A former Microsoft employee has launched a website dubbed 'Fixing Windows 8,' in an attempt to convince the company to address what he claims are major issues with the user interface on non-touchscreen devices.
Mike Bibik, user experience designer for Amazon and erstwhile Microsoft programme manager, is so bemused by the decisions taken by his former place of work that he's registered FixingWindows8.com
in an attempt to convince the company to rethink its approach to Windows 8's user experience.
'During the MWC keynote, Microsoft made it very clear that Windows 8 will work fantastically if you are using touch, mouse or keyboard
' Bibik writes on his site. 'Unfortunately, that's not entirely true.
Bibik then launches into a thorough deconstruction
of Windows 8 and its Windows Phone-inspired Metro UI, detailing the key points which he claims makes the system a disaster on any device not equipped with a touchscreen interface.
Problems range from the Start Screen, which Bibik points out contains numerous shortcuts to applications which simply won't operate until you've signed up for a Microsoft Account, through the Metro UI's lack of window controls and the invisible Start Button. Bibik also rails on the lack of search functionality in the Store, which for some reason has been relegated to the Charms Menu.
'All of these issues were uncovered in my first hour of using Windows 8 Consumer Preview,
' claims Bibik. 'Power users should be able to figure out how the mouse works in Windows 8. Novices and new users will be completely lost.
Bibik isn't alone in his belief that Microsoft has taken a wrong turn with the design of Windows 8, blinded by the success of Apple's iPad tablet range and the clean lines of its own - small-device centric - Windows Phone platform. A video recorded by Chris Prillo showing his father trying and failing to use Windows 8
offers a key insight into how the vast majority of users will be exasperated by Microsoft's changes.
As its name suggests, however, Bibik isn't just complaining. As well as highlighting what he claims are the key failings of the design, Bibik has drawn upon his UX designer experience to offer potential solutions to the issues raised by the blog
Sadly, at this late stage, it seems unlikely that Microsoft will be paying much attention. The Consumer Preview represents a near-final look at the software, and any of the overhauls suggested by Bibik would require that the launch schedule be delayed for implementation, testing and a second Consumer Preview cycle.
At the time of writing, Microsoft had not responded to a request for comment on Bibik's blog.