could pull off a brilliant change in the gaming industry, but the odds and technology is stacked against them as it currently exists. And that is assuming that Microsoft won't continue to hit home runs with advancing 3D rendering and gaming technologies, which they probably will.


Mobius Enigma said,

<snip>

I don't think you can really compare Carmack/ID and Gabe + Valve honestly. As influential as Carmack is in the direction of graphics, he didn't/doesn't have the advantage of Steam - or consistently high-quality game releases.

Athernar said,

I don't think you can really compare Carmack/ID and Gabe + Valve honestly. As influential as Carmack is in the direction of graphics, he didn't/doesn't have the advantage of Steam - or consistently high-quality game releases.

I actually wish Steam well, and hope they can carve out a niche market. So in that context, I hope you are right that they won't get caught up avoiding technology based on ideology. They do have a collection of games to help, but with dated titles, it could be as mild as another glorified MAME type project.

I am a bit disturbed by the notion that we are seeing another push for Linux to be the new gaming OS. As an OS engineer, the idea that Linux would be as 'good' or a 'better' gaming platform can still make me twitch.

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Id_Software)
Note the section dedicated to Linux gaming, and follow some of the reference links.

So much of it reads like a lot of recent articles today, just substitute Gabe/Valve/SteamOS for John/ID/Linux.

I do realize I am speculating about the future correlation between Gabe and John, but I can't help but be weary watching people I liked in the industry get caught up in bad decisions.

I truly did enjoy the conversation here. Until we knock heads on another subject, take care.

*lol, before taking on such a tall order, maybe they should beat the ouya first. next gen consoles just sold 4 million in a window of two weeks. gaming pcs with a gimped OS is a recipe for failure. if it was windows loaded,only then would I consider these having a chance at some level of success.

ZipZapRap said,
Damn, he's looking old.

Have you seen a picture of Bill Gates lately?

These industry pioneers are all around the same age. This is just what happens when you get past middle age.

In all seriousness, college cannot emulate the work environment of a real company. Work attitudes are way different.

neonspark said,
He never learned to count windows 8 users because they are kicking his predictions to the ground.

Actually the number prove he was right all along, not only is 8 miles behind 7 in terms of adoption, but it's slowing down in relative terms too.

Athernar said,

Actually the number prove he was right all along, not only is 8 miles behind 7 in terms of adoption, but it's slowing down in relative terms too.

Yep. Windows 8 has flatlined in the past few months.

Lord Method Man said,

Yep. Windows 8 has flatlined in the past few months.

Um.... that would be because it's not being sold anymore. Windows 8.1 has taken over most windows 8 growth.

ModernMech said,

Um.... that would be because it's not being sold anymore. Windows 8.1 has taken over most windows 8 growth.

Recent statistics include both 8 and 8.1, and it's still not going anywhere fast.

Acer1 said,
In all seriousness, college cannot emulate the work environment of a real company. Work attitudes are way different.

Exactly.

_Alexander said,
For a gamer the main reason to upgrade is the increased performance Windows 8 offers.

Also W8/8.1 with a SSD is an incredible speed boost, even compared to W7 with SSD. W8x is way more optimized for SSD/Flash Memory than W7 was. So there are more advantages to W8x than some people realize.

Athernar said,

Recent statistics include both 8 and 8.1, and it's still not going anywhere fast.

Not true at all. See these data from statcounter:

http://i.imgur.com/mUydg9w.png

Before 8.1, Windows 8 was growing at a rate of 0.011. After 8.1, combined they are growing at a rate of 0.022. It's now breached 10% market share and it's going nowhere but up.

Athernar said,

Sorry to burst your bubble, but relative to Windows 7 - 8 is still going nowhere fast.

http://betanews.com/2013/12/09...ming-compared-to-windows-7/

You're comparing numbers from 2009 and 2013. In 2009, the computing landscape was completely different. Since 2009, over 1 Billion PCs have been put into the market place, and the competition between OSs has grown with iOS and Android tablets competing directly with desktop sales.

Want to know which OS is going nowhere fast? Windows 7.

http://i.imgur.com/DchIB5V.png

Actually, Windows 8 is growing faster than any OS currently on the market and has been since its release, including iOS and Android.

ModernMech said,

You're comparing numbers from 2009 and 2013. In 2009, the computing landscape was completely different. Since 2009, over 1 Billion PCs have been put into the market place, and the competition between OSs has grown with iOS and Android tablets competing directly with desktop sales.

Want to know which OS is going nowhere fast? Windows 7.

http://i.imgur.com/DchIB5V.png

Actually, Windows 8 is growing faster than any OS currently on the market and has been since its release, including iOS and Android.

You're supporting my argument, the fact that Windows 8 now targets more than one market segment (Tablets) and is STILL significantly behind 7. Absolutely pitiful.

Yup, Windows 8 is dead in the water and Gabe was right. Fact.

Athernar said,

You're supporting my argument, the fact that Windows 8 now targets more than one market segment (Tablets) and is STILL significantly behind 7. Absolutely pitiful.

Yup, Windows 8 is dead in the water and Gabe was right. Fact.

It doesn't support that conclusion at all. Tablets are supplanting PC sales, not adding to them. All that has done for Microsoft is offer more competitors.

You keep using conclusory arguments and calling them facts. The only facts here have been presented by me.

Fact: Windows 8 is growing faster than any OS, mobile or otherwise since 2012.
Fact: Windows 8 uptake has increased since the release of Windows 8.1
Fact: Windows 7 is declining in market share and has been stagnant since 2012 when Windows 8 was released.

Here's another fact for you: taking data collected at different times and under different circumstances and assumptions and drawing conclusions without any normalization is one of the biggest rookie statistician mistakes. That's why you can only find these sorts of comparisons from journalists and armchair commentators like yourself pretending to be statisticians. You want to parrot that ignorant nonsense ad infinitum? Be my guest. I won't stand in the way of you making yourself look foolish.

ModernMech said,

It doesn't support that conclusion at all. Tablets are supplanting PC sales, not adding to them. All that has done for Microsoft is offer more competitors.

You keep using conclusory arguments and calling them facts. The only facts here have been presented by me.

Here's another fact for you: taking data collected at different times and under different circumstances and assumptions and drawing conclusions without any normalization is one of the biggest rookie statistician mistakes. That's why you can only find these sorts of comparisons from journalists and armchair commentators like yourself pretending to be statisticians. You want to parrot that ignorant nonsense ad infinitum? Be my guest. I won't stand in the way of you making yourself look foolish.

Oh how adorable, attempting to spin statistics to support your weak argument. Let's take a quick look shall we.

ModernMech said,

Fact: Windows 8 is growing faster than any OS, mobile or otherwise since 2012.

Since we're talking in relation to Windows 7 here, this one is completely irrelevant.

ModernMech said,

Fact: Windows 8 uptake has increased since the release of Windows 8.1

Yet more spin, nor was the increase in uptake was not disputed. The significance however was.

ModernMech said,

Fact: Windows 7 is declining in market share and has been stagnant since 2012 when Windows 8 was released.

Completely unsurprising with 7 likely hitting saturation and OEMs naturally being forced to take up 8.

So yes, Windows 8 is dead in the water, miles behind Windows 7's market share. Fact.

Athernar said,

Oh how adorable, attempting to spin statistics to support your weak argument. Let's take a quick look shall we.

It's really hard to take your condesention to heart when you're not speaking from a standpoint that is factually verifiable, as again you tout some unpersuasive conclusory statements as fact. Do you even know what dead in the water means? I'm starting to wonder, so here maybe this may help you:

http://www.usingenglish.com/re...ioms/dead+in+the+water.html

"If something is dead in the water, it isn't going anywhere or making any progress."

Windows 8 has surpassed 10% worlwide marketshare, and again, is growing faster than any OS in the world is able to right now. That growth is only accelerating. That is the exact *opposite* of dead in the water.

You can pretend this is not significant and point out that an OS released almost half a decade ago grew at a faster rate *back then*, but that has no relevence in today's market. We are here on the verge of 2014; it's not 2009 anymore. In 2009, the only competition Windows 7 had was Windows Vista, regarded as the worst OS in history by many. Now the competition for Windows 8 is not only Windows 7, regarded as the best OS by many, but also iOS, Android, ChromeOS, and even OSX is more competitive than ever.

You can't point to an OS that is more successful today. You simply cannot. To call that "dead in the water"? Simply baffling.

Watching you squirm around trying your hardest to justify the trainwreck that is Windows 8 is amusing.

ModernMech said,

You can pretend this is not significant and point out that an OS released almost half a decade ago grew at a faster rate *back then*, but that has no relevence in today's market. We are here on the verge of 2014; it's not 2009 anymore.

Ah, nothing like the foul odor of spin in the morning. Using language like "almost half a decade" to give the illusion of a much larger timeframe than actually exists, a fine example of hyperbole. You ever consider running for office?

"It doesn't matter b-because it was four years ago!!1111" isn't really a proper argument either.

ModernMech said,

In 2009, the only competition Windows 7 had was Windows Vista, regarded as the worst OS in history by many.

Oh, XP magically disappeared did it?

ModernMech said,

Now the competition for Windows 8 is not only Windows 7, regarded as the best OS by many, but also iOS, Android, ChromeOS, and even OSX is more competitive than ever.

ChromeOS, OS X? Bwahahaha, don't make me laugh. And 7 is no more loved than XP was in 2009, and yet 7 still managed to dethrone it.

That aside, do you really expect anyone to believe that the presence of iOS and Android on one specific sub-segment of the tablet market (Which has apparantly completely replaced the desktop PC) is to blame for 8's inability to match (or even approach) 7?

For someone that likes to parade around as Mr. Statsmaster, I would of thought you would have at least had a graph to back up your "unpersuasive conclusory statements".

ModernMech said,

You can't point to an OS that is more successful today. You simply cannot. To call that "dead in the water"? Simply baffling.

Get back to me when Windows 8 manages to surpass 7's market share.

Squirming? Look at yourself. You haven't added a relevant fact or logical argument to the discussion since 3 posts ago. Instead, you've resorted to an absurd amount of theatrics and hysterics. This tells me you've been backed into a corner and you can do nothing more than try to nit pick my words or make fun of them.

"It doesn't matter b-because it was four years ago!!1111" isn't really a proper argument either.

That's not the argument. You need to pay attention. The argument is since 2009 there has been an injection of over 1 billion PCs into the market, consumer buying habits have shifted dramatically toward smartphones and tablets, and the competitive landscape of the OS market has changed. Thus when you take a percentage from 2009 and a percentage 4 years later, you're not comparing similar figures. Try to publish your conclusions in any peer reviewed journal and you'll be laughed out of the field.

If you don't understand this, seriously, take some basic statistics. You mock me by calling me "Mr. Statsmaster" but your arguments display a shocking level of misunderstanding of how to work with numbers like these. I'm just trying to help you by explaining this nice and slowly, but if you don't want to help yourself that's fine.

Oh, XP magically disappeared did it? ... 7 is no more loved than XP was in 2009, and yet 7 still managed to dethrone it.

Windows XP had been losing market share since 2008 when Windows 7 was released. History shows us that both consumers and businesses were chomping at the bit to get rid of XP and Vista. While 7 eventually surpassed XP 2 years after launch, it also never attained the peak market share of XP. Is Windows 7 a failure for not doing achieving this? No? And yet Windows 8 is "dead in the water" failure for not meeting Windows 7 market share after just over year? Seems to me like moving goal posts.

That aside, do you really expect anyone to believe that the presence of iOS and Android on one specific sub-segment of the tablet market (Which has apparantly completely replaced the desktop PC) is to blame for 8's inability to match (or even approach) 7?

"one specific sub-segment"... and you call me out for using language to my advantage. That "specific sub-segment" is one of the fastest growing segments in computing, and yes, tablets along with smartphones *are* working to supplant PC sales given changing consumer needs. i.e. people who would have been happy to buy a new PC with only a choice of Windows 7 to replace their XP or Vista machine in 2009 are now able to buy a new tablet in 2013 with a choice of iOS, Android, and Windows 8, and they probably keep the Windows 7 desktop.

You laugh at OSX? According to statcounter OSX has 60% more marketshare now than it did in 2009 (7.5%). iOS alone has as much marketshare now than OSX did in 2009 (4.7%). iOS and Android combined have almost as much market share now as OSX (7.06%).

So yes, these are major forces acting against Windows 8 that did not exist in 2009. Chrome OS not so much, but it's just one more choice people have that they did not in 2009. But release an OS like Windows 7 today and I doubt it would see as much success as it did in 2009.

Get back to me when Windows 8 manages to surpass 7's market share.

Sure thing. Windows 8 is increasing. Windows 7 is not. Like I said the only thing "dead in the water" right now is Windows 7.

ModernMech said,
Squirming? Look at yourself. You haven't added a relevant fact or logical argument to the discussion since 3 posts ago. Instead, you've resorted to an absurd amount of theatrics and hysterics. This tells me you've been backed into a corner and you can do nothing more than try to nit pick my words or make fun of them.

Oh come now ModernMech, the least you could do is come up with something better than a glorified "no u".

ModernMech said,

That's not the argument. You need to pay attention. The argument is since 2009 there has been an injection of over 1 billion PCs into the market, consumer buying habits have shifted dramatically toward smartphones and tablets, and the competitive landscape of the OS market has changed. Thus when you take a percentage from 2009 and a percentage 4 years later, you're not comparing similar figures. Try to publish your conclusions in any peer reviewed journal and you'll be laughed out of the field.

If you don't understand this, seriously, take some basic statistics. You mock me by calling me "Mr. Statsmaster" but your arguments display a shocking level of misunderstanding of how to work with numbers like these. I'm just trying to help you by explaining this nice and slowly, but if you don't want to help yourself that's fine.

I'm still not seeing any of your fancy little graphs to back up your unconvincing conclusory statements.

ModernMech said,

Windows XP had been losing market share since 2008 when Windows 7 was released. History shows us that both consumers and businesses were chomping at the bit to get rid of XP and Vista. While 7 eventually surpassed XP 2 years after launch, it also never attained the peak market share of XP. Is Windows 7 a failure for not doing achieving this? No? And yet Windows 8 is "dead in the water" failure for not meeting Windows 7 market share after just over year? Seems to me like moving goal posts.

Oh? Would you care to explain the sales surge XP experienced in 2009? Or will you handwave off netbooks? (Please do, it'll be especially hilarious.)

You might like to think it's moving the goalposts, but for someone that likes to constantly whine about different market variables, you seem to be quite happy to wilfully ignore product variables like the abnormally long lifespan XP had due to the Longhorn project's failings.

ModernMech said,

"one specific sub-segment"... and you call me out for using language to my advantage. That "specific sub-segment" is one of the fastest growing segments in computing, and yes, tablets along with smartphones *are* working to supplant PC sales given changing consumer needs. i.e. people who would have been happy to buy a new PC with only a choice of Windows 7 to replace their XP or Vista machine in 2009 are now able to buy a new tablet in 2013 with a choice of iOS, Android, and Windows 8, and they probably keep the Windows 7 desktop.

Please tell me more about the success of Windows RT vs Windows 8.

ARM tablets are just as much trash as the netbooks that preceeded them.

ModernMech said,

You laugh at OSX? According to statcounter OSX has 60% more marketshare now than it did in 2009 (7.5%). iOS alone has as much marketshare now than OSX did in 2009 (4.7%). iOS and Android combined have almost as much market share now as OSX (7.06%).

So yes, these are major forces acting against Windows 8 that did not exist in 2009. Chrome OS not so much, but it's just one more choice people have that they did not in 2009. But release an OS like Windows 7 today and I doubt it would see as much success as it did in 2009.

Oooh, 7.5% marketshare, that's even more pitiful than Windows 8's ~10%.

I'll ask a second time, do you really think increased competition against Windows RT's market segment is to blame for the entirety of Windows 8's market share issues? Again, for someone that likes to tout his knowledge of statistics, you've still yet to provide any proof in this regard. Rather you've just made yourself a hypocrite by making the same "conclusory statements" you attack me for.

ModernMech said,

Sure thing. Windows 8 is increasing. Windows 7 is not. Like I said the only thing "dead in the water" right now is Windows 7.

Yet more conclusory statements! Here's another for you: Windows 8, dead in the water with absolutely pathetic market share.

Really now, give up this silly charade of yours. It's obvious your motivations here are to push Windows 8, rather than push the facts - otherwise you'd have simply dropped a comprehensive set of graphs in the first place, rather than waste time with your own "conclusory statements" wrapped up in a politician's finest spin.

I'm still not seeing any of your fancy little graphs to back up your unconvincing conclusory statements.

The thing about conclusory statements is that they are often easily disproved. You have not made any effort to do so. The *fact* that over 1 billion PCs have been sold since 2009 implicitly means that a percentage from 2009 is different from a percentage in 2013. This is an issue of basic math that doesn't need a graph to explain. I'm sorry that I didn't realize you needed this explained to you.

Oh? Would you care to explain the sales surge XP experienced in 2009? Or will you handwave off netbooks?

I see no surge in 2009: http://gs.statcounter.com/#os-ww-weekly-200827-201350
I only see a sustained downward trend starting in 2008.

you seem to be quite happy to wilfully ignore product variables like the abnormally long lifespan XP had due to the Longhorn project's failings.

I'm not ignoring them at all. I'm recognizing the fact that you are ignoring variables like Windows 7 was released at the peak of the desktop computing era and faced a surge of pent up demand due to Vista, whereas Windows 8 was released during the PC era's decline and face no such pent up demand.

Oooh, 7.5% marketshare, that's even more pitiful than Windows 8's ~10%.

7.5 + 7.1 = 14.6%... that's a net 10% that does not belong to a Microsoft OS that Windows 7 did not have to wrestle away in 2009, but Windows 8 has to face today. Mock it all you want, but your inability to see the significance of these numbers is what's informing your incorrect conclusions.

I'll ask a second time, do you really think increased competition against Windows RT's market segment is to blame for the entirety of Windows 8's market share issues? Again, for someone that likes to tout his knowledge of statistics

iOS and Android aren't "Windows RT market segment". They are competing against desktop PCs and Windows 8 and they're listed in the statistics right alongside Windows 8 today. As for statistics, you only need to look as far as the ones I've brought up countless times.

Look, we're arguing in circles now so I'll simply restate my point for a conclusion. 2013 is different from 2009, and success today looks different than it did back then. Conditions existed then that caused Windows 7 to grow at the rate it did. Conditions exist today that cause Windows 8 to grow slower. Despite this, Windows 8 has sold over 200 million copies and has attained sustained growth and pierced the 10% marketshare milestone, at a time when PC sales are declining and the OS market is seeing increased competition from new form factors and operating systems. You want to call that dead in the water and a failure? Fine. That does not change the fact that no other contemporary OS can achieve the same success.

ModernMech said,

The thing about conclusory statements is that they are often easily disproved. You have not made any effort to do so. The *fact* that over 1 billion PCs have been sold since 2009 implicitly means that a percentage from 2009 is different from a percentage in 2013. This is an issue of basic math that doesn't need a graph to explain. I'm sorry that I didn't realize you needed this explained to you.

Of course the numbers behind the percentage is different, that's the whole reason we use percentages in the first place. I'm sorry that I didn't realize you needed this explained to you.

ModernMech said,

I see no surge in 2009: http://gs.statcounter.com/#os-ww-weekly-200827-201350
I only see a sustained downward trend starting in 2008.

See: Netbooks.

ModernMech said,

I'm not ignoring them at all. I'm recognizing the fact that you are ignoring variables like Windows 7 was released at the peak of the desktop computing era and faced a surge of pent up demand due to Vista, whereas Windows 8 was released during the PC era's decline and face no such pent up demand.

A surge of pent up demand? Hah. It took years for 7 to equal XP's firmly entrenched market share (an advantage 7 lacks), yet another case of you using language to misrepresent the situation.

ModernMech said,

7.5 + 7.1 = 14.6%... that's a net 10% that does not belong to a Microsoft OS that Windows 7 did not have to wrestle away in 2009, but Windows 8 has to face today. Mock it all you want, but your inability to see the significance of these numbers is what's informing your incorrect conclusions.

Oh wow, 14%! How utterly groundbreaking! I bet Microsoft are absolutely terrified right now of GNU/Linux's current sub-integer market share on the consumer market too.

ModernMech said,

iOS and Android aren't "Windows RT market segment". They are competing against desktop PCs and Windows 8 and they're listed in the statistics right alongside Windows 8 today. As for statistics, you only need to look as far as the ones I've brought up countless times.

Hahaha, and there goes the last shred of your credibility. ARM tablets are nowhere close to the use case for desktop PCs, to say they compete with them is absurd.

ModernMech said,

Look, we're arguing in circles now so I'll simply restate my point for a conclusion. 2013 is different from 2009, and success today looks different than it did back then. Conditions existed then that caused Windows 7 to grow at the rate it did. Conditions exist today that cause Windows 8 to grow slower. Despite this, Windows 8 has sold over 200 million copies and has attained sustained growth and pierced the 10% marketshare milestone, at a time when PC sales are declining and the OS market is seeing increased competition from new form factors and operating systems. You want to call that dead in the water and a failure? Fine. That does not change the fact that no other contemporary OS can achieve the same success.

No matter how many years go by, success will never look like ~10% share on two sucessor OS compared to their predecessor's ~45% share.

Athernar said,

Oh how adorable, attempting to spin statistics to support your weak argument. Let's take a quick look shall we.

Since we're talking in relation to Windows 7 here, this one is completely irrelevant.

Yet more spin, nor was the increase in uptake was not disputed. The significance however was.

Completely unsurprising with 7 likely hitting saturation and OEMs naturally being forced to take up 8.

So yes, Windows 8 is dead in the water, miles behind Windows 7's market share. Fact.

You seem to be determined to prove something about Windows 8, yet it isn't clear other than you don't like it.

Windows 7 was an anomalous release for Microsoft, being the only consumer version of Windows that was well received and not requiring new hardware technologies.

Windows 7 was designed to fit the existing OEM hardware models.

Windows 8 was designed to change the existing OEM hardware models.

The majority of Windows 8 specific hardware didn't become available until late 2013, with the full push of hardware parity with Windows 8.1 hardware not being released until November of this year.

Seriously, go look at all the new notebook/tablet products from every major PC maker. 95% of all their new products are designed for and around Windows 8.1. You won't see people buying a flip-tablet design and then throw Windows 7 on it, reducing its functionality.

There is also a difference between consumer sales and it can't be mixed with enterprise market share, without proper understanding.

Windows 7 is still getting an surge in sales from the business world. This is from migration and investment planning and set in place back in 2010. They will continue to finish these rollouts, and are irrelevant to Windows 8, but will continue to hold Windows 7 percentages up.
(There are many that skipped Windows 7 or have the resources and are already planning their Windows 8.1 migration schedule, using custom Modern UI Apps and killing off older internal software solutions.)

It is also the same 'enterprise' market share that keeps XP in high numbers. XP isn't holding on to the consumer market. People are NOT keeping 10 year old computers just because they love XP.

The funny part of these arguments, isn't that Windows 8 is a failure, but it is a failure compared to Windows 7. Microsoft has always competed with their prior versions, and it doesn't matter to them. (XP competed with Win98, Win7 competed with XP, etc)

Windows 8 has nothing to fear, it is doing better than Vista, and doing better than OS X. Even if you want to dismiss the current Windows 8 market share, it has only just begun with the massive new hardware offerings from EVERY major PC OEM in the past two months, and will continue to grow considerably in 2014.

This is my final try.. I don't think you are evil or ignorant, in fact I like some of your posts and find myself in agreement. I don't comment on the things I agree with or when someone like you have stated essentially the same thing I would have written.

Take the olive branch, and don't get caught in your hatred for Windows 8 and be blinded to more complex circumstances that are needed to understand PC marketshare and what it means. I could be very wrong about Windows 8.1, but based on the metrics I see and use, it is going to do just fine.

(Windows 8.1 also has some brilliant technologies all the way from the kernel to the new API sets that never get discussed that do help consumers and progressing technology.)


Even the information I offer above, is only a tiny fraction of why the industry looks like it does, and I'm trying to throw it out in basic layman terms for anyone reading this get a base understanding that they can do further research if they want to understand more.

Take care, and don't get caught in hatred of any product to where it consumes you.

It's certainly true for me. My 4 years in the industry have been much more informative than my 4 years at university. Not so much academically, but certainly in terms of "what you were taught is the perfect way, now you're going to learn how it's really done".

I can agree with this but there are also things taught at a university that you don't necessarily get in the workforce unless you shadow someone for a long time and sit in on many meetings. For my Public Health undergraduate degree, I learned more about public speaking, PowerPoint presentations, writing and even math. These classes were all very valuable in securing a Help Desk job, just to get into IT, and then played a big role in being promoted over the years from being the technical writer for our Help Desk and on to becoming a systems administrator and managing projects such as our SharePoint upgrade. I think you have a good edge on moving up in the workforce if you learn these skills in a university system over someone who didn't go and/or hasn't learned/crafted those skills.