I’ve recently installed Parallels Desktop 8 for Mac and I’ve started running Windows 8 in virtualization, primarily to run the same Windows-based version of Quickbooks as ReadyMadeWeb’s accountant. I’m also interesting in local browser testing and of course playing a few Windows games, though nothing too taxing.

So far I have been very frustrated with the Windows 8 experience. It seems like it may be an adequate OS for a tablet, but the absence of proper controls in the desktop mode—forcing users to returns to the “metro” experience to launch programs—just seems like a terrible mistake to me.

This would be frustrating enough for a tablet user, but because I can’t swipe on the screen of my laptop, I’m forced to call up the Start screen by placing my mouse in the upper right corner and waiting for Windows 8 “charms” to appear, then clicking the Start charm.  I only knew to do this because the materials that shipped with the installation DVD mentioned “charms,” without any explanation as to what those were, but still I made note of this as it seemed like Microsoft was hinting at its importance. Suffice to say, the whole experience seems circuitous, poorly thought out, and unnecessarily frustrating.

I’ll be curious to see what 8.1 “Blue” brings us.  Hopefully Microsoft realizes that Apple’s strategy of building two versions of their OS for two very different use cases makes more sense than the “Windows Everywhere” approach that seems like such a strategic blunder.