Windows 8 logo hacked to Chinese Web site

Designer laments leak without full explanation of the design principles she followed

An image of the Windows 8 logo leaked last week was hacked from the design studio’s network and posted to a Chinese Web site, according to a published report.

The new logo, in the same Metro style that permeates the operating system user interface, was supposed to be released Feb. 26, just three days before the beta version of the operating system becomes available, according to a story on co.design.

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But an image of the logo was stolen from the network of design consultants Pentagram then made public on a Web site in China.

The problem with the image, says its designer Paula Scher, is that it’s the wrong type size and form. And the image released doesn’t come with any explanation of how it can be adjusted to different sizes and included in animation.

The logo as leaked met negative criticism for its lack of colors (it’s all a solid blue) and angular look, both of which fit the Metro design style.

Scher says in a post on the Pentagram site that the color is more of a placeholder, and that in practice the color of the logo can be changed to fit with the rest of the interface that it is part of.

The site also shows a video of how the logo might be set in motion.

Microsoft has made much of its Metro style interface that follows International Typographic Style, a clean, word-based system that mimics direction signs seen in public transportation stations. It is supposed to be easy to read and in combination with “live tiles” – rectangles that can slide and be pressed to call up applications via Winows 8’s touchscreen capabilities – make navigating the operating system faster.

The interface in general is styled after the one Microsoft designed for its Windows Phone 7 and together they indicate a move toward a unified look and feel across all Microsoft-based devices. With touchscreen support in Windows 8, the operating system is well suited for tablets, and in fact Microsoft has a whole separate version of the OS for tablets using ARM processors called Windows on ARM or WOA.

The beta version of Windows 8, called Windows 8 Consumer Preview, is scheduled to be released Feb. 29 at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

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