06-24-2014 09:16 AM
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  1. Jas00555's Avatar
    Does it really matter who stole what from who? I mean, OS 10.10 stole aero view and the transparency effects from Vista. iOS also copied the card view. I really don't see how copying features makes it "better".
    06-19-2014 12:24 PM
  2. Jas00555's Avatar
    I also fail to understand why starting over, if the current system if broken, is a bad thing. I mean, I get that you can argue that they should've done it right the first time, but I don't think any company can get everything right the first time.
    06-19-2014 12:40 PM
  3. altair679's Avatar
    I don't care about what Microsoft is doing. I only know one thing : IE sucks.
    Tom Snyder likes this.
    06-19-2014 12:40 PM
  4. Jas00555's Avatar
    I don't care about what Microsoft is doing. I only know one thing : Desktop IE sucks.
    There, fixed (;
    06-19-2014 12:42 PM
  5. dlalonde's Avatar
    Does it really matter who stole what from who? I mean, OS 10.10 stole aero view and the transparency effects from Vista. iOS also copied the card view. I really don't see how copying features makes it "better".
    It doesn't matter indeed. Was never the point.

    I also fail to understand why starting over, if the current system if broken, is a bad thing. I mean, I get that you can argue that they should've done it right the first time, but I don't think any company can get everything right the first time.
    That's actually part of my point. These things were not broken! Zune was not broken. Even the Music+Video hub was not broken. Longhorn looked promising at the time, it was not broken. They just wanted their graphics to be comparable to Mac OS. Windows 7 was not broken, there was no need for a major overhaul... and so on.
    06-19-2014 12:55 PM
  6. immyperez's Avatar
    I miss groups myself. Having all my closest friends on a single live tile. Family on another. Just so I could see the l their feeds...RUINED!
    dlalonde likes this.
    06-19-2014 12:58 PM
  7. dlalonde's Avatar
    I miss groups myself. Having all my closest friends on a single live tile. Family on another. Just so I could see the l their feeds...RUINED!
    Yep! Also, although I get why they changed it, I don't understand why the People Hub didn't just become a non-system app like Xbox Music so they could update it accordingly to changed in different networks. There was probably a reason we don't know about but it's still a shame.
    06-19-2014 01:10 PM
  8. a5cent's Avatar
    As far as Longhorn, I've read in the past (and just confirmed here) that it wasn't just "some parts" of it but rather that "Longhorn OS that was abandoned after years of development and almost entirely rewritten for release as Windows Vista.
    *Sigh*. It's hard to have a constructive conversation when we must rely on such crappy journalism for our facts. Not your fault of course. I only read the parts of the article related to Longhorn, and a lot of it is just plain wrong.

    At around the time Vista was released, I worked at a large software company with very close ties to MS' Windows division. I can tell you first hand that Longhorn is what most came to know as Windows Vista. It's the same thing. Longhorn was not abandoned, and the OS was not rewritten from scratch. What MS did abandon were a lot of the features they had originally planned to include in Vista/Longhorn. It doesn't sound like that is what the author meant, but it's the only thing I can come up with if I don't want to accuse the author of just making stuff up.

    Anyway, Cleavitt76 got it right. There are a few developers on this site with a lot more knowledge than your average tech journalist.

    Oh yeah, but despite this misrepresentation, I'd also agree with your overall assessment that MS too often tends to throw things out and start over again. That accusation should go towards the developer division however. The windows division doesn't generally do that. The change from WP7 to WP8 is the only exception I can think of, and that was necessary because the Windows kernel just wasn't ready at the time and MS needed to put something on the market rather sooner than later.
    Last edited by a5cent; 06-19-2014 at 04:36 PM. Reason: spelling
    06-19-2014 01:53 PM
  9. immyperez's Avatar
    Yep! Also, although I get why they changed it, I don't understand why the People Hub didn't just become a non-system app like Xbox Music so they could update it accordingly to changed in different networks. There was probably a reason we don't know about but it's still a shame.
    I just discovered that you can in fact still make and edit groups!!! The difference now is that before you could access it from the dialer. Now you can only do it from going to the people hub direct from the apps list. My faith has been restored!
    06-19-2014 02:47 PM
  10. dlalonde's Avatar
    *Sigh*. It's hard to have a constructive conversation when we must rely on such crappy journalism for our facts. Not your fault of course. I only read the parts of the article related to Longhorn, and a lot of it is just plain wrong.

    At around the time Vista was released, I worked at a large software company with very close ties to MS' Windows division. I can tell you first hand that Longhorn is what most came to know as Windows Vista. It's the same thing. Longhorn was not abandoned, and the OS was not rewritten from scratch. What MS did abandon were a lot of the features they had originally planned to include in Vista/Longhorn. It doesn't sound like that is what the author meant, but it's the only thing I can come up with if I don't want to accuse the author of just making stuff up.

    Anyway, Cleavitt76 got it right. There are a few developers on this site with a lot more knowledge than your average tech journalist.

    Oh yeah, but despite this misrepresentation, I'd also agree with your overall assessment that MS too often tends to throw things out and start over again. That accusation should go towards the developer division however. The windows division doesn't generally do that though. The change from WP7 to WP8 is the only exception I can think of, and that was necessary because the Windows kernel just wasn't ready at the time and MS needed to put something on the market rather sooner than later.
    Thanks for the precisions! :) I thought they'd scrapped most of it (not as in they rewrote the whole thing obviously but took the basis of XP and wrote a whole new interface around it). Wonder why it took them so long though.

    I agree for WP7 to WP8, changing kernel was a good (and logical) move.
    06-19-2014 03:14 PM
  11. Ebuka Allison's Avatar
    I just discovered that you can in fact still make and edit groups!!! The difference now is that before you could access it from the dialer. Now you can only do it from going to the people hub direct from the apps list. My faith has been restored!
    The dialer sends you to the PHONEBOOK because it is assumed that if you're in the dialer app, you intend to make a phone call. The people hub works as it always did.
    06-19-2014 03:25 PM
  12. Cleavitt76's Avatar
    We'd have to compare sources. Because I remember reading otherwise at the time. Plus, Mac OS X was highly successful compared to earlier versions as it was the first time Mac OS was no longer seen as a closed "incompatible with PCs" machine but rather a full personal computer (in the purest meaning of the word). Plus, it's undeniable that much of the graphical interface from Vista as well as some software are copied over, or at least highly inspired, from Mac OS X. That part is a fact. The rest, like I said, we'd have to check with our respective sources to know who's right. But it's a little pointless overall.
    Wiki has a pretty good explanation of the history of the Longhorn project...

    Windows Vista - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    I actually don't think that Vista was copying OSX. I know to some it appeared that way, but it very well may have been the other way around. The features that were introduced in OSX at that time were only a handful of the features MS had already been working on for Longhorn. Leaked versions of Longhorn (which I played with at the time) had those features years before OSX had them in the public eye. The Vista look and feel (which is mostly just a transparent version of the XP UI more than a copy of OSX) is noticeable to end users, but it was probably the least complicated part of the planned Longhorn/Vista feature set. Apple and MS have copied each other for years. No doubt about that. MS didn't scrap an entire OS project and create Vista to copy Apple though.

    As far as Longhorn, I've read in the past (and just confirmed here) that it wasn't just "some parts" of it but rather that "Longhorn OS that was abandoned after years of development and almost entirely rewritten for release as Windows Vista."
    It's more complicated than that one liner quote suggests. MS didn't just throw away Longhorn and start from scratch with Vista. Longhorn was the project codename for the Vista product, not a product of it's own. The problem was that MS was too ambitious and disorganized with the Longhorn project to get it out the door on time. They had started building Longhorn on the XP codebase, but the planned Longhorn feature set took so long to develop that the XP codebase had become obsolete during the project. The Windows codebase had been going through major changes in parallel for Windows Server 2003 due to Microsoft's focus on enterprise competition (they now develop consumer and server OSes in unison). Longhorn was eventually restarted with the Windows Server 2003 codebase and features that had been completed up to that point were copied over. That restarted Longhorn project based on the Windows Server 2003 codebase and new features that had been developed in the first attempt became the Vista product. The final Vista product mostly contained a subset of features that had been in the plans from the start.

    In the 90's, of course there were other players like IBM, HP, Novell, SCO and Oracle, I'm not saying otherwise. I was talking about home users, not companies. But I do understand how I was vague about this. In the 90's, not many households had systems based on something else than Windows 3.11, 95, 98 and so on.
    Agreed. I misunderstood what your were trying to say.

    For Windows 8, take everyday ends users and remove their main screen (the desktop) to show them a new screen by default, relegating the desktop to an app that you have to find at first with no obvious ways of going back to the start screen, that's called starting over. What Microsoft tried to do with Windows 8 was to focus on touch screens in which the desktop is less useful. But they went too fast and all over the place, hence de heavy criticism. I'm not saying they rewrote their OS. I'm saying they tried to change the system so the desktop would be replaced by the start screen. For people who don't use computers that often or who don't like change (there are a lot) that was like starting over. It was like saying "You know the desktop with the start menu you've been using for 20 years? Well now it's gone. Deal with it".
    You call it "starting over" I call it "too much change at once", but I get your point.

    MS clearly underestimated how easily confused people would be by the changes in Windows 8 and overestimated how willing the average consumer is to learn something new. No argument there. However, the desktop hasn't been "relegated to an app" just because it's represented by a tile on the Start Screen. It still does everything it did in Windows 7. Also, Microsoft certainly never said, "The desktop is gone. Deal with it." That is the buzz that some people have created and spread, but that was never Microsoft's message or plan (as evident by the fact that they desktop is still there and MS still write new desktop software themselves).

    Anyway, my point is that I see that example as a step forward too quickly rather than a good example of a restart (backwards then forwards). After all, MS needed to do something to embrace touchscreen and tablets. In that regard, Windows RT is actually a better example of starting over. At least Windows 8.x give people the ability to keep using their Windows software and most of their workflows. I think a better example of your original point is the removal of the "hubs" concept in Windows Phone in favor of the fairly boring IMO single-purpose-apps concept.
    dlalonde and a5cent like this.
    06-19-2014 03:26 PM
  13. dlalonde's Avatar
    Also, Microsoft certainly never said, "The desktop is gone. Deal with it." That is the buzz that some people have created and spread, but that was never Microsoft's message or plan (as evident by the fact that they desktop is still there and MS still write new desktop software themselves).
    Oh I know they didn't say it and that it wasn't meant like that. But I'm an IT you see and I deal with people trying to deal with Windows 8 and I guarantee you it's not just a buzz. That's actually the way they feel.

    But I understand what you mean when you differenciate "starting over" and "too much change at once". :)
    Cleavitt76 likes this.
    06-19-2014 03:34 PM
  14. Cleavitt76's Avatar
    Yeah, I'm in IT too and I see the same thing with certain people (mostly those that haven't actually tried it). I personally think MS is ahead of its time with Windows 8 from a technical perspective. However, in terms of marketing it, well, they let it get away from them and so from a consumer perspective you are probably correct. Many [clueless] consumers probably perceive it as yet another MS restart. Maybe it's a good example after all. :)
    dlalonde likes this.
    06-19-2014 03:48 PM
  15. dlalonde's Avatar
    Yeah, I'm in IT too and I see the same thing with certain people (mostly those that haven't actually tried it). I personally think MS is ahead of its time with Windows 8 from a technical perspective. However, in terms of marketing it, well, they let it get away from them and so from a consumer perspective you are probably correct. Many [clueless] consumers probably perceive it as yet another MS restart. Maybe it's a good example after all. :)
    Oh yes it is ahead. At first I was thrown off by it but quickly loved it (which is why I'm all Microsoft now). But most people I help don't want to learn a new thing especially with such a big learning curve. I get the feeling a lot if people are like that hence Microsoft bringing back the Start button and soon Start menu.

    Eventually when we'll all be using touch screens, I hope Microsoft doesn't wipe it and change interface again though ha ha! ;-)
    06-19-2014 03:52 PM
  16. Chregu's Avatar
    Oh yes it is ahead. At first I was thrown off by it but quickly loved it (which is why I'm all Microsoft now). But most people I help don't want to learn a new thing especially with such a big learning curve. I get the feeling a lot if people are like that hence Microsoft bringing back the Start button and soon Start menu.

    Eventually when we'll all be using touch screens, I hope Microsoft doesn't wipe it and change interface again though ha ha! ;-)
    I had to learn it as I installed Windows 8 very early (it was offered from my university). I still didn't like it. Personally I can't understand why people in this forum always assume that Windows 8 wasn't liked because users were too lazy or too stupid. It just wasn't good in the eyes of many, including mine.

    And even with Windows 8.1 Update 1 I'm looking forward to the start menu coming back.
    06-19-2014 04:03 PM
  17. AG VK's Avatar
    It wasn't OS X that changed things. It was the change from PowerPC CPUs to regular Intel x86 on the Mac range. That meant that converting applications to run on Macs became much easier by orders of magnitude. Even today, there are multiple tools out there meant to run Windows programs on OS X and that was possible only with the new CPUs. That was when Macs made the transition from niche to (almost) mainstream.
    06-19-2014 04:47 PM
  18. dlalonde's Avatar
    I had to learn it as I installed Windows 8 very early (it was offered from my university). I still didn't like it. Personally I can't understand why people in this forum always assume that Windows 8 wasn't liked because users were too lazy or too stupid. It just wasn't good in the eyes of many, including mine.

    And even with Windows 8.1 Update 1 I'm looking forward to the start menu coming back.
    Well, as I've said, as an IT, the comments I get from the people I serve have nothing to do with looks but rather that they are lost. And I've never said they were lazy or stupid but rather uninterested in change or confused. There's a huge difference and I would never disrespect these people as being lazy or stupid. If I was forced to work in a car motor everyday I wouldn't particularly enjoy it but then if I lost my points of reference, I would also be confused an maybe angry... Doesn't mean I'm lazy or stupid.
    a5cent likes this.
    06-19-2014 05:33 PM
  19. Joe.User's Avatar
    The thing is that by scrapping things and starting over with things like Windows 8, Microsoft is really trying to innovate. They realize that something like Windows 7, with essentially the same interface as the OS from almost a decade prior isn't good enough anymore. For once in a long time, they took a risk and tried something completely different, something we hadn't seen from them in a long time. And is any product perfect when it first launches? Hell no. The early Macs are a great example, a formula that Apple got right with OS X, not from the very start.

    Now personally, I love Windows 8.1 and the way it integrates so seamlessly with the services I want. I love the interface, and I think all of this hate towards Windows 8.1 is undeserving. Yes it has it's flaws, but they are slowly but surely being polished. People just need to take a minute or two and stop being so ignorant, at least give things a try. I mean just take a look at the first version of Windows 8 that shipped compared to the one we use now, there's a huge difference in the overall usability and intuitiveness. It takes time and consumer feedback for products to shape into something near perfect. Rarely is it stellar right off the bat. The important thing to take away from it is that Microsoft is trying to innovate and follow it's own path, rather than stick with an interface that is a decade old. Innovation of any kind, is a very very good thing. It'll force other companies to up their game and in the end, it all benefits the consumer.

    So maybe they don't have it quite right...
    But they sure don't have it wrong.
    BobLobIaw, rodan01 and snowmutt like this.
    06-19-2014 06:06 PM
  20. altair679's Avatar
    There, fixed (;
    Yeah, thanks mate😁
    snowmutt likes this.
    06-19-2014 06:10 PM
  21. waazzupppp's Avatar
    I think the OP is just sighting text book references on this one, but I do agree that the scrap and react method of thinking is not going to work in the future. I don't believe that MS is doing that though. Take a quick look at the real history and you can see a much different picture...

    XP was the best version of Windows ever. When Apple was competing with Microsoft, 3.11 was out and the biggest competitor was IBM OS2. When Apple tanked (mainly due to not licensing their OS to 3rd party makers) who stepped in to bail them out? Microsoft.

    During the 90's, Microsoft also dominated the mobile market in the US with Pocket PC and eventually Windows Mobile. They carried this torch in the states until BlackBerry became so popular in the mid-00's. WM was to the US what Symbian was to the rest of the world. It wasn't until 2007 and the launch of iOS that there was any serious threat to losing in the mobile race.

    Where the death blow came for Microsoft was from companies like Google - not on the OS front - but in services. Google beat MS to market with better services in mapping, email, searching and video sharing. Microsoft missed the internet and what it would become. MSN should have been Facebook, but instead was AOL. Messenger should have been Google Voice, but instead was scrapped. They still don't have a video sharing service and the deal they negotiated with Navteq for Bing Maps was terrible. Overall, they screwed up.

    Fast forward to modern day Microsoft and you have a whole new dynamic set of catch-up to play. Windows Phone should probably be abandoned in favor of Windows 9 itself. More work in integration of services and price them aggressively. Going after cross platform users is a great idea as well - which we already see happening. The fact is, MS got caught with their pants down and everyone ran past them. Even Amazon beat MS the three screen concept! Terrible...

    We forget how many terrible projects MS threw out - mostly on the consumer end. Anyone remember WebTV? MS just got passed up, but they will be back. The question is, are they going to try and copy Apple or will they go back to being the best Software and Services company for everyone?

    Just my thoughts...
    James8561 likes this.
    06-19-2014 06:24 PM
  22. neo158's Avatar
    *Sigh*. It's hard to have a constructive conversation when we must rely on such crappy journalism for our facts. Not your fault of course. I only read the parts of the article related to Longhorn, and a lot of it is just plain wrong.

    At around the time Vista was released, I worked at a large software company with very close ties to MS' Windows division. I can tell you first hand that Longhorn is what most came to know as Windows Vista. It's the same thing. Longhorn was not abandoned, and the OS was not rewritten from scratch. What MS did abandon were a lot of the features they had originally planned to include in Vista/Longhorn. It doesn't sound like that is what the author meant, but it's the only thing I can come up with if I don't want to accuse the author of just making stuff up.

    Anyway, Cleavitt76 got it right. There are a few developers on this site with a lot more knowledge than your average tech journalist.

    Oh yeah, but despite this misrepresentation, I'd also agree with your overall assessment that MS too often tends to throw things out and start over again. That accusation should go towards the developer division however. The windows division doesn't generally do that. The change from WP7 to WP8 is the only exception I can think of, and that was necessary because the Windows kernel just wasn't ready at the time and MS needed to put something on the market rather sooner than later.
    That's not strictly true though, Longhorn wasn't abandoned but the version based on XP was in favour of a Server 2k3 variant.
    06-19-2014 06:26 PM
  23. snowmutt's Avatar
    Where do I agree and where do I disagree without going all "write a novel"?

    The problem is, Microsoft is playing chess and everyone else is playing checkers. People look at what is happening on the hardware and OS side of things, and fail to understand that MS is coming at things from an entire different model. Enterprise, MS's financial backbone, is JUST NOW converting to Windows 7. It took a decade for that to happen from XP and Vista (which was not a success by MS's standards, but nowhere near the flop we have associated it with being). Windows 7 support and services will be hitting it's apex long before Windows 8 even starts to get adopted. MS know this. They have more then a few years before what is now Windows 8 and will surely be something else is even remotely getting adopted by business. That is the main goal- get the next wave of adoption. They are betting by that time, enterprise will be moving from stationary PC's to complete mobile tech. THAT is what the Windows 8 launch was for. To get it right by that timeframe.

    As for services, the consumer market has always en a goal for MS (The Zune, the Kin, the XBOX are all examples of that), but it is NOT their bread and butter. And most likely won't be anytime soon. They want to compete in it and profit from it. But they NEED the enterprise market. They cannot lose that.

    I will admit to one thing: I am not sure how Windows Phone settles into their company vision. Do they want to compete for the BlackBerry crowd? If so, they are sincerely spinning their heels and need to get true enterprise software on WP soon. I am mystified as to why they haven't. Is WP honestly a consumer product? If so, they are heading in the right direction but need that low end market to translate to top end market soon.

    Crap..... wrote a novel anyways. Sigh.....
    06-19-2014 07:29 PM
  24. fdalbor's Avatar
    The truth of the matter is if Apple's OS for their computers was as good as you imply they would own more than the small percent of the market they have. I think its nice but hardly ground breaking. As far as XP you can say what you want, it has lasted as long as it has because it does a pretty good job compared to what else is out there. It still owns more than twice the market share that Apples OS has and Microsoft is having a hell of a time getting rid of it. The people have spoken. And as far as Netscape, it owned the web in the beginning. I remember when there was no Explorer, I was one of the first Explorer users vrs. 1.0 that they bought most of the code from Spyglass. They beat Netscape because they gave away explorer and when Netscape could no longer sell its browser they did not have the funds to keep up with Microsoft. They lost money; but won the war. And that was not yesterday. Oh yes there was no broadband, everyone used dialup. Don't know if Microsoft will fix all the things we think they are doing wrong. IF they do, then great. We will stay with them and ride the wave. If not, we will find another boat and sail off into the sunset. The world won't end and I doubt the boat is going to sink. they haven't lost any major ships yet, row boats don't count.
    tgp and Editguy1900 like this.
    06-19-2014 08:24 PM
  25. a5cent's Avatar
    Longhorn was not abandoned, and the OS was not rewritten from scratch.
    That's not strictly true though, Longhorn wasn't abandoned but the version based on XP was in favour of a Server 2k3 variant.
    I think you need to revaluate the meaning of "strictly speaking". Strictly speaking, both of my statements are true.

    I understand your point though. Yes, MS stopped developing on the XP branch and derived Vista from the Server 2003 branch, but I suspect you envision this to be a far bigger deal than it actually was.

    Both Server 2003 and XP were based on Windows NT. Both Server 2003 and XP shared the overwhelming majority of their code. Both Server 2003 and XP were just two separate branches off the same trunk, and MS routinely merged code back and forth between both branches! Windows XP Professional was, at the time, actually already based on Server 2003! You make it sound like XP was an entirely separate OS that they dumped, but that would be incorrect.

    This thread asks how often MS scraps something and starts over. Stopping development on the XP branch and continuing it on the Server 2003 branch isn't an example of that. This is my main point.
    dlalonde likes this.
    06-19-2014 08:39 PM
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