Not Sure I Agree...
[QUOTE]But from bringing back to the Start button to using the name "Windows 9" instead of "Windows 8.x"[/QUOTE]
Does bumping a product's version number indicate the prior version is a failure? What if we applied that to Android and iOS releases? While I don't disagree that there are plenty of things about Windows 8.x that still don't appeal to customers, I disagree that not using 8.2 or 8.3 or 8.5 is evidence of it being a failure.
While it's probably too late, Windows 8.1 did fix most of the "dead ends" that folks experienced in Windows 8. (For example when you are using Win8 desktop IE on a non-touch device and you click on a PDF. Out of the box, the metro PDF viewer appears and it's not at all obvious how to get back to the browser.)
[QUOTE]It will also allow Modern apps, currently confined to the tile-oriented Start screen, to be run in floating windows on the desktop, presumably just like legacy applications.[/QUOTE]
While I welcome the ability run tiled apps in windows on the desktop, I still sense disconnect when folks continue to write about the "two sides" of Windows. Modern tiled apps are really just maximized Windows without borders running on the "desktop". (Of course desktop is really just a virtual term but...) For that matter, the new tiled start menu is no different than any modern app. Of course we could also turn that around and say that the classic desktop is simply a maximized window without borders too. Perhaps this will demonstrate my point: On a device loaded with x86 Win 8.x, go to the desktop and open the familiar task manager. Resize the task manager window so that it's perhaps the 1/4 the size of the desktop (or smaller if you want). Select Options from the menu and select "Always on top". Now go back to the "tiled menu". Start a modern application. Start a desktop application.
It's all just smoke and mirrors. I get it that people don't like it but why does it take Microsoft 15 months to make metro apps run as resizable windows on a desktop? I also understand we can have the start button back and another third party add-on even enables Metro apps to run as windows on the desktop RIGHT NOW. If these strategies are THAT important to the success of Windows 9, it seems Microsoft could release Windows 8.2 this spring. Since this is all just smoke and mirrors, I also suspect it's possible that 8.2 could allow folks to customize their experience and choose whether or not they want the old or new or new-new start menu and whether or not they want to run modern touch apps in windows on the classic desktop.
Of course if they do this, do they risk fragmenting the user experience to the point where developers cringe at testing all the ways folks could be trying to use their apps? Some modern apps already suffer from 8.1's ability to run on lower screen resolutions. There are also apps that don't behave properly when using the split-screen app view. Along with potentially infinite resolutions, infinite desktop window sizes and various forms of split-screen options, it sounds like an even bigger mess that's the worn out topic of almost every blogger and tech journalist.