When Microsoft announced that they were pushing the release of their new operating system (Windows Vista) back into Q1 of 2007 (almost a full year away), I wasn’t shocked. They’ve been working on this OS for what – over five years now? I’ve lost all hope and excitement for Windows Vista, sadly. Same holds true for the next version of Microsoft Office. I’ve seen very recent builds of both products, and I’m completely underwhelmed. Will I upgrade? Sure, but I already know I’ll be overwhelmed with annoyances. I look at all the things others seem to ignore – font faces, font sizes, errant pixels, alignment, general user interface snafus, etc. I see far too many inconsistencies in pre-beta 2 builds to be impressed. Some people are already running Windows Vista as their primary operating system, but I wouldn’t consider doing that until release candidates (which may not be released until much later this year). Even then, I’m going to be keeping a critical eye on Windows Vista’s flaws – making sure the right people put spit and polish on the elements that need it most.

If you’re running anything but Windows XP, you need to upgrade. When Windows Vista is released, I’m confident it’ll be better than Windows XP (despite each operating systems’ shortcomings). I realize that some of you are still using Windows 98 (or worse yet, Windows Millenium Edition). You really have to “get with the times” if you really expect to experience today’s world. Forget about the Internet for a second – software just runs better on a true 32-bit operating system (for now). 64-bit computing is right around the corner, too – though some say it’s already here. Windows XP currently has a 64-bit flavor, but Windows Vista will have even better support for this next level of CPU instruction management. Vista is on the horizon, but I feel its interest is already waning. The market will welcome Microsoft’s new OS with a lackluster response – largely due to its launch taking place after the all-important winter holiday shopping season. Joe and Judy Consumer won’t care about Vista, so long as they can still check their email and surf their favorite Web sites (with Firefox, of course). I don’t expect Windows Vista to be anything other than an operating system – nothing more, nothing less.

[tags]vista,microsoft,windows vista,pc,computer,windows xp,os,windows 98,64-bit,32-bit,microsoft windows,operating system,personal computer[/tags]