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Posted

Manual window management is awful. Traditional desktop window paradigms are powerful but obsolete. Like it or not, Windows is working towards a new way of doing things. Shoehorning Metro back into the desktop isn't going to solve any problems. It'll be nothing but the same old stories over again, as Microsoft bleeds market share, and developers.

 

Microsoft needs to work to streamline the desktop - Bring the Metro UX and dynamics to the desktop side. Remove the kludgy, disoriented Control Panel widgets, remove all that garbage that's been around forever. The desktop has collected weeds, and has become overgrown. Nobody is buying into it anymore. Half the windows on the desktop below have yesteryear's appearance. It's time to change that. It's time to update the way we work.

There is no dispute that the desktop can and should be improved but I fundamentally oppose your suggestions. The current stacking of windows on the desktop is inelegant but simply removing that functionality and forcing everything to run fullscreen doesn't help. The Control Panel is a mess but again forcing it to run in fullscreen doesn't help. Applications have inconsistent appearances but stripping away the chrome and forcing them to run fullscreen doesn't help.

 

Let's be clear, Metro hasn't made Windows tablets a success - in fact the Surface has massively underperformed in the market. Microsoft tried to leverage its success on the desktop to force help it in the tablet market and it has been a failure. Rather than forcing Metro on users who have absolutely no interest in it Microsoft should be looking to improve the desktop in a way that users do want.

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Posted

I don't know what they'll do with 9 but I agree that if they're going to keep merging the two then there is no way the taskbar stays the same going forward. Well see what the new start menu brings and metro 2.0 but the taskbar will have to move forward.

Likewise the metro task switcher will change and gain new features as well I bet.

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Posted

I don't know what they'll do with 9 but I agree that if they're going to keep merging the two then there is no way the taskbar stays the same going forward. Well see what the new start menu brings and metro 2.0 but the taskbar will have to move forward.

Likewise the metro task switcher will change and gain new features as well I bet.

It doesn't make sense to maintain both the taskbar and the Metro Switcher. You want a single environment to manage both and I consider the taskbar to be the stronger of the two, as it has more functionality and is always visible (on desktops with large displays it's inefficient to hide the app switcher off-screen). But certainly we'll need to see the taskbar evolve, much like we did with Windows 7. It seems that Microsoft is moving in that direction, as the taskbar now displays Metro apps and is accessible from within them.

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Posted

I think MS are royally screwing up with Windows 8.

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Posted

I think MS are royally screwing up with Windows 8.


With Update 1, now they are.

It doesn't make sense to maintain both the taskbar and the Metro Switcher. You want a single environment to manage both and I consider the taskbar to be the stronger of the two, as it has more functionality and is always visible (on desktops with large displays it's inefficient to hide the app switcher off-screen). But certainly we'll need to see the taskbar evolve, much like we did with Windows 7. It seems that Microsoft is moving in that direction, as the taskbar now displays Metro apps and is accessible from within them.


The metro task switcher is there for tablet users using their thumb to switch between windows. It would only make sense to keep it.
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Posted

The two fit into different device types, the taskbar doesn't fit well with a touch device like a tablet. The metro switcher is the best option for tablet users.

Likewise the taskbar fits better with a mouse and specially if it's always visible on screen.

I don't see why we have to drop one and only keep one? The argument here is that for different device types you need different UIs, or so people have been saying. The way the desktop works just does not fit for a tablet. Even with updates to the taskbar it's place will still be for mouse users more than anything else.

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Posted

The update is quite the improvement over Windows 8. I have installed it on my sisters laptop and even now she can use Windows 8.1.1 with little to no problem (when using Start8). I took that away from her as a test for a few hours to see what would happen and as I suspected, she couldn't find Word, Outlook and other programs she needed for her uni assignment. I told her to click the start button (as it's still there) but all it did was take her to the start screen, where the default live tiles reside. Where was Word, Outlook? She couldn't find them. Yes a search would of found them or clicking 'all apps' but what my point is, for a desktop user, for her to be even asking where a program is to start, then spending no less than 20 minutes trying to find the link to start it is just VERY POOR DESIGN.

Got her up and running anyway which got her happy, but my point to Dot is why have this mess on the desktop UI? Like others said, there is 0% reason to have applications run full screen. That is a waste of real estate and again, incredibly poor design. I dunno Dot, maybe you have been snatched by aliens as a child and implanted with a chip that can understand how to use Metro on a desktop PC, while the rest of humanity simply cant. 

So how do you appease both Dot Matrix and the rest of humanity you ask?
* Microsoft really need to forget bout releasing Windows 9 anytime this year. Hell, forget bout releasing it next year too.
* Set aside a small team of 50 people, and get them working on security updates, and service packs. 
* Get the remainder working on Windows 9 DE and ME. 
Now your going to ask, what the hell is DE and ME? Easy, Windows 9 requires 2 SEPARATE versions of Windows. One for Desktops/Businesses/Servers and one for Tablets/Phones. 'Desktop Edition' and 'Mobile Edition' DE would focus on the desktop - think Windows 7, but better. Mobile Edition is the dumbed down version of Windows, currently known as Metro. 
* Then split the remaining team up to 2 groups, one working on DE, the other on ME. Both groups start from scratch. Im talking both have 0 code in front of them. 
* ME group works closely with the Windows Phone group, since by the end of 2015 phones will be tablets anyway *looks at Samsung* so the phone/tablet/laptop/ultrabook is pretty much the one and the same. 
* DE group starts from scratch as well, and builds the desktop version, stripping out and streamlining code on both platforms to make it run and look amazing. So expect new UI, icons, WINDOWED metro apps etc. 
* Once these are running on separate machines this is where the fun happens. They can either sell them as separate versions of Windows or put them together as one package, but still, SEPARATE operating systems. 

Imagine this for a second:
You brought your brand new spanky Asus laptop. You power it up for the first time, see the boot animation lasting 5 seconds, and come to the login screen. You enter your details, and another screen appears. 
"We noticed you are using a touch enabled laptop. What would you like to use, the Desktop, or Metro?" 
You click Metro and get Metro 2.0, optimized for touch devices, and you smile knowing the world is right again.
Option 2, you click Desktop, and get your awesome new desktop UI optimized for mouse and keyboard, running awesome windowed Metro apps. 

THAT is what Microsoft should do if they want to really sell Windows 9. I have no doubt that 9 wont be the mess it currently is with 8 / 8.1 and its current mash-up. A complete start would easily fix those problems if they took the time to do it properly.

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Posted

This is what MS should be doing with Windows 8... Working to transform the desktop with the Metro UX.

 

attachicon.gifScreenshot (2740).png

 

attachicon.gifScreenshot (2741).png

 

  • The taskbar would be killed off completely, and the functionality moved to the Metro task switcher. The Metro task switcher can be resized just like the taskbar can now, if unlocked and docked to the left side of the screen.
  • Apps can be pinned/unpinned as per user desire. The arrows indicate windows with multiple tabs open, and the user could select a desired tab, like they can do now with Windows 7/8 desktop (a la open browser on the taskbar).
  • The active tabs would get a highlight color per developer's code, or the icon, just like they do now on the Windows 7/8 desktop taskbar.
  • Traditional icons are removed in favor of customizable and resizable live tiles.
  • Pure Metro applications would continue to be fullscreen and snappable applications, and feature the titlebar if used on the desktop. They would also be able to open up automatically snapped, if desired.
  • Desktop applications would be resizable, and continue to run like they do now, now relying on the Metro Switcher for Maximize/minimize functions.
  • Explorer would be transformed for the Metro UX. It would feature the titlebar only if used with the desktop. On other devices, it would function the same, however feature whitespace instead of a titlebar for finger/stylus functionality. The address bar would function similar to Metro IE, and can be hidden, if desired.
  • The Classic Control Panel, and all classic Control Panel applets have been removed and replaced with the Metro Settings, and when invoked via the desktop, opens automatically in snapped view.
  • Instead of pop up windows, minor settings and options would open up via a fly-out menu (a la Network Settings, currently implemented in Windows 8).
  • The Charms Bar works just like it does now.
  • The Start Screen works just like it does now.
  • This new environment would be fully scalable, and would work to unify both sides of the OS across all devices.

 

This shoehorning Metro into the old, classic environment isn't going to work out, and will only cause more (already is, as of the Spring Update) issues. If this path continues for Windows 9, I feel Microsoft will be shooting themselves in the foot.

.....Just NO, not even no, HELL NO

 

The day Windows looks like that is the day I give up on Windows for good.

 

Trying to shoehorn everything into Metro is a horrible idea unless everyone starts using nothing but tablets.

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Posted

I disagree that Metro needs removed from the desktop. You can't be afraid of change. It happens whether you want it to or not. The Start Menu was past it's prime, and the desktop environment is no different. It's powerful, but largely outdated in the way it looks and feels, and in the ways in which we interact with it.

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Posted

Speaking pragmatically, the most effective way to carry out a UI transition is to provide no choice for users to fall back to the old system.

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Posted

I disagree that Metro needs removed from the desktop. You can't be afraid of change. It happens whether you want it to or not. The Start Menu was past it's prime, and the desktop environment is no different. It's powerful, but largely outdated in the way it looks and feels, and in the ways in which we interact with it.

I don't mind change if said change is a very clear step forward, but metro is a very clear step backwards in non-touch user experience design.

 

I don't fear change, I just don't like change that is clearly not well thought out.

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Posted

Speaking pragmatically, the most effective way to carry out a UI transition is to provide no choice for users to fall back to the old system.

 

Quite true, but there is a high risk of alienating a large proportion of users, forcing them to look elsewhere for their computing needs.

 

If I had to completely re-learn my existing OS, the playing field would be level regarding other OSes.

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Posted

Quite true, but there is a high risk of alienating a large proportion of users, forcing them to look elsewhere for their computing needs.
 
If I had to completely re-learn my existing OS, the playing field would be level regarding other OSes.


I think that's an oversimplification for this instance; the desktop environment functions exactly as in Windows 7, sans the Start menu, which was a list of boxes that users clicked on (and has since been replaced with...a list of boxes that users click on). Meanwhile, Windows 8.x is also compatible with nearly all programs written for previous versions of Windows, therefore users don't have to, for instance, go back and learn how to use Word or Excel. I think "completely re-learning" the OS is a bit hyperbolic if applied to 8, but is definitely true if applied in a general sense.

It's not as if Windows users don't already deal with at least half a dozen different GUIs in their normal courses of work, thanks to the various designs in different programs that run on the platform. The most painful changes aren't something completely new so much as something new that replaces something old and familiar.

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Posted

The metro task switcher is there for tablet users using their thumb to switch between windows. It would only make sense to keep it.

...for tablets. It makes no sense to keep it for the desktop. I'm all for Microsoft keeping the Metro Switcher for tablets and having it replace the taskbar, as it makes sense of devices with limited display areas. But the Metro Switcher offers no advantages to desktop users and only gets in the way, whereas the taskbar is well suited to large displays.

 

Having used the Surface 2 I am perfectly happy with the direction that Microsoft has taken for tablets and the Metro Switcher makes sense there - in fact I would argue that it's the best tablet interface out there. However, Metro is a mess on the desktop and the last thing I would want to see is for the desktop to be dropped or merged into Metro. This update highlights Microsoft's realisation that difference UI's suit difference form factors.

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Posted

I figured out the enterprise mode. I have to say IE11 is fast or faster than Chrome

How did you figure it out ?

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Posted

I think that's an oversimplification for this instance; the desktop environment functions exactly as in Windows 7, sans the Start menu, which was a list of boxes that users clicked on (and has since been replaced with...a list of boxes that users click on). Meanwhile, Windows 8.x is also compatible with nearly all programs written for previous versions of Windows, therefore users don't have to, for instance, go back and learn how to use Word or Excel. I think "completely re-learning" the OS is a bit hyperbolic if applied to 8, but is definitely true if applied in a general sense.

It's not as if Windows users don't already deal with at least half a dozen different GUIs in their normal courses of work, thanks to the various designs in different programs that run on the platform. The most painful changes aren't something completely new so much as something new that replaces something old and familiar.

 

I misunderstood "provide no choice for users to fall back to the old system" to mean something like Windows RT, i.e. no access to the full desktop, and using Metro counterparts to desktop apps.

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Posted

f0rk_b0mb, on 08 Mar 2014 - 04:09, said:

The icons are still ass ugly. Seriously? This is extremely unprofessional looking.

 

attachicon.gifUntitled-1.png

 

Funny, I noticed this just yet. But it is also present in Windows 8.1

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Posted

The thing people wanted with Windows 8 was a way to stick to one UI or the other, desktop users wanted the desktop and those on the tablet wanted metro because those worked best.  Windows has always had multiple ways of doing things, the task switcher for metro is just another way, as is alt+tab which I use a lot, more than I do clicking on the taskbar.   To want one thing removed in favor of the thing you yourself use mainly is wrong.   With Windows 9 I have MS goes the extra step and in the process of merging or having the two UIs fit better together we have the ability to just use the way we want.  

 

They can make the taskbar better, they can make the metro switcher better, no reason one or the other should be dropped.  There are a number of ways to bring metro more into the desktop and bring the desktop more into metro and have those both fit the device type they target better.    One thing off the bat for the taskbar is for it to be updated to support tiles, right now what we get in update 1 isn't really the tile as it should be, they should update it to allow it to handle tiles like the start screen does, let them display information the same way they do.

 

Likewise the start screen should get the ability to have "jump lists" for live tiles, where clicking on a tile will give you the option to interact with the app without opening it and so on.  That's how you go about bringing the two things closer together.

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Posted

Funny, I noticed this just yet. But it is also present in Windows 8.1

Hmmm, I'd never noticed that but I guess it's no surprise as the delete confirmation is disabled by default.

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Posted

Metro on the desktop is looked at by a lot of people like it's a burden. And for Metro, it's the desktop that's looked at at like it's a burden in the Metro space. I kind of like the two being together, but considering that last statement to be what's more important, it's not up to me. We can sit here and talk design about what should go where, but it's a business and a business should try and keep the consumer happy with their product. Even if Microsoft did the ModernMix window frame thing, it still wouldn't come off right, The app design would have to change. Look at this from it's beginning, Metro was put on the desktop to attract people to the platform. That hasn't happened exactly as planned, every other week this gets brought up on Reddit where the comments pile up to a few thousand each time it gets brought up and people keep complaining. Lets think about this for a moment, lets say in April Microsoft does one of two things, they show how Metro is going to be integrated into the desktop platform even more in the future or they show a dialog screen where people can choose to boot up to Metro or the desktop when they start their computer, which do you think people would clap for? I'll clap either way, but and maybe I'm wrong about this, I think the louder applause would be for the Boot Up option. I just want Microsoft to succeed, if you were to ask me about this particular problem a year ago I would have said it was solvable and I've thought about this since the whole thing started, but I just can't see a way to make everyone happy. I keep thinking the solution is out there, but maybe that's foolish of me.

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Posted

Hmmm, I'd never noticed that but I guess it's no surprise as the delete confirmation is disabled by default.

Only the delete to recycle bin confirmation is disabled by default. The permanently delete confirmation is not.

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Posted

How did you figure it out ?

 

http://www.zdnet.com/internet-explorer-11-to-get-new-enterprise-mode-7000025842/

 

I don't remember all the steps but its in there

 

Seems like MSFT is trying to mash Modern UI(that is in fact what it is, MSFT was forced to remove the metro moniker due to legal issues). Now MSFT has really jacked up the OS. modern UI and desktop are two distinct and seperate environments. MSFT needs to get a brain and establish mobile environment modern UI for tablets and phones and leave the desktop for dekstop PCs' and laptops.

 

one caveat.. setup modern UI for touchscreen laptops. this does modern UI no justice for those who enjoy it. sickening simply put.

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Posted

MS needs to stop trying to build one OS for them all.  EVERYONE, and I mean EVERYONE would have been happy if MS just gave users a choice.

 

Have a first startup screen asking which environment they want to use.  Desktop only (Windows 7 style but better).  Mix (what we have now).

 

I have never heard of a good reason why this should not be done.  Those of you that like the way it is now get to keep using it that way.  Those of us that like desktop only environment can use it that way.  Everybody wins.

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Posted

http://www.zdnet.com/internet-explorer-11-to-get-new-enterprise-mode-7000025842/

 

I don't remember all the steps but its in there

 

Seems like MSFT is trying to mash Modern UI(that is in fact what it is, MSFT was forced to remove the metro moniker due to legal issues). Now MSFT has really jacked up the OS. modern UI and desktop are two distinct and seperate environments. MSFT needs to get a brain and establish mobile environment modern UI for tablets and phones and leave the desktop for dekstop PCs' and laptops.

 

one caveat.. setup modern UI for touchscreen laptops. this does modern UI no justice for those who enjoy it. sickening simply put.

 

I think having Modern on the desktop will become more important when WP, Surface (and other windows mobile devices) and the desktop can sync. For me, that's when people will see the advantage of Modern.

 

I guess I must be gifted since I have no issues using Modern, while others just can't seem to figure out how to use it with a keyboard/mouse. /s   But seriously, all this moaning is getting a bit tiresome. 

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Posted

I'm sorry, but Microsoft should have built an OS that the "customers" want, not what "Microsoft" wants.  

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