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The return of the Start menu in future Windows 8.1 update: Thoughts?

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ctebah    3,161

Didn't Microsft ask for feedback? See, I'm not PUSHING back, I'm offering my opinion and giving them feedback. What they do with it is up to them, use it, wipe their backside or ignore it, it's up to them.

That's the part I don't understand. Microsoft said that Windows 8 was the most tested OS before release. Something to the tune of billion hours across over a hundred countries. They should have known there and then that many users simply did not like Metro. While working in the IT industry for the last few years, only complaint I got against windows 8 was about the look. No one ever complained about the price.

I have managed to turn dozens, if not hundreds of people away from Windows 8. People have simple asked for my opinion and I told them why they should just stick with their Windows 7 machines for now.

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Quillz    1,011

That's the part I don't understand. Microsoft said that Windows 8 was the most tested OS before release. Something to the tune of billion hours across over a hundred countries. They should have known there and then that many users simply did not like Metro. While working in the IT industry for the last few years, only complaint I got against windows 8 was about the look. No one ever complained about the price.

I have managed to turn dozens, if not hundreds of people away from Windows 8. People have simple asked for my opinion and I told them why they should just stick with their Windows 7 machines for now.

I'm sure they were well aware that many disliked Metro. But either more people liked it than disliked it, or Microsoft decided to go ahead and make a change anyway.

 

To me, it's somewhat reminiscent of when the original iMac had no floppy drive. People thought Apple were crazy, because everyone used floppies at the time. But in the long run, it was probably the right move for Apple. I realize it's not a 1:1 analogy here, but I think Microsoft realized that touch interfaces are only going to get bigger, so the time was right to bring in Metro. How well they implemented that vision is of course a matter of debate.

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PGHammer    1,503

One other attitude I am picking up (on the part of the critics of ModernUI) is a bit of antitouch attitude in general - they don't want touch-screen hardware, support, or anything else in Windows.  I have referred to it, time and again, as modal absolutism.  While the cost of implementing it is approaching zero, they still want no part of it - even if it could simplify things for them in certain situations.

 

I'm not talking about those that don't want to use a touch interface themselves - I am talking about those that don't want even the rudimentary touch support that Windows 7 had.

 

The closest thing I have seen to that (outside of computing) is anti-growth NIMBYism; suimmed up, that sort of attitude is "I have got mine - nobody else can have theirs."

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MorganX    1,044

No thankyou, I treat the startscreen like a fully expanded start menu, and it's a lot quicker that way.

 

The new update with close buttons in metro apps and their integration into the taskbar is quite enough for me.

 

The start menu is a relic of the past.  The start screen is a smart upgrade and the only people that have issue with it are those with low brain functionality.

 

BUT!

 

if this calms down the ignorant whinging, it may be a good thing :)

 

smh.

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Lord Method Man    1,612

Delicious tears.

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MorganX    1,044

One other attitude I am picking up (on the part of the critics of ModernUI) is a bit of antitouch attitude in general - they don't want touch-screen hardware, support, or anything else in Windows.  I have referred to it, time and again, as modal absolutism.  While the cost of implementing it is approaching zero, they still want no part of it - even if it could simplify things for them in certain situations.

 

I'm not talking about those that don't want to use a touch interface themselves - I am talking about those that don't want even the rudimentary touch support that Windows 7 had.

 

The closest thing I have seen to that (outside of computing) is anti-growth NIMBYism; suimmed up, that sort of attitude is "I have got mine - nobody else can have theirs."

 

I just don't think there are that many people that are anit-touch. I think most were upset at the removal of keyboard-mouse centric options on the desktop that they deem more efficient and effective. For many things I agree. I have one system administrator with a 27" touchscreen, he uses it almost exclusively when standing, but when sitting, uses M&K. Touch is great, where appropriate. Many felt/feel that when in a situation where M&K is the preferred/Superior solution, MS took that option away or made it too cumbersome to bother with.

 

Just take a look at the context sensitive menus. Clearly superior, nothing in the modern UI could replace that in its current state. Going all the way to top or bottom of screen for something you can do in-place with a right click just makes sense. That's why MS made the 2-mouse button standard and part of why Windows has been a superior computing environment to Mac OS'. Even now on Mac OS there is no consistent implementation from OS to apps.

 

Having said that, I wish they would have kept the Modern look for the context menus. Popping up old looking context menus over the Modern elements just doesn't look good. But it's a case of function over style. Maybe style will come back with update 2.

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DavidM    329

I'm sure they were well aware that many disliked Metro. But either more people liked it than disliked it, or Microsoft decided to go ahead and make a change anyway.

 

To me, it's somewhat reminiscent of when the original iMac had no floppy drive. People thought Apple were crazy, because everyone used floppies at the time. But in the long run, it was probably the right move for Apple. I realize it's not a 1:1 analogy here, but I think Microsoft realized that touch interfaces are only going to get bigger, so the time was right to bring in Metro. How well they implemented that vision is of course a matter of debate.

 

To me that's the funniest part about all of this, MS invited people to test this OS, yet I wonder how many users over the age of 30 actually tested it? The type of people most attracted to alpha/beta/test projects are the ones who want to be on the cutting edge.

 

Microsoft is in a very tough position, they have to provide the future (touch and portability) AND keep their current user base (workstations), but thinking that you can cram both into a single user expierence seems foolish. Does anyone want edit HD movies on their tablet? Does anyone want to work with spread sheets on their phone? Does anyone want to have a full screen app on a 27 inch monitor?

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Richard C.    288

I haven't seen the final product yet so I'm not sure what to think, is the new start menu coming as early as update 1 in a few days?

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George P    5,539

I haven't seen the final product yet so I'm not sure what to think, is the new start menu coming as early as update 1 in a few days?

 

No, a new menu and floating windowed store apps are coming in a future update.  At this point the guess is it'll be in the fall.

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PGHammer    1,503

I just don't think there are that many people that are anit-touch. I think most were upset at the removal of keyboard-mouse centric options on the desktop that they deem more efficient and effective. For many things I agree. I have one system administrator with a 27" touchscreen, he uses it almost exclusively when standing, but when sitting, uses M&K. Touch is great, where appropriate. Many felt/feel that when in a situation where M&K is the preferred/Superior solution, MS took that option away or made it too cumbersome to bother with.

 

Just take a look at the context sensitive menus. Clearly superior, nothing in the modern UI could replace that in its current state. Going all the way to top or bottom of screen for something you can do in-place with a right click just makes sense. That's why MS made the 2-mouse button standard and part of why Windows has been a superior computing environment to Mac OS'. Even now on Mac OS there is no consistent implementation from OS to apps.

 

Having said that, I wish they would have kept the Modern look for the context menus. Popping up old looking context menus over the Modern elements just doesn't look good. But it's a case of function over style. Maybe style will come back with update 2.

MorganX, the keyboard-centric users have, by and large, adjusted far faster than even the touch-screen users that came from Windows 7 - it is the pointing-device-centered that are screaming.

 

"Mouse and keyboard" is precisely how they see things - the mouse/pointing device comes before, and is more important than, the keyboard.

 

I predicted that there would indeed BE screaming from the pointing-device centric for that very reason - however, even I had no idea how many folks realized they were utterly lost at sea without the Start menu.

 

I'm not a touch-screen user; while I could purchase one, I have no desire to, as they still have NOT reached utter price parity with standard desktop displays yet.  (They are getting closer, though.)

 

But I'm not pointing-device-driven. either.  Instead, I am keyboard-centric, and thus come in for a great deal of scorn from the "power mousers" - a lot of whom are doubtless close to half my age.

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Richard C.    288

No, a new menu and floating windowed store apps are coming in a future update.  At this point the guess is it'll be in the fall.

 

Look forward to this, I just don't think touch on  a desktop is practical, not to mention that it's pretty horrible having swipe prints all over my phone screen, let alone an expensive monitor

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Dot Matrix    7,437

Look forward to this, I just don't think touch on  a desktop is practical, not to mention that it's pretty horrible having swipe prints all over my phone screen, let alone an expensive monitor

Touch enables better input - Instead of a 1x1px x/y plot point, I have 10 fingers which can be utilized for input.

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PGHammer    1,503

To me that's the funniest part about all of this, MS invited people to test this OS, yet I wonder how many users over the age of 30 actually tested it? The type of people most attracted to alpha/beta/test projects are the ones who want to be on the cutting edge.

 

Microsoft is in a very tough position, they have to provide the future (touch and portability) AND keep their current user base (workstations), but thinking that you can cram both into a single user expierence seems foolish. Does anyone want edit HD movies on their tablet? Does anyone want to work with spread sheets on their phone? Does anyone want to have a full screen app on a 27 inch monitor?

If you need windowed support, run a desktop application - they haven't gone anywhere.  (Where desktop and ModernUI versions of the same application exist - such as VLC - I run the desktop version most of the time BECAUSE of windowed-view support; however, if a snapped view or even a full-screen view works best, depending on the situation, then I can use a ModernUI application.  It's still "horses for courses" - ModernUI is merely additional horses.)

 

And why couldn't there be, at some point, a ModernUI HD video editing application?  Consider the Surface Pro 2 (Microsoft) or Venue Pro 11 (Dell) - both come with current-generation Intel Core i5 CPUs as standard fare, along with Windows 8.1 Pro.  In short, the horsepower is definitely there - the ONLY thing lacking with either is screen size.  You can do the core editing in 720p and upscale - you don't necessarily HAVE to do all the scutwork in 1080p; not even Adobe Premiere asks you to do that.

 

There are always different ways of doing things - assuming that there is only one way is just that - an assumption, and is all too often a MIS-assumption.

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Order_66    948

I think it's a mistake.

 

Windows 8 has done really well in retail. 

 

I'm not sure what planet you are on but windows 8.x has completely failed at the retail level.

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Order_66    948

JYou tell the same stories everyday. If "everyone" hated Windows 8, then it would have 0 market share.

 

 

As a matter of fact windows 8.x marketshare is only showing very minuscule growth so far this year, it's going nowhere in the charts.

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DConnell    6,583

Look forward to this, I just don't think touch on  a desktop is practical, not to mention that it's pretty horrible having swipe prints all over my phone screen, let alone an expensive monitor

 

What does touch have to do with the Start Menu? Touch has never been a requirement on 8 - I'm using 8 just fine with a monitor I got back in 2008, which obviously doesn't have touch.

 

Why do people act like their mice have been stolen just because touch support has been improved. I don't think MS ever expected people to give up their mice. It's just another input option, not a mandatory replacement.

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PGHammer    1,503

I'm not sure what planet you are on but windows 8.x has completely failed at the retail level.

Order_66 - if you are looking at OEM sales, then desktops AS A WHOLE - regardless of what OS is on them - have completely failed at the retail level.

 

Tablets and slates are selling.  AIOs are selling (even touch-screen AIOs).  Notebooks and Ultrabooks (and their derivatives) are also selling - even those with Windows 8 and 8.1.

 

What is NOT selling are traditional desktops, by and large, and especially to businesses.  Even the BYOPC market is taking it on the chin.

 

The business desktop market by and large underwrites the consumer desktop market - and both started declining before the Windows 8 Developer Preview, and have not really recovered since. (Look at the sales numbers JUST from HP, Dell and Lenovo.)

 

Refurbs are selling - however, they are not purchased in big-box retail, are they?  (Amazon sells plenty of refurbs - so do MicrCenter, Fry's - even TigerDirect..  However, none of them are big-box retailers.)

 

Mobile and portable sells - desktop, not so much.

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Order_66    948

Not sure what you're getting at. The masses haven't rejected Metro at all, they're just slow at learning it.  

 

Not sure where you came up with that obviously flawed analogy, the masses have completely rejected metro and everything it stands for.

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PGHammer    1,503

What does touch have to do with the Start Menu? Touch has never been a requirement on 8 - I'm using 8 just fine with a monitor I got back in 2008, which obviously doesn't have touch.

 

Why do people act like their mice have been stolen just because touch support has been improved. I don't think MS ever expected people to give up their mice. It's just another input option, not a mandatory replacement.

 

Touch has nothing to do with the Start menu - despite that some of the WinKey shortcuts interacted with it, the keyboard itself has even less to do with it.

 

The Start menu was, to put it bluntly, designed primarily for pointing-device-centric interaction - which even Microsoft has made plain in several Microsoft Press books on Windows from 9x to 7.

 

Hence all the screaming from those same pointing-device-centric users - most of whom would deny being such - until the Start menu went away.

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Dot Matrix    7,437

Not sure where you came up with that obviously flawed analogy, the masses have completely rejected metro and everything it stands for.

Where? Metro has been deployed across all of Microsoft's products. Yet, I see no mass rebellion or exodus to other platforms or services.

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Order_66    948

Where? Metro has been deployed across all of Microsoft's products. Yet, I see no mass rebellion or exodus to other platforms or services.

 

And yet at the retail level nobody is buying it as marketshare statistics clearly show.

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PGHammer    1,503

And yet at the retail level nobody is buying it as marketshare statistics clearly show.

Order_66 - if you are looking at OEM desktop sales (which is likely the case), then the lack of sales in that space has little to nothing to do with what OS is on that hardware.

OEM desktop sales - merely since the launch of Windows 7 and that initial spate of buying - have been terrible.

 

There is also a very good reason FOR said sales being terrible - what are the hardware requirements merely since Vista's launch for Windows?

 

Since Vista, hardware requirements for the current Windows have stayed flat.  Not merely comparatively flat - but absolutely flat.  Consider that I am running Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center on Vista-era hardware.

 

A lot of folks have not moved hardware-wise because the software they are running didn't change - therefore, why purchase new hardware?  (How often have you in particular been pointing that out?  Note that I did NOT disagree with that statement in the least.)

 

If anything, folks are even more reluctant to change their OS - especially if said change is potentially disruptive. Nothing I have said was dismissive of the disruption factor that Windows 8, or 8.1, represents - I said specifically that this was the biggest UI change since the Start menu - and it was primarily due to said menu being axed.  Be honest, Order_66 - did you think there were THAT many people - even here on Neowin - that are pointing-device-centric users?

 

You are trying really hard to make a connection between two widely-disconnected events; because desktop sales have not recovered, Windows 8 is at fault.

 

Desktop sale were terrible before Windows 8 even launched - yet PC hardware is still selling; it just by and large is not desktops of the traditional sort.

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Lord Method Man    1,612

And yet at the retail level nobody is buying it as marketshare statistics clearly show.

 

And at the enterprise level 99% of clients are opting for Windows 7.

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PGHammer    1,503

And at the enterprise level 99% of clients are opting for Windows 7.

Lower training expenses - especially if doing a required/forced migration from XP; even I get that much.

 

Nobody - least of all myself, DotMatrix, or DConnell - said that the ModernUI would not be disruptive; in fact, all three of us made that quite plain in our posts back to the Windows 8 Developer Preview.

However, it is apparent that all three of us severely underestimated the number of pointing-device-centric users on Neowin.

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DavidM    329

If you need windowed support, run a desktop application - they haven't gone anywhere.  (Where desktop and ModernUI versions of the same application exist - such as VLC - I run the desktop version most of the time BECAUSE of windowed-view support; however, if a snapped view or even a full-screen view works best, depending on the situation, then I can use a ModernUI application.  It's still "horses for courses" - ModernUI is merely additional horses.)

 

And why couldn't there be, at some point, a ModernUI HD video editing application?  Consider the Surface Pro 2 (Microsoft) or Venue Pro 11 (Dell) - both come with current-generation Intel Core i5 CPUs as standard fare, along with Windows 8.1 Pro.  In short, the horsepower is definitely there - the ONLY thing lacking with either is screen size.  You can do the core editing in 720p and upscale - you don't necessarily HAVE to do all the scutwork in 1080p; not even Adobe Premiere asks you to do that.

 

There are always different ways of doing things - assuming that there is only one way is just that - an assumption, and is all too often a MIS-assumption.

 

I never said, assumed or even implied their was only one way to do anything, I merely pointed out there are many less than ideal ways of doing anything, and that the - same experience across all devices - is stupid. The devices are not used the same way, nor should they be. I've re-read my post and am shaking my head how you came to this conclusion, maybe a MIS-assumption, on your part?

 

Lower training expenses - especially if doing a required/forced migration from XP; even I get that much.

 

Nobody - least of all myself, DotMatrix, or DConnell - said that the ModernUI would not be disruptive; in fact, all three of us made that quite plain in our posts back to the Windows 8 Developer Preview.

However, it is apparent that all three of us severely underestimated the number of pointing-device-centric users on Neowin.

 

It's not just Neowin, people everywhere have mixed opinions of Metro and that doesn't make them pointing-device-centric users. I am a touch based user on my tablet and phone, but hate the idea of touch on the desktop. I propbably use touch more than a mouse, so again another MIS-assumption on your part? Maybe you should stop trying to find neat little catagories to place us in or finding labels for us, and accept that people don't like Metro for their own reasons. Maybe, we are simply tired of features being removed from Win 7, because they didn't fit with Win 8's Metro?

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