In honor of the Blue Monster (and keeping true to the reason I started this blog), I want to talk about Windows Mojave today. You might not know what that is. I didn't. I read about it online. What is it? Is it the latest version of Microsoft Windows (code named Windows 7)? No. Is it some great new product we haven't even heard about yet? In a way, yes. It is a great product called Windows Vista. And the Mojave name came from a marketing tactic akin to the Pepsi Challenge or the old Folger's commercials -- "We've secretly replace the fine coffee served here..." Some clever Microsoft marketing people conducted a focus group about a product called Microsoft Mojave. The marketers first asked the members of the focus group for their opinions on Windows Vista. They were not good. Then, they showed the audience a "new" OS from Microsoft called Mojave (which was really Windows Vista in disguise) and asked for opinions. The reviews were outstanding.
I read an article recently about a wine tasting. Several "experts" were brought in to taste a variety of wines. Some were labeled as cheap table wines. Some were priced quite expensively. What the experts didn't know was that they were all the same wines, with different labels and price tags. As you might expect, the "experts" gave high marks to the more expensive wines and had a very sour opinion (pun intended) of the cheap wines.
This is what has happened with Windows Vista. I know many, many people running Windows Vista that are quite pleased with it as an OS. I also know many, many people (though none personally) that absolutely hate it and can't say enough about how much they hate it. I've talked with some of these folks online -- some of them have never even used the product. When I ask why they hate it, the response is generally something like, "Everyone does." Ah.... I know that attitude. And who can blame them? Every 10 minutes, there is an Apple commercial on singing the blues of Windows Vista (in one case, quite literally). Trade magazines are full of articles about how bad Windows Vista is. Even the article above about the Mojave marketing has comments that say things like:
MJConver: Fancy marketing still won't convince us alpha-geeks. My clients, colleagues, friends, family, and neighbors turn to me first for my advice about computers, and I am steadfast in my assessment of XP as the best and most economical OS to get things done.
HowardParsons: So, They haven't actually fixed anything - they're just going to tell you that tripe is turkey and spend millions to do it. Of course, they could spend millions to actually fix the problems but - hey - what do I know?
In neither of these posts do the authors actually say they have used the product, nor do they say why they don't like it. I see this a lot. There's not much I can say to refute these posts, as there just aren't any facts there. We just released SP1 for Vista. I think that counts as "fixing" things. We also released updates throughout the lifecycle of Vista. Again, fixing things... Not sure what, exactly, HowardParsons thinks is broken, but based on my own Vista experiences, I think we might have fixed it. :)
There are a couple comments that I would like to look at in more detail. They are, in fact, the reason for this post.
Kalmon: One of the fundamental questions that Microsoft needs to address is this:
"Why should I upgrade to Windows Vista?"
<middle omitted due to length>
Personally, I look at Vista and I like the idea of having pervasive search facilities. Unfortunately, as much as I want that I can't justify paying the license fee just for that, and I'm damned if I can see anything else in the product that makes me want it over XP.
I hear this a lot. What is the point of upgrading? I have Windows XP. It works for me. Here's another comment that is worth noting (excerpted):
MartyFinkle: I run XP, Vista, Ubuntu and OSX. For a windows operating system vista is as incompatible with games and other windows software as linux and OSX. As a consumer there is no reason to buy vista. For business - even less.
The message is clear here as well, "What is the point of upgrading?" And to me, that is what would make the Blue Monster most unhappy -- not that people are critical of our product (assuming their criticisms are justified), but that people don't even know why they would want it. That's why I am going to spend the next few days talking about what is new in Windows Vista and why you might want to consider an upgrade. Do I expect to convince everyone who reads this that Windows Vista is the best OS ever? No. Do I expect to convince hardcore Apple fans that they should ditch their Macs in favor of a PC? No, though I might convert one or two. :) But, when I have finished, I expect that you will at least understand what is really new in Vista and give you a chance to evaluate it based on its own merits, rather than based on what this guy says. :)
We interrupt this blogpost to bring you a breaking announcement... I started this whole series with a
"The Last and Final Chapter" -- that sounds ominous, doesn't it?  Maybe "Windows