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'Windows 8' Looks Revolutionary, Risky

I hadn't really had time to digest Kurt Mackie's sneak peek at Windows Next or Windows 8. (Windows Next is an utterly bad code name, since it's just too close to the core, so to speak.) Well, I've see the screen grabs and all I could think was that Ballmer is finally stamping his name on the company and OS. The changes seem pretty risky and will have us either wishing Gates was back at the helm or hoisting Ballmer on our shoulders for...ahem...thinking different.

Sure, you'll be able to revert to a classic interface (why tick off your enterprise constituency who's been supporting you all this time?), but the Windows Phone-like tile interface is leaps and bounds a new direction. By comparison, Aero appeared to be just more of the same, but spiffed up, glassy, and OS X-ish. I wonder if Windows 8 (or Windows Phone 7, for that matter) had ever been scrutinized by the Microsoft UI feedback loop where it would have raised dozens of eyebrows? I'm sure someone in a focus group raised a hand and suggested that the company call the new OS 'Tiles' because it's that obvious and different, even Zune-like.

But I'm not making any unique observations and who cares what I think anyway? What matters is your opinion out there in IT-land, where you may or may not switch to the new OS when it's out in the not-too-distant future. Yes, that soon.

Based on the interface preview alone, do you think Microsoft's OS is going in a new direction or will it eventually usher Ballmer into retirement? Would love your comments here.

Posted by Michael Domingo on 06/03/2011 at 11:59 AM

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