Microsoft Kills WordPad: A Nostalgic Look at the Demise of a Simple Text Editor

Microsoft Kills WordPad: A Nostalgic Look at the Demise of a Simple Text Editor

In the realm of text editors, there exists a unique and profound relationship between the Libre enthusiast and their chosen tool. As a Vim user myself, I traversed the learning curve from grappling with the enigma of quitting Vim to realizing its unparalleled versatility. Vim, with its myriad of plugins, has become an indispensable program on my system, making me a fervent Vim enthusiast.

Diverse Text Editors for Libre Users

While Vim holds a special place for some, the world of text editors is diverse, catering to different preferences. Emacs users, for instance, can reach a level of enthusiasm that extends beyond mere text editing, with some integrating it into their entire computing experience.

The Journey From Windows to Linux

Before embracing Vim and Linux, my journey in the computing world began with Windows. Although Notepad and early versions of Word served my initial needs, the most influential Microsoft text editor in my life turned out to be WordPad.

WordPad’s Impact on School Assignments

During my school days, around sixth grade, computers became a central tool for writing assignments. WordPad came to my rescue, providing a platform where I could effortlessly continue my work. Unlike Notepad’s limitations, WordPad allowed me to open and edit documents in the proprietary .doc format, facilitating seamless transitions between school and home assignments.

The Quirks of Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word was prevalent in schools, and while it offered compatibility, obtaining a personal copy posed challenges. I found myself unable to access Word on my laptop at home, forcing me to rely on my Dad’s computer, which was not an ideal solution.

The Comfort of WordPad

Enter WordPad – a comforting solution that wasn’t a true replacement for Microsoft Word but served its purpose as a minimalist document editor. Despite lacking advanced features, WordPad was my go-to editor, allowing me to bridge the gap between school and home assignments effortlessly.

Microsoft’s Unfortunate Decision

Fast forward to the present, and Microsoft has decided to kill off WordPad. A visit to learn.microsoft.com reveals a list of deprecated features for Windows clients, and WordPad finds itself among the casualties.

Questionable Motives

While the deprecation of outdated and insecure features makes sense, the demise of WordPad raises eyebrows. WordPad, a lightweight and functional editor, is not burdened by security issues, making its discontinuation seemingly driven by Microsoft’s pursuit of profit.

Microsoft Word: The Expensive Alternative

Microsoft’s recommendation to use Microsoft Word as an alternative comes at a cost – a subscription fee. This move imposes unnecessary hurdles for users who simply want a basic, free document editor. The online version also demands a Microsoft account and an internet connection, complicating the process further.

A Regrettable Loss

The decision to phase out WordPad may not significantly impact Microsoft Word’s market share. Still, it leaves users without a straightforward, built-in solution for editing common document formats, forcing them to opt for paid alternatives.

Embracing Open Source Alternatives

While LibreOffice Writer offers a robust open-source alternative, not everyone is aware of it, and some may lack the means to install new applications. Microsoft’s reluctance to provide essential tools for handling their proprietary file formats raises questions about the user-friendliness of Windows.

Windows: A Gaming OS?

With Microsoft seemingly prioritizing gaming compatibility over productivity, one wonders if Windows can still be considered a viable desktop operating system. The subscription model for basic functionalities challenges the perception of Windows as a productivity-oriented OS.

The Appeal of Linux

For those seeking efficiency and functionality without unnecessary bloat, the suggestion is clear: consider a Linux distribution like “It Just Works Linux Distro.” It provides the necessary tools for document editing with minimal bloat and no built-in spyware.

In conclusion, the demise of WordPad marks a shift in Microsoft’s approach, leaving users to navigate through a maze of subscriptions and alternatives. As we bid farewell to an old companion, it’s evident that the landscape of text editing is evolving, and users must adapt to the changing tides of proprietary software.


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