Max, follow my theory, never use a windows OS until its at least 2 generations out of date. By then they may have ironed most of the bugs out, and you'll by then have had enough exposure to the new OS that when you HAVE to move to it you don't get an experience like the above. (you get some funny looks sometimes, though... :-)
There's a nice article on the subject here
Hi Adam -- I used to like XP, but I think you'll find Windows 7 is GREAT -- check out these blogs wot I wrote:
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.
I've been purchasing refurbished computers so I can get them with xp installed. I have used vista and 7 and they both don't suit me. When I can no longer keep xp running, I guess that I will be forced to move to Linux.
The frustration I feel at people like you, is more i'm sure than the frustration you feel for Windows 8. So you liked the 'Search programs and files' feature in windows 7?, well it hasn't gone anywhere, yes you still type while in the start screen to find the programs and files you want, actually there's 20 odd things you can choose to search. As with anything, 5 minutes of reading some simple information would have saved you the hours of frustration, with little things like right clicking while in any metro app to get options, top right corner to get to that program's settings or devices to output to printer (or the forever present Ctrl+P), the Start key on your keyboard to return to Start (Home) just like on an iPad. These simple methods are NOT hard and will get anyone on their merry way to enjoying Windows 8. But instead you choose to be ignorant and not spend 5 minutes to read a guide.
"The frustration I feel at people like you, is more i'm sure than the frustration you feel for Windows 8."
I wouldn't bet on that if I were you. Let me explain this in a nutshell -- I've been using computers for longer than I care to remember -- I worked with analog computers at university and my first job was designing CPUs for mainframes.
I'm sure that as you say there are ways around everything in Windows 8 -- but what we have here is someone (me) who already has too much on his plate and who just wants to do basic things like launch apps and find and print documents -- this should be intuitive (but it's not) -- and it should be obvious to the countless millions of people who have slogged their way through previous generations -- the fact that it is so UNintuitive is going to generate a HUGE amount of frustration and subtract from the total sum of happiness on the planet
Max - I'm totally with you on this. "this should be intuitive (but it's not)" - this is really the key as far as I'm concerned. There have always been annoyances and idiosyncrasies in any new OS. But, when moving to a new OS, I've always been able to be productive right away. Even from DOS to Windows 3 and Windows 3 to Win 98. Always. Even if I thought the OS was buggy or annoying, I have always been able to get up and running right away. Not so with Win 8.
I'm a few years short of you in computer experience, but I've hand assembled machine code and entered it with a hex keypad and I've used every Windows desktop OS (except Bob).
Win8 does seem reasonably intuitive if all you want to do is read and look at things, but it's horribly space inefficient for decent sized monitors, so many functions are hidden and it is not set up by default for actual work.
Hiding something isn't good, but isn't necessary catastrophic provided it works the same as it used to, but hiding it and changing the way it works is very poor design.
You and I and the rest of the world will eventually figure it out, but I strongly consider the Win 8 UI to be a bad business decision that could have only been made by someone out of touch with the vast majority of users. A good UI shouldn't require a book or training class. Maybe that was okay back in 1990, but not now.
Max - I downloaded the final release preview revision of Windows 8 and have been using it off and on in a virtual machine for a few months. I was bound and determined to not be thwarted by the changes in it.
I have to admit, that Windows 8 has been very helpful to me in one regard. It's done a very good job of, no, an excellent job of curing my addiction to computers and saving me money by ensuring that I will never buy a PC with that floperating system until it's fixed and turned into a useable product.
I understand that tablets do okay with the full-screen, non windowed paradigm. But I also understand that that paradigm is there as much because of the tablet CPU limitations as it is for useability and it only works because of the touch screen. So, they've taken something that mostly works in a specific form-factor and shoe-horned it onto a completely different platform with a completely different set of functionality and requirements, where it simply doesn't belong.
As a member of the 60s generation I understand resistance to change. I have been through GEOS, DOS, WFW, NT3.51, the linux distros, Chicago (W95), Longhorn (WinSver 2008), Win7 and now the Win8 (2012svr)evolutions.
Change is constant and if MS does not change then android will give us the next great OS. My two granddaughters see Win8 modern ui as completely intuitive. They are the android touch generation. These are the next consumers.
Change or become irrelevant. Harsh but true.
I am a technology instructor and change is my bread and butter. I will not become "irrelevant".
Besides (Is that a word?)I find watching the resistant flail is fun.
This is the bottom line. Win8 was not designed for the old guard. It was designed for 10 and 20 somethings who type with 2 thumbs if at all. Although I think win7 was the zenith of MS products, I still jumped off the windows train a while back. I'm all linux now except in dire desperate circumstances when I have to run a win7 VM, but still inside linux. At least it makes me feel like my computer still belongs to me rather than Microsoft.
Yeah, right. The only trouble is that I am a CREATOR and not a consumer. How about that? People like us cannot work with such an environment. As a creator I am reluctant to change: I want my (creative) energy used on relevant things, and not to find my way in a non-intuitive OS. The non-intuitiviness of where Max is referring at for me always is *most frustrating* ever. No matter what: PC's or measurement equipment, intuitive use for me is prime important. That's one of the reasons why we replaced the whole automation up here to Apple 5 years ago. OK, it also has it's quirks, but at least it is damned intuitive -and after 5 years in service I have to conclude that my MAC brought me a lot of money -just by saving us time and frustration. All that energy could flow to our customers. And I am 100% sure that most engineers think the same. It is only the managers lying in their way that they may not always decide what equipment or what OS to use...
I think Nav... is correct. The new fad is aimed at those consumers with the milliseconds attention span, who never create anything except text messages. For those of us who create actual designs for real things, not just software, and real documents that convey detailed information correctly, we need something fully intuitive, and the worst possible thing is to be constantly changing how our tools work. And change is seldom an improvement, ESPECIALLY FROM MICROSOFT!!!
Aside from that, a company with integrity would not sell products loaded with bugs. I have heard the cop-out that the huge OS is just to big to debug fully, which clearly indicates that it is just plain too big! Perhaps that never occurred to anybody? Bigger is seldom better, except possibly for a very few things, and software is none of them.
ErickJ - I understand your sentiment: "Change or become irrelevant." Many years ago, I vowed to myself to never become a Luddite or lose touch with the particular technologies that I deal with. I think I've done a decent job of it, but not perfect - There are a few things that I ask my kids to help with. In some senses, I do feel overly harsh with my criticism of Windows 8, but in others I feel it's justified.
My first approach with Windows 8 was to just dive in and see what I could figure out on my own. The Internet was my fall back for actual instructional material.
I've managed to figure out how to more or less mimic the start menu and pretty much anything else I can do in Windows 7, and I'm sure there will be a utility to make it easier at some point. I would say making things that much more difficult is a poor business decision.
That's the crux of my extreme level of disappointment. The interface formerly known as metro has its place. It works on tablets and for consuming material. - I think Max articulated it better than I've seen anywhere else - The default setup is designed around consuming content, not producing it.
This is a case where Microsoft really had an opportunity to differentiate between home and pro versions. Pro versions could default to ease of creation and home versions to ease of consumption, with an easy switch either way. In my opinion, not doing that stems from not really understanding their customers, is a very poor business decision and a very large opportunity lost.
Oops! When I said "I do feel overly harsh with my criticism of Windows 8, but in others I feel it's justified.", I meant "I do feel overly harsh with some my criticisms of Windows 8, but in others (aspects of my criticism) I feel it's justified."
Leaving out those few words could pretty dramatically change the meaning of what I was trying to say.
"You WILL use this and you WILL like it" is not a good attitude towards customers, unless of course there is a monopoly or duopoly. Just imagine how much more customer driven, rather than dictatorial, both Microsoft and Apple would become if Adobe, Altium and a host of other software producers would port to Linux....
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!
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.
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 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."
That's a good one, I remember hearing that about using Alt UP instead of the up button when I switched to Windows 7. Alt + X and Ctrl + Y is great only for two situations; honest shortcuts that you use a hundred times a day (undo, copy, cut, and paste are good examples) and command line applications. I use a UI so I don't have to memorize what CTRL X does for something I rarely use.
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.
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 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.
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 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.
30+ years in computers. One thing I've always found with Microsoft software is that they sure leave lots of room for other people's software to fix their messes (misses?). There are a number of free, and for a price, "apps" that put the Win 7 Start button back along with other tweaks (remember TweakUI?). It won't take long for someone to fix most of the Win 8 warts. I stayed on XP as long as I could but found Win 7 relatively painless.
I'm a big fan of Win 7 (can't believe I said that!) I've been using Win 8 now for a few months as has my nephew (on ocassional visits.)
He is 8. I am 56. I envy the fluid way in which he "intutively" finds his way around.
It is telling that those of us who claim with pride our long experience with computers are also the ones most critical of the "intuitive" claim. Be a kid again. You might learn some new tricks!
Max, you should get a WindowsRT tablet device and say what you think. Personally I only found the Metro UI usable.
But there is a weird mix of the Metro and the old desktop mode. I can't really tell wich is on top of wich.
You really get annoyed when opening an app that opens the old desktop, and they have the same old windows file explorer that may work for gnome fingers, but not mine.
Also the internet explorer seems to come in two variants. One for the dektop mode and one for the metro. Did they just merge 2 OS's?
windows 8! It suck it sucks it sucks, Ohhhh did I forget to say it sucks. I love windows 7 I will NOT go with windows 8. I will become a Linux power user before I switch to windows 8. The user interface is good for a tablet or phone but not for a desktop PC.
Having tried Windows 8 on my wife's new Sony Vaio laptop, I agree with most of your thoughts. I don't even consider the Metro interface to be attractive, though. To me, it looks like the 1970s' idea of what The Future Will Look Like. I'm sticking with Win7 -- or barring that, switching to Linux.
I am yet to try Windows 8, however, I look forward to it. I want to see if it increases or decreases productivity in my Engineering Software packages.
As a 27 year old, I starting computing in DOS right as Win3 and MacOSs started to emerge. I have never had much trouble migrating. I also have no peeves with running multiple OS's. Dual boot or Virtual Machines.
The move to Win7 increased productivity for me.
Didn't dislike Vista. I simply thought it was plane.
Linux is great, for most things. But there is a software hole. (with some advanced tweaks, you can get around almost all of them... ALMOST).
Not to discriminate in any way, but I truly think this is an age related issue. And this is the dawn of a new age.
Hey, maybe I will eat my own words when I try it, but I think I will like it. Especially after getting an i5 Slate Tablet. No ARM tablets for me!
I hate Windows 7 but not because of win7 itself but what because of what it allows our IT dept to do with it.
They insist on requiring authorization for everything - or seemingly everything. This has caused me an innumerable number of headaches and frustrations in installing apps, in trying to edit documents (it commonly does not allow me to edit a document I previously created and read on another workstation.) etc. etc.
Again this is mostly the fault of our "Severely Handicapping I.T." dept - which I abreviate as S.H.I.T.) requiring all sorts of "authorization".
So I personally bought an old XP laptop to do my content creation. For run-of-the-mill emails and such I use the "official company PC" with windows 7.
Also I know why they call it "Windows 7". Initially it took me about 7 tries to get it to print out a document to what I really wanted. Hence the name Windows 7 - because it takes 7 tries to get something to work.
Someday maybe I will learn to live with Windows 7 at work (if the company keeps it long enough), but for now I generate my content with XP - thank you very much!
I guess in time I will have to comply with the Marine code:
ADAPT! IMPROVISE! OVERCOME!
Three weeks ago I was saying the same thing. But I got over it. Here is a simple survival guide for new Windows 8 users.
See that little key near the spacebar that has the Windows logo on it. You probably never used it before. Well, its time is now.
Push that key and it takes you to the main (Start) screen. It works every time.
Right-click on any "tile" (that's what they call those pretty multi-colored squares) that you do not plan to use in the next 48 hours.
Click on "Unpin from Start" and bingo, it disappears. It doesn't really disappear and you can add it back in 3 seconds if you want. More later.
Now, do this for EVERY tile you don't plan to use in the next day or 2.
Why am I doing this? Well, it cleans up the START screen. Make things a million times easier to find.
But don't do this to the "DESKTOP" tile. You will need this, even if you don't think you do.
Now, click on the "DESKTOP" tile. Bingo, you're back to Wndows 7, that is, without the Programs List. You will have to push the Windows key and return to the START screen to get another application (that's what they call programs now).
How do I see all my APPLICATIONS?
From the START screen, right-click anywhere on the background. A little symbol will appear near the lower right side. Click on it. All the applications will appear.
So how do I put an application back on the START screen? Right click on it and click on "PIN TO START".
That's it. All you need to know.
Have a blast with it!
All these things that make it "intuitive" for
the mouth-open entertainment forager, impede
the guy who's already got his motion down and
just wants to keep working.
All these things you "can do" to make the shiny
object work like the shop-worn one, just steal
your time, maybe billable time, to make work.
But that's all fine because we exist for the
convenience of the device manufacturer and not
the other way around. "You should just read the
brand new 10MB PDF manual" instead of working
the day job. Yeah, thanks, Mr. Developer. No
way would you want the default to be "no pain,
same as it was".
As mentioned, Microsoft has not been shy in
educating us about the benefits of migrating to
a stable platform. Put your work life on Linux
and leave Windows to the entertainment
appliances, which is where it evidently wants
Never buy a MS OS until SP1 is out, at least.
Forgot to say:
Three things I like about my new computer running Windows 8:
(1) It's faster.
(2) Way faster.
(3) Unbelievably faster.
I still think XP is the best operating system around, but "faster" always wins, hands down.
No more, "Click and Wait".
Performance is the only reason I would even remotely consider Win8. This is interesting if it's true, but computers can be fast only because they're in a new unfragmented state, or they can be fast because of OS/file system optimization and therefore STAY fast indefinitely. I seriously doubt anything from MS is going to be lean, efficient, and optimized. Time will tell after an endless stream of security/stability updates.
I had my 30-year old nephew teach the mindset of Windows 8, how the 'Modern' screen is the new Start, how to pin/unpin to customize it, etc. I still don't like it visually, but at least it makes some sense now.
I absolutely love how much faster everything is, but then I now boot from a SSD (in less than 10 seconds!) and the system is not yet cluttered by so many add-ons.
I will probably get a touch pad in the future, but not a touch screen, at least not until they find a way to 'touch' without leaving fingerprints, maybe using the new touchless 'gesture' device from Microchips?
I write code. In several languages.
I run simulations. In several domains (circuit, EM, system).
I do CAD (drawings, schematics, layouts).
Heck, I even touch-type. Hobbled by my need for a real keyboard.
I can't see ANY of this being easier in Win8.
As far as age being an issue...even a young person can get used to doing things a certain way (they call that "muscle memory"). At some point, we cross over from needing to LEARN a new tool, to being able to USE that new tool. Without constantly re-learning the tool!!!
That's called productivity. It helps us get paid. MS keeps losing track of this.
Max, you have it right...content CONSUMPTION vs content CREATION. My use does not STOP with reading datasheets, it BEGINS there...
Your view accurately reflects mine, too! There are HUGE productivity benefits to sticking with old tools unless new ones have REAL (rather than "gee-whiz") advantages. I'm an analog circuit designer (I can hear the kids snickering "old-school") and my computer is simply a time-saving TOOL ... not the end in itself that consumers of games, movies, you-tube, social media, ad-nauseum seem to regard them as. A true pity that Microsoft is alienating content producers for the fast money of consumers. As much as I hate the arrogance of Apple, once I can't use Windows 7 any more, I'll likely move to an Apple product! Let Microsoft have the "open mouth" consumers (love that phrase!) and virtual-friendship generation.
I don't hate Windows 8 yet becaise I took my son-in-law's advice a few months ago when I needed to replace one of my dying computers. He told me that I wouldn't like W8. I trusted him and didn't accept the "upgrade to W8 option".
I thought that MS peaked at XP but finally saw something in W7 that I really liked, seeing all of the like-kind apps in a stack on the task bar. It makes me forgive MS for making it more difficult to "see" the path where I just was. Those translucent borders of the windows suck.
I don't mind change if it gives me more productivity but I can see that MS is catering to a new generation that is dumbed down to a play environment of cool toys. I like toys but I want them to be productive.
Does anyone feel the same way about the MS Office 2010 "Ribbon" interface? I actually did approach it with an open mind, but found that some things that you used to be able to do with a right-click were now not possible. You have to actually go to the right ribbon, the right menu and do them there. I use Office a fair bit and although I can now usually do anything I need with a bit of searching, I still find it very frustrating. I suspect Win 8 is gong to be like that.
The sad thing is that yes, MS will lose customers over this, but they have a lot of new young customers who don't know or care what the old UI was like, so they (MS and the customers) won't even notice the loss.
I get the feeling they made Win 8 the way it is to avoid becoming the new Nokia. Whether it will do that for them remains to be seen....
YES. It took me MONTHS to get back to doing the things I USED to be able to do with the previous version. Like it or not, to accomplish or create things, there needs to be a certain amount of stability, which is NOT the same thing as ossification or lack of progress. New does not necessarily equal better, and change is not always (forward) progress.
Can you just IMAGINE what would happen if, say, the lowly adjustable wrench was changed overnight, and within a couple of years, all the old versions went away? There would be a few new adopters. Mechanics, both professional and shade-tree, would revolt en masse.
In 1982 I was using a operating system like Windows 8, It was a Color Computer with a program that had graphics that allowed you have little programs when hit with a joystick. What a bunches of boloney.
It's also interesting that Windows 8 is the cheapest of most of the Windows iterations. I didn't find it intuitive either and I have a tablet. I never expected my tablet to be like my desktop PC and I don't expect my desktop PC to be like my tablet.
I have, however, put Windows 8 on my laptop because it was the only machine that Windows 8 would let me put it on. I didn't like the fact that Win 8 made quite a few of my programs unusable (clicking the EXE file caused dead silence). Hopefully I can return to Win 7.
The new fad called Windows 8 is aimed at those consumers with the milliseconds attention span, who never create anything except text messages. For those of us who create actual designs for real things, not just software, and real documents that convey detailed information correctly, we need something fully intuitive, and the worst possible thing is to be constantly changing how our tools work. And change is seldom an improvement, ESPECIALLY FROM MICROSOFT!!!
Aside from that, a company with integrity would not sell products loaded with bugs. I have heard the cop-out that the huge OS is just to big to debug fully, which clearly indicates that it is just plain too big! Perhaps that never occurred to anybody? Bigger is seldom better, except possibly for a very few things, and software is none of them.
Win8 is not simply for touch. It enables new hardware which uses touch. Not everything with touch is a tablet. I'm writing this on a Dell One 27, and can move easily back and forth between kb, touch, and mouse, depending on what I do. If I want to draw something the One kneels down like an easel.
Did Win8 get everything right? No, it is new, it will need to adjust. I don't think you see much advantage moving from Win7 to Win8 on old hardware (I have both around the house now) which is hardly surprising considering that Win7 is the end of a long line of co-evolution.
In order to appreciate Win8, try it on new hardware. A laptop with a multitouch screen, or a tablet, or an all-in-one with touch. And take 5 minutes to study the basics. Yeah, they decided to make some changes. You guys are engineers, you can understand the chasm issues.
If you like Win7 on current hardware, no problem. But I think if you are willing to think about why the UX changes were made, and experience them on new hardware, Win8 will start to make sense.
Not saying they got it all right. But they were definitely in chasm-jumping mode, and for good reasons.
My first uP was a 6800 DK2 kit. I feel at home here.
I thought when MS Office changed to the ribbon it was a horrible thing. Give Beta versions to new non-paying customers who loved it and ignore your installed base.
I currently have numerous Android devices, Droid Original, Droid Razr, and a Hacked Nook Color. I hope for an Asus TF700 as the Nook is terribly underpowered. Yet I use it to surf and sudoku. I can see MS's need for a tablet OS. If Win8 enables a tablet interface and lets you switch to a full blown development system that is going to be great. It sounds like it needs a little work. I can't see myself running Netbeans on Android yet. Maybe with the power of the Asus Infinity Tab. Until then I use a Win7 Toshiba Laptop that I love for its weight and portability yet hate having the small screen and mouse pad.
At home I'm on Ubuntu 12.04 with a six core AMD processor. I love it. Too bad it doesn't fit in my briefcase. I didn't love 12.04 at first. The tiles felt awkward and I missed the old desktop. But its definitely workable once you figure out how to find your apps. Again this sounds like Win8. I haven't booted into Win7 at home in a long time. I am working on getting Win7 running in VirtualBox concurrently under Ubuntu 12.04...
In short Win8 on a tablet may enable it to fully replace development on a laptop. I think that's MS's intent. I'm hoping that Linux under Android, or Android under Linux will be faster and equally reliable. Then my tablets will enable development and I can stick to Linux.
Linux has a long way to go before it becomes usable by everyday people. So does Android as its updates are a horrible experience. My favorite OS would never need updates. I once ran Fedora Core 4 for 10 years until my bank no longer worked with its version of Firefox. I can live with that.
Has anyone tried to use a phone or tablet as a PC/Laptop replacement? I'm thinking a docking station with network, a mouse, keyboard and a monitor or two attached? Use the phone/tablet processor to do editing, documentation etc and farm off simulation, synthesis, place and route etc to something sitting on the network (though the phone/tablet processors should be able to do much of this anyway - 1GHz+ quad core). Has anyone experimented with running Win7 apps on a Win8 phone?
When I first got Windows 8, about 3 weeks ago, I also complained how un-intuitive it was.
But when you really think about it, how intuitive was Windows XP? You had to push the START button to shut down the machine, not very intuitive. You have to Right-Click for certain special functions, also not very intuitive. To change my Outlook email properties, I have to do it in MS WORD, not in Outlook. Again not very intuitive.
The bottom line is, no program is really intuitive. We learn it as we go along, and then we think it is intuitive because we no longer have to think.
Give Windows 8 a chance. There's a lot about it I don't really like, but I think in a couple of months, I won't give it a second thought = intuitive!
Obviously Microsoft doesn't have any clear direction, when you compare the ribbon's "throw everything in your face at the same time" style with Metro's "show as little useful stuff at the same time" style. What a mess. Wouldn't surprise me if one or the other will get canned in a very short time.
As for Metro, it is crazy how little information is shown on a typical screen, with huge amounts of whitespace, while everything you need to use is actually hidden OFF the screen! This may be barely palatable on a small tablet, but on a 22" desktop monitor, it's outrageous. The whole interface seems designed for maximum mouse movement. Doctors treating carpal tunnel will love it.
Then there's the weird disconnected nature of the new Metro UI and the traditional desktop. Is one "under" the other, or "on top" of it? Or "next" to it? It seems impossible to convey a clear mental picture of their relationship, which is disturbing to most minds. Without a mental map, it is hard to feel at home.
I have been playing with Windows 8 on my wife's laptop and found it painful. I hope to avoid it for a while longer here at work (still on XP). For my personal computers, I've been happily using Linux for years now. There have been changes to the UI there too, but they seem much more sane for desktop use, even if they try to become more touch friendly (I really like Gnome 3 myself).
Intuitive...the word always reminds me of a funny true story from the early 1990's.
A former co-worker of mine was hired by the University of Saint Louis and was asked to train an Administrative Assistant (who was fluent in DOS/Wordperfect) to use Windows/Word for the first time. After a quick demo, he let her drive, and nearly got fired for laughing hysterically when she physically picked up the mouse to go to the top of the screen!
FORWARD to go UP, what crazyness was that?? Thankfully Windows never became the OS for airplane controls... ;-)
I have the same problem shopping at local stores. Using my credit card, sometimes I press on the screen and am told, "it's not a touch screen". Other times I'm looking for buttons and am told, "it's a touch screen". And they both look alike. It the same with ATM's at banks.
The problem today is there is no standardization in industry like there was years ago. Companies are free to do what they please and it's driving everyone crazy trying to keep up.
We used to have more cooperation among industries; where has it gone?
This reminds me of a story: I was touring England during the 70's and I noted, when my friend bought an appliance like a hair drier, it had no plug, just 3 bare wires.
Why no plug, I asked? They told me, "Every part of the city had a different outlet type, so rather than manufacture the hair drier with a dozen different plugs, they just leave it off". Then you have to take it to an electrical shop to get a plug installed.
Sounds like the same problem all over again, lack of standardization.
Why not allow the user to choose his interface.
Boycott the ribbon!
I mean boycott the tiles!
Call stick in the muds but if it works why change it.
Some new feature that you want to try?
Go watch the utube video-slideshow on how it works and decide if you want to switch your interface so you can use the new interface feature. Most of us would never update to the new interfaces.
I loaded Windows 8 on a little-used laptop at home and once I got over the shock of the new interface I'm beginning to warm up to it. It s MUCH faster than win 7.
I'll be sticking with XP as long as I can on my computers at the office and in my lab at home. We tried rinning Win7 on a laptop at the office and had endless troubles with USB-based test equipment that had always worked flawlessly on XP. I expect Win 8 will have the same troubles.
Window is just anxious about other OS competitors especially iMac, this is all about keep rush up with new OS not necessary a better one but could be a worse than recent verson. Consumers become their testers at loss.
I'm trying to wean my wife off XP and on to Win7. It's a hard sell. The Win7 box is set up next to the XP box but I have to almost carry her to the Win7 box. The Win7 box has office 2013 while the PX box runs Office 2003. She's sort of OK with Outlook 2010 but she still wants to use WordPerfect 11 for typing. WP11 runs on Win7 but only in XP emulation mode.
The other problem with why she goes to the XP box is that her whole work setup is around that space. I'l move the Win7 box into the permananetn space and the XP box to the temporary space. That will help. At least the XP box is still running so it gives her comfort and it does make the transition easier. Still, old habits die hard.
I just switched the computers so the Win7 box is under her desk. The XP box is in the temporary location. I had to connect it because she needed the browser bookmarks from the XP box.
This is why one should not wait for a disaster to upgrade. Suppose the XP box hard drive had died and the data was unrecoverable. Then what?
Because the Win7 box is a used computer (upgraded from Vista), I don't trust its hard drive. Most of her work files are on a USB flash drive and the few files she used at home only are not on a flask drive on the network where I can back them up easily and any time.
@David "That means if she changes she'll have to get used to the new office ribbon, right?" She's getting used to it but really, she hasn't had to use the ribbon much. I did have to show her how to insert a row in Excel.
What are the engineering and design challenges in creating successful IoT devices? These devices are usually small, resource-constrained electronics designed to sense, collect, send, and/or interpret data. Some of the devices need to be smart enough to act upon data in real time, 24/7. Are the design challenges the same as with embedded systems, but with a little developer- and IT-skills added in? What do engineers need to know? Rick Merritt talks with two experts about the tools and best options for designing IoT devices in 2016. Specifically the guests will discuss sensors, security, and lessons from IoT deployments.