Windows 9 Review
|by Maxim Blin|
File under: Fake Tech17 Dec 2014 13:55 EST
The results are in: Windows 9 is shaping up to be the best version of Windows yet. Gone are most of the major annoyances that appeared with Windows 8, and returning are some of Windows' best-loved features. Perhaps most importantly, the Start Menu is back and the Metro interface has been decommissioned for desktop users. We couldn't wait to try it out!
A Labor of Love
The new head of Microsoft's Windows division, Kumar Rajinikanth, has taken a radical turn from the legacy of Windows 8 and decided to focus on what most Windows loyalists will consider the meat-and-potatoes tools. But there's plenty of new and exciting features for tablet users, too. "I am totally in love with the new Windows 9," he tells us, "and I hope our users will come to love it as well."
Also radically different is the price: it's set to retail at $29.99, far lower than previous versions of Windows. "Windows 9 is not only easy to use, but cheap too," Rajinikanth says. "There will be an initial loss, but we think of the low price as our apology for our past mistakes." Whatever your opinion on the previous versions of Windows, we're sure the accessible price is one feature that will be welcomed by all.
Exciting New Features
The Warm Blanket
The Start Menu has returned under a new moniker: the Warm Blanket. Though this term was initially interpreted as a condescending dig at Microsoft's core clientele, Rajinikanth explains that "warm" has a second meaning when dealing with heat-based touch interfaces. As you can see below, the menu has a new color and slight glow, which is meant to be comforting and soft, like a toddler's blanket. Users of touch devices will notice that it emanates a slight heat, so that you can always locate it by detecting the warm patch on the screen. Even if you are multi-tasking and can't actually see the Warm Blanket button, you'll still be able to feel your way back to it, like a cozy house on a cold day.
Snap has been expanded to help address the common 'desktop overload' problem. "Sometimes, you've just got too many windows open, and the computer is running slow, not being very reponsive, or not doing what you want it to do," Rajinikanth explains. The new Snap feature is the solution. Touch users can pinch the center of the screen, then pull back and release. Once the snap has occurred, the desktop will automatically reset to a default, hassle-free state. How did the guys at Microsoft come up with this novel idea? "We used the analogy of snapping the back strap of a woman's bra," Rajinikanth tells us. "Sometimes, when I'm trying to tell my girlfriend something important, and she's not listening or being non-responsive, I snap her bra and she instantly becomes attentive again. Operating systems are a lot like women, so I thought we should find a way to incorporate this real-life feature." Who says tech doesn't emulate life?
New 'Caress' Feature
In an attempt to optimize the energy efficiency and longevity of hardware, Microsoft has introduced the new Caress feature for touch screens. Here's how it works. When your device enters hibernation or power save mode, gently carressing the screen actually generates small amounts of electricity, which is then sent back to the battery. A faint purring sound can be heard as the process occurs. The caress is interpreted by the OS as a 'reward' to the Snap's 'punishment'. "A caress will tell the OS that it has been working well, and in that case it will review all the operations of the last session and try to repeat that performace in the future. This is the first step toward establishing a user-initiated feedback system." I asked Rajinikanth if this technique also works on his girlfriend. "You bet!" he said.
New Desktop Themes
In response to the perceived lack of variety in desktop backgrounds and colors, Microsoft has come up with a new solution: fully-integrated Desktop themes. "We thought of creating themes as individuals with 3D personalities, not just 2D superficial appearances." As of this writing there are only three desktop themes: Blonde, Brunette, and Ginger. Each one is associated with a different color set and has special, unique Charms that will display when a hot corner is activated. They all looked good to us when we first viewed them, but Rajinikanth promises that more personalization is to come. The first update pack for Windows 9 will include three theme subtypes: Athletic, Demure, and Sleazy.
So when can you expect to see Windows 9 on the shelves? We're told that the release date is currently set for April 1, 2015, but such dates have been known to change in the past. "It's such a great operating system," Rajinikanth humbly tells us, "that I'd almost prefer to never release it and just keep it for myself." Let's hope that doesn't happen.
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