Not Done on Thursday at Noon?

This may seem like a really silly question, but it has a basis in some information I’ve been sharing lately.
When Microsoft initally studied the new “Ribbon Bar” interface for Office 2007, a study that showed a 34% (roughly) improvement in productivity was done. Thirty-four percent is roughly 1/3, and 1/3 of a 40 hour work week is about 13 hours. Logically–I suppose–if you get a 34% increase in productivity, you’d finish your 40 hour work week in just 27 hours, or about mid-day on Thursday. So what’s wrong?
Perhaps it might be the study. Another study showed only a 17.4% increase in productivity. Still, that’s almost a full day off during a 40 hour week, and I don’t see the parking lot empty on Friday morning in my building. Do you?
So what’s the deal? Is there really a productivity increase with the new office interface?
I would argue that yes, there is an increase in productivity with the Office 2007 and 2010 interfaces. I have experienced some of this in doing tasks myself. As long as I can let go of the “I know it was on this menu…” logic and go with the current way of doing things (which involves checking Help on a regular basis), things are better and faster.
However, I don’t get a 34% increase, or even a 17.4% increase. It might be 5%. Maybe less.
The reason is in the method. Microsoft’s study gave a number of guinea pigs a set of tasks to do. They measured how long it took people with the old (Office 2003) interface, and how long it took with the new (Office 2007) interface. The time savings was 34% on those tasks.
It turns out that I don’t do that same list of tasks. Neither do most of my clients and friends. So we get a fraction of the 34%. It doesn’t mean that the 34% is not real; it means that it is only real for a small part of the tasks I do.
In other words: Office 2007 solved problems I do not have. Here is my conclusion: Money spent to solve problems you do not have is wasted! Even money spent on technology you like.
Am I beating the drum loud enough yet?