A subtle, aesthetic, change was made to the Windows 8 close, minimize, and maximize buttons on the Windows 8 desktop. It now looks more “tile-ish” just like Metro and it has a sharper look to it. Some Windows “purists” of course will probably hate it, but these are probably also the people that hated the user interface change that Windows XP made to Windows 95/98/ME/2000.
The new changes were introduced very subtly through pictures on the Building Windows 8 Blog. As a matter of fact, if it hadn’t been for the tech blog Engadget, we might not have spotted them at all. (OK, I know there are some of you out there that are probably jumping up and down and screaming, “Wait! I spotted it too!” Normally I would probably be just like you, but for now, I’m just talking to the general public.)
The reason for this change, Microsoft says, is because many users have been complaining that after using the Metro interface for a while, when they switch back to the classic desktop every once in a while, it seems like a step backward. Or as Andy Inhatko from the Chicago Sun-Times puts it, “Every time the classic Windows 7 interface pops up, it looks like a drunken uncle at an otherwise elegant family wedding.”
This actually seems like a great idea. It will please both sides of people. It will help please the people that want to move forward and just go to the Metro interface right away, and it will ease the transition for the people that don’t adapt to changes in technology as well.
I think that it will help ease the transition to Metro easier through subliminal messages. If more traditional users are using the classic desktop more in Windows 8 than Metro, they will still get the basic feel of Metro subliminally through the windows on the classic desktop. That way, when Microsoft finally decides to make the big overall switch in Windows 9 or 10, (or whatever the next few generations of Windows will be called) classic users will have subliminally grown used to the Metro interface one step at a time.
I actually hope that Microsoft makes more changes besides the Windows to the classic desktop in the final version. If you haven’t noticed, all versions of Windows (at least starting with Windows XP) have made major changes to the desktop.
Windows XP had its Luna user interface which brought a more eye-catching and colorful look to Windows, Windows Vista introduced Aero which looked pretty and made Windows fun to use, (OK, maybe Vista wasn’t fun to use, but Aero was at the time) and Windows 7 brought in a few more Aero features and of course the new system for opening programs and files. (The icons, kind of like Mac OS X’s dock.)
The only thing thats new so far with the Windows 8 desktop is what they’ve taken away, the Start Menu. There isn’t really much new. But this might actually be the direction we’re heading in, just taking stuff away until the desktop is completely gone.