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Common sense fixes to Windows 8

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#16 OP Deactivated.

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 17:04

There is windowed search in Windows 8. Have you forgotten about the Search Bar in Explorer?

Oh, come on. You don't really use that to launch apps, do you? It's not very convenient for quickly opening documents either. And what shortcut would you even use?

Also, don't judge Windows 8 until you've used it via touch, then you'll see why things are the way they are.

Except I don't intend to (possibly ever) use Windows 8 as a touch operating system...but I will accept that maybe I'm simply not in the intended audience then.


Removing the charmsbar from the desktop is silly. Now I have to get back to the startmenu first to go to the crahrms bar again.

What? No, you don't. You have the search and settings button permanently visible on the Desktop. The search/devices charm is useless for Desktop apps as it is, but could be integrated into the titlebar of windowed Metro (or supported Desktop) apps on the Desktop.


#17 firey

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 17:06

There is windowed search in Windows 8. Have you forgotten about the Search Bar in Explorer?

Also, don't judge Windows 8 until you've used it via touch, then you'll see why things are the way they are.


Wow, you finally said it... Windows 8 is built for touch. You keep saying it's good even for mouse and keyboard (because it works), but finally you have said if you don't use touch windows 8 isn't the same so don't base opinions on keyboard/mouse aka normal use.

#18 Dot Matrix

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 17:09

Oh, come on. You don't really use that to launch apps, do you? It's not very convenient for quickly opening documents either. And what shortcut would you even use?


If that's what you're using with Search, is there any reason why the Start Screen Search doesn't work for you? Sure you have to leave the desktop, but who cares?

If you're that tied to the desktop, create a shortcut to the old run prompt.

#19 OP Deactivated.

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 17:28

you have to leave the desktop, but who cares?

You don't, I know that much. :) Yes, you have to leave the Desktop. Never mind that Windows 8 search has very limited context menu and absolutely no drag-and-drop support, and separates apps from settings from files, even when there's only a result in a single one of the (unselected) categories. But this has been covered many times before. I really don't think it's a good idea to rehash the argument here?

But you know what, Microsoft might stick to their guns. And so be it. Doesn't mean I need to see the sense in it. It just seems like it would be an easy fix to satisfy everyone, by offering the option of a windowed search (let the full-screen option be the default view for all I care). I could be wrong though...

#20 bikeman25

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 17:46

Add a Windows Defender Icon to Desktop Taskbar, for Status Checking, Updating, and right click access to quick scans, full scans or custom.

Otherwise I personally don't see many changes that Windows 8 Needs, I tend to us personally with my Desktop, Keyboard and mouse, and I spend 50 percent of my time in Modern/Metro start screen, playing games, using Windows 8 Mail app, Internet Explorer Metro/Modern Style, listening to xbox music or watching a video in video mode, sometimes snaping a metro app to the corner of my screen to see in Desktop mode as well. Desktop mode I use IE exclusively, no other browser installed, Skype, and various other games and utility programs.

Overall happy with Windows 8 here, minus a few quirks here and there, and a little minor annoyances, and issues

#21 BajiRav

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 18:05

I am sorry I do not have my computer on 24/7 like everybody else here. for 18 hours, there is no need for it to be on or even in sleep. I am at work for 10 hours (8 hours and 1 hour travel time each way), and I sleep for 8 hours. 18 hours that the computer is not being used. So I turn it off. Not sleep....not hibernate....turn it off...with an SSD, there is no benefit from having it sleep or hibernate.

Also, what do you want people like me to do that do only use their computer extensively for the remainder of those 6 hours? I have a mac, so I boot between OS X and Windows 8 a lot during the day. Having such an option might not benefit you, but it would benefit me and businesses I am sure. It annoys me to hell having to click Desktop 3-6 times every day to get to the desktop. I am never in the Start Screen except for that first boot.

where did I claim you have to have your computer on for 24x7? :huh: My 1st bullet in fact refers to a freshly starting system. I will ask you this, on your typical day what do you do after your Windows 7 system boots?

As for the two buttons on the Start Screen, they are not quite as near to the corners, and in any case not any closer to the edge than the user picture currently is.

If you mean the app-specific settings/search buttons, then there are currently already other controls at that position, so I don't see what would change as far as accidental input is concerned.

Not any weirder than the Start button looked on Windows 7?

Well, yeah. Because the context differs in each case. There's a systemwide settings/search button for systemwide settings/search and app-specific settings/search controls for app-specific settings/search. Does that not seem logical?

Never mind that what you mention is already the case unless you stay in the Metro environment only. Neither the search nor the settings charm works for Desktop apps. That's part of the problem. Currently, the Settings charm has the Desktop itself as its context, regardless of the app you're using. And the Desktop-specific settings charm offers both a link to the systemwide Desktop control panel as well as to the systemwide (incomplete) PC settings as part of the systemwide settings charm.


But they have. It's there. Already. Right now. Only that it's not extended to desktop apps (let alone windowed Metro apps), but the Desktop 'app'.


So then the start button was a bad bad idea, too?

- Fair enough. I still think having a unified charms bar makes more sense because it reduces UI clutter. I think you are overthinking discover-ability. The right-mouse-click context menu IS not obvious even today to novice users, hell even double click drives many people crazy. It just takes some time to learn and understand new UI metaphors. (I am not saying current charms are perfect just that they are not any more difficult than say right-click or double click).

- As far as I know, there are no app/system separation in charms. They are always in context. So if you used settings on start, you can tweak its settings but if you did that in an app then you will reach app's settings. I would trade consistency for a bit obviousness. It takes couple of attempts to remember charms but once you know, you are good.

- True but as I said, start button was not perfect - we just got used to using it. There is also difference between one button at the bottom of your screen and having two buttons at top and the bottom.

- Charms are not designed to work with desktop apps. Should they? It sounds like a good idea but if today people think switching between start-screen & desktop is jarring, imagine switching between search charm and Outlook. There is not a single way I can think of unifying the charms search panel with a desktop app, say Outlook, without a really bad UI transition.
They have not extended to desktop. I can not change any "desktop" settings in the settings charm. It just launches control panel from there.

- Start button was not a bad idea but system tray icons and the "show desktop" button introduced in Win7 are surely are. "It's simple, just add a button to taskbar" is a bad design - think years of system tray abuse, weird toolbars by everyone including Microsoft.

#22 OP Deactivated.

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 18:35

- Fair enough. I still think having a unified charms bar makes more sense because it reduces UI clutter. I think you are overthinking discover-ability. The right-mouse-click context menu IS not obvious even today to novice users, hell even double click drives many people crazy. It just takes some time to learn and understand new UI metaphors. (I am not saying current charms are perfect just that they are not any more difficult than say right-click or double click).


Fair point. It definitely reduces clutter and is incredibly consistent and predictable for Metro apps. That's fantastic! The question really becomes whether it's worth the (fairly) steep learning curve and whether the Charms bar is a successful UI concept once you've learned it, or more successful than e.g. search fields and settings buttons consistently implemented in apps (I can only hope that's what Microsoft's user testing showed). I actually don't see any major issues there in the Metro environment (as long as your users are up for learning this new UI concept), moreso when you have to switch between the Desktop and Metro environment

- As far as I know, there are no app/system separation in charms. They are always in context. So if you used settings on start, you can tweak its settings but if you did that in an app then you will reach app's settings. I would trade consistency for a bit obviousness. It takes couple of attempts to remember charms but once you know, you are good.


You have to differentiate between Metro apps and Desktop apps. Metro apps, you'll get the app's settings, Desktop apps, you'll get the Desktop's settings, i.e. Control Panel, Personalization, PC Info (which are all more or less actually in the systemwide context). Also, the lower part of the Settings charms always contains system settings, including a link to (what used to be called) "more" settings, now "Change PC settings" (which is actually a subset of the control panel settings, plus a few other items)


Charms are not designed to work with desktop apps. Should they?

That is not actually what I'm saying. My argument is that the Charms bar is currently almost useless on the Desktop (with respect to the app-specific charms), and becomes superfluous once you integrate a Search and Settings button into the Desktop UI, whether as part of a Start menu replacement apps or as individual buttons. So you might as well deactivate it on the Desktop. But once you allow Metro apps to be shown in a window on the Desktop, you would then need to integrate widgets for searching and entering settings into their window's UI. Which makes a lot of sense, since this is how Desktop apps have always worked on Windows (though, with respect to Settings, interestingly, not on the Mac's OS)


They have not extended to desktop. I can not change any "desktop" settings in the settings charm. It just launches control panel from there.


My point is, the Charms bar and hot corners can't be disabled on the Desktop and are currently largely useless. Worse than that, where you might expect the Charms to apply to Desktop apps, they actually apply to the Desktop itself (which, like you say, doesn't really have any functionality to offer. ModernMix actually makes the Charms bar apply to windowed Metro apps, which arguably makes things a little more confusing when it works for some apps on the Desktop, but not others.

- Start button was not a bad idea but system tray icons and the "show desktop" button introduced in Win7 are surely are. "It's simple, just add a button to taskbar" is a bad design - think years of system tray abuse, weird toolbars by everyone including Microsoft.

Could "just remove a button from the task bar" possibly be bad design, too ;)

#23 xWhiplash

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 02:19

where did I claim you have to have your computer on for 24x7? :huh: My 1st bullet in fact refers to a freshly starting system. I will ask you this, on your typical day what do you do after your Windows 7 system boots?


Um, run a program where I have a shortcut on the desktop. I do not jump in the start menu right away.....so why not give us a damn choice if we want to avoid the Start Screen right away. Clicking Desktop 3-6 times a day is very very very annoying. I do NOT click anything else, or ever visit the Start Screen after that.....so why is it forced on me? Was the Start Menu automatically open with every Windows version? No. Why does the start screen HAVE to be open initially?

#24 Dot Matrix

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 02:48

Um, run a program where I have a shortcut on the desktop. I do not jump in the start menu right away.....so why not give us a damn choice if we want to avoid the Start Screen right away. Clicking Desktop 3-6 times a day is very very very annoying. I do NOT click anything else, or ever visit the Start Screen after that.....so why is it forced on me? Was the Start Menu automatically open with every Windows version? No. Why does the start screen HAVE to be open initially?


I dunno, why is it the first thing I see on my Windows Phone? Why is it the first thing I see on my tablet? Why is it the first thing I see on my Xbox?

It's a dashboard to your PC. It's meant as a startup UX. That should have been clear to you way back in the beta.

#25 xWhiplash

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 02:59

I dunno, why is it the first thing I see on my Windows Phone? Why is it the first thing I see on my tablet? Why is it the first thing I see on my Xbox?

It's a dashboard to your PC. It's meant as a startup UX. That should have been clear to you way back in the beta.


Sigh.....Windows Phone =/= PC. XBox =/= PC.

Why didn't the Start Menu default to being open then?

#26 Dot Matrix

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 03:05

Sigh.....Windows Phone =/= PC. XBox =/= PC.

Why didn't the Start Menu default to being open then?


Oh, but they do. The idea is the same. You're supposed to pin your apps, and go from there. Start is the new desktop.

#27 nub

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 03:49

I dunno, why is it the first thing I see on my Windows Phone? Why is it the first thing I see on my tablet? Why is it the first thing I see on my Xbox?

It's a dashboard to your PC. It's meant as a startup UX. That should have been clear to you way back in the beta.


Why are we trying to dumb down the desktop to the level of a smart phone/tablet or game console?

#28 Order_66

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 03:57

There is windowed search in Windows 8. Have you forgotten about the Search Bar in Explorer?

Also, don't judge Windows 8 until you've used it via touch, then you'll see why things are the way they are.


Are you saying that desktop users really have no right to judge windows 8?

#29 Dot Matrix

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:28

Why are we trying to dumb down the desktop to the level of a smart phone/tablet or game console?


How is Windows 8 dumbed down? It's still a highly advanced OS.

#30 BajiRav

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:32

Um, run a program where I have a shortcut on the desktop. I do not jump in the start menu right away.....so why not give us a damn choice if we want to avoid the Start Screen right away. Clicking Desktop 3-6 times a day is very very very annoying. I do NOT click anything else, or ever visit the Start Screen after that.....so why is it forced on me? Was the Start Menu automatically open with every Windows version? No. Why does the start screen HAVE to be open initially?

I will ask you again. Where did I say that you should leave your PC running 24x7?

If you are going to justify your dislike for start screen by talking about clicking a shortcut on your desktop then that is just classic "who moved my cheese". Move the shortcut to your taskbar or better move it to start menu. I personally don't use desktop to keep shortcuts or any other files since XP came out in 2001 so I can't feel sorry for you. sorry. ;)