Oh Really? Vista?

Microsoft did a “blind taste test” with a group that thought they were looking at the NEXT version of Windows – code-name Mojave.

Some of the clips showing the reaction of people that had preconceptions about Vista are pretty classic.

First, the “Oh Really?” group: http://www.mojaveexperiment.com/#/?video=v12

Then the main site: http://www.mojaveexperiment.com/

I like Vista myself, even though I am now on a Mac every day – I run Vista on it in VMware Fusion.

Nicely done, Microsoft (could have been done in Silverlight instead of Flash – perhaps after the Olympics drive more Silverlight adoption, ok?)

I can can’t not do what?

I do not understand this Microsoft Vista error dialog I got yesterday while editing my Registry.


Microsoft Softens Response to Piracy

Finally!  This is what I suggested to Microsoft almost exactly one year ago, when my beta copy of Vista completely shut me out.

Glad to see they listened to me.  Heh! 🙂

SEATTLE (AP) — Microsoft Corp. is pulling back from a system that disables programs on users’ computers if it suspects the software is pirated, opting instead for a gentler approach based on nagging alerts.

Microsoft said late Monday it will roll out the new version of Windows Genuine Advantage with the first "service pack" for Windows Vista, due in the first quarter of 2008.

When computer users activate a copy of Windows Vista or try to download certain software from Microsoft’s Web site, the Windows Genuine Advantage system scans their PCs for signs of pirated software. Today, if the tool finds an unauthorized copy of Vista, the glassy Vista user experience disappears and other features are suspended.

Wired News – AP News

Microsoft opens widget marketplace for Vista and Windows Live

As Microsoft churns out amazing profits they are also almost literally printing their own money. 

Microsoft Points is the currency Microsoft uses for transactions in the XBOX Live environment.  And now it’s branching out. 

If Microsoft can get wide acceptance for Microsoft Points it will be a very, very powerful way for them to increase revenue – and by offering more and more Microsoft Services that are available via points (and now third party applications) they will branch out.

I’m just waiting for the first time a non-Microsoft web site asks me if I would rather pay with PayPal, Credit Card, or Microsoft Points.  I bet it happens in the next year.

Microsoft opened a new online marketplace last night to sell a new class of desktop and web applications directly to consumers. The new version of Windows Live Gallery extends the existing Windows Live Gold partnership program with premium content listings, partner storefronts, and the ability to charge Microsoft’s users for each new widget. Microsoft’s widget marketplace uses the same Microsoft Points currency system as Xbox Live Marketplace and Zune Marketplace. The new gallery site also includes the ability to rate reviews (“4 out of 5 people found this review helpful”) and widget developers featured on the front page of the site.

Microsoft opens widget marketplace for Vista and Windows Live

Yes, I must use Microsoft – but that doesn’t mean I have to like it.

I now have four different Product ID’s for my main Vista machine. Why? Because I have changed motherboards three times (I like new and fast). Each time I had to call MS and get a new key. This is unacceptable. All I did was what I do – change my hardware. I do this 4-6 times a year. If MS wants to spend the money generating new keys every time I make a change then I understand why their stock price is stagnant. This is a HUGE waste of resources. Take those resources and put them on fixing the bugs in the Operating System.

I seriously question if all the money spent on DRM is worth the support problems, or if maybe, just maybe, they could just release software that COULD be copied, but is easier to support. I think the evidence is pretty clear – I NEVER CALLED MICROSOFT for a new XP key – ever. And at one time in the office I had over 65 computers I managed – all running XP. THANKFULLY I do not manage Vista PC’s for anyone other than me right now. I would not do it.

I’ve tried giving MS money for XBOX Live since July – I spent about 11 hours on tech support with them (so far). Guess what? They still can’t/won’t take my money. Why not? They have no clue, and they don’t seem to care.

Me? I have an XBOX and two XBOX 360’s – I freaking care! I want my Gold account back. NOW. Just make it freaking happen – I have the money, they have the service. Figure it out. Please. The fact I can use my credit card to buy things on the Live Marketplace, but NOT to upgrade my account should make it VERY clear that the problem is NOT with my credit card. (XBOX live account name is kr8tr, if anyone from Microsoft is curious).

My tablet PC OS install died after 5 years (Windows XP). I reinstalled the OS but it wouldn’t validate. Fine. Email MS. Their response is that I can “pay for support” to get what I already paid for working again. I have the original damn product ID sticker right on the bottom of my tablet. WTF should I pay for support for (unless it’s a levy for not upgrading to Windows Vista)?

Fine. Great. Really building up some customer loyalty here.

Microsoft, you’ve gone “Brokeback Mountain” on me. I can’t quit you – I have customers to support. But I can learn to hate you for your lack of HUMAN support, your constant twiddling of bits that don’t need twiddled with. For your DRM. For your inept tech support personnel (sorry – I’ve called on the same issue to XBOX Live over 15 times and every time I have to start all over even though every time you give me a “case-ID”.) Why then do you give me a NEW case ID every time – yet the root problem is never addressed? Why should I spend an hour each time I call re-trying everything I have tried ten times already? Free your tech support people from the script! Or hire people that think out of the box (and speaking English would be a huge freaking plus as well). And if you promise me a manager will call me “Saturday” then have them freaking call me on Saturday – not 8 days later on Sunday afternoon.

(And please, nobody tell me to switch to Ubuntu. I’ve tried – as recently as this past weekend. The “Grub error -17” that I get when I try and run Ubuntu/Kubuntu just isn’t very friendly to me. Doesn’t give me a clue what the problem is. But the machine won’t boot. I don’t care how good the OS is, if it won’t boot after an install it is of zero value to me. And I shouldn’t have to cipher through the apparent 5,000+ things that could cause an error -17.)

I never thought I would say this – but I miss the simplicity of DOS.

If it wasn’t for Office 2007 I really wouldn’t have anything good to say about Microsoft today. They’ve seriously pissed me off (again).