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Windows 8: The Seven Roads Not Taken


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#76 Dot Matrix

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 16:05

if you don't complain then more than likely windows 9 is going to be worse


In what way? They just can't revert back to a desktop only OS. Windows needs to advance to incorporate new form factors and functions in order to survive, without forming too many SKUs and without becoming too fractioned.

It's silly to sit here and say the desktop only UI is maintainable.


#77 singularity87

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 16:17

Option 7 is just what I've done on my laptop - I've installed Start8 so I don't need to "jump" out of the desktop - but I switch between using the Start menu and Start screen depending on what I'm doing. I have it set to boot to the Start screen and only go to the desktop if I want to do something that needs it - not if I'm checking e-mail or doing a quick online search. Gradually I can see Start8 falling by the wayside as the Modern UI/Start screen mature/I get more used to them.

#78 seethru

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 16:26

I've been in IT for over 20 years and I have never seen so many whiny bit@hes in my entire tenure. Don't use the new Metro Apps if you don't want to...IT ISN'T A REQUIREMENT! And how much time do you freaking people spent in the start menu anyway!!! Other than that it IS Windows 7...only better!!

This, this, and more of this.

I was a skeptic but took the dive. I do not miss the start menu. Microsoft clearly did their homework and found that a majority of people were no longer using it.

#79 Guth

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 18:29

Agree with last 2 posters.
I didnt really miss the start menu at all, although a few times I went to launch something and did find myself moving the mouse down there, before I realised, then I just press win key and typed what I wanted. This was a minor inconvenience as I usually launch apps from the mouse to save moving my hand back and forth between mouse/keyboard just to launch one app.

I decided I'd give start8 a try and i love it. It does what its supposed to and is simple. I still boot into metro and just go to desktop if I need to, otherwise as singularity87 said, if I'm just doing a quick search I use the google metro app / use metro apps if I can.

I love windows 8 and dont see what all the hassle is about. Move with the times. Upgrade and get used to it. If you find yourself missing the start menu then install start 8.
I have noticed that in the last week since I've had start8 that I'm using the start menu less and less, so I will uninstall it soon and go back to start screen. However, during this adjustment, I'm keeping it there for now as I do find myself using it.
Stardock have done an amazing job. Start menu is the only significant emittance IMO. I do understand when people say that they miss it, all other complaints about 8 are just people looking for problems IMO. No matter what MS did, these people would moan.

So, if you like the start menu too much, get Start8, they did such a great job it just looks like it is standard with the 8 metro style menu.
Otherwise, quit your complaining and jump in. Use it, get used to it!
Change is good, change is moving forward.

#80 Shane Nokes

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 21:36

The points are very relevant to how people actually interact with their computer, which to 99% of people is a lot more important than "how it works", also as I said in my post, it's not an silly guess that by say Windows 10 Modern UI will be the only UI available, so you can't use that as a defence


Got it. You had no intention of actually discussing the points.

You could have just said that from the beginning and I wouldn't have bothered with a reply.

Why invite someone pointing out where you are wrong if you're just going to deny it later on with what you THINK might happen in future versions of Windows.

You asked about Windows 8, and I discussed Windows 8.


If I knew you really wanted to know why you should use WIndows 8 because of how you feel about an OS that won't be out for at least 5 years, and no one in the public has any idea what it contains then I again wouldn't have bothered.


I mean at that point I might as well ask...Can someone tell me why I should get a WiiU? I ask because I heard that the WiiW will go in a direction I don't like. So why should I get a WiiU if they are going to do something I don't like in the future that doesn't impact the WiiU at all?

I mean why should I use something that is useful now if some future product that may or may not exist is going to be something I don't like?

#81 Richard C.

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 22:46

You didn't discuss windows 8 at all, I presented a usability situation (a few actually) that is likley to meet PC owners around the world, and because it wasn't a programming question, you decided to respond with "this has nothing to do how with Win 8 works", this is insulting and not really an answer to anything I said, if anything it's more akin to hearing "everyone else wants x" when I enquired about y in a store. In the post you quoted I intended to explain this I'm sorry that this has caused the reaction it has, that was not my intent.

In answer to your console point, the future of consoles is far less relevant than computer software, since I plan on using a computer for the foreseeable future and need confidence in the direction the product is taking if I am to keep updating it. A games console by comparison is a device which plays games, so if it plays the games I like I will buy it, different needs entirely.

If the best Windows 8 supports can say to a reasonable use case is "Windows 8 doesn't work like that" then I really don't think I'll be spending any more time on Windows 8 than I already have, since this seems incredibly similar to the "you're holding it wrong!" camp over at Apple some years ago. This my first real chance to express how i feel about Windows 8 from a practical standpoint rather than a technical one, nice to see how it's been read.

Hopefully this clears things up between us, so short of installing third party software to remove hot-corners and Modern UI, my usability case still stands without an adaquete rebuttal, and if I remove those two features, now that DX 11.1 features are coming to WIndows 7, and I already have reasonable security setup, Windows 8 is essentially unchanged from WIndows 7.

#82 Crimson Rain

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 23:26

Use W7 instead of whining. nobody is stopping you.

#83 Fahim S.

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 00:21

Some very interesting views here.

For those that are saying that Microsoft should have had two operating systems, one for tablets and one for desktops, which do you suggest would work best on a hybrid form factor such as an Asus Transformer? A touch based OS isn't fun in docked mode and a non-touch OS sucks in undocked mode.

Personally I think a hybrid OS like Windows 8 is needed and I believe that Microsoft are betting the farm on hybrid form factors to take the majority of the market and I personally can see the appeal as it would mean one less device to carry.

As for those who are extreme multitaskers, watching most users I think you'll find that the vast majority live in one maximised window at any given time. That includes those that 'do real work'. You may be the most efficient user of the OS - but you are the minority, and the real money is with the majority.

Finally I agree that every decision a commercial entity makes is a business decision. There were no doubt several technical challenges to enable the Start Menu to continue working but the decision not to try to overcome them would have been made in a cost vs benefit vs strategy tradeoff - and Microsoft have made it very clear what their thoughts are on this subject.

One of the more popular methodologies these days in software development is Agile which is predicated on making regular incremental releases such that course corrections can be made without committing yourself to a very long term deliverable. I think Microsoft are acting in very much the same way and are largely testing the water with Windows 8. I think they are on the right track despite Windows 8 being somewhat rough around the edges.

#84 contextfree

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 00:36

not keeping two versions of the same UI around (the general Windows UEX rule of which not keeping the Win7 start menu is a special case) is motivated more by future design/development/test/support/training costs than current design/development/test/support/training costs. as long as you have both around, every part of every new feature that needs to interact with them needs to be designed etc etc twice, meaning for a given budget you get half the features/quality/whatever.

you may ask, "ok, but what about stuff they did do twice, like the IE interface? doesn't that suck too according to the above logic?" the answer is that it does indeed suck - it adds confusion and hassle for users and developers alike - it just doesn't suck quite as much as the current alternatives (not having a browser that fits into the new UI, or not having a way to browse multi-windowed / with persistently visible tabs) would. for each feature you have to weigh (a) the suckage of redundancy vs. (b) the suckage of whatever special features / strengths you're losing, and in the case of the start menu (a) was deemed a lot (another UX rule at Microsoft is that every UI should have a single "home base", which two start menus would break) and (b) not much, considering even with the start menu gone there are still several arguably redundant ways to launch/switch left on the desktop alone (taskbar, desktop shortcuts, File Explorer) with the leftover scenarios pretty marginal (and even if you were to decide that something must be done to support them, you would probably want to build something tailored to those particular scenarios, or modify something to support them, not build an entire parallel general-purpose launcher)

#85 Shane Nokes

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 00:42

You didn't discuss windows 8 at all, I presented a usability situation (a few actually) that is likley to meet PC owners around the world, and because it wasn't a programming question, you decided to respond with "this has nothing to do how with Win 8 works", this is insulting and not really an answer to anything I said, if anything it's more akin to hearing "everyone else wants x" when I enquired about y in a store. In the post you quoted I intended to explain this I'm sorry that this has caused the reaction it has, that was not my intent.

In answer to your console point, the future of consoles is far less relevant than computer software, since I plan on using a computer for the foreseeable future and need confidence in the direction the product is taking if I am to keep updating it. A games console by comparison is a device which plays games, so if it plays the games I like I will buy it, different needs entirely.

If the best Windows 8 supports can say to a reasonable use case is "Windows 8 doesn't work like that" then I really don't think I'll be spending any more time on Windows 8 than I already have, since this seems incredibly similar to the "you're holding it wrong!" camp over at Apple some years ago. This my first real chance to express how i feel about Windows 8 from a practical standpoint rather than a technical one, nice to see how it's been read.

Hopefully this clears things up between us, so short of installing third party software to remove hot-corners and Modern UI, my usability case still stands without an adaquete rebuttal, and if I remove those two features, now that DX 11.1 features are coming to WIndows 7, and I already have reasonable security setup, Windows 8 is essentially unchanged from WIndows 7.


I did address it directly. You are choosing to pretend that I didn't.

I'm not the one with my head in the sand.

Don't bother replying. I won't read it. If my posts aren't worth your time to read then yours aren't worth mine.

#86 +TruckWEB

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 01:04

Another one like that?! Oh boy...

People with their wallet will decide if Win8 is good or not. Nobody else will.


<snipped>

Edited by Calum, 23 November 2012 - 15:57. Reason: Please leave out the attacks on other members.


#87 Shane Nokes

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 01:24

Another one like that?! Oh boy...

People with their wallet will decide if Win8 is good or not. Nobody else will.


<snipped>


I addressed his post. He says I didn't.

That means he didn't read my post.
Block me if you don't like me. That's what the option is there for.

Edited by Calum, 23 November 2012 - 15:58. Reason: Edited the quote to reflect the edited post.


#88 trooper11

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 02:07

Before people get me wrong on this thread, I am not a fan of Windows 8. I'm going to explain why in a bulleted list but please consider my environment before you rebut my points:

My PC environment
I sit at a big desk in a room with large speakers and a big screen TV at the other end, on this desk is a desktop PC, and an iMac. Hence 2 27" monitors. Infront of my desk is a couch for when i wanted to watch the TV. So I can keep my vision I sit about 1m away from the screens, so its understandable that touch is something that I can't really use on a regular basis.

My Points

  • As stated above, Touch is a big nono for me, so this makes the Modern UI essentially useless, as while it's possible to use it with a Mouse and keyboard, its hardly ideal.
  • I tend to have anything between 5 and 100 items on my screen at a time, notes, small sized applications, videos, browsers you name it. So the idea that I can split my screen in half and have the luxury of opening TWO windows only is a joke, considering MS is likely considering removing the desktop entirely by Windows 9 or 10, Windows will no longer meet my needs as it is unable to display multiple applications acceptably
  • I can live without the start menu, my Mac has no start menu and I've had no trouble launching all the apps on it by adding a list type folder to the dock, This is partially solved by the start screen, but not in a way that is comfortable
  • Huge numbers of tiles require an MS account, while this doesn't bother my needs as such since my device is always online, I'd hate to try and access data I've saved on say Windows Calendar in an offline environment such as on my laptop in a presentation room, displaying things to people on say a construction site, or on a train. (Here there are no wireless on trains, and it's often hard enough to get any cellphone signal, let alonr 3g or lte). The impracticality of it aside, if I want to store data offline using every app on the computer that doesn't specifically require internet access (messaging and games essentially) I should have the capability to do so.
  • On a big screen its a usability nightmare to have hidden buttons on the sides of the screen. I can't think of anything worse than having to be incredibly careful about where I place my windows incase I accidentally mouse over some hidden feature when I take something from that Window
  • ILike keyboard shortcuts, but my dad doesn't, so claiming that there are 1000x new ways of doing things, I'm not interested if for no other reason than stupid amount of phone calls I'll get from, that I can't help with because WIndows 8 is so radically different and probably has 100 new things I've not seen having only a few hours experience of it.
  • I have little use for tablets, and find them a waste of money since for the same price a small notebook (ultrabook?) offers better functionality, so why would I want a tablet OS on my desktop?
If anyone can pro windows 8 can give me a point to point rebuttal of these, please do so and I'll swap to Windows 8 Permanently tomorrow.




Those points are easy to respond to imo. Your first 3 points all deal with the metro side of Windows 8. That side is designed to be touch first and geared toward media consumption for the most part. Think of Metro as the ipad experience for windows. So your points show why Metro is not made for all scenarios. Thankfully, Windows 8 also has a desktop environment that is equivalent to 7 with several new features and improvements on existing ones found in windows 7. Since you point out that you werent tied to the start menu, then the only differences are the hot corners and the charms menu.

Point 4 relates back to my above point. Its not that the tiles themselves require a MS account, its that MS now offers the option to save your metro experience (files, apps, settings, etc) in the cloud and to do that, you need an MS account. But you dont have to do this. I have setup a local account and used Metro apps without being online. Now you lose some functionality like live updates and live tile info, but you can still interact with apps. Also, if you want local access to files stored on say Skydrive, all you need to do is install the Skydrive app to the desktop and your files can be in constant sync, meaning that when your somewhere that does not have internet, your files are sitting there to be used. If you want to avoid the cloud stuff completely, then you can just use the desktop side with apps like Outlook.

Regarding point 5, I get what your saying about the hot corners, but my personal usage hasnt run into the issue. Yes the corners are triggered if you move your cursor there, but I haven't triggered the charms bar nearly as often as i thought i might. I am using a 24" LCD (1920x1200 res), so its a big screen. The only times I have run into this issue is when closing a full screen window. A couple of times I have triggered the charms menu, but it never has prevented my click from registering on the close button and it goes away very quickly. Again, this has not happened much (only when I overshoot the close button and actually push the cursor into the corner). I dont know the behavior with multiple monitors, so someone else will need to chime in on how it behaves when dragging windows from one to another. I will say this though, the charms bar does not show up unless you go to the corners, so if your moving windows through the middle, you shouldnt trigger anything. I happen to also have a pc with Win 8 on it that is connected to a large tv (60" LCD 1920x1080) and I have yet to trigger the charms bar accidently. It feel like the larger the screen, the less likely I am to overshoot the close button on full screen windows. So for me, the hot corners havent been any more intrusive then the buttons that use to be there for those frunctions.

So on to point 6, I really dont think you need to be worried about this one. Yes you can use keyboard shortcuts, but it does not need to be complicated. If your dealing with someone that is coming from windows 7, then its very easy to get them up to speed. I made those points a couple pages back in the thread. If your not using metro, then all you have to know is how the start screen works, the hot corners, and the charms bar. Everything else works as it did in 7. Most people didnt even use the start menu in 7, so it makes it even easier. Of course if you yourself dont try out 8, then it will be hard to support people using it. Trying to troubleshoot a problem without seeing what the see is almost impossible. That would be like trying to help people on a Mac when you dont actually have experience with it.

Finally, point 7. Considering how you want to use the system, you have no use for a tablet os, so metro can be largely ignored. The desktop side has some nice enhancments imo that are worth it if they apply to you. I dont know why so many like to paint Windows 8 as metro only, but the reality is much different. There are two experiences in this system. Luckily, you can almost completely ignore one if you arent using the other. Since the start screen is not an issue for you, then think of this as similar to Windows 7 with Media Center. Media Center is a totally different experience compared to the desktop on 7, and yet there are plenty of reasons to use one side or the other depending on how you want use the system. Same goes for Metro and Windows 8. In fact, Metro is an evolution of the media center experience in many ways. I would suggest you try and demo it as deeply as you can before deciding. If the multi-monitor setup turns out to not be an issue, then I think the improvements to the desktop warrant a look.

#89 Superboy

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 03:20

not keeping two versions of the same UI around (the general Windows UEX rule of which not keeping the Win7 start menu is a special case) is motivated more by future design/development/test/support/training costs than current design/development/test/support/training costs. as long as you have both around, every part of every new feature that needs to interact with them needs to be designed etc etc twice, meaning for a given budget you get half the features/quality/whatever.

you may ask, "ok, but what about stuff they did do twice, like the IE interface? doesn't that suck too according to the above logic?" the answer is that it does indeed suck - it adds confusion and hassle for users and developers alike - it just doesn't suck quite as much as the current alternatives (not having a browser that fits into the new UI, or not having a way to browse multi-windowed / with persistently visible tabs) would. for each feature you have to weigh (a) the suckage of redundancy vs. (b) the suckage of whatever special features / strengths you're losing, and in the case of the start menu (a) was deemed a lot (another UX rule at Microsoft is that every UI should have a single "home base", which two start menus would break) and (b) not much, considering even with the start menu gone there are still several arguably redundant ways to launch/switch left on the desktop alone (taskbar, desktop shortcuts, File Explorer) with the leftover scenarios pretty marginal (and even if you were to decide that something must be done to support them, you would probably want to build something tailored to those particular scenarios, or modify something to support them, not build an entire parallel general-purpose launcher)



then why have 2 control panels and two different settings and two ways of closing apps one for desktop and one for metro, and why have the taskbar you have the leftside gesture for open apps, and why have 3 ways to get to the start screen, "heck if winRT is so great why not get rid of the desktop and for everyone to accept the change, acording to a lot of people is for the better isn't it and whoever don't like it they can stay in win7"/s

#90 +Aheer.R.S.

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 03:49

~snipped~
Not sure what manners has to do with anything. Just expressing how annoying your reminders of having worked for Microsoft have become. I know you're a smart guy. I believe that you have worked for Microsoft. I just don't believe it's absolutely necessary for you to repeat either of those things every other post.


Well put sir, well put (Y)



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