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What if Windows 8 was the last one


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#1 Orymus3   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 7149

Posted 30 October 2012 - 10:22 AM

Hey,

Been reading a few threads regarding windows 8 lately, and a funny thought crossed my mind.
Now, I won't say that's going to happen, nor that it would even be likely, but let's imagine that tomorrow, microsoft is no more, and that windows 8 is the last operating system that they'd develop.

A few years from now, what would the install base look like?
People sticking to windows 7?
Increased linux install base?
More MACs?
New OS on the PC market (and who do you think would be up for this?)

I've been devving since back in the day, long before I had windows 3.1, but for some reason, the last decades have led me to imagine windows would "always be the way".

I think its an interesting topic even if its in the realm of imagination alone.

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#2 slayemin   Members   -  Reputation: 2269

Posted 30 October 2012 - 01:05 PM

I think the future of computing is trending away from the traditional desktop computer and going mobile. If Microsoft doesn't shift with that trend, they may still lead the way in market share on the desktop, but fewer and fewer people will be using desktops, so their markets will contract and their lead will become somewhat irrelevant (sort of like saying, "I'm the fastest out of anyone in my class...at morse code!").

In terms of big data and computing, the trend is also going into cloud and distributed computing. The leaders in the server markets are VMWare and Linux.

Will Windows9 be built and released? Yes, I'm pretty certain of it. It won't be as revolutionary on the desktop computer as it will be for mobile computing and server clustering. Look for Microsoft to continue enriching their ecosystem and participating in the various markets by releasing new OS's which bring desktops, servers and mobiles together under a common platform. This, I would argue, is their strong suite, much moreso than their OS. Their OS is just a vector/platform to bring their other products to market.

Eric Nevala

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#3 alnite   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2063

Posted 30 October 2012 - 05:12 PM

A few years from now, what would the install base look like?
People sticking to windows 7?


Most likely.

Increased linux install base?


Unlikely, unless someone makes a better Linux. Linux still remains unusable to the general population due to its lack of marketing and app support.

More MACs?


If Apple continues to release new products, then yes. People are more attracted to newer products. If Apple keeps releasing new OSes, while Windows stuck at Windows 8, then overtime, people will use Apple products more than Windows.

New OS on the PC market (and who do you think would be up for this?)


I doubt it. If anything, Chrome might be the new OS, but Chrome has very little chance to steal the market share from Apple.

#4 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 13004

Posted 30 October 2012 - 05:29 PM

When it comes to anything I want to buy new in the future, I would go where the games go.
If they all follow Valve over to Linux (shudder) then after a few years I might buy one.
If they all go to Macintosh OS X then, well, I already have one (under my bed; it sees the day of light only when I need to test my engine on it or iOS).
And if the industry is still strongly focused on Windows 8 then I will just get Windows 8. Since we are talking about the distance future here, by that point we will be able to see if Microsoft is trying to transition into a fully Metro style of things or if it really is just nothing but an add-on to normal standard desktop Windows 8.

Finally, since I really don’t want to use Linux or Macintosh OS X any more than absolutely necessary (for developing my engine), I will most likely just stick to consoles for gaming and stay with Windows XP and Windows 7 for PC use.

I am glad I started my previous topic on this because it seems that Metro is just that, at least for now.
Microsoft has been pouring so much marketing into its Metro feature that people are getting the idea that that is the main focus on Windows 8, and that the desktop mode is secondary.

If we assume 2 things:
#1: Windows 8 is just the same as Windows 7, with Metro mode tacked onto the side for the additional ability to play mobile games on desktop.
#2: The desktop feature is a priority that will never go away, and Metro will always be just an add-on.

Then actually all seems good. If that is all true.
#2 worries me, however, because of how much they have marketed and the fact that it needs special hardware to use correctly. Once this hardware has a substantial install base it only makes sense that they would push more into the Metro side of things.
Even if they do continue to support desktop mode it would eventually become secondary. Little support for new features etc.

Ultimately my answer is just, “Wait and see.”


L. Spiro
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#5 mhagain   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 7648

Posted 30 October 2012 - 06:28 PM

I don't believe that Metro is anything to be scared of. Microsoft have been trying to push the desktop programming model away from Win32 since at least the early 2000s and so far have failed; all indications I can see is that they're just going to fail again. Win32 is just too deeply entrenched, and despite the fact that it may be crochety and awkward at times, it's well understood and has a huge existing knowledge and application base that's not going to disappear overnight, or even over the timescale of a few years/major releases.

On the other hand if they end up developing a sane and usable API/framework then who knows?

The one factor that is being ignored is the huge corporate install base. That's traditionally ultra-conservative, and even if Windows 8 was the end, it's not going to budge for at least 5 years. Hell, we're even currently having trouble getting away from IE6 (thank you Oracle) never mind being in a position where we can begin to think about life beyond Windows 8.

Linux on the desktop is a joke. Sure the likes of Ubuntu do a decent enough job, but for practical day to day non-technical use it's not even in the same universe, never mind the same ballpark. In my former role as an enterprise network admin it's something I evaluated every few years, and at one point in time (the Vista transition) it looked as though a switch to Linux may have been less trouble than a Vista upgrade, but the Linux distros never really took advantage of that and I firmly believe that the Linux communities are wasting far more energy on infighting than on just making it a better and more cohesive all-round package.

I don't doubt that the day will eventually come when Microsoft ends and there is no more Windows, but I don't think we'll see it in our lifetimes. Even if nothing else, that corporate desktop I mentioned is a big enough money-spinner to keep a scaled-down company afloat, and the move to tablet/touch technology is not as relevant there right now.

When that day comes who knows what the options will be?

It appears that the gentleman thought C++ was extremely difficult and he was overjoyed that the machine was absorbing it; he understood that good C++ is difficult but the best C++ is well-nigh unintelligible.


#6 Orymus3   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 7149

Posted 30 October 2012 - 09:55 PM

The one factor that is being ignored is the huge corporate install base. That's traditionally ultra-conservative, and even if Windows 8 was the end, it's not going to budge for at least 5 years.

Ya, my office just started transitionning out of Windows XP SP3, and we're the private sector. Imagine government management offices Posted Image


I don't doubt that the day will eventually come when Microsoft ends and there is no more Windows, but I don't think we'll see it in our lifetimes.


I don't know how old you are, but I got to see Microsoft come to life, so I might also end up seeing it die. I mean cmon, I've see BBS die, internet breathe, etc. I wouldn't be so surprised by a quick shift, but all it needs is a little push, to quote the Joker. I'm wondering what that little push might be, not fooling myself into thinking that the stand-out from Zenimax is going to affect this in any way shape or form.

Edited by Orymus3, 30 October 2012 - 09:57 PM.


#7 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 31 October 2012 - 08:04 AM

I think people underestimate the draw of the physical hardware. I think more and more frequently we will see hardware driving adoption more than the operating system. At the moment I legitimately think Windows 8 is being released on the widest range of desirable hardware except for maybe the nexus 10.

I think the push for interoperability between WP8/W8/xbox is non trivial too, though I'm not sure the impact it will have. It will be something to watch.

#8 ChaosEngine   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2251

Posted 31 October 2012 - 04:48 PM

I don't know anyone who actually wants a windows 8 machine. Plenty of people know they'll get one, but I have yet to meet anyone that actually desires a Surface (or any other windows 8 based tech).

On the other hand, almost everyone I know either has or wants an iPad/iPhone or even an S3/Galaxy tab.
I think MS have a bigger marketing problem then they realise.
if you think programming is like sex, you probably haven't done much of either.-------------- - capn_midnight

#9 Badwolf1   Members   -  Reputation: 105

Posted 04 November 2012 - 07:39 PM

You actually might be partly right about Windows 8 being the last "Windows" release since they are at least considering changing the name with the project codenamed Midori (Not the browser). Not sure how accurate this information is since its from wiki however based off similar projects we know they are pushing forward more with the idea of a Managed Code OS. Should be interesting at any rate.

Edited by Badwolf1, 04 November 2012 - 07:40 PM.


#10 abcdef44   Banned   -  Reputation: 2

Posted 05 November 2012 - 05:43 AM

I've heard that Win 8 will be the very last version.

Honestly I don't care about any proprietary OS anymore. I can do all with Ubuntu and only boot other OS to recompile stuff. (OSX86 and Win 8 with
disabled Metro, as this seems awkward to me.)
Where will we be in 20 years? No idea, more mobile and cloud with thin desktops? Need to watch some science fiction for ideas. Posted Image

Edited by abcdef44, 05 November 2012 - 05:47 AM.


#11 Oolala   Members   -  Reputation: 758

Posted 05 November 2012 - 06:42 PM

Personally I've been hoping for new movement in the operating systems world for a while now, but the immovable object is much less windows in the desktop market, but the major player [linux included] in the server market. If microsoft disapepared tomorrow, you'll see some interesting stuff happen in desktops, but it'll likely be a decade or more [barring some massive security vulnerability that gets discovered] before people targetting desktops stop targetting windows emulation platforms and actually transition fully to a actual new OS for desktops. After that though, I'd really hope something new has come along. Mac has such a rancid reputation with developers, and linux is linux.

Perhaps a more interesting question would be what would happen if unix/linux bit the dust in the server market. Lots of people use their desktop as just means of opening a web browser, and after it's open the OS is irrelevant. In the server market though? Losing linux would be a really transformative change, and I'd argue this change would be for the better, as it would give the server market an 'opportunity' [it would force them out of their comfort zone] to adopt a lot of the more distruptive, but frankly necessary, changes that need made in the server & HPC world.

#12 abcdef44   Banned   -  Reputation: 2

Posted 06 November 2012 - 01:03 AM

If Linux would disappear as Server not much would change as most servers are AIX, HP-UX, Sun etc. anyway. Linux is small but more widely used than Windows for servers. In typical server rooms you might have one Windows frontend, Linux for web, email etc. And most high performance on expensive Unix machines.

Edited by abcdef44, 06 November 2012 - 02:19 AM.


#13 Gavin Williams   Members   -  Reputation: 646

Posted 06 November 2012 - 08:08 AM

I don't know anyone who actually wants a windows 8 machine. Plenty of people know they'll get one, but I have yet to meet anyone that actually desires a Surface (or any other windows 8 based tech).

On the other hand, almost everyone I know either has or wants an iPad/iPhone or even an S3/Galaxy tab.
I think MS have a bigger marketing problem then they realise.


I want a Surface ! Unless they are broken in some way or just don't deliver, but I would guess that those issues would be due to wider limitations of the tablet hardware, rather than Surface specifically. And I want Windows 8 because it gives me direct x 11.1 which gives me easier development. I have an iPhone but I don't want an iPad. What the hell would i do with an iPad that I couldn't do with a Surface ? And with the Surface I can use my software, and I can develop for it, I can more easily network it to my desktop and laptop. For a Windows user / developer, the iPad seem to me to be a closed box in that if I bought one it would only be for it's own sake, and not for the ways that it might extend my existing network.

#14 Ashaman73   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 6977

Posted 06 November 2012 - 08:39 AM

tomorrow, microsoft is no more, and that windows 8 is the last operating system that they'd develop.

People are very flexible. I believe that linux will be the next big thing in this case.

Most people are not really aware of how many home devices already use linux as base. I'm not a linux fan, I'm personally not using linux, but linux is really mature and once an easier,prettier option is gone, linux will be the next thing to go for. If it weren't for visual studio I would have gave linux a chance already. Windows is a business OS for me, making it a colorful, casual, and from a business view, clumpsy OS will not help me at work at all and I would bet, that many PCs are business PCs.

Windows 8 is a step back in the wrong direction, it is a clumpsy attempt to put two different sets of requirements into a single OS, eventually satisfying neither desktop users nor tablet users, but we will see.

#15 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 06 November 2012 - 12:05 PM

Most people are not really aware of how many home devices already use linux as base. I'm not a linux fan, I'm personally not using linux, but linux is really mature and once an easier,prettier option is gone, linux will be the next thing to go for. If it weren't for visual studio I would have gave linux a chance already. Windows is a business OS for me, making it a colorful, casual, and from a business view, clumpsy OS will not help me at work at all and I would bet, that many PCs are business PCs.

One thing that would be cool about linux becoming the primary OS is that you'd probably have the most popular one being the most user friendly/UI centric, but it would still benefit from the development of other distros.

Would be an interesting environment once there's enough popular demand to really push it forward as it would probably accelerate much faster than other OS's could keep up as every version benefits from the work of other versions. The demand isn't quite there to reach the point where it outpaces other OS's atm, but probably before too long.

#16 phantom   Moderators   -  Reputation: 6912

Posted 06 November 2012 - 12:47 PM

One thing that would be cool about linux becoming the primary OS is that you'd probably have the most popular one being the most user friendly/UI centric, but it would still benefit from the development of other distros.


Sure, if you could put up with all the bullshit which goes with it - my favourite just recently was the GPLing of a fucking API interface which means you can't (legally) use them from closed binary blobs such as the nVidia driver.

If it was a minor API then it wouldn't be as bad (still bullshit but...) but it was an API for a common kernel layer interface to allow things such as the Optimus stuff to work (Intel and NV GPU in a laptop).

Honestly, if Linux becomes the mainstream then I think it'll be time for me to hang up my coding boots and find some new hobbies because I'm not sure I could program in a world where the GPL, a license for which the term "dislike" is not strong enough to cover how I feel about it, is the mainstream way of doing things.

#17 SimonForsman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5990

Posted 06 November 2012 - 01:29 PM

Honestly, if Linux becomes the mainstream then I think it'll be time for me to hang up my coding boots and find some new hobbies because I'm not sure I could program in a world where the GPL, a license for which the term "dislike" is not strong enough to cover how I feel about it, is the mainstream way of doing things.


I don't see how a kernel interface being GPL licensed is a big problem for application/game developers though (we don't write kernel drivers and the license of the kernel is pretty irrelevant for us). It is true that this was a stupid decision though, nvidia won't open their drivers for this since their important Linux customers are using the GPUs for HPCs or on workstations and couldn't care less about this feature, This basically only makes Linux a worse choice for consumers with dual GPU laptops. ( So 2013 will not be the year of the linux desktop :P )
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#18 phantom   Moderators   -  Reputation: 6912

Posted 06 November 2012 - 01:40 PM

I don't see how a kernel interface being GPL licensed is a big problem for application/game developers though (we don't write kernel drivers and the license of the kernel is pretty irrelevant for us).


Because it could be the start of a slippery slope to more 'GPL only' interfaces, not just in the kernel but to applications/libs in userland which need to communicate with subsystems and if they are forced to become GPL then anything which needs to consume them becomes GPL and so on until you can't release anything closed source without reventing a whole software stack below you.

You might dismiss this as 'never going to happen' but this is no more 'out there' than the idea that MS are going to completely lock down all versions of windows in the future so *shrugs*

#19 swiftcoder   Senior Moderators   -  Reputation: 9765

Posted 06 November 2012 - 02:53 PM

I don't see how a kernel interface being GPL licensed is a big problem for application/game developers though... nvidia won't open their drivers

You answered your own question, right there.

You can't ship games to a platform that doesn't have working GPU drivers. Anytime NVidia/ATI tangle with the GPL, it means more consumers without proper GPU support, and thus unable to play your games.

Tristam MacDonald - Software Engineer @Amazon - [swiftcoding]


#20 SimonForsman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5990

Posted 06 November 2012 - 03:57 PM


I don't see how a kernel interface being GPL licensed is a big problem for application/game developers though... nvidia won't open their drivers

You answered your own question, right there.

You can't ship games to a platform that doesn't have working GPU drivers. Anytime NVidia/ATI tangle with the GPL, it means more consumers without proper GPU support, and thus unable to play your games.


Allthough their GPUs do work, you just have to pick one of them to go with.
I don't suffer from insanity, I'm enjoying every minute of it.
The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!




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