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Gabe Newell calls Windows 8 "a catastrophe"

Foresees a future of wearable computers, suggests Photoshop adopts a free-to-play model.

Valve co-founder and managing director Gabe Newell has become something of a doomsday prophet regarding Windows 8.

Speaking with Ouya adviser - and former VP of game publishing at Microsoft - Ed Fries at Casual Connect, Newell said: "I think Windows 8 is a catastrophe for everyone in the PC space," according to a report by All Things D.

"I think we'll lose some of the top-tier PC/OEMs, who will exit the market," he continued. "I think margins will be destroyed for a bunch of people. If that's true, then it will be good to have alternatives to hedge against that eventuality."

He explained that these alternatives involve Linux support. "We want to make it as easy as possible for the 2,500 games on Steam to run on Linux as well. It's a hedging strategy."

This echoes the Seattle-based company's recent announcement of Linux support for Steam.

Elsewhere in the report, Newell suggests Adobe adopt a free-to-play model for Photoshop. "They say, 'We have absolutely no idea what you are talking about, but it sounds really bad.' And, then we say, 'No, no, no. We think you are going to increase the value being created to your users, and you will create a market for their goods on a worldwide basis.' But that takes a longer sell."

"This isn't about videogames; it's about thinking about goods and services in a digital world."

Additionally, Newell speculates about the future of motion control and wearable computers.

"This is super nerdy, and you can tease us years from now, but as it turns out, your tongue is one of the best mechanical systems to your brain, but it's disconcerting to have the person sitting next you go blah, blah, blah, blah."

As a result, "I don't think tongue input will happen, but I do think we will have bands on our wrists, and you'll be doing something with your hands, which are really expressive."

He noted that Valve is working on a wearable computer, but it's far from complete. "I can go into the room and put on the $70,000 system we've built, and I look around the room with the software they've written, and they can overlay information on objects regardless of what my head or eyes are doing. Your eyes are troublesome buggers."

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Jeffrey Matulef


Jeffrey Matulef is the best-dressed man in 1984.

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