Rumours about Windows (opens in new tab)10 hint at changes for the operating system, but not necessarily good changes.
It's apparent that whatever coup happened at Microsoft, the lunatics are now in charge of the asylum. Thus far, Windows 10looks as if it will be like Windows 8.1 visually, but with some redesigned tiles and a few new "apps." The company is all-in with the poke-and-shove iPhone-esque interface on the desktop.
It isn't a coincidence that PC sales began falling just as Windows 8 came along. It's also no coincidence that we are in a post-PC era where the desktop OS is just a bigger version of a phone OS.
Someone at Microsoft – and I suspect it began with the miserable counter-productive "ribbon" interface on Microsoft Word – hates desktop computers.
(Using the word "app" to describe anything on a desktop computer is a giveaway that we are all doomed and must find our way to Linux as soon as possible. Having an idiotic Microsoft Store on the machine is further proof that the end is near. To me an app is a small bit of code for an iPhone to do something cute. Are we going to call the massive SAP suite an "app?" Apparently so. But I digress.)
Whatever the case, I suspect I will be all-in for Linux by the end of 2014 unless the iPhone-ification of the desktop is reversed.
I do have a few suggestions Microsoft should consider to keep me and others interested in Windows 10. The irony here is that these suggestions have been made over and over to the company, but it never listens.
1. Fix the file system
The company promised it would develop a database-style file system that would allow for easy and super-fast searches for keywords within the file. This means it should quickly retrieve every DOC file containing the words "Android OS." The biggest problem with such a file system would be the indexing costs. It is likely that a gigabyte of storage fully indexed as a real database would take 2GB or more in overhead. So what? Terabytes are cheaper than ever. If necessary, you can always make this sort of file system an option for the cheapskate who thinks paying more than £300 for a PC is spending too much money.
2. Fix the networking
How did the Microsoft networking subsystems deteriorate with Windows 7 and above? I have a legacy NAS from Cisco that no OS since Vista can access on my network. There are a few supposed patches that kind of work. Why do I need to patch anything? What's the reason these legacy devices cannot be used anymore? They don't work because nobody wants to write the code to make sure they still work.
3. Bring back the distraction games
What happened to some of the classic games that came with the OS? I'm talking specifically about Spider Solitaire. Where is it? Whatever happened to Pinball, for that matter?
4. Scale everything
This full-screen idiocy must go. I have complained bitterly about the stupidity of full-screen programs from their early pre-Windows 8 conceptualisation. Full-screen programs hark back to the days of DOS. Having a bunch of these running and switching from one to the other is nothing more than DOS task switching from 1985. Check the calendar, people. Why isn't everyone in the tech community squawking about this incessantly? Besides praising this lunacy, now some users are giddy about the new "half full screen" mode. It makes you wonder where everyone with a brain went.
5. Put back the real Start menu
Microsoft can simply go buy the Classic Shell (opens in new tab) code and use that if it wants a good implementation. The reason for the Start menu was for convenience, nothing more. Taking it away was like that "Ribbon" interface – it's a way to impede an efficient use of the product. Why do this? Why encumber the user? Everything just takes longer than it should.
Windows 10 will be the end of the road for Microsoft if it keeps digging the same hole to nowhere. Everything the company does now seems to be part of some unspoken weird or secret theory stemming from smartphone UIs. It is all so inappropriate for the desktop computer. Microsoft is simply ruining the industry with this tactic, as we see with PC sales. My suggestions above, if implemented properly, would stem the decline.