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Agony, ecstasy over Windows' logo

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Did Microsoft just “butcher” the new Windows 8 logo, or is it “pure genius?” Ordinary users and IT geeks alike greeted the new blue-squares logo that Microsoft Corporation has created for its next Windows release with a wide range of reactions, some praising the logo for its simplicity, others less generous about its flag-like appearance.

Microsoft itself appeared somewhat defensive about it, with Sam Moreau, Principal Director of user experience for Microsoft, writing a column in his blog titled, “It's a window, not a flag.” Mr. Moreau however added that his company wanted the new logo to be both modern and classic by echoing the International Typographic Style.

“Using bold flat colours and clean lines and shapes, the new logo has the characteristics of way-finding design systems seen in airports and subways,” Mr. Moreau noted of the logo's wider visual appeal, explaining that the idea was to align the logo with the basic style of Windows 8 itself, which he said was “fast and fluid... [and the logo is] humble, yet confident.”

Some industry experts however clearly did not share Mr. Moreau's enthusiasm about the logo. Forbes magazine's E.D. Kain wrote, “It's hard for me to see how this is a great leap forward in design from the Windows 1.0 logo... I realise that this is all very much a matter of taste, but to me the blue window panel in the original is more eye-catching than the tilted blue panel in the Windows 8 version.”

A commentator on Mr. Kain's column retorted, “I think it's very appropriate to have four Blue Screens of Death coming right toward you. Pretty much captures my Windows experience, anyway.”

In a similar vein VentureBeat's Sean Ludwig said, “It's a simple one-colour logo that emphasises Windows 8's simple design, but it's so bland that it doesn't convey anything important about the new operating system. Likewise, ZDNet's Larry Dignan remarked, “The Windows 8 logo gives me a window, but I want to jump out of it.”

Such acerbic criticism notwithstanding the very fact of intense debate and scrutiny surrounding the new logo however suggests that Microsoft's grip on the global computing market is as strong as it has ever been.

Fast and fluid... humble, yet confident, says Microsoft


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