I like Vista. I’ve said it before, and will say it again, Windows Vista works for me, and works well.
But, it’s no secret that Microsoft has run into problems convincing the masses to really give Vista a try. And so Microsoft is trying something creative, a fun campaign named the Mojave Experiment. Microsoft assembled a group of users who’d not been exposed to Vista personally, but who seem to have all of those preconceived notions that prevent Vista adoption. Microsoft presented a new version of Windows codenamed “Mojave” to these individuals, and only later revealed that what they were demonstrating was in fact Windows Vista. The videos are fun (well, some of them), as are the participants’ reactions. And while I highly doubt that this campaign will change all of those lingering doubts, I really would like Microsoft to succeed at this one. After all, I do like Vista.
But here’s the interesting thing. Obviously, Microsoft wants the Mojave Experiment to be viewed as much as possible by as many users as possible on as many machines as possible, and it wants a high quality experience and consistency while ensuring that just about anyone connected to the Internet could immediately view the content. And I am guessing that’s why the site is powered by Flash, and not by Silverlight.

13 thoughts

  1. These types of things are always entertaining because people like to watch others reactions when the ‘reveal’ occurs and their misconceptions are smashed. Microsoft came up with a pretty catchy marketing plan with this one that seems aimed at their ‘average’ user. Also, I think I saw a news story this morning about Microsoft working with vendors to provide a better experience with new hardware. The mistake was vendors sold Vista on less than ideal hardware to keep the prices low. Microsoft is now working with vendors to sell Vista on better hardware, configured correctly to optimize speed and boot time and without crapware.
    But, I think techies like me will remain skeptical because what kind of hardware did they give these testers? My first experience was with a dual core 2.4 GHz machine with 2 gigs RAM and it was slower and unresponsive compared to an old lesser machine with XP on it, and yes, I blew away the crapware with a fresh install and gave it a month before I ended up frustrated and went back to XP. Searching articles and forums I always saw the Vista fans saying things like "Vista isn’t slow.. you must be a linux fanboy MS basher… works great on my 3.0 GHz quad core machine with 4 gigs RAM". I did like some of the features in Vista, but I don’t think it’ll be user friendly for me until I can afford beefier hardware.

  2. Lets conduct the same "experiment" but replace Vista with OS X and/or Ubuntu. I’m guessing they called this "The Mojave Experiment" because they had to go to the middle of the desert to find people this gullible!

  3. @Ben – How much RAM do you have running your Vista machine?
    I only ask because I have been hesitant to give Vista a try because Dreamweaver CS3 is a core app for me and it is fairly resource intensive. I figured that if I was already getting average pe

  4. Christopher, yep, I kinda agree. My comments were less about the experiment or Vista for that matter, and more just appreciating the irony in that Microsoft opted to use Flash instead of the "Flash killer" Silverlight for this project.
    Andy, I use two machines. My primary machine is an older laptop with 2GB RAM, and yes, I do code on it, and more. And Vista runs fine for me (once all apps are loaded, this is an older laptop and the hard drive is not as fast as it should be). I also use Visa 64 on a dual CPU 64bit machine with 4GB RAM, and obviously it flies there.
    — Ben

  5. Wow, the irony of Microsoft using Flash to push their latest videos instead of Silverlight is so amazing I think I need to sit down. They know you just can’t beat 99% market penetration. I guess their dog food just doesn’t taste good enough to eat yet. lol

  6. It’s a shame Adobe couldn’t use this tactic to market ColdFusion to all of the nay-sayers out there who have latched on to the "top 10 dying technologies" BS.

  7. Sorry been busy and only picked up on this now,
    Just to clarify and de-bunk the hysteria or propeganda about what we have done or haven’t done, let me simply state It was outsourced to an agency that made the decision around which technology to make. I’m a little suprised at the level of hysteria and Adobe staffers pushing the agenda / notion that this was a pre-mediated strategic Flash vs Silverlight decision process.
    Did anyone stop to ask us what the rationale behind this was? or is it just a better headline to assume?
    Anywho, thank you for the kind words around Windows Vista ben, and hope folks get a different perspective on how great Windows Vista is 🙂

    Scott Barnes
    Rich Platforms Product Manager
    Microsoft.

  8. I’d have to agree with Jodi here – Microsoft is simply making the more pragmatic decision. Though I’m hard pressed to agree in liking Vista and I found the Mohave Experiment a bit trite – I’m not surprised by the decision to use Flash in place of Silverlight.

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