Another Windows/MAC flame war, *again*
Windows has been shooting themselves in the foot ever since they came out with activation for XP. 8.1 is actually a pretty nice operating system, but as with many other people I had install Classic Shell to make it usable, and the Charms Bar still comes up at inopportune times. However general speed, core parking on Intel processors, and network reliability are all much better.
If anything XP was too successful, and they didn't parlay Windows 7's success by making 7.5 rather than 8. A Windows 7 that was cheaper and maybe even activation free would have been a killer. I'm surprised that the Office and gaming divisions are doing so well. Office is being hit in the groin by Google Apps and Open Office, and the Xbox pretty much requires a subscribed Gold account to do anything other than run single player games.
It would have been better to see how Android/Linux splits up; every IT person I know runs or uses Linux, but that quickly goes away once you get away from jobs that require scripting and maintaining servers. Despite 20+ years it really hasn't made a dent in the mainstream. Android, the OSX without Apple, seems to be doing that.
And lastly Apple......take all the energy from the PC/Mac flame wars and put it into a furnace and you could heat the world. I've tried Macs, on a Mini, desktop, and a laptop, and will not use one again. I want to choose the hardware I use, and play games, and use a lot of software that either isn't on a Mac or would require me to buy everything all over again to use it on a Mac. I also have found almost 100% Mac users are vocal fanboys who love to tout how great a Mac is but when it comes to anything really technical simply flounder. Stick with graphics and "creativity," amd quit trying to impress us with your misbegotten brilliance.