Windows Vista – how original?

I know that imitation is reckoned to be the most sincere form of flattery, but this morning I was listening to episode 37 of the This Week in Tech podcast and my ears pricked up when the guys referred to a video doing the rounds on the ‘net with Bill Gates’ Windows Vista CES keynote over the top of some Mac OS X demonstrations.

I’ve tracked it down (on MacLive.net, although that’s not the original source of the video), and it appears that it was so popular the creator has made two follow-ups:

They’re very funny!

I’m not a Mac user, but I have previously expressed doubts about the Windows Vista interface (codenamed Aero). I also commented last month that the Aero interface seems to be a mix of the Windows XP Luna interface with hints of Apple OS X and KDE. It’s a fine line to tread between plagiarism and a familiar user interface but personally I don’t like any of those big icons.

Right now, my favourite interface is Sun Java Desktop (based on Gnome and borrowing heavily from Windows in its aesthetics and operation, but much “prettier”). I guess it’s all a trade off between user familiarly and innovation, but then Microsoft has always been good at buying other people’s ideas and then promoting them.

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