UltimateSilence alerted me (thanks!) to the following excerpt from the MSDN blog post
In 2006, Windows Vista substantially changed the visual appearance of Windows, introducing the Aero visual style. Aero gave the appearance of highly-rendered glass, light sources, reflections, and other graphically complex textures in the title bars, taskbar, and other system surfaces. These stylistic elements represented the design sensibilities of the time, reflecting the capabilities of the brand-new digital tools used to create and render them. This style of simulating faux-realistic materials (such as glass or aluminum) on the screen looks dated and cheesy now, but at the time, it was very much en vogue.
So, what six years ago Microsoft called beautiful, they now have a spokesman describe it as "cheesy." Amazing.
I don't give a hoot whether a certain look is "dated," it only matters to me whether it works
and (since I look at it all day) how attractive
Anyway, how exactly is Aero "cheesy"? My dictionary gives two definitions for the word: (1) like cheese, and (2) inferior. Supposing that Aero is not like cheese, how then can the Aero design with its various refined elements -- transparency, Flip, shadows and other 3D effects -- possibly be viewed as "inferior" to the Metro design with its flat surfaces and square corners? That's like saying that a red Lego block looks superior to a ruby.
Perhaps the real explanation is that the Central Committee has changed the Party Line, so all loyal Party Members must do a 180 and talk up the New Truth.
Apropos of this, the following remark in the comments section:
Microsoft circa 2015: "Metro looks old and outdated, look at how we rounded the corners off!"
Excuse me while I go and not jump on the bandwagon.
Another head-scratcher from the MSDN blog, with respect to the "trends that influenced the design of Windows 8":
In 2009, desktops were 44% of the worldwide market and laptops were 56%. Just 3 years later, over 61% of the PCs sold are laptops and the trend is accelerating—this is globally, measuring all Windows PCs sold. Among consumers in the United States buying a PC this year, more than 76% will purchase laptops—the absolute number of all US desktops sold will be fewer than the number of tablets in 2012! That is a fairly stunning change in the role of different form factors. Even in businesses, laptops are now purchased more than half the time.
Never mind that worldwide
desktop sales have actually gone up slightly -- the writer is either confused himself, or is deliberatly obfuscating the enormous differences between laptop computers and tablets. Sales of laptops have nothing to do with sales of tablets. Why? Because the experience is different. Try using screen touch on a laptop: it's only slightly less awkward than using a touch screen on a desktop PC. On a tablet (where the screen is truly on your lap, not raised in the air as with a laptop), the touching distance is much closer, the angle is much more natural, and the touch movement is easier to control.
Gadgets, introduced in Windows Vista, held the promise of providing a more connected UI surface, but failed to relate to the apps and services we care the most about.
Such as, what? I have a financial gadget that updates me on the stocks I've invested in. What are you talking about, "failed to relate to the apps and services we care the most about"???
In any case, it's obvious that tens of millions of real PCs will continue to get sold each year around the world. Why embark on a redesign of Windows that makes it harder and more awkward to use the OS on a desktop (and yes, even a laptop) computer? If the idea is to respond to users' increasing embrace of social media, then all you need is the right Gadgets to put on the Desktop so that anybody who so wishes can follow the latest tweets, Facebook status updates, and other trivial cr*p (sorry). But no, you've basically killed off Windows Gadgets, presenting the Metro abomination as the answer to our suffering.
In Vista and Win7, I can have the Gadgets I want showing while I get work done in two or three open windows. Under Metro, if I want to see the current weather or stock averages I have to interrupt my work and switch apps. How is that preferable?