Well, not always… A recent case at work has reinforced an idea I have long since held that often blame is assigned to the technology (or the technical staff maintaining it) when the behaviour would be quite different if a computer was not involved.
The release of Windows 7 generally getting good feedback from users, especially compared to Vista, comes as no surprise. Vista is, when you actually look at it, not a bad OS- I’m still running it on my main home PC and I haven’t had to reinstall it, my applications work, and I’ve never had any virus or malware problems (although having written that I’m going to go home and find it’s exploded or something). However we all know the reputation it has for being slow and buggy, a reputation apparently fixed in Windows 7.
Looking back at the history of the Windows consumer line we see an undulating good-bad-good-bad opinion of the operating systems.
Windows 98 offered improvements to the design, but graphically was very similar to its predecessor. Looking back on it I recall an OS which was generally well received and I know people who still use it to this day. GOOD
Windows Me came next and received a bit of a battering. BAD
Then along came Windows XP, a platform that’s still going strong nearly 8 years later. GOOD
XP, as we all know, was followed by Vista. Google currently returns over 1 million results if you search for “Vista sucks”. BAD
And finally Vista followed by the new Windows 7. The same look and feel as Vista, and many of the same features that no-one got a chance to use in it’s predecessor because they were too busy downgrading to XP. It’s still early days but so far GOOD
So, Windows 8 is apparently already in development- I won’t be holding my breath. I’m sure it will be a good OS, but unfortunately unless Microsoft can buck the trend it will be considered unpopular by the media and general public. Windows 9 though…….