Unlike the KIN phones where Microsoft (MSFTclearly had no idea what it was doing from development to launch, the company did have a clear vision for what wanted Windows 8 to look like. iStartedSomething has published a handful of mockups from the Windows design team showing off an early version of the operating system’s tile-based Start page from 2010.

As noted by iStartedSomething, Microsoft’s internal re-imagining of Windows came at a time when tablets were virtually non-existent and Apple (AAPL) was just launching the iPad. In one mockup, Microsoft even has an iPad-like slate with a Windows home button positioned below the screen when it’s oriented in portrait mode.

From the Start page to the hidden menu that opens up on the right side of the screen to the side-by-side multitasking apps, it doesn’t look like Windows 8 changed too much from concept to launch; which can be considered a very good thing or a bad thing depending on your take on Windows 8.