Somehow these days, the leaks drift out, leaving you to wonder whether some enterprising hacker has obtained them first or whether the company launching the new, new thing believes leaking is the finest path to peaking.
"I guess. I don't think about it. I just want it to work. I mean, I'm on everything Microsoft. PowerPoint, Excel -- actually, I like Excel a lot-- Word, Sticky Notes, Teams. But now that you show it to me, it definitely seems prettier."
"Prettier like your Apple thing."
"My Apple thing?"
"Your MacBook whatever. This looks more like that."
"What about the rounded corners?"
"What rounded corners?"
She focused on the footage more closely and concluded: "That'll probably look nicer on my big screen."
As for the new start menu and the fact that it's now in the middle but movable, her verdict was simple: "The more icons I can see, the better. There are more icons there, right? Or are there?"
I sensed my wife was mildly interested but fundamentally unenthused. So I tried a different approach.
"How about the new startup sound?"
She began to sing it: "Duh-duh. Ping!"
"You like it?"
"That could stay in my head. Not sure why I'd want it to, though."
She was getting restless. "How is this going to make my work any better or easier?" she wondered.
"I don't know. Hey, this might even be a fake leak and the real thing will be the most exciting thing you've ever seen."
"Don't think so," she mused drily. "You all get excited about these things, but I just want something that works better and quicker. Security would be nice, too, but I know that's asking for too much. I spend half my life staring at numbers and the other half staring at people. So if you can make Excel and Teams better, I'm all in. Otherwise, yeah, I'll give you this looks a little more, um, feminine."
"I like the new folder colors. Once you learn what color each folder is, you can identify them more easily," she explained.
I began to feel that Windows 11 -- if this is, indeed, Windows 11 -- wasn't going to change my wife's (work) life too much at all.
She's still at the mercy of whatever Microsoft provides her and the laptops her bosses grant her. Which, currently, means a painfully lugubrious Dell Latitude.
Many are surely in a similar situation. They open their computers, perhaps receive a message that there's a system update and then it's back to work.
Perhaps they notice that some icons are prettier and some corners are rounder. Perhaps they even remark on it to themselves.
Ultimately, will this new Windows improve anything? It could be that Microsoft will offer a few surprises on June 24. It could also be that someone in marketing was desperate for a little polish to peddle. The UI is unquestionably more inviting.
"So will this Windows 11 make your life any better?" I asked my wife, as she reached for a beer. (Did I mention she's an alcohol researcher?)