Opinion – As if we needed any more confirmation: Steve Ballmer made official what many of us have been suspecting for more than a year. Vista isn’t final, it’s a work in progress, according to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. I don’t want to be much more sarcastic than this, but guys, seriously: Is it worth the effort?
Todd Bishop over at the Seattle Post Intelligencer got his hands on a spicy Microsoft piece , with words from Microsoft’s chief executive officer that are likely to spark a feeding frenzy. Ballmer is quoted saying “Windows Vista: A work in progress. A very important piece of work, and I think we did a lot of things right, and I think we have a lot of things we need to learn from.”
Anyone who has not attended Ballmer’s speech held yesterday at the “Most Valuable Professionals” conference in Seattle (I guess that would be most of us), would have a hard time interpreting these words and their context. Was he serious or funny? Reading over the excerpts from the speech, I would say it’s probably something in between. And if you weren’t sure before, now you know that Microsoft is working on improving Vista.
So, should we happy about this “announcement”? Should we be happy that Microsoft is trying to make Vista better than it is today? I am not going into a rant complaining about Vista performance and compatibility issues and painfully slow and stuttering Office 2007, the fact that Windows has become a data monster with a truckload of features many of us have no use for and a shiny new interface that fails to increase the operating systems productivity capability. I am sure you have your very own complaints.
What struck me about Ballmer’s statement is that there is work being done to make Vista better while XP is kept on store shelves. Is there a value in improving an operating system that has been criticized more any other Windows version since version 3.0? Why not cancel it completely and move quickly to a leaner Windows 7?
Windows is not just ready for a serious renovations, it may actually time to say good-bye. Windows 7 shows some initial promise that users may be getting something new, but I am somewhat suprised how Microsoft is treating its Singularity project. It appears that it is simply ignored in public.
There is a small team of developers who have found some true innovation opportunities, security features that could simplify our everyday life and a performance capability that is nothing short of stunning. Guys, drop Vista and make Singularity your work in progress.