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Windows and Fresh Air

June 28, 2008

The NY Times Sunday Business section Jun 29th had an interesting article by Randall Stross that posed the question should Microsoft rewrite Windows completely for its future. He contrasts Microsoft against Apple and what they did with OS-X and also talks about an OS project at Microsoft called Singularity. Articles and blogs on what Microsoft should do for the Future are many but this is the first I had seen where there was discussion of new efforts within Microsoft itself.

I am a user of operating systems not an expert in them, but like most users over the years, I am grown too familiar with the issues around Windows and how those issues impact my work and my customers. 

Vista is not an option for me. I worry that Windows 7 will be more of the same, bigger, slower, and more incompatible. Windows XP gets my work done, but it is also clear where XP is going and XP also has its own set of issues.

Stross's article talks about Singularity being conducted by the research arm and not the Windows group so is safely bottled up. I can't say if Singularity is the answer, but I know the issues with Windows all too well to see the value in developing a new OS from scratch. Stross argues that this could be Microsoft's future, and I can't disagree.

I would like to see more information on Singularity get out sufficient to get discussion going both outside and inside Microsoft. Perhaps we need to aid the rebels within Microsoft to get more attention on this issue as well as provide pressure for change.

Stross refers to Windows OS X developed as a rewrite along the Mac OS X model. Makes sense to me. 

++B 

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