Is Windows 8 an indictment of OS X, Linux, all other Desktop OSes?


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thomastmc

There are very intelligent people who use computers to perform specific tasks and expect them to be as transparent as possible. They don't believe they are paid to know computers, IT is paid to provide them technical solutions that allow them to do more, faster, without being obtrusive.

In many ways, the Start Page is far superior to the Start Menu.

I edited your quote so that I could completely agree with you :)

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PGHammer

I'd say Windows 8 is just another manifestation of Microsoft's recent obsessive desire to compete with Apple and Google in every single market, rather than focusing on what they do well.

Then blame Google and Apple.

Both Google and Apple had been trying really hard to make devices (and especially non-PC devices - specifically smartphones, tablets, etc.) relevant by positioning both as low-cost alternatives to PCs, especially in terms of content consumption. Why *shouldn't* Microsoft care?

Apple is going so far as to make their own entry in the PC space - OS X - less relevant compared to iOS. Again, why shouldn't Microsoft care?

Microsoft got to where it is by owning as much of the turf (not just the high end or even the mainstream) as possible; therefore, a threat at the low end is still a threat. (In fact, isn't that where Microsoft started with DOS and Windows - the low end?)

Javik - Microsoft is not IBM. IBM has habitually wanted to deal with ordinary customers as little as possible; in fact, look at the businesses that IBM has gotten out of. The only business that IBM has gotten out of that has failed is the networked printer business; everything else is still going strong (even Lexmark - IBM's old standalone printer business). Microsoft historically has been, if anything, the opposite of IBM - even with Microsoft's push into services, it simply does not think that aloof. (Note that Microsoft isn't selling services like IBM, either.) You may be quite comfortable seeing Windows become a niche and for Microsoft to become an IBM - but what would be in it for Microsoft, let alone the millions of us that use their products and services?

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chrisj1968

This is a subjective topic based on one companies "vision" for what future computers and OS's will be like in the future. this also includes how we interact with the OS.

an indictment? -no. A challenge to how we compute? by all means.

Windows 8 is an example of perhaps what corporatism wants for us. I won't elaborate on corporatism here but, Companies seem more and more hard leaning on Cloud computing. the US Dept. of Justice, wants to monitor ALL emails and communications and cloud computing falls right in line with that. take your data away from you and force you to put it all on the cloud. that's the job of surface RT and pro. limited and tethered to the cloud. the surface doesn't hold any of the data capacity of the laptop.

So Windows 8 isn't an indictment, rather an attempt at changing the way we compute all in the name of being "hip", "in the know" and "a sheep." (in the larger sense)

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vhane
all in the name of being "hip", "in the know" and "a sheep."

I cringe every time I see someone spout off lines like this. It's lazy and facile.

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MorganX

Interesting perspective. Though I think the push to cloud computing is being driven more by the need to create revenue streams. Take Office, how much better can Office 2013 get? And how many who have it in corporate America actually need more than PowerPoint, Outlook, Word, and light Excel?

Same with Adobe moving Creative Suite to the cloud. With the 64-bit engine in CS6, with hardware GPU acceleration, why would anyone need to spend a lot of money upgrading? So move it to the clout and the subscription is the revenue stream.

There isn't much innovation in software right now outside of games, and even those have somewhat stagnated into FPS'.

Still and interesting perspective.

This is a subjective topic based on one companies "vision" for what future computers and OS's will be like in the future. this also includes how we interact with the OS.

an indictment? -no. A challenge to how we compute? by all means.

Windows 8 is an example of perhaps what corporatism wants for us. I won't elaborate on corporatism here but, Companies seem more and more hard leaning on Cloud computing. the US Dept. of Justice, wants to monitor ALL emails and communications and cloud computing falls right in line with that. take your data away from you and force you to put it all on the cloud. that's the job of surface RT and pro. limited and tethered to the cloud. the surface doesn't hold any of the data capacity of the laptop.

So Windows 8 isn't an indictment, rather an attempt at changing the way we compute all in the name of being "hip", "in the know" and "a sheep." (in the larger sense)

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Growled

Windows 8 is going to be fine. Microsoft will retool it and it will sell eventually. And as much as I like Linux it will never be a huge desktop success.

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Dashel

Windows 8 is an example of perhaps what corporatism wants for us. I won't elaborate on corporatism here but, Companies seem more and more hard leaning on Cloud computing. the US Dept. of Justice, wants to monitor ALL emails and communications and cloud computing falls right in line with that. take your data away from you and force you to put it all on the cloud. that's the job of surface RT and pro. limited and tethered to the cloud. the surface doesn't hold any of the data capacity of the laptop.

So Windows 8 isn't an indictment, rather an attempt at changing the way we compute all in the name of being "hip", "in the know" and "a sheep." (in the larger sense)

I think you are generally right, but I'd label it consumerism, not corporatism. The 'old guard' the corporate world and its support of on premise solutions is really the only guarding force to the BYOD driven consumer cloud push.

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PGHammer

Windows 8 is going to be fine. Microsoft will retool it and it will sell eventually. And as much as I like Linux it will never be a huge desktop success.

Growled, the issue Windows 8 has it that it dares to be different UI-wise from what has come before it.

Windows 8 makes the biggest UI change (according to the critics) since Windows 9x - darn right it will shake things up.

The critics get ALL the reasons why the change was made - however, they see THEMSELVES as "privileged" and "special"; hence all the whinery over the UI change.

As much as the UI changed, other than the Start menu (and all the foofaraw directly associated with it) being gone, what affect does the excision have on applications, or even the installation of applications? Even the critics admit that answer - none.

A lot of us (as users) have gotten fat and sassy (if not downright lazy-brained) by the overlong overhang of XP AND that it took two OS releases to get the Vista/7 driver model up to snuff. Therefore, those same users thought it was going to be another steady-state (read: safe) barely-evolutionary OS release from Microsoft.

How much we forget that Microsoft didn't get where it is by being safe - if you want safe, go to IBM.

Then you have Google and Apple - do you REALLY think that those two companies didn't (or don't) have plans to go after Windows itself? (In the case of Google, explain Chromebooks. In the case of Apple, explain the larger Retina-Display iPads.) As much as you may hate Steve Ballmer, he is NOT the late Admiral Isaac Kidd - who was indeed caught napping at Pearl Harbor. Late, yes - but not TOO late.

I called Windows 8 a counterattack/hedge-bet - and both strategies are proving out. The "counterattack" is composed partly of new form-factors (Ultrabooks and their progeny) and evolution of existing form-factors (such as touch-screen-but-otherwise-traditional notebooks, touchscreen AIOs, etc.); the "hedge-bet" is WindowsRT. The two-pronged strategy is indeed seriously reducing the bleeding - if not well on route to stopping it altogether. (That can, in fact, be enough - didn't Google have to take that approach by unifying the phone-centric 2.x and tablet-centric 3.x? Specifically, with 4.0 - Ice Cream Sandwich?)

Windows 8 has also been a wake-up for traditional (as in Win32) application developers (especially in terms of utilities, such as AV or disk maintenance). The biggest response has come from Condusiv (formerly Diskeeper Corporation, and prior to that, Executive Software), and Condusiv HAD to step up, as Disk Optimizer (Windows 8's included disk-maintenance program) was a threat. (It still is - unless you need features in Diskeeper 12, Disk Optimizer could well be the ONLY disk maintenance utility you'd need. I'd been a Diskeeper user since 1998, and a Diskeeper/Condusiv reseller/remarketer since 2002 - but I called it like I saw it - and I passed along the warning to Condusiv.)

Microsoft historically is not a do-things-safe company; they wouldn't be where they are if they were. (If anything, most Linux distributions are far more risk-averse than Microsoft, let alone Windows.)

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vhane

Windows 8 is an OS in transition. It's a work in progress. The reason why it exists in its current state is because Microsoft realise that they won't be able to compete with iOS and Android if they start from scratch and release a brand new tablet OS. They saw how hard it was for Windows Phone 7 to compete. So instead they decide to grab marketshare by building a tablet OS into Windows itself. Nevermind that this displeases their current users and nevermind if the result is schizophrenic for desktop use. Microsoft will weather the storm. What use is an overwhelming marketshare if not to enable exactly this kind of thing? It's not like the majority of their install base will jump ship.

Metro on top of Windows is a strategic play. This is Microsoft leveraging their huge install base into tablet relevance. It makes sense and I would have been surprised if they did it any other way. The one thing they need to be careful about is the fact they have been ****ing off developers by introducing, then deprecating so many frameworks. They need to pick something and stick with it.

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Dot Matrix

Windows 8 is an OS in transition. It's a work in progress. The reason why it exists in its current state is because Microsoft realise that they won't be able to compete with iOS and Android if they start from scratch and release a brand new tablet OS. They saw how hard it was for Windows Phone 7 to compete. So instead they decide to grab marketshare by building a tablet OS into Windows itself. Nevermind that this displeases their current users and nevermind if the result is schizophrenic for desktop use. Microsoft will weather the storm. What use is an overwhelming marketshare if not to enable exactly this kind of thing? It's not like the majority of their install base will jump ship.

Not only that, but it is needed to set the base for the next decade or so in computing technologies. As the world moves beyond the traditional desktop, Windows would face extinction if it were to remain the way it is. Take a look at touch, take a look at Leap Motion. It's these kinds of technologies that you'll see more of in the future, and trying to use those on a classic 90's desktop, just wouldn't work. It would be a disaster akin to Windows 7 tablets.

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PGHammer

Windows 8 is an OS in transition. It's a work in progress. The reason why it exists in its current state is because Microsoft realise that they won't be able to compete with iOS and Android if they start from scratch and release a brand new tablet OS. They saw how hard it was for Windows Phone 7 to compete. So instead they decide to grab marketshare by building a tablet OS into Windows itself. Nevermind that this displeases their current users and nevermind if the result is schizophrenic for desktop use. Microsoft will weather the storm. What use is an overwhelming marketshare if not to enable exactly this kind of thing? It's not like the majority of their install base will jump ship.

Metro on top of Windows is a strategic play. This is Microsoft leveraging their huge install base into tablet relevance. It makes sense and I would have been surprised if they did it any other way. The one thing they need to be careful about is the fact they have been ****ing off developers by introducing, then deprecating so many frameworks. They need to pick something and stick with it.

Exactly, vhane. It's also something that had never even been TRIED, let alone done, by anyone else. The issue for developers is that they had, by and large, gotten as "fat and sassy" as the users, if not more so - if developers can't stand the faster-paced evolution of developer tools, maybe they should get out of development. (I actually DID get out of database development due to no longer being able to keep up with the pace of changes to the toolkits - just because I did doesn't mean that I'm necessarily stupid.) Hardware changes do, and always have, impacted development - how do you think that Intel got into development tools? (Intel was into writing compilers well before their acquisition of Havok.) Also, quite frankly, a renaissance - if not a revolution - in computing has been necessary since the launch of Windows Vista - the issue with Vista is that the majority of IHVs stalled, then the users used that to make their own excuses to stall (I'm referring to corporate and enterprise users for the most part). When Windows 7 came along, the IHVs were finally ready, and the users that stalled were running out of both time AND excuses.

However, the two long overhangs led to a complacency throughout the ecostructure; everyone expected that Microsoft was going to slow down their pace of innovation to match the snail's pace of the hardware and user communities. Never mind that such a slowdown was something alien to Microsoft as company AND Microsoft as culture; Microsoft saw the creeping advance of non-PC devices (tablets, smartphones, and other hardware), simply BECAUSE the PC ecostucture had gotten nearly static. Microsoft did not, and does not, want to be rendered moot.

"First you're ripe - then you rot." Oscar "Scar" Gordon, Consort to Her Wisdom CLXVII, Glory Road by Robert A. Heinlein

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Noir Angel

Then blame Google and Apple.

Why would I do that when Apple and Google have the good sense to actually design their products properly? They don't bastardise which makes their approach more easy to tolerate.

People keep pushing the argument that the design of Windows 8 is innovation and it really is not. Once support for Windows 7 dies Microsoft will probably be losing my business and I know I'm far from being alone in that sentiment. When things are truly innovative people buy them in big numbers, sales don't start sinking like a stone. People can make all the excuses they want, the sales figures (of Windows 8 PC's and tablets) tell me everything I need to know.

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Dot Matrix

People can make all the excuses they want, the sales figures (of Windows 8 PC's and tablets) tell me everything I need to know.

Looking at the bigger picture with Windows 8, XBox One, Surface, Windows Phone, and technologies like touch, voice, and Leap Motion, there more going on here than just sales figures. But hey, what the hell does Microsoft know... I guess they should just leave the PC behind, while everything else moves on? All these things aren't going to go away, you know.

That means the PC is truly dead then, by what you are saying, because it can't evolve to play nice with these technologies without massive changes.

So, enjoy whatever it is you use, then. I can make a bet it won't be the classic desktop you're used to now.

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