Microsoft GUIs

Andrew Berg bahamutzero8825 at
Wed Jul 6 06:53:33 CEST 2011

On 2011.07.05 11:25 PM, Chris Angelico wrote:
> Suppose I gave you a computer that had GNOME ported to Windows, and
> used the purplish palette that Ubuntu 10.10 uses, and had a Windows
> port of bash as its most convenient terminal. Members of this list
> will doubtless have no problem duck-typing that as a Linux box (to the
> extent of being quite surprised on seeing something that functions
> differently).
I would love to see a fully functional KDE running on Windows (this is
being worked on, but development has been slow and rough). I was talking
about GUI design, though, not just the aesthetics of a window manager
and widgets.
A recent version of bash working on Windows would be nice too, but IMO,
MS should be actively promoting PowerShell. It's not that PowerShell is
a superior scripting language to bash, but that it's integrated with WMI
and is therefore much more convenient for admin stuff.
> What is Microsoft selling? They're a company, which means they need to
> keep selling stuff year after year. What's saleable in Windows? Is it
> the kernel? Maybe, but only by its specs. Far more saleable is the
> user-facing parts of the system. Sell them a pretty new GUI with
> transparent windows. Sell 'em a fancy new Office that looks and feels
> different. Sell a development package that lets programmers use these
> same facilities in their own code.
I think the reason MS has been creating good sysadmin tools lately is
that it's feeling competition from Linux/Unix server solutions. If they
can make a Windows domain admin's job easier, they're more likely to
sell their OS.
As for the end-user side of Windows (and their office suite), AFAICT,
they're still pretty complacent with their market share and only change
things up for the sake of difference. Since the GUI is the most
noticeable part of the software, that's what gets changed.
> Since XP, the Windows kernel has been mostly reliable. I've had
> programs go wrong, and (eventually) managed to kill the process, upon
> which everything cleans up fairly nicely. Not that that's really a
> boast-worthy feature; I'd call it mandatory these days.
I agree.
> Let
> Microsoft play with, and sell, pretty GUIs and pretty apps.
I completely disagree. MS sucks at making GUIs.

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