Yesterday at the Microsoft Build conference in San Francisco
, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Windows dev chief Julie Larson-Green introduced the one-and-only "Milestone Preview" of Windows 8.1 (aka Windows "Blue"), touting its remarkable improvements over the much-maligned Windows 8 and Windows RT.
In the 24 hours since, I've had a chance to kick the Preview's tires a bit and look under the hood, employing the jaundiced eye of a longtime Windows veteran who isn't the least bit impressed
with Windows 8's Jekyll-and-Hyde approach. What I see leaves me more convinced than ever that Microsoft is running Windows into the ground.
Here's the good news: Windows 8.1 isn't worse than Windows 8.
If you're forced to use Windows 8 or if you're one of the 1 percent (OK, 5 percent) who actually prefer Win8 over Win7, Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1 are shaping up to be must-have updates.