I don’t usually blow my horn quite this loudly, but I wrote this two years ago, almost to the day. Three weeks from now, Microsoft is bringing in Windows 10, replacing the deservedly hated and wildly unsuccessful Windows 8. People said I was just being stubborn, refusing to “get with the program.”
Windows 10, from all reports, is a lot like Windows 7, which is what I still use on all my computers. Given the way things have turned out for Windows and Microsoft, they should have listened to me and the other few million users who said “hell no, I won’t go” to their poorly conceived operating system. Microsoft converted more computer users to Apple systems than Apple could ever have managed to do without their help.
Here’s what I wrote, two years ago. When you’re right, you’re right.
I’ve given this thought. I reviewed the video from Microsoft. I read the FAQ. I’ve read the articles in ZDNet and anything else that seems to have detailed information. I watched the video a second time. I read the email you sent me and looked at the poll results. I still can’t find any advantage for me in using — or even testing — Windows 8.1.
I don’t have a machine appropriate for testing anyhow. If I install it on a little notebook, the inadequacy of the machine would so limit what I could test I’m not sure I would learn anything meaningful. I couldn’t use such a little machine to run any important applications. I don’t even know if Chrome will run on 8.1. The information in the FAQ was vague.
Installing and testing would steal time from other projects to which I’m already committed. Others things take priority. If I could install it on one of my real working computers and use it for regular stuff I do … no, I don’t think so. I’ve heard rumors. Ugly rumors. I’m not willing to risk my computers … or waste my time. In the end, I’m merely curious about the system. And that isn’t enough motivation.
Windows 8 does not appear to be a work-oriented operating system. I’m a work-oriented user. The Dell XPS tablet I gave my son runs RT and that’s fine. RT was designed for a tablet and it does well in that environment.
But what’s in it for me? A bunch of apps I don’t need and won’t use? I have no interest in or need for basic photo editing apps. I don’t need simplified anything. I’m way past grade school versions of real tools I’ve been using for years.
Who does Windows 8.1 target? Not me. You? Anyone out there?
I understand what Microsoft is selling. The problem? I don’t want or need it. It’s not a business environment. My wish list for a new operating system is for more and better business tools. Easily organized, searchable databases for graphics, photos, and documents. Tools to help me quickly locate files on huge hard drives. A better media player for audio.
WHAT I WANT
I want an improved email client and a versatile calendar I can share on a network. I don’t want to lease or even buy it. It should come with the computer and automatically update as needed.
I want dependable, simple access to the Internet. In particular, my blog.
I don’t like Internet Explorer. I hate being prevented from going where I want because my browser is a wimp. I’m not 12 and I don’t need to be protected from myself.
Microsoft urgently needs folks like me to test drive their operating systems. They need core users — like me — to work with it, accept it, and enthusiastically endorse it. To talk it up on the Internet. To vouch for it to friends and co-workers.
Instead, we are the people most reluctant to try it and unless something dramatically changes are least likely to adopt it in the foreseeable future.
Does Windows 8.1 work? Probably with a lot of bugs. Eventually Microsoft may fix it … or give up and create a system people will want. Not nearly fast enough.
Two basic questions remain unanswered:
- Why should I switch to a new operating system that’s anti-intuitive, ill-suited to my needs, and requires I relearn basic computer tasks?
- What advantages does Windows 8.1 offer that might motivate me to use it?
The answers are “no reason” and “none.”
Two words: Why bother?
I have read every article, watched all the videos, played with my son’s RT tablet and I cannot see anything tempting — for my purposes.
Maybe in the future Microsoft will do something to change my mind. But far as I can tell, they don’t know I exist. Or don’t care. One way or the other, they’ve chosen to ignore me and everyone like me, effectively disenfranchising the whole class of business users. That’s a crazy choice for a corporation which depends on business clients. Mind blowing and well … dumb.
Does this mean that there’s no merit in this operating system? I’m sure it has value to someone, but it doesn’t have any to me. At least none I can find. And I’ve looked. I want to want it. I want to like it.
Sorry, Microsoft. Not happening for me.