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Windows 7 – who gives a $#%&!?


What an interesting couple of weeks. Google released, to a select few, the beta version of the much-anticipated “Wave” collaboration tool — more on that later. Of course, the biggest story in the technology press at the moment is the long-anticipated release of Windows 7.

‘Anticipated’ because regardless of what you think of it, most infrastructure managers I know have opted to leapfrog the adoption of Vista in anticipation of Windows 7. This has been disastrous for Microsoft and many are now looking at Windows 7 as Microsoft’s last chance to redeem itself.

Needless to say, it’s two biggest rivals, Google and Apple, didn’t see the need to help Microsoft out this week. Only yesterday, Apple launched a beautifully designed shiny version of its iMac, the day before the scheduled launch of Windows 7. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

Days earlier the blogosphere was in a tizz about rumours that Google Chrome was out in the wild. Google has been talking about working on its own operating system for a while. Needless to say, we are all busting to see it, so this certainly piqued my interest.

The launch of Windows 7 seems to have been planned to go ahead without the usual pomp and ceremony that you have come to expect from a Microsoft OS launch. Perhaps after the way Vista backfired, they are planning to under-sell and over-deliver. We can only hope.

The feature list boasts all the things you have come to expect from a new operating system — i.e. better networking and an easy upgrade from your old OS. (They said that about Vista, remember?) But I have to admit I find it hard to get excited about an operating system. It is, after all, supposed to give you access to your stuff — the ‘stuff’ being the more interesting part of computing for me. Anything else on top of that is just bells and whistles.

I have very simple tastes. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been using Windows 7 since the Beta version and I love it, but then again I love Vista too. I never had any of the compatibility problems that frustrated so many of my colleagues.

This has to be one of the most anticipated yet underwhelming launches in Microsoft’s history. Apparently, we were supposed to be so excited about the launch that we would host a party in honour of it! Come on, MS. Really. Generally speaking, I like your stuff. But am I going to throw a party in honour of it? Not unless you’re paying for the booze.

The adoption rates of Windows 7 will speak for themselves in the coming months. We will no doubt see a flurry of articles and reviews in the next few weeks, so watch out for that.

In the meantime, I’m keen to know. Are you excited by the launch of Windows 7? Are we supposed to be?

David Birchall is a Business Solutions Consultant for boutique software solutions consultancy Solentive. He is also the founder and organiser of Sydney networking events group www.sydneynetworkers.net.

Photo: Bashed