Traenk is tired of everyone else diagnosing Windows 8 problems and remedies. It's time to envision a new Windows strategy and feature set that embraces everything Windows has been and what it can be. Because this lofty a thesis takes so many words, stayed tuned to this Blog channel for follow-on pieces. Extra points will be given to the best comments and retorts offered by you, the Readers...
Let us begin with the facts:
1. Smartphone and tablet sales are increasing. Exponentially. The pundits predict the end of the PC. Based on sales of consumer electronics. Professional markets aren't influential enough.
2. Sales of Windows systems are declining, with the decline seemingly tied to Windows 8, an OS that hopes to capitalize on a "mobile-like" interface. On a PC. With PC being a platform with hundreds of applications, niche applications, OS-provided utilities, free third-party utilities, and storage space for apps and data exceeding most tablets by a factor of at least 10 to 1.
3. We all believe a mobile/tablet interface that links us to tiny chunks of storage for data and programs to scale well for the PC paradigm. The paradigm with hundreds of gigabytes of local space and with massive chunks of Cloud storage too. And all that space and those hundreds of apps is to be represented by a non-hierarchial display of icons, same as my 16-gigabyte iPad's display.
I want a New Coke/Old Coke accommodation in Windows 9. Fine, stick me with that Metro interface. But, when I swipe the screen, get me to my Desktop Interface. Furthermore, now let me choose the interface I want for start up. This is my first requirement. Don't make it Metro OR Desktop. Give me both.
Stay with me now! Most importantly, give me a configurable number of desktops--give me the 1996 Linux option. Let me plough through that cluttered Metro interface for all those native Metro apps. Provide a forward-looking link to the new world of mobile apps you hope to win Developers to, Microsoft. (In future Win 9 Blogs, I'll develop this theme more.)
In a world of multiple Desktops, I have multiple configurable Interfaces. With this much "Interface Space", I can even vary the Desktop-desktop model. I can swipe to a traditional Desktop-desktop, one with the traditional menuing system and Start Button. This Desktop-desktop can be the focal point for legacy organizational applications. With another swipe, I get a DIFFERENT Desktop-desktop, one that has a "Metro-Lite", "Program Manager-like" dialog box that gives me a FOCUSED view of the applications I'm using most. Yes, give me XP's "box of most often used apps" my computer calculates and displays dynamically. Over time, this flat-file of icons will get me interested in Metro and will keep me from Metro's "icon-overload".
(In short, give me what Windows has always given--options, versatility, and API's needed for making Windows MY Windows. What I think we need is the ultimate in Windows Interface customization.)
I think it's time to allow third-parties a chance to craft "Alternate Interfaces". By publishing "Shell Interface" standards and API's, Microsoft can enable large organizations a chance to 'skin' Windows and align Windows Use to corporate culture and to organizational applications--a sure way to encourage adoption of Windows in large numbers AND increase follow on sales of Windows to workers' home systems.
Why make all these changes and improvements? I am floored that all the threading, multitasking, and parallel processing issues solved by modern Windows seem to take second seat to Metro being confusing and frustrating to so many users. Maybe it's time to let others work on Interface issues? Is it possible to give us Windows geeks multiple desktops and multiple interface configuration options? Is too much world-rocking to allow seasoned, enthusiastic Windows-Heads and Open Source Projects a chance to create novel Windows Interfaces? Can we get people talking about the Operating System's strengths again? And here's my fast breaking point...
Can the PC be the Nexus, the Hub for IT activity? Stick around; I'll explain how PC can be the juncture of so many trends.
Mind = Blown.