It’s fair to say that Information Technology professionals owe 99% of their livelihood to Windows. Without those wondrous wizards of Exchange access to gift you the tools required to do your job, you’d just play solitaire all day. But did you ever have to resolve an issue with one of these Windows professionals? As a user, you’re usually made to feel stupid when Mr. Doritofingers’ precious time is required to resolve a problem he learned the first day of IT bootcamp. That’s kind of how I felt when I got swept up in the initial marketing volley for Windows 8, only to have Windows President Steven Sinofsky have to spell out for stupid users – again – that Windows apps wouldn’t run on any ARM processors.
If you were a reasonable person, this is how you heard Microsoft’s rollout of Windows 8:
Microsoft: Windows 8 represents a bold new direction for Microsoft. The slick Metro UI will be optimized for touchscreen devices, and overlay the traditional desktop-and-folder Windows interface. Windows 8 will run on devices powered by multiple chipsets, including lower-power ARM processors. Windows 8 brings together all the power and flexibility you have in your PC today with the ability to immerse yourself in a Metro style experience. You don’t have to compromise!
Reasonable Person: One OS for all devices? Isn’t it kinda stupid to stuff Windows inside a smartphone for the sake of realizing your unrealistic “Windows everywhere” mantra?
Microsoft: Of course not! See all those tablets running on low-powered chips behind the bulletproof glass? Watch one of our Vice Presidents show you the traditional Windows desktop for 2 seconds while he drones on about Metro’s background gradient! He’s not avoiding showing you Windows!
RP: Wow- if I could have Windows 7 programs on a low-cost device, it would be a compelling alternative for the 15 people that won’t have an iPad when you finally release it. This is a bold step!
Microsoft: Whoa, whoa whoa! This won’t be Pocket Windows 7.5! We’ve been saying that all along! Why are all of you technology people constantly twisting our words? No Windows apps will run natively on the low-power processors; they’ll have to be recompiled. If they’re more resource hungry than Angry Birds, they’ll probably choke it. But you’ll have that awesome gradient effect!
Now where would all of those stupid users gotten the idea that a full version of Windows 8 would run on every rig anyway, including the one running on the Droid Bionic’s processor? See if you can guess who said this (hint- it’s the only proper name in this entry):
Why not just start over from scratch? Why not just remove all of the desktop features and only ship the Metro experience? Why not “convert” everything to Metro? The arguments for a “clean slate” are well known, both for and against. We chose to take the approach of building a design without compromise.