Windows. The central pillar of Microsoft and the modern computing world has also been, for the past several years, passingly easy to take for granted. Operating at varying degrees of mundane to tolerable, Windows has been a bore; a groan and a what-can-you-do shrug. No more.
With the intersection of PC and tablet interface in Windows 8, Microsoft hasn't just made a gamble on its Metro interface catching on; it's introduced a whole new set of variables to an overwhelming frontrunner. It's like Usain Bolt going home and training to run the 100m while playing the bagpipes. The degree of difficulty is staggering. The ambition behind it admirable. And the execution? Not half bad. But not quite there yet, either.
Using Windows 8 is pleasant, especially if you don't have to do anything in a particular hurry. It's a totally new way of thinking about how you want to operate in a desktop OS—and maybe not entirely in the way you think. But it also seems like a rough draft of a deeply interesting idea.
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