Thursday, July 3, 2008

If Only We All Had a Personal Windows Test Manager...Or Not?

There was a story out a while back about Charles Walling, a retired warehouseman who upgraded to Vista and promptly couldn't use his printer any longer. He ended up with the blue-screen of death while trying to troubleshoot the issue.

The follow up story by Todd Bishop talks about how Microsoft took on the viral nature of Mr. Walling's predicament and assigned him a personal Windows Test Manager. Ultimately, they resolved the issue and have a happy ending they can propagate with their marketing department.

Is there a silver lining in this entire experience? I can't see one. Todd's article ends with:

Too bad every PC user can't have a Windows test manager on call. But as for Mr. Walling, he's just happy he can print his genealogy records again.

I don't think I know anyone who would like a personal Windows test manager, especially after reading about all the hoops they had to jump through in order to get mediocre hardware and software to work together. Mr. Walling just wanted to work with his genealogy records, not have to deal with Microsoft. They should have been invisible. Is this a good experience? Microsoft needs to get better at addressing the overall user experience instead of just the user interface.

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