Re: Windows 8 is a flop
My wife is neither a technophobe nor a technophile. She doesn't have ideological opinions about Microsoft. She is the kind of user who shrugs, mostly accepts default settings out of the box, and just goes ahead and learns how to use her computer. She liked MS-DOS, Windows 95 SE, and Windows XP.
She went into Windows 8 consciously--choosing not to attempt an upgrade, choosing to buy a new machine with Windows 8 preinstalled, and choosing it IN PREFERENCE TO Windows 7 machines (which at that time were still available). She knew the UI was different. She shrugged and said, "Well, I'll learn it." She went to a Microsoft store and (in my opinion unfortunately) did not insist on doing personal hands-on, but she did spend ten minutes having someone in the store show her Windows 8, so she was aware just how new the UI was.
She hates it. She tells all her friends how badly she hates it. When the 8.1 upgrade came out, she installed it, and still hates it. She says that Windows 8.1 changed a lot of things without making anything better. She says all Windows 8.1 did for her was make a few things she had finally learned stop working--and remove the one thing she actually enjoyed in Windows 8, namely having the Bing Picture of the Day for her wallpaper.*
Her beef it "it's different' or "there's no start button." It is: a) having to memorize key combinations; b) not being able to find invisible controls unless you already know where they are; c) having a bunch of device settings, preferences, etc. that can only be accessed through the Charms bar and another bunch that can only be accessed through the Desktop screen; d) mostly being unable to open more than one window at a time--there's a special-case trick which I think works on some applications but not all that lets you open exactly two; e) being forced to deal with a mix of Metro and Desktop applications, with different user interfaces, _even if all you do is use Microsoft's own applications._ I haven't quite figured this out myself but listening to her it sounds as if Microsoft has actually included two different pieces of software called "Internet Explorer," one Metro and one Desktop, and some websites only work properly with one and some only work properly with the other. I may have that all wrong, but that's what it sounds like.
When she complains about it, if any of the people she is talking to have used Windows 8 they, so far, have already agreed--they hate it, too. And they've all had a lot of time to get used to it and figure out where the Charms Bar is.
I've never seen such a disaster in term of user dissatisfaction among ordinary users. My wife feels completely betrayed by Microsoft.
*About a month later she figured out how to get it back. It's necessary to find and reinstall what is now an optional Windows 8.1 component. But why on earth did they just unilaterally delete it? Why wasn't there a dialog box in the upgrade installer saying "We see you have chosen to have the Bing Picture of the Day as your wallpaper. Do you still want this in Windows 8.1? [ ] yes [ ] no." What is so hard about "don't undo or wipe out any choices you know the user made intentionally?"