Today I saw some previews of Windows 7. I definitely liked what I saw, but I didn't like that I saw the preview.

Of course, Microsoft is between a rock and a hard place in the arena of releasing their next OS. If they don't do early releases of Windows 7 for others to see, they'll get backlash from developers and businesses who can't prep for its launch. If they do early releases, people are going to nitpick over the little details that are incrementally revealed over time until launch. By the time the launch happens, there's nothing new and astounding about it except that now you can shell out money for it. And I don't know about you, but that's not very new or very astounding.

Reading the comments on the articles about Windows 7 is actually more interesting than the articles themselves. There are scores of comments from people who denounce Vista as trash and nothing really new over XP and just a lot of bloat and that Windows 7 will be more of the same. I think these people are just being obtuse. However, Microsoft themselves are to blame for the attitudes of these people. Microsoft's method of releasing an OS is so anti-climatic that it's no wonder there are hordes of people who swear they will never upgrade and that their abysmally outdated operating system is good enough for them.

Windows 7 isn't due out until 2010. That's a long time in the computer industry. And that's if Microsoft releases it on time. Meanwhile, here it is in 2008 and people are already getting a taste of what's to come in Windows 7. Starting now, and the for the next two years, people are going to be nit-picking apart every little "new" feature they see in Windows 7. There will be a hundred variations of "lame", "program X already does this", "not even an upgrade over [insert other OS]'s feature", and so on.

If Microsoft kept everything about Windows 7 quiet until it was done (or quite close), the landscape of user acceptance would be entirely different from what they have to deal with now. Frankly, though, I don't think they have any choice. The position they are backed into in the market forces them to release their OS this way if they want to continue their dominance.