I sympathize with Mark Pilgrim, who is reinstalling Windows XP (caution: Adult Language). Robert Scoble, who works at Microsoft as an product evangelist for the next generation operating system (code named Longhorn) also sympathizes:
"Yeah I know what you mean Mark. I need to reinstall this machine too. Not looking forward to it."
I'm not going to say anything about Apple OS X, because it can obviously create mischief too (see Dan Gillmor's recent problems).
There are three things I want from an operating system. (1) stability (2) quick access, and (3) smart Wi-Fi operation.
In my book, OS X is more stable than Windows. I'm sure that others will disagree, and perhaps my success with one particular powerbook can't be compared to my overall experience with Windows 2000 and Windows XP (over the past 3 years).
Apple's OS X definitely gives me quicker access to my computer than Windows, because I don't have to power down. The sleep function on my Apple actually works so my laptop is ready in less than 5 seconds from the moment I open the case.
Does anyone out there have a Windows machine that they put to sleep and wake up, say, 10 times a day over a month long period without having any system hangs? If so, you are blessed. The best I could get out of any of my four windows laptops was two or three days at best.
And Apple has got Wi-Fi down. Apple computers are very smart about finding and connecting to Wi-Fi access points. Windows XP is pretty good too. I'm sure that the next version will be comparable to Apple or maybe even better
But will the next version of Windows address the stability and quick access issues? And it is not like this is a cutting edge concept. I imagine a lot of people would like to have quick access to their computers. But it doesn't seem like that happens in the Windows world. Why not?