Windows 8, A Moving Target

One of the issues a technical book author must face is that a product could change a little from the time that the manuscript is completed and the book is printed. In fact, it’s almost certain that a product is going to change long before the book is out-of-print. While writing Windows 8 for Dummies Quick Reference I have worked hard to ensure you get the best and most current information possible. As I’m writing this post, I know that everything in the book is currently accurate and you’ll find an amazing array of new ideas and how-to information that will make your Windows 8 experience better.

There is some change in the wind though. The articles are already appearing in the media and Windows 8 isn’t even released yet. For example, someone recently pointed out the ZDNet article entitled, “Microsoft releases details for Windows 8 app updates” to me. On the one hand I’m gratified to see that Microsoft is taking user input seriously and keeping an eye on what the competition is doing as well. On the other hand, I almost wish that Microsoft had let Windows 8 cook a little longer before serving it up. I’m sure that the Microsoft engineers are working overtime right now to ensure that this major upgrade comes with as few flaws as possible. However, with such major changes come flaws. Windows 8 will require some time in the public eye before Microsoft can work out all the kinks (and even then, pleasing everyone is an impossible task).

I’m currently reading as many Windows 8 articles as I can to look for potential problems in my book. Once Windows 8 for Dummies Quick Reference is released, you’ll see updates for it appear right on this blog, so make sure you keep a bookmark open for this particular blog category when you buy my book. You should also contact me at when you find an issue in the book that I haven’t covered in the blog. I work hard to keep on top of all of the issues in my books, but sometimes things slip past me and you’re my second line of defense against inaccuracies.

Until Microsoft has found all of the issues with Windows 8 and the buying public has tested it thoroughly, you can expect Windows 8 to remain a moving target. Let me know about any issues you find in my book once it’s released and I’ll do my best to address them. In the meantime, happy computing!

Post Update: Since the time I wrote this post, a few readers have pointed out that Microsoft has released some additional information about the update. Steven Sinofsky has provided a short post on the topic entitled, “Updating Windows 8 for General Availability.” You can read a bit more about the update (along with some informed conclusions) in Mary Jo Foley’s post. I wouldn’t dismiss this update as minor, even though Microsoft presents only four bullet points to describe it. The download is 170 MB and it does make some significant changes under the hood. What I’m still wondering about is whether this is the tip of the iceberg and why Microsoft couldn’t make these changes at the outset.