As in Bauhaus design, with its fidelity to the essence of materials, the most innovative element of Metro is its shift away from visual metaphors. That imitative system, called skeuomorphism, is another legacy of GUI. Before users were accustomed to working with computers, designers had to make on-screen applications legible—for example, a digital Rolodex to denote where contacts were stored. Skeuomorphism has since flooded into all areas of UI design—most prevalently (and jarringly, to some) in Apple’s software, where digital calendars have faux-leather stitching and bookshelves an Ikea-like veneer. “We think stuff like leather stitching is just a useless distraction,” says Moreau, who seems genuinely repulsed by excessive GUI, as if it were actually gooey and not just pronounced that way. Team Microsoft believes consumers have developed a fluency for digital interfaces and no longer need those kitschy translations. In Bauhaus-speak, software designers can finally let the pixel be a pixel.