back to article Nobody knows what to call Microsoft's ex-Metro UI

Microsoft says it is 100 per cent committed to its new user interface (UI) design principles, as embodied in Windows 8, even though it still hasn't come up with a meaningful name for them. Speaking at the annual Build developer conference in Redmond this week, Microsoft Principal User Experience Advisor Will Tschumy said the …


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  1. Nanners

    How's about

    A square peg in a round hole symbol.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Microsoft Window™

      Seems quite obvious given that the apps can only be fullscreen.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Microsoft Window™

        I've heard it called "Modern UI" when chatting to the product manager for Server in the UK.

        ...and you can run more than one app on the screen at a time, but credit for the lulz at this hour of the morning

        1. John 62

          Re: Microsoft Window™

          Will its successor be the post-modern UI?

      2. /dev/null

        Re: Microsoft Window™

        If you only have one window doesn't that make it a wall?

        1. Schist

          Re: Microsoft Window™

          They look like windows....

          How about Microsoft Flag...


    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      The UI with no rounded corners?

      1. Esskay

        Re: Maybe...

        I was thinking perhaps something that resembled the end of a bell. Steve Ballmer's forehead, perhaps?

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. dssf

      Re: How's about ... how about

      A "pare squeg in a hound role"?

      "A pound reg in a hair (hare) squoll"

      Roonerlism Aspert

      1. wowfood

        Re: How's about ... how about

        It's pretty obvious. These tiles are like little portholes of a kind into the application they'll run.

        So, portholes, portals. Portal UI.

        Or y'know... since portholes are a type of window, they could just call it the Windows UI.

  2. Studley

    The Interface Formerly Known As Metro

    Am I destined never to get credit for that? :( cf. 14 August 2012

    1. Hellcat

      Re: The Interface Formerly Known As Metro

      TIFKAM for sure!

      I've started using that now, and when 'She Who Must Be Obeyed' gets her Surface, going TIFKAM myself might be inevitable.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The Interface Formerly Known As Metro

      You need a better trademark lawyer. There's plenty of prior art for TIFKAM.

    3. Simon_Sharwood_Reg_APAC_Editor (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: The Interface Formerly Known As Metro

      Studley, you do indeed seem to have coined TIFKAM 9 days before I used it in this yarn

      You'll have to take my word on this, but this was a Newton/Leibniz simultaneous co-invention-without-prior-Knowledge thing, but I am happy to cede the honours.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The Interface Formerly Known As Metro

        I am happy to cede the honours

        Careful, he may want a fee for each usage :-)

        (Brings to mind the Newspaper Licensing Agency, a body that's trying to charge for using quotes from reviews published by a newspaper - see the current issue of Private Eye for details).

  3. AndrueC Silver badge

    $20bn a year? Really?

    Even if the results had been an improvement that's still a crazy amount to be spending.

    1. Burbage


      The number doesn't look right to me, but I'm not a corporate accountant. Perhaps there's a good reason to spend a sum equivalent to an entire year's profit on 'research and development'.

      1. 142

        'research and development'

        Is all that profit should be spent on.

        (Especially when you've got a cash pile the size of Microsoft to cover rainy days)

        1. Hoagiebot

          Re: 'research and development'

          'research and development' Is all that profit should be spent on. (Especially when you've got a cash pile the size of Microsoft to cover rainy days)

          I don't know about that, especially since it seems like Microsoft is going to have a lot of rainy days ahead of them that they'll need that cash pile to cover. I mean lets face it-- corporations are stubbornly sticking with Windows XP or are at best in the middle of their upgrade cycle with Windows 7, so I doubt that Windows 8 and the programs being released with it such as Office 2013 are going to enjoy much corporate love. Add to that Windows 8's mixed reviews, the slowing growth of the PC market, and strong competition from Apple, Android, and even Windows 7 in the consumer market, and I have a feeling that Microsoft's "rainy day fund" is going to start shrinking rather rapidly...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      They gave us 'the ribbon' - 20 billion well-earned.

      1. Scott Marshall
        Thumb Down

        The office updates "gave" us the ribbon......

        .....but will this new touchy-feely interface allow us to give Microsoft the finger?

        I am not enamoured of this new interface, especially its "split personality" modus operandi between "tiles" mode and "start/desktop" mode.

    3. 0_Flybert_0

      considering ..

      Steve Jobs did design for $1 per year and actual business expenses

      reaching for my Galaxy SIII and I'll be on my way

    4. DougS Silver badge

      $20 billion a year - total bullshit figure

      This is probably the sum they spent on all R&D each year. That in itself is a total bullshit figure, because in the software biz, writing software counts as "R&D". If you get together a team of 10 new hires you pay $100K a year and tell them to rewrite Notepad.exe as a Metro app, you just spent $1 million on "R&D".

      As a result it is rather difficult to tell what any company that does a lot of software (Microsoft, Apple, Google, et al) actually spends on what we think of as R&D - investigating some new product ideas, reinventing an extra product category, or doing the kind of basic research that led to the transistor. If Microsoft increases its R&D budget by 50% does it mean there should be some innovative new products coming in a few years? Or does it just mean they've increased the size of the Windows and Office dev teams by 50%? We have no idea.

      1. crashtest

        Re: $20 billion a year - total bullshit figure

        It might be easier if you think of IT research as the development of new building blocks. Thus porting notepad to a new although pre-developed UI is not research. Example of research would be a notepad app, where you can type without using the keyboard.

  4. Simon Lyon

    Go with TIFKAM, with a standard cut'n'paste bootnote and graphic, or ...

    ... just keep calling it Metro. Everyone I know does.

    Personally though I'd go with Vista 2.0.

  5. Len Goddard

    The Fisher Price Playblock Interface (Fippy for short).

    1. dssf


      Toss Across User Interface

  6. David Webb

    I was uninstalling VS2012 Ultimate RC and managed to snag a screenshot which states...

    "Windows Software Development Kit for Metro style Apps"

    So if we can't call it Metro, lets call it Metro style?

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Robert E A Harvey

      Too long. Abbreviate. MeSy

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. David Webb

        I had to come back and post, a nightmare scenario popped up in to my head. Steve Balmer singing the Metro Style song to the tune of Gungam Style...... ARGHHHHH..... just had to come put that thought into your head... happy Halloween........ MWAHAHAHAHAHA /coff

        1. asdf Silver badge

          >Gungam Style

          Wow that was a waste of a google search. Nothing to see hear but a mega geek with who doesn't listen to real music like normal people (dude stick to Pink Floyd references or something).

          1. David Webb

            You had to google Gungam Style? Even I know about that song and my preference is for a band called AKB48 (who you should google, especially 【PV】 ヘビーローテーション / AKB48 [公式] hehehe - top tip, that video is much better if you turn the sound off......... ;)

          2. DJ Smiley

            You sir are the one who failed.

            Definition of fail:

            Calling out someone as a geek for knowing the No1. charting song in the UK when you can't even name it yourself.

            1. asdf Silver badge

              Re: You sir are the one who failed.

              Yeah must be mostly a UK thing as that meme didn't make it across the pond. Probably because most Americans prefer memes that are crude or put somebody down (lol teabagging).

    4. Studley

      Metro is also still pretty pervasive in the official Windows 8 UX Guidelines (available as a PDF download at the top of this page) which refers to "Metro style apps" throughout.

  7. Tom Maddox Silver badge

    My vote . . .


    Mine's the one with the jar of lubricant.

  8. asdf Silver badge


    The reason Microsoft suddenly dropped the Metro name is because somebody approached them with a copyright on it. With all the azzhat lawyers ready to sue its no surprise they have to use a convoluted meaningless phrase though granted nobody does convoluted like Microsoft.

    1. Michael Jennings

      Re: iirc

      My understanding is that it was Metro AG, Germany's largest retailer and the fifth largest in the world. A very large company indeed, but a company that does not operate in the US, probably due to the strength of Wal-Mart. Microsoft didn't do their due diligence before choosing the name in the first place, I would tend to think.

      1. Robert E A Harvey


        Interstingly they did not approach M$ until quite late.

        My view is that they would have gone along with it had the wretched thing shown promise, but when they saw what a turkey it was decided "We don't want any of this on us" and unleashed the lawyers.

  9. Big-nosed Pengie

    How about


    1. Lars Silver badge

      Re: How about

      or "fail"

      1. dssf

        Re: How about SHALE?

        If it is shite, and if it will fail, and if it is black and blue, then BL2Shale..... (yeh, very crude attempt, hahaha)

  10. PaulR79


    I'm a fan of Duplo8. It makes as much sense as Metro / not Metro, TIFKAM, and certainly fits with the spirit of Duplo by using GIANT COLOURED SHAPES AIMED AT GETTING YOUR ATTENTION with just as much, if not more.

    1. PaulR79

      Re: Duplo8 - missing words

      Just as much use, if not more.

      *Oh how I long for an edit feature, at least within the first X minutes of posting something.

    2. ratfox Silver badge

      Re: Duplo8

      Good idea, but I think you will find that Duplo is very much a trademark…

      Why don't they just call it the Tile interface?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Duplo is very much a trademark

        how about Duplic8 then?

        1. Nigel 11

          Re: Duplo is very much a trademark



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