The New York Times’ Bits Blog posits a terrifying idea: what if they bring back Clippy to work the floor in the new Microsoft retail stores? “It looks like you’re trying to run out of the store in disgust!” [Bits]

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  1. Ananelle says:

    … But, I liked Clippy. =(

  2. FLConsumer says:

    I’m just trying to figure out what Microsoft would be doing with a retail store. Other than their defective game consoles and their unpopular Zune, what else would they sell?

    Most people don’t run Windows because they want to. It was usually crammed down their throats when they bought a PC from a larger company (Dell/Gateway/HP/etc) and since it was there, they used it.

    People buying Windows Server or Office are a different type, but still aren’t the type of people who will be going to a store to buy/try it in a store. Those products are best field-tested. You’re not going to learn enough about those in a few minutes in a store.

    Maybe Microsoft would do support from there…but given MS’ track record of blaming hardware vendors for their own programming screwups, I don’t see how that would work.

    This just feels like another MS attempt to copy something that Apple’s doing without fully thinking out the execution.

    • PHRoG says:

      @FLConsumer: Well, gee…Thanks for making up the minds of everyone else for us!! Wow, life is so much easier now.

      But, then again, in the REAL world, there are PLENTY of folks who far prefer Windows over OS X. Myself is one and a very large portion of my customers as well. Also, Microsoft sells more than just X-Boxs, Zunes and software there buddy. They have a nice line of other hardware to boot.

      Finally, I doubt it’s going to carry only Microsoft products…They will most likely partner with other hardware manufacturers as they try to move more into the living room, than the office. Let’s not mention it gives a face behind Microsoft finally.

      Sure, a fair share of people have had their issues with Microsoft, including myself. However, I still far prefer them to the, “Ohh, look!! Flashy things!!!” allure of Mac. I also work on Mac’s and I have FAR more horror stories about them than I do Windows machines.

    • scoosdad says:

      @FLConsumer: Maybe they can sell computers that have all the Windows updates pre-loaded in them so you can take it home and actually start using it immediately instead of watching it do endless updates and service pack installs because the software it came with is rev 1.

      Course, the following Tuesday it starts up all over again… sigh. Buy it on a Wednesday for maximum satisfaction.

    • Robert Synnott says:

      @FLConsumer: Microsoft is betting the farm on Windows 7, to an extent. Given that Vista was a hideous disaster, it’s possible that they’ll want to show consumers what W7 is like and how it’s not as horrible as Vista.

      This apparently worked very well for Apple when the first usable version of MacOS 10 (10.1) turned up; users were at the time bored with boring old MacOS 9, and turned off by horror stories of 10.0 (which was never really released directly to consumers).

      Didn’t they scrap the Zune thing?

  3. crazacool says:

    *points at Apple blaming nVidia for driver issues on the new MacBooks*

    You can probably see what they’d be doing with a retail store from (gee, I don’t know) the test retail store they set up earlier this year (last year?).

    Also, I run Windows because I want to. More choices in hardware manufacturer, more choice in software, and more functionality. I have yet to meet a professional programmer who mainly runs OS X. I might just not have met enough programmers, but it seems to me like MS has more of the market share for a reason.

    • Robert Synnott says:

      @crazacool: I’m a professional programmer who mainly runs MacOS. What, precisely, should I be running? One can’t, obviously, use Windows, unless one is just writing for .NET or Win32 C/C++ applications. (In general, Windows is treated as a second-class-citizen platform by developers of libraries and languages.) And Linux never did that well on laptops, power-management-wise.

  4. RichasB says: