Microsoft, don't get me wrong, you did an admirable job with Windows 7. I have not had a software crash in a while that made the computer freeze up solid. They happen but they're increasingly rare. This machine is a five year old Acer Aspire 5610 with 3GB memory running Windows 7 32 Bit Professional.
Professional I think... I don't think it's Ultimate - and I don't need Ultimate.... anyway
See the beef I have, today, is with the way you hid everything.
In your zeal to make your Flagship Home and Office Operating System look less ugly and more like Mac OSX (Yes, I went there, and you know you did too so stop complaining) you let the focus groups run amok. The Aero Glass look and feel went too far. You just went and hid EVERYTHING... in this case, everything means the icon for Windows Update.
What you did was to take all those silly little icons that used to reside next to the clock in Windows XP that most people didn't know what they were, and you packed them up nice and tight into a little ball and put them away.
Away is a little triangle. Next to the Speaker Icon. It points up, helpfully. If you hover over it, it says "Show Hidden Icons".
That silly set of Icons in XP were the "HEY! You in the Meatspace! LOOK at ME! I need to TELL you something!". Those were the Important Message Icons. Sure they got corrupted. My XP machine has icons that don't disappear that look like a track pad, and other "things" that the programmers think are important and really aren't.
Windows Update Is Important. You need to SEE that it wants attention. It needs to be OBVIOUS.
Don't get me wrong, I REALLY like that I can dismiss it for variable amounts of time up to 4 hours, but this is the rant today.
The Icon is teeny. Really Small. Ok, I have better than normal eye sight, better than 20/20 in one eye. I support users up to over 80 years old. How on Earth can they see THAT.
That's an icon that needs to be in your task bar. Put a message box up on the screen that you can dismiss that doesn't fade away like that silly pop up balloon. Make me Click to Clear.
Next thing that annoys me. Other than Internet Explorer, there are a bunch of browsers out there. Fully a quarter of the traffic to this blog is on Other Browsers. Some I have never heard of. I use Firefox. Sorry, you lost this guy a long time ago. Internet Explorer is a Single Point of Failure and a giant Heap Of Code. It runs slowly, bogs down your complete computer. When it crashes you may as well reboot because you never are completely sure what broke.
I'm sorry, "Restart". Ok, so I'm oldschool I still say "Reboot".
When you shut down or "Restart" this computer under Windows 7, the Focus Group got it terribly Wrong.
Can you hear that Fail Buzzer? WRONNNNNG!
Applications now will ask you "Save and Quit"? Firefox does that and will wait for you. There are other programs that do that as well. When you reboo...er Restart your computer it closes what it can. You end up with a Window Shade of Darkness coming down over everything with an icon for every program still running that it is waiting for and it will sit there saying that it can't restart. I'd have clicked that "Save and Quit" button but with all those programs closing the computer slows down and the Window Shade of Darkness won't let you get to it. It is a giant Saran Wrap covering letting you see the food but not letting you taste.
Window Shade of Darkness. I like that. Remember where you heard that first. Here.
Sure... you can click a button letting you go back to the programs and your operating system, but WHY? Let me have access to that button and I'll do it while YOU wait, not the other way around.
Now that we've redesigned the operating system, Windows 7, with Mac Minimalism in mind, you've gone a bit too far. Its nice, but just a bit too far. Now, Mr Code Monkey and Ms Design Team, I'll pat you on the head and tell you go back to your offices and fix it.
Don't go too far in copying Mac OSX and Linux. They don't have everything right, sometimes different is merely different. They do have their own annoyances - just don't get me started on iTunes....
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