domingo, marzo 11, 2012

Metro y la herencia de Win32, II

Mientras recopilo información de Windows 8, pensando en el impacto que pudiera tener sobre las aplicaciones existentes (Win32), encuentro estas observaciones de Osvaldo Doederlein, ingeniero en Google:
Microsoft's "squaring of the circle" is by no means perfect: it looks more like an octogon to me. And while I understand and even appreciate the new UI concepts (semantic zoom, layout, typography etc.), its current rendering still looks crude, and (like Peter mentions) the Desktop and Metro look totally alien to each other. Maybe Microsoft can still work on this and make Metro's look more polished, and more similar to the desktop. I like shades, subtle 3D effects, and other decorations that a large display can use (and yeah, OSX uses more elegantly than anyone, though I'm happy enough with Win7). And I'm not visually impaired to need fonts with grotesque sizes everywhere; I'll rather see more data in one screen than need lots of horizontal scrolling (which is really cumbersome on mouse systems). My PC is not a giant Windows Phone!

Now I realize that MS is struggling in the smartphone and tablet markets, and having a single OS and UI that carries over all these platforms will be a big win. Can't really blame Microsoft: Apple is moving in the same direction with Mountain Lion (but not as aggressively as Metro). Even at Google we have Android and ChromeOS, but these platforms are more device-/web-/cloud-centric, and they have no desktop legacy; also, they're not competing on full desktops, to run complex apps like Photoshop (at work, I use Goobuntu for my "macho apps" like Eclipse). The problem is, after years of failure trying to shoehorn the classic Windows into tablets, Microsoft went to the opposite extreme--the total "tabletification" of the PC. Big mistake; there's no reason to believe a device-centric UI will be optimal for a conventional PC, remarkably when running sophisticated applications like IDEs, graghic editors, office suites etc.
Esta es mi especial preocupación. Así como y antes observara respecto a la tecnología de Activex frente al énfasis en .NET, existe un riesgo evidente de que todo el universo de aplicaciones basadas en Win32 y en la interfase visual del Windows [ahora] tradicional, se encuentre ante un futuro de difícil encaminamiento. Por necesidad, volveré sobre esto. Mi cuenta de aplicaciones Win32 a atender es demasiado grande.

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