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Windows 8: The hype and cheerleaders

I can't figure out how Microsoft always gets so many cheerleaders to root for its new operating systems, but it somehow manages to do so. The cheers are beginning in full force and will continue unabated until the release of Windows 8 into the wild come late October.

If the OS doesn't take off like wildfire, then everyone will swiftly backpedal. As my readers know, I side with the critics of the product because I am not a fan of the “formerly-known-as-Metro” interface.

I am not going to name names because writers do not diss other writers unless they want an everlasting blood feud. Who needs the aggravation of that, especially when they are pandering to Microsoft? This rallying for Windows 8 spun out of control when some "objective" writers actually claimed that it is the greatest product ever. Then they finished with: "I can't wait!"

First of all, they do not have to wait. They can get a pretty clear idea of the new OS by downloading the Release Preview now. So why do they say they cannot wait? It makes no sense.

Over the next two months, this sort of “booster-ism” is going to be rampant. In the olden days, Microsoft would send a lot of PR people into the field with techies in tow to show off the features of the new OS. If you, the writer, didn't understand the awesomeness the first time round, then they'd return for a second or even a third brainwashing session.

Now the process seems to take place via blogs, Twitter, and video podcasts. It's a different kind of cheaper groupthink. If Microsoft can get enough of its memes in play, these messages can permeate the media.

Personally, I cannot see why Windows 8 is so much better than Windows 7. What's so great about the dopey full screen Metro UI?

Yes, it is more cross-platform than Windows 7. So what? Why is that better? It is essentially dumbed down and based on the lowest common denominator: The Windows Phone 8 OS for handheld devices. This is funny to me because in the past, before the smartphone revolution, Microsoft's philosophy was just the opposite.

It used to take the basic desktop OS and move as much as possible to lesser devices. It was even the case that older versions of Windows Mobile required a stylus to work. Now the Redmond-based firm has reversed its thinking. The way I see it, the company will never get this right.

Thus, predicting that Windows 8 will be a flop is a good bet.

Every time you glance at the briefest of critiques, you end up reading something new. I had no idea, for example, that I will not be able to back-install a different OS if I hate Windows 8.

Here is an excerpt from a Globe and Mail article:

Windows 8 machines may not be capable of running other operating systems, thanks to UEFI nailing down what's allowed to load. This means no sneaky slithering of Windows XP or Linux onto a machine that came with Windows 8. It won't be a big deal for most, but the minority who wants the freedom to swap out the shipped OS for something else is irked, and working on ways to get around the restriction.

That doesn't sound good. These sorts of complaints are harder to find amidst all the applause.

Microsoft pulled this exact same trick since Windows 95. It's like clockwork. The only difference between then and now is that there are new suckers who will shill for the company. Kudos to Microsoft for a job well done.