I have a confession: for weeks, The Verge has covered Microsoft’s new Windows 10 Paint app, and it never occurred to me that this MS Paint is the evolved form of the same MS Paint that allowed me to doodle away my childhood. Only with today's announcement of Paint 3D did it occur to me that Paint, with its revamped logo and unnecessary features, did it really hit me. Suddenly, I felt intensely protective of classic MS Paint.
I don’t even have a Windows PC, and it’s been a few years since I’ve played around aimlessly in MS Paint. But its status as a classic, timeless program (I refuse to call it an app!) should divorce from the burden of modernization and software updates, especially ones that encourage you to customize emoji and share them on Facebook. Who would do this?
The beauty of MS Paint is its limitations. It challenges you to make something out of nothing, using tools that feel like the digital equivalent of craft room dregs. MS Paint is how artists got their start painting on a computer for the first time, using just a mouse and imagination, and influenced entirely new styles of drawing. At its core, it is, dare I say, ideal for making memes. What will we make memes in now? I’m not ready to see an Arthur fist in 3D!
But putting my outrage aside, this is probably just my "old man yells at cloud" moment. Our generation grew up messing around with our version of Paint, and this latest update will be an introduction to 3D for the kids of this generation. In the best-case scenario, maybe it’ll be a gateway software that inspire kids to pursue 3D modeling and animating. And in the worst-case scenario, I’ll be unfollowing anyone who tries to sneak a bearded 3D emoji into my Facebook timeline.