Aren't you tired looking at those icons Tallest? I've been with Windows 3.1 using the icons claimed to be copied out of Mac's "look and feel". I had extensively used OS/2 in the 1990's, a vastly better OS than both Windows and Mac OS combined as it already had a built in Preemptive multitasking more than a decade before Windows iterations and Mac iterations [OSX is when it is fully preemptive]. It rarely crashes in comparison to Windows 3.1 or even Mac OS. Albeit, due to a half-hearted attempt by IBM top banana at the time [Lou Gertsner] to support this OS and Microsoft total abandonment of it, I could only practically use it for less than two years as I elected not to upgrade to OS/2 Merlin as there were almost no major apps to speak of aside from running Windows Apps through the Windows emulation engine it has. Oh, I forget to mention another wonderful OS, AmigaOS. They are all good in their own way, but they are all "icon"-ic. Apple was "inspired" by this icon oriented user interface in early 80's, and Microsoft "followed" Apple lead a couple of years later. We've been living trapped inside this iconic cocoon for about 30 years now. It's dated and shows its age. In some OS'es, notably IOS, take a look at those icon defined by its rigid grid-like existence, it all looks so awfully old, repetitive and tiresome.
A lot of kudos go to Microsoft that behaves like it has nothing to lose by ditching this iconic existence with WP 7.x and WP8. Microsoft actually doesn't have anything to lose in going to a completely different direction in the smartphone world as it has almost negligible market share there. It needs that "nothing-to-lose" attitude perhaps to bring forward a fresh and revolutionary approach. These live tiles are something else and it is a new concept, a paradigm shift, which challenges the deeply ingrained iconic stronghold in the computer world. This icon is the Goliath of he computer world, and the live tile is like David. In the miniaturized version of OS'es for use with hand held devices and smart phones, Live Tiles fit perfectly with its built-in ability to update itself with pertinent information in a very unobtrusive way, and they are very alive.
Now, if we are talking about Windows 8, we are talking about something entirely different. There will be less need to miniaturized or "versatilized" things we have on the desktop, but it is a welcome features/options. It is perhaps the matter of getting used to something new. It is hard to unlearn something that has been ingrained for many many years. I have personally installed an RTM of Windows 8 on my two year old 2GB Netbook. It runs as swiftly or better than Windows 7. The fact that it requires extra steps when accomplishing many tasks relative to previous versions of Windows is quite frustrating at times. Windows 8 is actually two windowed world exist in one OS. Many of current apps will revert you back to the desktop with its, tada..., old iconic world.
I start to think differently after using this W8 for a couple of months [Release Preview and RTM]. Windows 8 is just an intro to the next dimension of Windows. So, I start visualizing the old windows desktop as a point [or a live tile] in Windows 8 user interface. So, since W8 is one dimension higher than Windows desktop, it can freely go in and out of it at any time. So, you have that added flexibility. Watching Rob Bryanton's short video about "imagining the ninth dimension" about the higher dimension concept can help illustrate my point. The point is whether having this option really adds to Windows' functionality on a much bigger screen. I think the only reason why this lower dimension exist is due to the heavy baggage that W8 has to carry, namely legacy Windows applications. Once majority of these older applications have their w8 counterparts, Windows users will have no need to go to that lower dimension that often. At some point in time, W9 perhaps, Windows users may lament the old desktop as just a relic of the past which they may visit from time to time to run their beloved legacy apps which for one reason or another are not being updated to their newer iterations. Then and only then, the "iconic" Windows will be a thing of the past. I personally prefer the transition from the icon centric user interface to go faster, but the millions of "iconic" computerized devices will make this time of transition be very tedious and long. The very elementary human psyche's resistance to change is also another factor which may make this transition even harder.
Edited by mcrs - 9/23/12 at 6:10am
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil