Windows 98 to Windows 10. One thing still remains the same. Can we improve it?

Well! Not everyone can be as efficient as Bill Gates to keep their desktops clean

I have been using Microsoft Windows probably since the time when Windows 98 was launched. Since then, one thing has still remained the same. I am not sure why it hasn’t been improved yet. I see a problem in it and I have a feeling that this probably would resonate with a lot of the people reading this article.

Imagine completing a project, imagine completing a long assignment, imagine just completing any task that would require you to make multiple files over a period. Once it is done, most likely your desktop or your folder would look something like this…

Now, you could argue that the person could just create multiple folders and sort the files. However, even after doing so there may come a point when you are left with multiple files of the same format. Perhaps something like this (Imagine the below image with 30 or 40 files)

Now, imagine a situation when you need to access some important files in this folder and you don’t remember the name. Most likely, you would be opening one file at a time and wasting your precious time.

Possible solution

I am sure the solution I am suggesting could be wrong, but I am also sure that this could help initiate the ideation process towards solving the problem stated above.

I imagined a categorization where colors could help us differentiate and categorize the same types of files. Wouldn’t that be cool?

If you see closely, I added a few color categorizations. At the bottom right, Windows could allow users to themselves create these categories and name them.

By default, each file could be kept as grey i.e. ‘Not Highlited’. However, later the users could color code any file which they want to differentiate from the rest of the files.

The view could look something like this if a user would have selected the List view

To summarize, this categorization solves two main problems

  1. Helps the users identify the files they are searching for in a shorter time
  2. Keeps the desktop more organized even when there are a large number of files in a folder

All of this ultimately improves the user experience and that is what every product wants for its user. I could have gone a lot in-depth to write a more detailed solution. However, I felt telling about this possible solution on a high level would be enough to see how you feel about it and if that even is a problem that resonates with a lot of people.

As always, if Microsoft were to solve and come up with a solution it would involve a lot of research, a lot of alternative solutions, and immense design iterations to make it feasible for a product that is used by over a billion users across the world.

If you liked the idea, I would really appreciate seeing you clap on the left of the article. Even if not, I would be more than happy to hear what you think could have been added or improved.

Thank you.

Full-time MBA Student at UBC | An Ex-Product Manager | Always love talking about product management.