Windows 8 doesn't need saving

This week's Great Debate topic is: "Can Windows 8 be saved?" Here's a news flash for you and the debaters — Windows 8 doesn't need saving.
Written by Ken Hess, Contributor

Someone needs to consult the Mayan calendar, a Sumerian tablet, or the Oracle of Algernon, because I'm actually on the same side as Ed Bott in this week's Great Debate argument, "Windows 8: Can this OS be saved?" Well, except for one thing: I don't think that Windows 8 needs saving. So to me, the debate's premise is kind of moot. It will be interesting to see the arguments on this one, but seriously, Windows 8 doesn't need saving. Hold off on lowering the lifeboats.

Every time Microsoft releases a new version of its operating system, there's a bit of controversy and fighting that takes place. And I understand your love for Windows XP or your attachment to Windows 7, but it's time to embrace the future.

In my mind's eye, I imagine two nerds getting into the argument about whether Windows 8 can be saved and ending up in a slap fight that eventually is broken up by one of their mothers. Scenarios like this just make me hang my head in embarrassment. But that's the nature of IT folk. It's kind of like arguing Windows vs. Linux, or PC vs. Mac.

Religion is belief-based. Technology is observation-based. Learn the difference before taking a side. 

Now having said that, I will tell you that in my humble opinion, Windows Vista and Windows Me were totally bogus and completely unnecessary efforts. Sorry, I know that I said in a previous post that I'd never dog Vista again, but it's such an easy target that I can't resist. The mere mention of it is like Kryptonite to me. And I'm positive that too much exposure to Vista would eventually kill me. I digress.

The bigger questions for me are, "Why does Windows 8 need to be saved?"; and pray tell, "From what does Windows 8 need to be saved?"

I don't get it.

I've been to several retail stores and one discount store around town, and I've seen Windows 8 on several systems. New laptops with touchscreens, desktops, netbooks, and, of course, the Surface tablet line.

I installed it on a laptop and have yet to see anything wrong with it. Admittedly, I'd enjoy it more if I had one of the new touchscreen, models but there's nothing wrong with Windows 8. And I've put it through its paces. I haven't been nice to Windows 8. I hated it at first, but I forced myself to change with the times and work with it. The Windows 8 Metro-style interface is the future of computing.

The mouse will be a thing of the past very soon in our post-PC era that one of the debaters writes about so often. If you, and he, truly believe that we are now into the post-PC era, why the heck would you need to save Windows 8?

Windows 8 is a full operating system that can run real applications. There's no need to apologize for it. It's a good operating system — every bit (pun?) as good as Windows XP, and in many ways, better than Windows 7. One of my favorite features of Windows 8 is its impressive boot time. Thirty seconds from power on, I'm opening apps. Windows 7, conversely, takes several minutes on the exact same hardware.

Windows 8 doesn't need saving any more than Windows 95 did. People are afraid of something new, but in this case, they shouldn't be. And neither should you. Windows 8 is a good operating system that deserves a respected place in history alongside other innovative technology advances.

Let me put this in personal terms for you: Windows 8 is what you wanted. Seriously.

You wanted an operating system that would run on the hardware that you have now because you don't want to spend the money to upgrade. Done. You wanted an operating system that runs on a variety of hardware so that your user experience is the same on all devices. Done. You wanted an operating system that's easy to use. Done. You wanted an Apple-like experience with swipey icons and an app store. Done. You wanted an operating system that doesn't take a long time to boot up — hence all of the geeky tales of "going to get a cup of coffee while it boots". Done.

There's absolutely no need to save Windows 8.

So don't feel compelled to lower those lifeboats just yet. In fact, you can proceed on the Windows 8 journey with no lifeboats at all because this ship is unsinkable.

What do you think? Do you think that Windows 8 needs saving, and if so, what do you suggest? Talk back and let me know.

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