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Windows 7: Elegant, yes. But too many tiny inconsistencies

In documenting Windows 7 for Windows 7 Secrets and, of course, for this site, I've come across hundreds of tiny inconsistencies that I feel may damage the reputation of quality that Microsoft is trying to establish with this release. Hopefully, these are the things that Microsoft will fix between now and RTM, but I have a feeling they won't get them all. There are just so many.

I'll highlight an obvious one here.

Homegroup ... Or is it HomeGroup?

Microsoft refers to its HomeGroup sharing feature in two different ways, as Homegroup and HomeGroup. This is annoying, but never more so than when the spelling difference both appear in the same UI. If you bring up the HomeGroup control panel, you'll see that it is referred to as HomeGroup in the address bar, and in the final link on the window, called the Start the HomeGroup troubleshooter. But in five other locations in this same window, it is referred to as Homegroup.


By the way, capitalization is hugely inconsistent throughout Windows 7. It's clear that Microsoft is trying to be consistent, so when menu items would previously read like "New ... Bitmap Image" in Windows Vista, they now read as "New ... Bitmap image" in Windows 7. But they've missed a bunch of them.

Also ... I wrote previously about inconsistencies in the new enhanced taskbar, of course. When you right-click different items from left to right, you see the following:

Start button: Standard windows context menu

Taskbar button: Jump List with glass border

Taskbar: Standard windows context menu

Standard tray items: Standard windows context menu

Aero Peek: Standard windows context menu

Doesn't look so bad, right? I mean, only one item--Taskbar buttons--has unique behavior. There's just one problem with this theory. When you left-click any standard tray item (Action Center, Network, Sound, Clock), you get a Jump List-like window with a glass border. Seriously, Microsoft. Get it straight.

Anyway, I don't mention this to cast a shadow over all the good stuff in Windows 7. But in writing about this a lot, these things just stick out. And they form, I believe, what could be a quality wall between what Microsoft hopes to achieve and what it will achieve. Many of these issues can and should be fixed. For heavens sake, figure out HomeGroup/Homegroup at least, Microsoft.

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