Windows 8: Embrace Or Reject?

Windows 8: The Bad

Windows 8 is beautiful, fast and fluid. What could go wrong, right? Well, apparently a lot. There have been a lot of complaints voiced on the internet about Windows 8, mostly from the power users and also from “IT pros” whose work may involve deploying Windows to many PCs and worrying about the corresponding training/support costs. Besides, there is the big issue of rebuilding or supporting legacy line-of-business , or LOB, apps on Windows 8. Some concerns with Windows 8 that have created the most noise on the interwebs:

  • The missing Start orb: Let’s face it, power users have developed a muscle memory to get things done. Folks who don’t like to dump a bunch of icons on the desktop typically use the taskbar to launch programs or go to Start > Search in Windows 7 to just search for the programs. With the missing Start orb, things change. On a non-touch computer, when you hover your mouse over the bottom-left corner, you see an icon for your Start Screen and clicking on it will bring you to the Start Screen. With Windows 8, you can now simply start typing on the Start Screen to invoke search, so effectively, the new interaction mode does the same exact thing as Windows 7. For power users though, it is a disruption because they have to leave the Desktop mode and enter the Start Screen.


  • Shutdown being “hidden”: Another series of complaints has been the fact that shutting down a PC is now “hidden” and/or more difficult to execute. The shutdown option is now under the Charms bar > Settings. While you can argue that it is the same number of mouse clicks, or that it is even better with touch (Charms bar is invoked by just swiping from the right edge, and the power button is right where your thumb would be), there is no argument about it not being immediately visible. There is also an argument to be made that modern computers don’t need to be shut down and putting them to sleep is effectively the same as what shutting down used to be. In fact, in my personal case, I don’t shut down any of my computers except for when there are OS or security updates which require a restart.

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Romit Mehta

Romit writes about mobile news and gadgets, and is currently a Windows Phone owner (Nokia Lumia 920).Find him on twitter @TheRomit. Personal site is

  • Good one.

  • A new Metro-style interface has been added that was designed for touch screen input in addition to mouse, keyboard, and pen input.

  • The day Microsoft makes a working, logical, user-intuitive/friendly, and stable environment is the day I will consider (note that word) being back in their camp. However, 30 years of experience tells me not to hold my breath. If Microsoft had to compensate me monetarily for all the years of frustration their products have put me through, I would be as wealthy as Bill gates himself.

    I even, recently, dumped Microsoft Word off of my Mac and started using Apple’s “Pages” to finish a book I am working on. Literally, formatting a picture to do what I wanted took 7 mouse clicks in Word. Pages takes only 2 for the same operation. I was amazed. Also, it was not uncommon for pictures, once Word reloaded the book for another work session, to ignore their settings and randomly be moved anyway. So far Pages has been flawless…. way too many “Microsoft Moments” in my history to not be skeptical.

  • Micro$oft is doing to windoze what Canonical did to Ubuntu…forcing users to new UI and making users fight their OS just to get things done. The purpose of the OS is help get tasks done not force you to waste so much time trying how get tasks done efficiently.