Windows Vista Makes Your Life Easier?

I kid you not. Here’s the official process for saving an image in a different format inside Windows Vista (using only what ships with the OS). Directly from the Windows Vista help center:

To save a picture in a different file type

  1. Click to open Windows Photo Gallery.
  2. Click the picture you want to change.
  3. On the toolbar, click Open, and then click Paint.
  4. Paint will open with your picture displayed.
  5. Click the File menu in Paint, and then click Save As.
  6. Click the Save as type list, and then click the file type you want to use to convert your picture.
  7. Click Save.

I discovered this only after being told that I couldn’t adjust saturation, hue, etc. on a BMP image. Sounds like a niggling point to bring up at this stage in the game, but it only underscores my initial arguments. “Wow?” This kind of workflow would have been acceptable in the days of, say, Windows 95 – but Windows Vista’s Photo Gallery should have been a bit smarter. If I can’t Fix a PNG or JPG in the Gallery viewer, then why is the toolbar button still illuminated? This isn’t just a fontface oversight.

I’ve been living inside Windows Vista (32-bit) for the past week, and I don’t think I could go back to Windows XP. I want Windows to be better – as a consumer, as a technologist. Maybe that’s why I’m disappointed when I find details like these skipped. Microsoft Paint is just… the anti-Vista. Why not just license PhotoFiltre or the fresh-out-of-beta Paint.NET? Let’s just see what gets patched when Vista’s first service pack hits the streets later this year.a