About Vistaphobia

vis-ta [vis-tuh] - noun

1. A distant view or prospect, especially one seen through an opening, as between rows of buildings or trees.

2. a far-reaching mental view: 'vistas of the future'.

[Origin: 1650-60; It: a view, n. use of fem. of visto (ptp. of vedere to see L videre)]

pho-bi-a [foh-bee-uh] - noun

1. a persistent, irrational fear of a specific object, activity, or situation that leads to a compelling desire to avoid it, despite the awareness and reassurance that it is not dangerous.

2. A strong fear, dislike, or aversion.

[Origin: 1780-90; extracted from nouns ending in -phobia]

Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.0.1), Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Random House, Inc. 2006.

Windows Vista

There are a number of reasons why Microsoft chose "Vista" as the name for their latest flagship desktop OS. One runs along the lines of "..Windows Vista delivers a 'personal vista' for all who use it." - Microsoft Group Product Manager, Greg Sullivan. Yeah whatever, but obviously the metaphor is here to stay, based on the concept of a 'far reaching view' and 'reaching into the future'.

Not everyone shares Microsoft's view of the future and many will stick with what they already have. Some will rush out and get Vista because they must have 'the latest thing'. Those who choose not to upgrade will do so for various reasons, some of them being financial.

My point with using the name vistaphobia, is that some people have an inherent fear of the unfamiliar and this extends to operating systems and other software applications. This may be fine for an average home user who just wants to get the job done. But my job is training computer technicians and future administrators and these are precisely the people who need to be already embracing this new OS.

If your job is working in a technical support role with Microsoft operating systems or other software, then you need to be getting familiar with the inner workings of Redmond's latest offerings as soon as possible.

In 1995 a technical colleague of mine, feeling a bit browned off about the ongoing effort of keeping up in the dynamic world of IT, threw up his hands and exclaimed, "I'm not even going to bother to learn Windows 95.." I know how he felt and I was in no rush to start learning this radically new Windows interface either.

However as tech support types we really have no choice in the matter. People expect us to know this stuff, our users, our managers, whoever. This is one of the things about working in the IT world: you have to stay current. And at the moment this means grabbing Betas and RCs of the new operating systems and using them for everyday work.

To this end, some of the early Vista work shown here has been performed on the RC1 pre-release version and so some details may differ slightly from the final product. We hope you find these pages useful. Your feedback and ideas are welcomed.

Andrew Mallett
October 2006, Tasmania Australia.