Microsoft Pulls Disappearing Act with Start Button in Windows 8 Preview

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maxeeemum

So I am being blocked! Why?

Tried to reply to MS employee Cregan89 but I can't.

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hackmaster

Windows needs to pull it together and not get ahead of itself. Personally, I have to resort to using Ubuntu when I get pissed off about windows not bothering to fix their system errors and just churning out new "shocking" operating systems. Let's just hope this one doesn't try to go down the user friendly road just because there are computer-illiterate people out there who don't know how much RAM they have.

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maxeeemum

Yet another example that Windows 8 will be the biggest failure Microsoft has ever produced. They are shooting for the tablet market but will have minor success mainly because of the iPad3 and many other factors.

Just look at what's happening to Ubuntu in the linux world. They put out a touch type interface called "Unity" which is easier to use than Metro and they are losing users and are being heavily criticised for not listening to their users.

Look for Windows 9 coming in 2013.

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maxeeemum

I originally liked Vista when I tried the beta. The problem was software compatibility and high hardware requirements. So if you purchased say Nero 6 for $75-100 and it wouldn't work on Vista you'd be mad. And Win7 & 8 are Vista under the hood.

But when I tried W8 I got mad and did all kinds of hacks to it. I expect a backlash against Microsoft and Win7 being around for a long time like XP.

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Cregan89

This is a beta release so its assumed that the user base is going to be actively looking for these hidden swipe and hover elements. I'd imagine that if this change were to make it to the RTM it would include some sort of tool tip or intro video showing off these new major hidden swipe and hover UI elements.

Some screenshots of the beta-candidate for anyone interested:
http://winunleaked.tk/2012/02/windows-8-beta-candidate-build-8220/

I know many people on this website will strongly disagree with me, but I guarantee that Windows 8 will be the fastest selling version of Windows to date.

You guys are all way too hung up on the "Start Screen"/"Metro Interface" being specifically for tablets and touch screens and offers no advantage to traditional mouse users. First off, to those who claim that there's no place for touch on the desktop, look at the HP Touchsmart series for an example of how touch can work on the desktop. Rest assured that external monitors will be released with a similar hinge design and touch capabilities. You get the advantages of both a touch screen and physical keyboard. Imagine future touch enabled versions of AutoCAD and Photoshop on a touch enabled desktop! That experience is just waiting to be executed. Not to mention, Microsoft is clearly very interested in bringing the Kinect to the desktop, which offers a whole new interface experience all it's own.

Secondly, to those who would be using Windows 8 on current PC's without touch hardware, or really won't use the touch features of future hardware. YES, the Metro interface is intended to be touch friendly, but NO this does not necessarily mean that it is mouse unfriendly. The Metro interface isn't intended to be used for someone doing heavy word processing while referencing across multiple other documents and internet sources across multiple monitors. Or a developer coding on three separate chunks of source code at the same time while running a debug environment and a database instance. Its intended for when those users decide to take a break and want to check their Facebook, emails, photos, Skype, etc. They can quickly toggle the Metro Start Screen and see "oh, I have 3 new emails, a Facebook message from Mark, and my Wife just posted our vacation photos on Flickr". Thats where Metro excels; At data aggregation and common media consumption. And that's why Windows 8 combines both Metro and Desktop. Its a very simple philosophy, Metro for consumption, Desktop for creation. And while one of Metro's core advantages being a text and tile based interface is that it is very touch friendly, it still works very effectively with mouse input as well (I will admit that the Developer Preview of Windows 8 was indeed missing some critical mouse features that have been added to the beta). The Metro interface simply stresses simplification and content rather than interface. Just take a look at the already existing Zune software as an example of how the Metro interface benefits mouse input as well.

Also, the removal of the Start Menu is just a move by Microsoft to push users to properly use an existing interface feature included with Windows 7, the ability to pin your most commonly used applications to the taskbar. So when anybody uses the argument that "the Metro Start Screen is less efficient than the current Start Menu for finding and launching applications" while this statement alone is even debatable, it doesn't matter anyway because you were never intended to actually use the Start Menu to launch applications on a regular basis because you should have pinned any common applications to the taskbar anyway. The removal of the Start Menu just makes users more likely to take advantage of this feature.

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JohnP

Whew, nice post. As a Win8 Developer Preview user and a technet subscriber, I too think that Win8 will be a huge success for Microsoft. After dual booting between Win8 and Win7 lately, I begin to appreciate Win8 more and more.

I also agree that the Metro interface will be a "jump into and then back to desktop" for desktop PCs as that is how I use it now.

As for touch on the desktop, most users of touch friendly desktop monitors really sing its praises so that too will work out well.

As for the start menu on Win8, I rarely use it mainly because there are much better substitutes (True Launch Bar and Directory Opus 10 put the taskbar to shame).

As for the Kinect PC interface, tons of potential there but I will wait a bit before getting it...

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Cregan89

(I'm a technet subscriber too, love it.)

But in respect to Metro, thank God, you seem to "get it" as well. I'm a software engineer, and I believe the way I interact with my PC is one of the most classical Windows "desktop" scenarios in existence. My workflow demands multiple monitors, multiple applications, multiple windows, and efficiency. But I'm excited as hell for Metro! To me Windows 8 is the epitome of where technology has been heading for the last two decades. Finally I'll be able to carry around one convertible touch screen ultrabook all day long.

At the office I can connect my external monitors, keyboard, and mouse, and do all of my development on a full-powered machine. And then debug my touch applications on my touch screen external monitor or my ultrabook without needing extra hardware.

In my meeting I can convert my ultrabook to a tablet and take notes with a stylus and pictures with the built in camera. Then connect it to a projector to present my work in a full fledged development environment.

On the bus ride home I can whip out my ultrabook in tablet mode and check my Facebook, message my friends, check for that recipe I wanted to make, and update my grocery list.

On a plane to a business trip I can open up my ultrabook and get some additional work done on my project and fire off a couple emails.

All of this on one device that weighs 3 pounds. Now that to me sounds like the future, and that's what Windows 8 is bringing to us by the end of the year. And I'm pumped about it! There seems to be a lot of people fighting against Windows 8 and Metro, and promise to stay with Windows 7/XP. But I promise you, you and I will be getting a lot more out of our devices with Windows 8.

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damicatz

Windows 8 will only be successful because Microsoft will use it's monopoly to force it on people. You won't be able to buy a computer without it.

I mean, if we are going by sales numbers, Vista and ME were successful too. When you have a monopoly and your customers have no alternatives, then you can basically do whatever you want, release a turd and still make money.

I use the start menu without looking. Windows Key then type what I want to launch (e.g Windows Key + Excel). Being pulled into a full screen travesty of an interface is incredibly disruptive and is a needless distraction.

I, and many others, do not want Metro. I do not want a horribly thought out and designed interface with giant fonts and fisher price graphics. My users don't either. Interface design 101 dictates that horizontal scrolling is bad because humans read one line at a time from top to bottom. There are also far too many unnecessary distractions; I don't need to see the weather or the time or the stock ticker, I just want to launch an application.

Touch screens will not replace the mouse and keyboard on the desktop. Touch screens are hardly a new concept, desktop computers with touchscreens and touchscreen addons for computers have been around in one form or another since the 80s (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-THdG5gVTw). And they've all flopped on the desktop because the human body is not designed to have the arms held up for extended lengths of times (gorilla arms).

"As for the start menu on Win8, I rarely use it mainly because there are much better substitutes (True Launch Bar and Directory Opus 10 put the taskbar to shame)."

I'm not going to pay extra simply to get some modicum of functionality back in Windows 8. I'm more likely to just skip it entirely.

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Cregan89

Windows has plenty of competition. Mac, Linux, ChromeOS, iOS, Android, Playbook. And in many form factors and markets Windows is getting smoked (tablets) or at least has some very serious competition (Mac is gobbling up the high-end general use market). Now obviously Windows does benefit from a monopoly, but if you think for one second that Windows is where it is today simply because it has been coasting on that monopoly and not producing very high quality products then you are sorely mistaken.

Your Windows Key + "Excel" example perfectly demonstrates that you have no idea what you are talking about and are complaining just to complain because that functions EXACTLY the same in Windows 8. Pressing the Windows Key brings you to the Start Screen and typing anything from there starts searching your applications, and pressing "Enter" executes that application. Exactly the same as the current Start Menu. And this still doesn't even address the fact that you clearly didn't read my entire comment because, like I said, you shouldn't have to be going to the Start Screen or Start Menu to launch desktop applications on a regular basis anyway because if you use an application frequently you should have pinned it to your taskbar anyway. From this point I should probably just ignore you because obviously you're an idiot, but okay, I'll bite.

Have you ever taken a course on interface design? Obviously not, or else you didn't listen very well. Avoiding horizontal scrolling refers to text being read by the user. This is because our brains have been trained to progress downwards while reading. While this is a good general rule of thumb, this does not necessarily apply to application launching or interface points for many reasons. Text generally varies in width while icons and buttons generally have a static size. Sideways progressing icons allow for proper alignment of corresponding downward progressing text. Icons and buttons are each unique and distinct looking while preserving a common size and aspect ratio and therefore it's easy for the brain to track their movement. Books have always been portrait oriented, so downwards progression makes sense. Monitors are more and more landscape oriented, so naturally sideways progression makes more sense. And finally, look at all other application launchers (iOS, Android, Mac Dock). They all progress... SIDEWAYS!

"There are also far too many unnecessary distractions; I don't need to see the weather or the time or the stock ticker"
Alright well this may sound a little crazy, but... How about you just remove them!?

"Touch screens will not replace the mouse and keyboard on the desktop."
Again, you clearly didn't even read what I wrote you idiot! NO, touch screens will not replace the mouse and keyboard on the desktop, nor should they! That's what's so great about Windows 8. It gives you the ability to reap the benefits of both a touch screen, keyboard, and mouse! Think about graphic designers or 3D design engineers who have dedicated touch pads for drawing things out, they would strongly argue that there is no place for touch on the desktop.

"And they've all flopped on the desktop because the human body is not designed to have the arms held up for extended lengths of time"
Again, READ MY COMMENT. If you look up the HP Touchsmart series you'll see how their hinge design slides the touch display down over your keyboard and on an angle so that your arms can rest on your desk or armrests and your fingers lay comfortably on the touch screen, exactly as they would on a keyboard. And all of the reviews for any touch screen desktop or Windows 7 tablet all basically say the say thing: "the potential is there, the software sucks"... Enter Windows 8...

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damicatz

"Windows has plenty of competition. Mac, Linux, ChromeOS, iOS, Android, Playbook."

Mac and Linux are great unless you are locked into Windows programs. ChromeOS, iOS, Android, and Playbook are non-starters for serious work. When was the last time you saw a full fledged ERP or CAD Application for any of those platforms?

"Your Windows Key + "Excel" example perfectly demonstrates that you have no idea what you are talking about and are complaining just to complain because that functions EXACTLY the same in Windows 8. Pressing the Windows Key brings you to the Start Screen and typing anything from there starts searching your applications, and pressing "Enter" executes that application. Exactly the same as the current Start Menu."

It's not the same. It brings up a full screen interface, thereby disrupting my workflow. I am forced to look at the start screen, whereas I can use the start menu without looking at it.

"like I said, you shouldn't have to be going to the Start Screen or Start Menu to launch desktop applications on a regular basis anyway because if you use an application frequently you should have pinned it to your taskbar anyway. From this point I should probably just ignore you because obviously you're an idiot, but okay, I'll bite."

And this attitude explains exactly why the quality of commercial software today has gone downhill. You think that you are superior to the average user because you are a programmer; that whatever metaphors and interface design you have come up with for your applications are RIGHT and everyone else is WRONG.

"Have you ever taken a course on interface design? Obviously not, or else you didn't listen very well. Avoiding horizontal scrolling refers to text being read by the user. This is because our brains have been trained to progress downwards while reading. While this is a good general rule of thumb, this does not necessarily apply to application launching or interface points for many reasons. Text generally varies in width while icons and buttons generally have a static size. Sideways progressing icons allow for proper alignment of corresponding downward progressing text. Icons and buttons are each unique and distinct looking while preserving a common size and aspect ratio and therefore it's easy for the brain to track their movement. Books have always been portrait oriented, so downwards progression makes sense. Monitors are more and more landscape oriented, so naturally sideways progression makes more sense. And finally, look at all other application launchers (iOS, Android, Mac Dock). They all progress... SIDEWAYS!"

The Mac Dock doesn't scroll. iOS and Android don't scroll, they use a page turning metaphor with a touch gesture. There is a difference in how the user effects the action of moving from one set of items to the other.

I took only the best course in interface design. It's called REAL LIFE. Not ivory tower theoretical bullshit but actual REAL WORLD EXPERIENCE. I've worked in Front Line IT, I know how users interact with and use their computers unlike programmers who seem to do everything possible to avoid interacting with the users. If only every programmer was forced to actually spend time in the trenches and do customer support on their own software...

BTW, you might want to read what these people have to say on horizontal scrolling : http://homepage.mac.com/bradster/iarchitect/shame.htm

"Despite all that has been learned about human interaction with computers, Microsoft still finds ways to come up controls that are basically inefficient. This list box is provided by the Certificates function in Microsoft's Internet Explorer. Humans can scan written material faster from top to bottom rather than left to right. Despite this widely-accepted observation, and despite the fact that vertically-oriented lists are used throughout Windows, Microsoft chose to require the user to scroll horizontally in this particular list. In contrast to the single-item scrolling permitted by vertical lists, horizontal lists create huge visual changes in which the list is complete redefined, and after which, requires the user to scan vertically anyway. The most unfortunate aspect to this is that other developers will erroneously conclude that, since Microsoft is doing it, it must be good design. It's not. "

No matter what you say, Metro is mostly text. That's supposed to be the big thing about Metro is that it's mostly text instead of visual clutter with graphics.

Also, FYI, I've been programming computers for over 18 years. I started with Turbo Pascal and Watcom C in DOS. I know crappy software when I see it and I do know a thing or two about actually implementing interfaces. I've hacked on the Linux kernel in my spare time and I used to contribute to WINE (some of the old D3D code before it was completely rewritten).

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Cregan89

Not that we're going to get anywhere with this argument, but...

Yes a lot of people are locked into Windows applications, but if Mac or Linux really did offer a vastly better experience then people would definitely deal with the complications of virtualization in order to run their Windows applications until it was ported to their OS. Many people already have with Mac. But clearly neither OS offers significant enough of an improvement in order to convince the majority of users to switch. And how many Windows applications can you really think of that aren't also available on Mac now anyway? And no ChromeOS, iOS, Android, and Playbook are not very good for serious work, but Windows 8 is Microsoft's competition to those platforms, so they have to be included in this argument. That is the major selling point of Windows 8 after all, the best of all worlds, a no compromise environment.

If you can use the Start Menu without looking then you can use the Start Screen without looking. The fact that it takes up the whole screen shouldn't matter, you're not looking anyway.

And you kinda turned away from my pinning applications to the taskbar point by saying that the interface design a developer comes up with for THEIR application isn't always right. Well, it's THEIR application, and that's how they designed it to work. You can't complain that their application doesn't work well when it's being used outside of it's intended usage. If you're not going to use Windows properly then you can't make a valid argument regarding a feature that wasn't intended to be used that way. You can make the exact same argument that navigating through Windows Explorer to launch an application is inefficient, which it is, because it was never intended to do that on a regular basis. And what is so wrong about pinning applications to the taskbar anyway?

I also used to work in Front Line IT actually in high school before I went to university. And 9 times out of 10, user's complaints stemmed from their refusal to accept change. Which is a completely fair argument, but it in no way does that mean that a new interface is worse then the old one. It just means people are stubborn. But this is quickly changing as younger people take to interface changes significantly faster. And when designing my software I am constantly taking user opinion into consideration, as is Microsoft:
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/01/30/acting-on-file-management-feedback.aspx

And your quote about horizontal lists being a bad idea is in reference to single line text lists. The Metro tiles are sooooo much more advanced than single line text. The same interface paradigms cannot possibly be applied in the same manner. There are a bunch of new features in the Start Screen in the beta that actually address your exact concerns so it's not really fair to argue about this until you see them. There's now groups and a kind of zoom out effect too which will be quite useful.

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damicatz

"Yes a lot of people are locked into Windows applications, but if Mac or Linux really did offer a vastly better experience then people would definitely deal with the complications of virtualization in order to run their Windows applications until it was ported to their OS. Many people already have with Mac."

Dude, you're living in a pipe dream if you think the average user would even know what virtualization is much less how to use it. When I was younger, I used to make this mistake too; merely because something is easy for us computer nerds does not mean that Aunt Tilley is going to be able to figure it out.

The majority of my users couldn't even figure out how to save a file in Office 2007. Linux and Mac could be the best things since sliced bread and it doesn't matter because all the user is going to see is that their software doesn't work on it and they are not going to even know about virtualization.

"And how many Windows applications can you really think of that aren't also available on Mac now anyway? "

Pretty much everything that we use at my company. Our CAD software doesn't work on Mac. Our ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning; like a souped up accounting system) doesn't work on Mac. In addition, we are a scientific instruments company and the software used to drive GC/LC MS systems that work in conjunction with our instruments don't work on anything but Windows. The drivers for the instruments are Windows only. So moving to anything but Windows is completely out of the question. We are stuck.

"I also used to work in Front Line IT actually in high school before I went to university. And 9 times out of 10, user's complaints stemmed from their refusal to accept change. Which is a completely fair argument, but it in no way does that mean that a new interface is worse then the old one. It just means people are stubborn. But this is quickly changing as younger people take to interface changes significantly faster."

Think about it from the user's standpoint. A computer to them, is just a tool. They don't care about having the latest greatest anything. They just want to sit down and get their work done. Having to relearn a new interface takes time away, time that they could be spending getting their work done.

As for the younger people comment, well they will eventually get older. And then they too will be the "stubborn" ones. One day, you will get older and you will be the same way. People slow down.

"And when designing my software I am constantly taking user opinion into consideration, as is Microsoft:
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/01/30/acting-on-file-management-feedback.aspx"

The problem with this is that it's not statistically sound because it relies on the users actually volunteering that feedback. People who are content with Windows 7 are not likely to be volunteering feedback about it so the only feedback Microsoft is going to get from Windows 7 is from those who want things changed. It's a self-selection bias. This is even more true with Windows 8; the people who are going to be testing Windows 8 are the technologically minded. So, the feedback Microsoft gets for Windows 8 is not going to be representative of the Windows userbase but that of a mere subset.

If Microsoft wants to get accurate feedback about their products, they have to call/e-mail a random group of their customers and solicit their opinion. You can't let the customers come to you because that biases the survey towards those with strong opinions (particularly those with strong opinions in favor of change.)

"And your quote about horizontal lists being a bad idea is in reference to single line text lists. The Metro tiles are sooooo much more advanced than single line text. The same interface paradigms cannot possibly be applied in the same manner. There are a bunch of new features in the Start Screen in the beta that actually address your exact concerns so it's not really fair to argue about this until you see them. There's now groups and a kind of zoom out effect too which will be quite useful."

It does not matter. You are shifting everything over. Everything is therefore in a different position and the user then has to re-read the entire screen. I have not played with the beta and I will reserve final judgement on this until I do.

"And you kinda turned away from my pinning applications to the taskbar point by saying that the interface design a developer comes up with for THEIR application isn't always right. Well, it's THEIR application, and that's how they designed it to work. You can't complain that their application doesn't work well when it's being used outside of it's intended usage. "

That's the problem. If a user has to give this much thought into what the "intended usage" is, then it's a bad design. Programs should be intuitive and *consistent*.

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bloodgain

Will the Windows key on the keyboard still be functional? The key became a standard key on our keyboards due to the ubiquity of Windows. It does nothing (by default) in Linux. Gamers hate it, because it can cause you to interrupt a game, and it sits between 2 commonly-used keys. However, I use it often, especially on my HTPC where the keyboard shortcuts are faster than the touchpad.

While we're on the subject, the Caps Locks and left Ctrl keys should really be swapped... grumble... grumble...

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0ly1r3m@1ns

it pops up the main windows in gnome (used by alot of linux distros) and it ubuntu it brings up the app bar

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Cregan89

Yes.

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SPreston2001

I think I will be skipping this version of windows as well. This touch based interface isnt appealing to me at all. When windows 7 was released it was like a breath of fresh air! Windows actually released a stable version of windows that just simply worked! Windows 8 is trying to reinvent the wheel and unfortunately it looks like its heading for disaster! Unless they come up with some sort of option to turn off the metro tablet based interface, im sticking with Win 7...

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bloodgain

Ditto. I'll be skipping this one, unless the Windows tablets are really that compelling.

I appreciate what they're trying to do with Metro, I just don't think I'll have a need to update from Windows 7 until Windows 9 rolls around. Windows 7 is pretty solid.

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warptek2010

I think I'll be skipping this one too... unless, like the previous poster said, there's some way to turn off the Metro junk and revert to a "classic" interface. This Windows version seems to be too much of a radical departure for me.

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Danthrax66

Someone will make a mod that does that.

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avenger48

The problem is mods reduce stability. If I have to mod it, I'll just install 7 and be done with it.

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wolfing

I'm totally skipping Windows 8. Seems to me that they're doing a lot of changes just because they think touch screen is hot right now so they don't want to fall behind with the times, but I don't think it benefits desktop users at all. I agree they should have just created 'Windows for tablets' or something and don't mess with Windows

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bling581

Posted in wrong spot. -Delete-

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Keith E. Whisman

People your being a little too hateful for this new interface. MS is trying to be innovative and forward thinking and trying to build a touch screen friendly interface. I actually like what MS is doing, I just think they need to not make important parts of the interface invisible.
Even the popular Ubuntu Linux Distro has changed to a more touch screen friendly interface. The idea of an App store is little different than what has been available in Linux for years in the form of package managers.
If you are concerned with design elements in the new Windows 8 then you should mention something in an email to the development team. There are forums and contact them, check out this URL http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2011/08/17/introducing-the-team.aspx

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Cregan89

I used to agree with you about these hidden UI gestures. But these screen-edge gestures are more or less a rip-off of the Blackberry PlayBook's interface, and I've been using one a lot lately as a test case for a web application I'm building at work. And I can tell you that once you learn the screen-edge gestures, they're actually incredibly intuitive.

With that being said, Microsoft MUST introduce some sort of tool-tip or introduction video to Windows 8 for the RTM which exposes users to these new UI gestures, because you're right, they are not at all obvious to a first time user.

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0ly1r3m@1ns

we're not hating cause we dont care for it but we're hating it because its simply change for the sake of change some of it is touch pad friendly but this isnt its just oh lets change it windows8 is the reason im switching to linux heck i only use windows now for games other then that im all linux (which there touch screen stuff is an OPTION ie NOT BEING FORCED ON YOU)

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Cregan89

Windows 8's touch screen features are optional too. You just don't touch the screen! I hate the attitude of the posters on MaxPC that because something is designed with touch in mind that it is automatically inefficient for mouse input. That is the whole principle behind the Metro UI. A UI that is simple, clean, efficient, and is effective with both touch and mouse input. And I think they've achieved that perfectly with Metro.

And removing the Start Button is obviously not change for the sake of change. They're trying to maximize the amount of space for pinned applications in the taskbar since it's importance as the sole application launcher for the desktop UI is increasing with the removal of the Start Menu. Also, the Start Button doesn't really make visual sense now that the Start Menu has been replaced by the Start Screen, and this new interface coincides with Windows 8's screen-edge UI gestures and "chromeless" interface.

Just because you don't agree with its reasoning doesn't make it "change for the sake of change". There is some pretty clear reasoning behind the decision.

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damicatz

The touch screen "features" are not optional. Metro is designed for touchscreen. It can't be turned off. It may not require a touchscreen but it is designed for touchscreens (touch first, remember?).

Combine this with the walled garden app store (don't believe for a second that Microsoft is interested in protecting you; they just want their 30% skimmed off the top of every software sale), the secure boot nonsense, and the butchered Windows explorer, this is one Windows that will be a turd.

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Cregan89

Metro is not designed solely for touch screens. Microsoft has said time and time again that the whole principle behind Windows 8 (including Metro) is a "no compromise design", a design that works effectively on touch screens and with a mouse and keyboard.

And this whole "touch-first" nonsense was in reference to the hardware. From the Windows 8 Blog:

"Windows 8 will enter the market in a time when touch-first devices, such as the slate form factor, are becoming more and more prevalent. As such, we need to deliver a boot experience that is designed for touch, but works just as well for mouse and keyboard."

That's what Microsoft said, and then all the idiots took that and ran with it.

And you don't believe for a second that Microsoft is interested in protecting you? Yeah, that's why they built in a free antivirus application and are providing Windows XP with security updates 11 years after it's release. Obviously they're interested in protecting you, that's a significant selling point of their product. They've also stressed how users have been demanding a central location for application updates and a centralized application store, so this provides on this as well. Not to mention it gives developers probably the best outlet to make money on their applications. And yeah obviously they want their 30% off sales. They not a god damn charity. Everybody benefits. The users get what they were asking for, the developers get a more effective way to advertise and sell their applications, and Microsoft makes money. Everybody wins. This should also significantly cut down on piracy which all of you PC gamers should be ecstatic about.

Secure Boot... Well I'm going out on a limb here and assume that Microsoft is offering a Windows license price reduction on ARM systems to make them price competitive with other tablets. So they don't want consumers purchasing discounted hardware at Microsoft's expense if they're going to install a competing platform. Sounds pretty fair to me. This doesn't affect x86 systems either.

Windows Explorer... I assume you're talking about the ribbon. I've argued how the ribbon is superior in every possible way till my fingers have gotten sore so I'll just let this link do the talking:
http://www.7tutorials.com/windows-8-analysis-new-ribbon-interface-more-efficient

The ribbon interface is superior in every possible way to all previous interfaces, whether its measured in number of clicks, space used, feature discover-ability, time-to-find, discovering of keyboard shortcuts, etc. The ONLY valid arguments which can't be statistically proven wrong are people who just downright hate any change or progress, and that some feature locations have to be relearned. Not to mention, the ribbon is minimized by default in the beta.

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praack

the horizontal scroll is killer with the WIN 8 display- to see half of a set of metro tiles and that horisontal scroll bar is pretty dumb

then again that's with a laptop, desktop and a notebook - and since this is a tablet optimised item i don't doubt a tablet will only see one set of tiles

i have to echo the rest- I find myself not using any of the metro tiles and always tryng to get to the desktop - even explorer in the metro is limited (no tab browsing). and there is already a hot corner (and hot edges) so too many times you misstep and end up in an app you did not want to go back to - or back to Metro

this OS will not work for the consumer on the desktop

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mattman059

To me it seems like they could have just released the Metro version as "Windows 8 for Tablets" and for the Touchscreen PCs and left us desktop users with the regular old Desktop that we're familiar with

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Badass1982

Anybody Know if the "metro" mode can be turned off , In Windows 8 (without performing a hack) I mean I'm a desktop user, have zero interest in tablets or the Metro interface, so am curious if this option will be included???

Thanks In Advance.

Martin

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damicatz

I don't want the start screen. Pulling me out of my workflow with a full screen interface that wastes screen real estate is incredibly disruptive and distracting.

Surely Microsoft can see what a disaster Windows 8 will be. I, for one, have no plans right now to deploy Windows 8 at all on my company's computers. The cost of user retraining alone would be huge.

Ivory tower elitists like Steven Sinofsky think they know what makes an easy to use interface but they don't. The most important thing to the average user is consistency. The average user sees their computer as a tool to get stuff done. They want to be able to sit down at their computer and do their work, browse the web whatever. They do not have the time nor the inclination to continuously learn new interfaces merely because Microsoft thinks it's "cool" or "easier to use".

Office 2007 was bad enough. I had so many users asking me "how do I save a file?" (who would have thought that an orb with the Office logo wasn't intuitive) that I had to send out a memo. I shudder to think how they will react with Windows 8.

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Ridnarhtim

Well, I wouldn't say I'm an average user exactly, since I do use office excessively, but it took me a few days to get used to Office 2007 and now I love it. It's much nicer to use and makes much more sense than the previous version. I'm happy to have new things if a little relearning can make things much faster and easier in the future.

Having said that, I'm not convinced about Win 8 at all, and Metro definitely needs to stay the hell away from my PC. It's a tablet/smartphone interface, and that's where it should stay.

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Zoandar

+10

I'll never understand why programmers love to befuddle user interfaces every time they release a new version of something. Fortunately for us home users, there are like-minded folk who know enough about programming AND about user consistancy to write aftermarket hacks to allow us to resume familiar operations. One of the first things I did with Windows 7 was google and find a hack to make its start menu work like XP. I've never regretted it. The second thing I did was find ways to dump all the useless trash folders M$ put at the start of every Explorer window.

Hopefully those same lifesaving folk are already working on ways to "fix" all the BS M$ is "breaking" in Windows 8, so by the time it releases, the same solutions will be just a google-search away.

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Keith E. Whisman

I don't like the hidden feature idea for the start menu because its something that your not going to figure out by just walking up to a Windows 8 box with no prior training. I don't like it one bit because it's not simple and intuitive if you don't know much about the OS. I like the idea of Windows 8 Metro GUI because it sure does look a lot like LCARS to me. Does Windows 8 Metro GUI have active content on the home screen like LCARS? Windows MOFO 7 has an interface that looks a lot like LCARS and I think that its well done, just needs more development to make it look more like something I want.

I only hope that the PC manufacturers realize that they need to build Windows 8 Desktops and Laptops with touchscreens to really make the new Windows enjoyable and really usable to its fullest potential.

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warptek2010

Metro looking a lot like LCARS is not necessarily a good thing... if you ever looked closely at those Okudagrams on the LCARS interface they actually make no logical sense. :)

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Keith E. Whisman

Who cares, LCARS the preferred GUI for the crews of Enterprise starships from Star Trek the Motion Picture to Star Trek 2009 and all of Star Trek The Next Generation. If its good enough to last so many generations then it has to be good enough for my PC's.

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bling581

"I don't like the hidden feature idea for the start menu because its something that your not going to figure out by just walking up to a Windows 8 box with no prior training."

I agree. I don't mind change, especially if it's for the better, but it's bad when it's forced without an option to change back. Change usually requires time, but what if I still don't like it after weeks of use? There are a few things about Windows 7 that I just can't stand and I haven't figured out a way to make it like XP.

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