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It's generally clear that the tools you use influence the way you think. To a two-year-old with a hammer, everything looks like a nail, just as PowerPoint's indented bullet lists both structure and limit much business thinking about more complex issues. We often think we know how to do something because we know how to use the tool that does it, but don't stop to think that other tools might produce better results or to question whether the tool we know might not be dictating the results we expect.
I don't have OS X yet myself, still using 9.2 but log lots of time on win-pcs in other settings, i.e. workplaces/friends/family/clients, etc -- and I've always been really frustrated with how (other than the right click button) it takes several extra steps/keystrokes and more time to do something in windows that I can quickly do on a mac in one or two steps.
I have no particular love for apple as an entity and especially their lackluster treatment of long-time loyal customers; (in fact it's mainly all the adobe/macromedia software I've purchased over the years that makes it prohibitive for me to switch any time soon), but it's that darn obtrusive, un-parsimonious in-your-face windows interface that especially drives me nuts! as long as you don't actually want to easily, quickly or efficiently do anything, find anything, save or delete anything, windows is fine (i.e, for web surfing and other mostly passive stuff).
anyway, this is a great article and should be a a jumping off point for other interesting discussions/articles about human factors/interface/design/systems, etc
I also noticed an article at the linux sister site about how java desktop apps will soon give microsoft a run for the money. if only
I recently escaped a 5-year sentence working at Microsoft. As valid as the points in this commentary are, I was exposed to another angle on the same concept: How Microsoft's own developments are inspired by its surroundings.
Most of the year, Redmond is cold, dark, and grey. All of the year, Redmond is functional but hardly personal or inviting -- generic strip malls, tacky apartments, bland at best and garish at worst, and just generally lacking character. Microsoft itself can be an incredibly unpleasant, frustrating, needlessly complex place to work, where you truly can do many different things -- arguably more than one could do working at Apple -- but it's such a pain to do them that whatever inspiration you may have started with has trouble getting through the work environment.
And that's all exactly what I dislike about Windows. It's cold, grey, needlessly difficult to get things done in, and functional but hardly pleasant or inviting. Windows XP adds intrusive to the mix while bringing hideously garish to the fore.
One thing I'll say for Microsoft, most employees have offices. And a surprising number of these offices have windows (the clear things we look through, not the OS), or views to windows. Unfortunately, the view out those windows only inspires MSFT employees to create what they see -- including an oppressively dark desktop theme called "Rainy Day." Ha!
Let me into the sunshine. Just let me do my work. Keep the OS out of my face and let me do with my computer the things I bought it for.