24 Jul 2008

Microsoft Tries Fighting Back

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Ed Bott likes Microsoft’s initial ad attempting to defend Vista, but observes that it’s going to take more than trying to ridicule the messenger.

That’s a pretty good start. The real hard work begins with the messages that immediately follow this one. Microsoft has to identify the real benefits in Windows Vista and communicate them clearly and crisply. That’s not going to be any easy task.

Not easy at all, IMHO.

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Adrian Kingsley-Hughes points out that MSFT’s ad isn’t going to get it done, because although the earth was not flat, Vista really does suck.

Even the overall message that the ad is trying to convey is uninspiring. For example:

    Meanwhile, a series of independent speed tests found that Windows Vista with SP1 performed comparably to Windows XP SP2.

    Why doesn’t it win? Simple. Behind the scenes, Windows Vista is doing a lot more on your behalf than Windows XP does. It’s indexing your files so you can find them fast, keeping your hard drive organized, saving your work so nothing gets lost, and defending your computer against hackers and phishers.

So, when your favorite first person shooter starts to stutter, or that photo is taking a little too long to open in Photoshop, you can take comfort in the fact that Vista is doing a lot more on your behalf than Windows XP ever did.

I tried Vista recently, and I thought it was doing a lot too much for me. Every mouse click produced a close relative of MS Office’s infamous dancing paperclip freezing the action and popping up to warn me that opening a browser or clicking on an application could expose my system to viruses or possibly initiate a fatal sequence of events leading to the heat death of the universe.

I gathered a distinct impression that Vista’s designers really believed one should take that PC and admire the nice Microsoft wallpaper through the lucite block you had cast around it.

Everyone assured me that one could reduce the level of pestering by tweaking security settings, so I reduced them alright. I just installed XP right over it.

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Hat tip to Karen L. Myers.

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