Photo: The Verge
In 1984, the New York Times ran an article slamming the concept of windows-based operating systems.My colleague Nicholas Carlson just pointed it out as an example of why you shouldn’t listen to gadget reviewers.
He’s right about that as far as it goes: You shouldn’t listen to gadget reviewers. It only leads to heartbreak.
But the New York Times article is actually amazingly prescient, if you think about the future of computing today.
What’s magnificent about Apple’s iPad and Microsoft’s new Surface? They let you focus on a single task, by design.
The biggest critique of Windows 8’s new user interface is that it doesn’t really involve “windows” anymore. Instead, it shows you one screen at a time, letting you swipe between apps. There’s a clunky way to have two apps side by side, but that’s as far as this new Windows goes in showing you windows.
Supposedly “multitasking” is a wonderful thing for computers to be able to do. But study after study has shown that humans are terrible at multitasking. So that antique computer critic was correctly grouchy about this newfangled windows thing. Too bad it took us three decades to figure out he was right.
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