I’m the last guy (at least I believe for nowadays) you’d find blogging about technology. It’s almost like talking publicly about the environment. Everybody has a screwed-up opinion, and a majority of the people standing around, pretend to know what will work, and just absolutely know everything that matters. That is kind of why I tried talking about the difference between opinions and knowledge at one point of time, but bleh.
And the Windows 8, added with my newfound joblessness and willingness to write/improve my writing, is cool enough to make me write about it. Now, if you’ve not seen the windows 8 video, considering that I have, there’s something wrong with you. So I’m going to presume that you have.
I may make some references to what John Gruber says here too, so you might want to read that beforehand.
I love innovative design. Like love it. I think one would die without that. That was one of the reasons Windows 7 never really burned my soul up so much. Doesn’t it look much better? Yes, it does. But it doesn’t look different. It’s just the same boring piece of shit we’re all bleeding bored with. At least I am. And that there, is an opinion, and I know it. But I’ll still state it as a fact, for the fun of it. The windows (98 too, actually, to) xp to vista to 7 has been pretty much zero progress in terms of design. When I’m saying design here, I’m not referring to the quality of visual elements at all. I’m referring to how it looks. Which might be tough to explain. You might think you get it, after you’ve seen the windows 8 video, thinking oh yeah, windows 8 looks a lot different. But I’ll give an example of what kind of slow and soft modifications too, I would count as changed design. What feature makes me drool the most, about the Mac OS X Lion? The Launchpad. That’s the kind of change I give merit to. We’re making progress in user interaction here, which in my opinion, one of the rate determining factors in the speed at which we can operate a computer.
So, around the beginning, what Microsoft has done seemed absolutely awesome. For once, they did something that is close to game-changing. And then the dude never stopped using his finger. And everything crashed when he opened Excel, and it went back to the same boring 7 layout. So they’re making an interaction layout that works independently and alongside the normal Windows. But obviously. They wouldn’t be standing up to their name if they entirely abandoned windows, would they?
In my opinion, they’re trying hard to please everyone, and yet bring a darned big jump. One, as Gruber says, I don’t think one should try to make touch-friendly software that is common for touch interfaces as well as mouse usage. Those are two different kinds of devices. And until one of them entirely phases out, one needs to develop for both, separately. I feel arrogant and like one of those know-it-all actors I talked about in the start, because I
can’t haven’t really develop(ed) for either. But I’ll still plod on, because… well, it’s my blog.
Now I can see that making the entirety of windows 8, based on those panels layout, would possibly have such a sharp learning curve for not much enthusiastic people who need to deal with computers. So there will be a significant entry barrier for it’s usage, restricting the kind of people who buy it, to only tech-enthused people. But developing just an alternative layout, in a desktop OS, which is made with a high point of tactile interaction imagined, wouldn’t work much too well, so I believe. There might be a huge difference between what ends up being in our hands, but hopefully not for the worse. And not having made important work apps like Excel and Word, have a consistency in user interaction, with the rest of the interface, would be just a terrible thing to do. So I believe.
You know what that video makes me want to do? Be able to make an entire version of Linux, that works just on those panels kind of interaction. And everything within, and along it. It would be so awesome to try and make a word processor that works with a UI like that. *drools*
You want to help me? =)