The past Tuesday I went to a Microsoft developer conference. I went there mostly because they were handing out free copies of Office 2007 Professional, but I was also interested to see what they had going on as far as development on Vista. I have participated in the betas over the past year or so, and wasn't too terribly impressed with how the OS ran. The main reason why I didn't it like too much was the fact that I couldn't run it on my hard disk array, which meant I had to resort to using a clunky 40GB hard drive that ran really slow. This is one of the things that really was poor with the Vista betas: it's indexing service constantly ran, it was always pulling stuff into memory, etc.
So, when I went to the conference, my attitude was pretty poor towards the OS. However, my view has slightly shifted.
One of the main themes from the conference was the idea of creating applications 'that are a joy to use'. And Vista coupled with the .Net Framework 3.0 (aka WinFX) do just that. They demoed many interesting effects that can be produced to make interesting applications that are quite fun to interact with. one of them was a proof of concept for North Face. They are one of the world's largest producers of outdoor gear and a website was engineered to leverage WinFX to pull of a fun website to visit and explore.
The downside of all this is that you have to be on a machine that has .Net 3.0 on it. Which whittles down the interactivity to just those computers that run Microsoft's OS on it.
It has been exciting nonetheless and since nVidia has come out with new drivers, I decided to reload the Vista release candidate discs.
It has been nice working in an OS that is clean and reacts with a certain amount of grace. It will be difficult to go back to XP with its relatively clunky interface, but there are some things that need to be improved upon before I buy into Vista. One of the biggest sticking points, of course, is games. Many people have reportedly had problems with popular existing games, and until that gets fixed, we're going to be experiencing problems. One of the other issues that I've come across is compatibility with Norton Anti-Virus. No fool is going to run without one, but I see no reason to have to go buy new AV software just to upgrade the OS--especially when I get it for free from my work.
Those things aside, Vista is visually appealing and there are quite a few security reasons to upgrade. But, all 'prettiness' aside, I still plan on waiting until at least Service Pack 2 till I use it as my main desktop.