Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 29th Oct 2012 23:34 UTC
Games I'm not 100% sure this is actually word-for-word, but alas. "In a presentation at Ubuntu Developer Summit currently going on in Denmark, Drew Bliss from Valve said that Linux is more viable than Windows 8 for gaming. Windows 8 ships with its own app store and it is moving away from an open platform model." I feel like a broken record by now but here we go again: keep an eye on Valve, even if you're not into games. This is the company pushing NVIDIA and AMD to improve their Linux support, with enough clout and name to actually get stuff done. Valve doesn't mess around.
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ansidotsys
Member since:
2008-08-15

I thought you weren't the "omg the sky is falling" type? Those fictional series of steps you just listed are the epitome of the paranoid quote you just said you were not.

When I was referencing Win32 backwards compatibility based on the APIs, that same dependency applies to the current distribution model of a Win32 application (On x86, the only ISA that matters for PC Gaming). In other words, Microsoft CAN'T close off Win32. Because again, the basis of what makes Windows so powerful are applications that exist today *AS THEY ARE NOW*. Closing off Win32 applications and requiring that they be installed via a Store is exactly the same as breaking Win32 API compatibility.

Why? Because by virtue of Windows rejecting an installer, it is breaking compatibility; there are thousands of applications whose installers will never be re-written. Like I mentioned earlier to Thom, this disaster scenario you are making up is making the following assumptions:

1. That Microsoft is willing to throw away all of their backwards compatibility that they worked so hard to preserve the past few decades.
2. That Microsoft even WANTS to get rid of the desktop.
3. That Microsoft even CAN get rid of the desktop.

Microsoft recognizes the strength they have with the desktop. It's why they are using it is as a selling point for Windows 8. Microsoft will not abandon the desktop until the desktop and laptop form factor themselves are dead. And the only way that will happen is if every x86 device on the planet dies and x86 is never again produced. But hey, that's another ridiculous assumption altogether.

Edited 2012-10-31 08:23 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

dnebdal Member since:
2008-08-27

I thought you weren't the "omg the sky is falling" type? Those fictional series of steps you just listed are the epitome of the paranoid quote you just said you were not.

When I was referencing Win32 backwards compatibility based on the APIs, that same dependency applies to the current distribution model of a Win32 application (On x86, the only ISA that matters for PC Gaming). In other words, Microsoft CAN'T close off Win32. Because again, the basis of what makes Windows so powerful are applications that exist today *AS THEY ARE NOW*. Closing off Win32 applications and requiring that they be installed via a Store is exactly the same as breaking Win32 API compatibility.

Why? Because by virtue of Windows rejecting an installer, it is breaking compatibility; there are thousands of applications whose installers will never be re-written. Like I mentioned earlier to Thom, this disaster scenario you are making up is making the following assumptions:

1. That Microsoft is willing to throw away all of their backwards compatibility that they worked so hard to preserve the past few decades.
2. That Microsoft even WANTS to get rid of the desktop.
3. That Microsoft even CAN get rid of the desktop.

Microsoft recognizes the strength they have with the desktop. It's why they are using it is as a selling point for Windows 8. Microsoft will not abandon the desktop until the desktop and laptop form factor themselves are dead. And the only way that will happen is if every x86 device on the planet dies and x86 is never again produced. But hey, that's another ridiculous assumption altogether.



I think you're being very optimistic here - MS are perfectly capable of going down a path like that. Sure, it will mean throwing away some of the reasons people use windows. The benefit is that they get to decide what runs on windows, and that they earn 20% on every single windows application sold. That might well be worth the customer loss it would cause. It might not even be a large loss: Eased in over time, the number of consumers lost to other OSes wouldn't need to be especially large.

Reply Parent Score: 3

galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

I thought you weren't the "omg the sky is falling" type? Those fictional series of steps you just listed are the epitome of the paranoid quote you just said you were not.


Im not being paranoid. I don't believe Microsoft will end up doing that. But it is a completely realistic scenario. I believe it is naive to pretend that something like this couldn't happen, it could - quite easily actually.

In other words, Microsoft CAN'T close off Win32. Because again, the basis of what makes Windows so powerful are applications that exist today *AS THEY ARE NOW*


You didn't read what I posted. If they wanted to they could make a whitelist of popular apps and allow them to run unsigned... Sure, they can't include everything obviously, but they could more than likely include enough to make the vast majority of users not notice. They could even forego the whitelist and just go the "bug the user with a warning" route indefinitely - i.e. never really "break" the apps, just make it a pain to run them if they are not signed...

The result is the same either way - it herds developers to their distribution model, and they make more $$$. Don't underestimate the power of $$$.

Like I mentioned earlier to Thom, this disaster scenario you are making up is making the following assumptions:

1. That Microsoft is willing to throw away all of their backwards compatibility that they worked so hard to preserve the past few decades.
2. That Microsoft even WANTS to get rid of the desktop.
3. That Microsoft even CAN get rid of the desktop.


Your absolutely right. The thing is nobody but Microsoft knows the answer to 1 and 2. But 3 is definitely true, pretending its not isn't terribly useful.

Microsoft recognizes the strength they have with the desktop. It's why they are using it is as a selling point for Windows 8. Microsoft will not abandon the desktop until the desktop and laptop form factor themselves are dead. And the only way that will happen is if every x86 device on the planet dies and x86 is never again produced. But hey, that's another ridiculous assumption altogether.


I think you are underestimating the allure of having total control of distribution on the platform... Again, I don't think Microsoft will go this route - but at the same time I don't for a second believe they wouldn't do to if they felt they could get away with it.

I just want to keep them honest. I think demanding a roadmap for win32 development going forward is not too much to ask.

Edited 2012-10-31 17:02 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

ansidotsys Member since:
2008-08-15

I can understand your viewpoint then, but I suppose the point on which we disagree is whether or not they can get away with it. I, for one, don't think they can even if they tried. As I've mentioned, they tried with the .NET Framework to move the world to a managed code world. It failed. Microsoft fails at many things.

They failed to move the world to Windows as quickly as they wanted. The industry only moved to Windows when the industry itself said it was ready. If it was up to Microsoft, we would've moved to Windows at 1.0. It took until Windows 98SE to get where most the PC industry moved to a pure Windows model and moved away from DOS.

If it was up to Microsoft, Vista would have been a success and all applications would have been programmed in WPF. That did not happen, devs stuck with Win32 and many people stayed with Windows XP -- against Microsoft wishes. It took Windows 7 to bring that larger move over, a move in which Microsoft themselves updated their built-in Win32 apps (like Paint and WordPad).

In the many failed initiatives Microsoft had, the industry kept Microsoft honest by just continuing to use technology they felt was best. If that technology wasn't Mircosoft's latest and greatest, then so be it. That has always been the pattern. Microsoft responds by trying again, until it finds something that WE accept.

The same is going to be true today, whether it be Metro or some sort abandonment of the desktop. If we don't like the taste of the next version of Windows, it won't get eaten and it won't get sold (look at the downgrades that happened with Vista for XP). Right now, the desktop is alive and ready in Windows 8. If Windows 9 closes the desktop, the industry will just say with Windows 8. If Windows 9 doesn't do it, but MS does it in Windows 10. Then the industry will stay with Windows 9. See Microsoft's predicament?

I'm not underestimating the allure of money and total control, but I do think you're underestimating the market's ability and real power to vote with their wallet. And THAT is what will affect Microsoft the most, just as it always has. Like I said, Microsoft won't abandon the desktop and it's distribution model until WE, as a collective industry, say so.

Edited 2012-10-31 18:18 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3