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1 August 15 (permalink)

WINDOWS EX

Unless you were living under a rock for the last week, you'll know that Windows 10 launched on Wednesday. I've got it up and running on three of my machines so far and to be blunt, I'm not impressed. Why?

  • It's very closed system. Microsoft's new Calendar application looks nice, but it doesn't give me any option to import my existing calendar from Mozilla Thunderbird. I'm not going to type everything in again from scratch, so it's not going to get used.
  • It's thin on functionality. For example, the Photos application "organises" all your photographs according to image metadata and sorts them by date (even if the date is thirty years in the future, I noticed). And that's it. It doesn't allow you to organise things how you want or, god forbid, present stuff to you using the folder hierarchy that you'd organised things with in the first place. The "editing" controls consist of single buttons with no explanation of what they do or control over their use. That's when you can use them at all: editing photos wasn't possible on a large number of the pictures I tried it with.
  • It's buggy. At present the sound card on this PC keeps crashing every half an hour. The only way to get sound back is to restart the machine.
  • It's plastered with adverts. Groove Music, the replacement for Windows Media Player, vomits huge picture after huge picture of artists I've never heard of at me in a pathetic attempt to get me to buy their stuff. Old favourite solitaire now comes in a cut-down version. If you want to play without being advertised at, you have to cough up. I can't play a video without being told I really need to buy the latest Tom Cruise movie. Thanks, but I'll stick with VLC Media Player.
  • It's all about the horizontal branding experience. You want to use your computer? Hey, how about we give you a Microsoft account instead, so you can sign in to everything using that and we can track your usage for advertising purposes. You want to play a game? Sign in with your X-Box account. Not got one? Don't worry, we'll create one for you, regardless of whether you want it or not.

Using Windows Ten is an alienating and frustrating experience. It might be free, but that's only because the user has become the product. And MS are going to exploit that product every way they can.

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