I agree with the article.
I hate windows 8. The issue is not even whether you are a content consumer or creator, but rather whether you want to be productive in a myriad of ways. Well, Windows 8 just get in the way.
Never under estimate the potential of Microsoft to screw things up.
Windows 2000 is the only version of Windows I ever liked. XP made it harder to launch programs and W7 has all sorts of glitz that just gets in the way.
So I followed Microsoft's implicit advice and switched over to GNU/Linux.
If you want people to try something new, you invite them, you don't force them.
The smartest thing Microsoft could have done was to have Windows 8 open up to a desktop, then allow people to open up a Metro window...if they want to.
At first, they'll work as usual. Eventually curiosity will overcome them (or their kids will bug them: "You should try it. It's cool!"), and they will try it out. They'll probably even learn to like some of the new features.
I'm predicting that they do this in their next Windows 8 release.
Considering Microsoft used to be known for their useability labs, I'm surprised they didn't learn this lesson the easy way, rather than the hard way (with reduced sales from bewildered users).
I don't know if I will buy this new system. From commends I know the ordinary users do not like to learn new functions and most likely adapt themself to no changing conditions.
But every time microsoft shows their new version, there will be many changes to fit the young man or new learners.
This seems that the world is belong to the young, to the new, to the change.
There are a few problems with Windows 8. I don't think most of we techies are "resistant to change"; we tend, more often than not, to be neophiles. But change isn't a universal good... it's a vector. And in this case, it's change in the wrong direction, for creative users.
The stuff you get first is the first problem. The tiles might seem cute, but mixing informational content with a program launcher just seems to me to codify the terrible mess you find on lazy Windows users' desktops. Worse yet, even at the tablet level, the UI just isn't intuitive. Of course I could learn it... but this is supposed to be a UI you just "get".. that's the whole point of de-evolving our UI tech for fingers and consumers.
Compare it to Android or iOS... the latter is austere, but so simple pretty much anyone can pick it up and use it. The former has more options, a bit less polish, but again, it's obvious (in fact, I'm writing this on an Android tablet).
It gets worse when that tablet UI moves to the desktop. It's bad with touch, worse with a mouse. This is already leading to bad ideas, like vertical touchscreens on desktops.. those "more experienced" in the crowd here might recall that screen input was tried, and rejected, in the early 80s... on both CAD systems and some personal computers, like the Commodore 64. It worked well... light pens, earlier touchscreens, etc. But on the desktop, way too much stress on the arms, versus horizontal input.
And for creative types, the "Modern" (formerly Metro) UI is a step back almost to the bad old single tasking days. Content creation, whether schematic capture, PCB layout, video or audio production, multimedia authoring, etc. all involve the synthesis of a new thing from a variety of resources. Forcing the user to a single app per screen is just insane... I rarely have fewer than a dozen windows open, and its usually important that they share the same visual context... also why I have two monitors.
I haven't tried Window 8 yet, but from the comments here and elsewhere, I'm not particularly looking forward to it. When I'm working, I tend to like keeping lots of windows open, and if I can't see one peeking behind another, at least I can see their icons on the taskbar.
I'm not a big fan of having an app occupy the entire screen and not knowing which other apps are still open. Even though I like my iOS devices for content consumption, I find it annoying that I have to constantly double tap the home key to see all the apps that are still running, and then kill them one by one to make them go away.
It took me a while, but I finally realized that the Metro screen has replaced the Start menu. Since the Start menu is now full screen, you have to click something to get back to Desktop. That made it all less disorienting for me.
I do think it's ironic that some Windows boosters are encouraging folks to use keyboard shortcuts if they can't figure out what to click.
I'm with you, Max. I have only played with Win 8 a few minutes at a time in the stores. I saw nothing that appealed to me. Might be fine for people who use only a tablet and all they do is browse the web. Can you imagine trying to run all your engineering software on such a system? How often do you have to clean that touchscreen? I, too, like Win 7 and XP. Hated Vista and it was then I began seriously take a serious second look at linux. Since Win 8 has come out, I have converted a desktop and one of my laptops to linux. I can see the writing on the wall.
I am told there is already a Win9 on the way. Sometimes I think Microsoft is in this only so they can charge for new certification courses.
Interesting, I guess I'm the crazy one here. I've been using Win8 for several months now and I think it is pretty good. I put all my 'production-type' software on tiles in the Metro screen and it is very easy to just click the tile and start the apps. The key to improving the user experience is to use a touch pad in lieu of a mouse (if you don't have a touchscreen, that is). I use a Logitech product designed especially for the Win8 OS and it makes a big difference. I still use my very precise trackball for CAE tasks and I'm a happy camper!
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