Re: Modernise apps?
"Programmers and admins are luddites?"
I didn't mean to generalise, but I do think as a developer sometimes things were better in command line, but since I was brought up on Windows 3.11 I knew many people using GUIs who otherwise couldn't use computers. I generally feel that Microsoft made a mistake pandering to the tastes of old users when being able to train a newer set of users would be a big deal. I got used to Windows 8 fairly quickly and actually preferred it to Windows 10 and Windows 7, because it was easier to layout items in 2 dimensions than in folder layout, compared to Windows 7 and below where you could have unlimited folders, it felt like it wasn't organised.
"How are Windows 10 and 8.1 closer to how mobile phones work?"
Windows 10 is not closer to how mobile phones work, but Windows 8/8.1 is because it behave based on swipes for right side bar, menu bars will bring up a fresh screen of icons in full screen mode. Yes I know that people who have really short memories felt that they cannot do two things at once such as remember what was previously on screen whilst searching for something in "Start" on Windows 8 but I felt that was a good thing, since it meant I wasn't constantly being distracted and also meant I had to think like I would in command line and actually remember things. In iOS, Android, Blackberry, Palm, Nintendo DS/3DS/Wii/Wii U/Switch, Nokia Symbian/Maemo, Sony Playstation, Xbox, and Android you always see a full screen of icons. Only OSX, OS/2, Windows and Linux have non full screen use, I would hope people could learn to use many different systems, but in real life most people like to have consistency among their system. Makes it easier when I have to teach my mum how to use Windows when they are already used to how iOS/Windows/Android works. As I said previously if you really wanted a custom environment Linux is much better for this.
I know i'm in the minority but that minority can grow to a majority if Microsoft had the balls to see it through. I still like going into Linux/Dos command line as I can do file manipulation much easier and faster.
I agree having an inconsistent look to apps is bad, but do you think Android was able to force older apps to use the new design aesthetics, nope they just said if you can't get up to a certain version, you just can't use the app. Microsoft doesn't have the same luxury as they aren't hip like Apple and Android and also seeing how all the other OS like Nokia, Blackberry and Palm not being backwards compatible basically meant the older user base had no reason to upgrade to the next phone since all their existing apps weren't compatible, regardless of how much better the newer operating system was compared to other systems. I am a self confessed luddite, I still use a Blackberry and Windows. But I also had used iOS, OSX, Linux, Maemo, Symbian, Nintendo, Playstation and Xbox operating system, and there seems to be a trend towards have more simpler interfaces.
"that confused a lot of people who were adept with Windows 7 and their mobile phone"
You're just being elitist by keeping people who are adept with the old system. The less time I need to train other people because the operating system gets in the way the better it is to focus on the task at hand, which is why most games run full screen and remove all that OS chrome. Windows 8 was removing more and more chrome but I guess people are happy to keep the status quo. Whether you like it or not more and more computers will be touch based, even toddler know how to work their way around a tablet but would require lots more training to learn how to operate traditional desktop environment.
Try writing a program with Windows forms and another with XAML, XAML is far more easier to read and is more flexible.