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Valve Boss Gabe Newell Says ''Windows 8 is a Catastrophe''

By - Source: GamesBeat | B 81 comments

Valve's Gabe Newell conveys his thoughts about Windows 8 and the post-touch era.

During the Casual Connect game conference in Seattle, Valve Software boss Gabe Newell indicated that he's not a big fan of Windows 8, likely because the upcoming OS comes packed with native support for Xbox Live and Windows Store, both of which threaten Steam's stronghold in the PC gaming sector. Even more, he predicts that top-tier OEMs will exit the market thanks to the new OS.

"I think that Windows 8 is kind of a catastrophe for everybody in the PC space. I think that we’re going to lose some of the top-tier PC [original equipment manufacturers]," he admitted in an interview. "They’ll exit the market. I think margins are going to be destroyed for a bunch of people. If that’s true, it’s going to be a good idea to have alternatives to hedge against that eventuality. But when you start thinking about a platform, you have to address it. You have to address mobile. You have to look at what’s going to happen post-tablet."

He went on to say that the mouse and keyboard have been stable for around 25 years, and that touch will be stable for only 10 years. Whatever comes after that will endure for another 25 years: a "post-touch" era, he calls it. This may consist of a couple of different technologies that will come together -- augmented reality combined with motion detection, perhaps?

"The two hard problems in the short-term are input and output," he said. "I don’t have all these nice slides. But the question you have to answer is, “How can I see stuff overlaid in the world when you have things like noise?” You have weird persistence problems. How can I be looking at this group of people and see their names floating above them? That actually turns out to be an interesting problem that’s finally a tractable problem."

In the future users will likely have bands on their wrists, and that they will be "doing stuff" with their hands. "Your hands are incredibly expressive. If you look at somebody playing a guitar versus somebody playing a keyboard, there’s a far greater amount of data that you can get through the information that people convey through their hands than we’re currently using. Touch is…it’s nice that it’s mobile. It’s lousy in terms of symbol rate."

To read the full interview, head here.

 

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Top Comments
  • 36 Hide
    deathengine , July 26, 2012 5:12 PM
    Im sorry but MS will never threaten Steam. They NEVER have sales on GFWL and thier selection of games on the service is PATHETIC.
  • 30 Hide
    Kami3k , July 26, 2012 5:10 PM
    "likely because the upcoming OS comes packed with native support for Xbox Live and Windows Store, both of which threaten Steam's stronghold in the PC gaming sector. "

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
  • 25 Hide
    cscott_it , July 26, 2012 5:18 PM
    Which top tier OEMs is he talking about?

    For your non-internet gamers, touch is a catastrophe and something that none of us will use while gaming. That or we won't use it in the same capacity we use keyboard/mouse. For your average user, adding touch isn't going to change anything for them as it doesn't matter if you click your friends cow with a mouse or touch it on your screen.

    More importantly, is the title of the article a little misleading?
    We get a short blurb on Why Windows 8 is a catastrophe, a link, no in depth look at why Gabe said that, and the large majority of the article on future user interaction technologies.

    That said, there is some merit to the HUD/Augmented reality thoughts and there are several big players that are looking into it (Google, Microsoft, etc.). The future is going to be an interesting one. I can't wait for minority report interaction (or more recently, if you noticed, how Tony & Bruce interacted with data in The Avengers).
Other Comments
  • 30 Hide
    Kami3k , July 26, 2012 5:10 PM
    "likely because the upcoming OS comes packed with native support for Xbox Live and Windows Store, both of which threaten Steam's stronghold in the PC gaming sector. "

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
  • 36 Hide
    deathengine , July 26, 2012 5:12 PM
    Im sorry but MS will never threaten Steam. They NEVER have sales on GFWL and thier selection of games on the service is PATHETIC.
  • -4 Hide
    internetlad , July 26, 2012 5:14 PM
    Pot, meet Kettle. I have been less and less impressed by Valve's actions as of late. TF2 went from a ton of fun to an absolute bloated mess after the 300 new weapon updates and F2P model hit, what was to have been a 6 month wait for ep3, Valve's flagship series, is going on it's fifth year now, whith no end in sight, and my wallet has very little to fear from the recent steam sales.

    December 2009 I spent over 100 dollars on various games and got a ton of bang for my buck, probably over 30 games of varying quality. This summer sale? I picked up Back to the Future for 6 bucks or something like that. Nothing else piqued my interest. There were no earth-shaking deals or reason for me to buy. Mix that in with the unacceptable promises of what is quickly becoming vapourware and the catering to macfags and talk of a home console, microtransactions and pay to win models, and Valve is, in my humble opinion, quickly becoming "what's wrong with gaming today"

    Rant at me if you want, but i've been hooked ever since I played HL2 back in '05, and I can see nasty things on the horizon for this company that seems to value profit over user experience.
  • 8 Hide
    Kami3k , July 26, 2012 5:18 PM
    john_4Time to start moving STEAM to Linux and Open GL, STEAM is already working fine with OS X and Open GL MS the company that bought out SKYPE and then rewrote the code so the FEDS could easily listen in on your conversations. The same thing MS did to their OS after the FEDS dropped the monoply suit against them in the 90s. MS and the FEDS are in bed together, Google too adn if I had to guess I wouldn't trust OS X either.Long Live Linux


    Steam isn't an engine so Open GL? lol....
  • 25 Hide
    cscott_it , July 26, 2012 5:18 PM
    Which top tier OEMs is he talking about?

    For your non-internet gamers, touch is a catastrophe and something that none of us will use while gaming. That or we won't use it in the same capacity we use keyboard/mouse. For your average user, adding touch isn't going to change anything for them as it doesn't matter if you click your friends cow with a mouse or touch it on your screen.

    More importantly, is the title of the article a little misleading?
    We get a short blurb on Why Windows 8 is a catastrophe, a link, no in depth look at why Gabe said that, and the large majority of the article on future user interaction technologies.

    That said, there is some merit to the HUD/Augmented reality thoughts and there are several big players that are looking into it (Google, Microsoft, etc.). The future is going to be an interesting one. I can't wait for minority report interaction (or more recently, if you noticed, how Tony & Bruce interacted with data in The Avengers).
  • 21 Hide
    DjEaZy , July 26, 2012 5:19 PM
    Valve Boss Gabe Newell Says ''Windows 8 is a Catastrophe'' and i agree!!!
  • 23 Hide
    CollegeisaScam , July 26, 2012 5:21 PM
    Windows 8 is terrible. It is Vista 2.0. Stay with 7 and wait for Windows 9.
  • 6 Hide
    DjEaZy , July 26, 2012 5:21 PM
    http://www.tomsguide.com/us/Valve-Confirms-Steam-on-Linux,news-15907.html
  • -7 Hide
    Kami3k , July 26, 2012 5:28 PM
    john_4No but all the games from STEAM on OS X are in Open GL and will be for Linux too, now shut your hole.


    All I have to do is to look at the Steam's own numbers for OX X and Linux and see how bad of a move that will be to abandoned windows.

    Proof mac****s are stupid.
  • -5 Hide
    internetlad , July 26, 2012 5:33 PM
    Kami3kAll I have to do is to look at the Steam's own numbers for OX X and Linux and see how bad of a move that will be to abandoned windows.Proof mac****s are stupid.


    They see me trollin'

    The comments
  • -2 Hide
    teh_chem , July 26, 2012 5:36 PM
    Said this elsewhere. What we think of as PC gaming where we install a game within an OS is going to vanish. Cloud gaming will take hold, and at that point it doesn't matter how "open" the OS is. You'll just be "streaming" games from within some app or browser.

    Don't get me wrong--the current cloud offerings like OnLive are a far cry from satisfactory. But it's going to happen, and it'll happen quick. All these discussions and dissatisfaction with the openness of Windows 8 is mostly a moot point.

    That and the fact that most real PC gamers aren't going to migrate to windows 8, so the problem pretty much solves itself for the time-being.

    On the other hand, the PC enthusiast market is shrinking. :'( 
  • 3 Hide
    EVILNOD , July 26, 2012 5:37 PM
    internetladPot, meet Kettle. I have been less and less impressed by Valve's actions as of late. TF2 went from a ton of fun to an absolute bloated mess after the 300 new weapon updates and F2P model hit, what was to have been a 6 month wait for ep3, Valve's flagship series, is going on it's fifth year now, whith no end in sight, and my wallet has very little to fear from the recent steam sales. December 2009 I spent over 100 dollars on various games and got a ton of bang for my buck, probably over 30 games of varying quality. This summer sale? I picked up Back to the Future for 6 bucks or something like that. Nothing else piqued my interest. There were no earth-shaking deals or reason for me to buy. Mix that in with the unacceptable promises of what is quickly becoming vapourware and the catering to macfags and talk of a home console, microtransactions and pay to win models, and Valve is, in my humble opinion, quickly becoming "what's wrong with gaming today"Rant at me if you want, but i've been hooked ever since I played HL2 back in '05, and I can see nasty things on the horizon for this company that seems to value profit over user experience.


    if you buy summer fire sale the past 2 years, then you pick up most of AAA title already.
    i just dont think there many AAA game worth buying this year..
    i dont buy any ubisoft game due to DRM
    i can't buy any EA game since they using their own
    and i stilling waiting civ discount include all the DLC + exp.

    as more and more people buy games online via steam, publisher like EA, activation want a piece of action too. therefore they pull their new game and create their own online store. this is other reason why we felt so few game onsale compare to the past.
  • 14 Hide
    bigdragon , July 26, 2012 5:55 PM
    I agree with Gabe. Windows 8 is a train wreck in progress. I don't want XBox Live or Games for Windows Live on my PC. I don't want to buy stuff from the Windows Marketplace. I don't want Metro apps. I don't want an OS designed for finger smudges. I don't want an OS inspired by the failed Windows Phone 7. I really don't like that Microsoft is so focused on going after the iPad that they've screwed up everything they've built upon with previous versions of Windows.
  • -4 Hide
    dgingeri , July 26, 2012 5:57 PM
    I'm thinking, with the pricing we've already seen for Windows 8, he's talking that MS is going to be selling the OS directly to customers at nearly the same price as to OEMs. This will cut into any profit an OEM might make from an OS that would normally be $40 to them and $100+ to the customer. They'd be losing about $40-50 on their margin.
  • -4 Hide
    Marcus52 , July 26, 2012 6:03 PM
    The head of the company that's responsible for Steam calls Win 8 a "catastrophe".

    HAHAHAHAHA!

    That boy needs to mow his own lawn if he's going to talk about his neighbors like that.

    I've bought my last game on Steam. Tired of the product key code hassle. No, Steam, I already put in the code and checked the little square on the box that says "don't show this message again, so - STOP showing the message on top of my game Every. Time. I. Play.
  • 3 Hide
    scogar , July 26, 2012 6:07 PM
    It looks like Gabe doesn't understand or get the point that the keyboard and mouse will still be optional, they are now, afterall still USB devices.
  • 7 Hide
    dark_lord69 , July 26, 2012 6:12 PM
    I've never used or seen windows 8 and I knew it would be a catastrophe.
    I've a few screen shoots and heard it was designed with touch interfaces in mind and that is when I knew I wouldn't be getting it.

    I'll stick to windows 7.
  • 3 Hide
    dauntekong , July 26, 2012 6:14 PM
    Windows 8's main target is tablets and touch screen PCs. You're limited to what you can do on Windows 8.
    Can you see yourself walking around not with a tablet but your desktop or all All-In-One PC?
    -Windows 8 is going to be a big down fall for Microsoft.
    -OSX is bad enough already.
    -Guess Linux is going to rise for this part of the OS.
  • 5 Hide
    gabrielspcs1 , July 26, 2012 6:16 PM
    Touch interfaces are anoyying and expensive compared to mouse and keyboard.
    (Windows 8, iOS and Android) Think about it for a moment.... Have you ever needed to pay for a expensive screen protector for a keyboard to keep it from being scratched? Have you ever realized how easy it is to scratch a touchscreen? Yes, Windows 8 is the next disaster right next to iOS and Android.
    ZAGG 13" (yep, laptop) HP touchscreen protector $39.99 (insane)
    So thanks to the touchy interface these days we now either have to live with scratched screens or pay extra just because its touch? Thanks..... Goodness knows how much its going to cost for a screen protector for a 24" LED touch screen.... eeks! And who needs touch interface for really fast frame per second games? Have you tried playing need for speed on a 10" tablet? Since the controls are limited, its a pain!
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