Comments
Tell Me Again: Why Rush Into Windows 8?
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
<<   <   Page 3 / 3
ChrisMurphy
50%
50%
ChrisMurphy,
User Rank: Author
3/28/2013 | 7:31:58 PM
re: Tell Me Again: Why Rush Into Windows 8?
The flip side of its touch-focused effort isn't very appealing, though -- that Microsoft sits back and takes care of its content mouse-and-keyboard users and, if touch storms the desktop, we all say "they failed to anticipate the touch movement." If only some embrace touch, and if people do cling to Win7 -- might Microsoft have a nicely segmented market for two operating systems, or at least two interfaces?
UberGoober
50%
50%
UberGoober,
User Rank: Strategist
3/28/2013 | 6:12:24 PM
re: Tell Me Again: Why Rush Into Windows 8?
The article got me to thinking about UI changes over the years. I go back to Win 2 and Solaris 4 windowing UIs, and 80x24 greenscreens before that, and in general, I think the single biggest GUI breakthrough that comes to mind is the *combination* of the Start Button and Taskbar (or equivalents in other OSes). That combination allows multitaskers to easily get to their running and non-running programs very quickly in a way that's easy to understand. It adds minimal value to folks who struggle to run one app at a time and whose highest use of a computer is watching videos on YouTube, but frankly, I don't want a UI that woks best for the lowest common denominator.

It seems to me that the key is to have a UI that is easy enough for non-morons to work with minimal training but powerful enough to keep high-end users happy. The Win95-Win7 UI meets those goals. There is also a vast pool of folks who already know how to work it and don't need any retraining. I fail to see how a UI that requires me to buy new hardware to use it and then learn a bunch of non-intuitive and ill-documented gestures meets that set of requirements.

As anyone who's even slightly familiar with Unix/Linux knows, there's no necessary hard link between the UI and the OS; if you don't like KDE, you can switch to Gnome. Unless a device is so crippled that it can't support a normal UI (no keyboard or mouse, for instance), there's no reason no to have a familiar and generally acknowledged superior interface available.

The M$ decisions to do away with the Start button and focus on touch was clearly not based on what users wanted. While it might be seen by some as a push to move folks to a newer, better interface, I'm not buying it. The new UI is all about change, and making folks feel a need to upgrade. It is exactly analogous to the widely hated Tool Ribbon. My prediction is that the new UI will just encourage a large segment of the user base to cling bitterly to their Win7, just as we've clung to Office 2003 (and switched to Openoffice.org). My computers are not consumer devices whose primary goal is to be cool and entertain; they are business tools and I'm not going to switch and go through all the lost productivity of retraining for the sake of being compliant with the Micro$oft's marketing plans.
Anonomouser
50%
50%
Anonomouser,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/28/2013 | 8:49:05 AM
re: Tell Me Again: Why Rush Into Windows 8?
Using Win7 is like going into another room and wondering "now what was it I was going to do here?". There's always some usability issue that pops up and interferes with what I want to do, and by the time I figure it out I forgot why I sat down at the computer in the first place. Win8 and it's automatic updates changing the interface all the time is going to make this feeling the new Microsoft Windows "user experience".
SMB Kevin
50%
50%
SMB Kevin,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/27/2013 | 10:08:22 PM
re: Tell Me Again: Why Rush Into Windows 8?
I'm planning to spend a couple of weeks with a new touch model soon, so will perhaps have a better answer(s) for you soon. But in meantime it seems like apps are one of the key areas here. I don't think calculators and alarm clocks are going to get it done. As GBarrington196 notes, what about Adobe or Word? How does touch make those better on a laptop or desktop (versus a tablet or smartphone, where touch is a given)?

And what about all of those "legacy" and/or home-grown applications that businesses run? When you talk to folks at companies with a lot riding on these kinds of applications, there's usually plenty of complexity or outright pain involved, sometimes just in getting from XP to Windows 7. And now we're already talking about Windows Blue and the "death of the desktop." (I'm in the camp that thinks reports of the desktop's demise are exaggerated.)

-Kevin C.
InformationWeek.com
GBARRINGTON196
50%
50%
GBARRINGTON196,
User Rank: Strategist
3/27/2013 | 9:09:14 PM
re: Tell Me Again: Why Rush Into Windows 8?
It isn't the touch capabilities that will "win people over", it is an improvement in productivity that wins people over. How does touch make Adobe Lightroom or Photoshop better? (For that matter, how can they even be USABLE with touch?) Shoot! How does touch make Microsoft Word better? Look at all the applications that we use EVERYDAY that simply have no inherent touch . . .um. . .touchpoints. Aren't you Brave New Worlders kinda sorta ignoring all of them?

I've been around the block once too often with technology to just accept that Microsoft, or Google, or Information Week, for that matter, has my best interest at heart.
Laurianne
50%
50%
Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
3/27/2013 | 6:02:08 PM
re: Tell Me Again: Why Rush Into Windows 8?
"But there's a lot of a work to be done before touch wins over the PC workforce."

Kevin, do you have any thoughts on what touch capabilities would win over "PC people"?

Put another way: What could Microsoft leak regarding touch that would impress you?

Laurianne McLaughlin
InformationWeek
<<   <   Page 3 / 3


IT's Reputation: What the Data Says
IT's Reputation: What the Data Says
InformationWeek's IT Perception Survey seeks to quantify how IT thinks it's doing versus how the business really views IT's performance in delivering services - and, more important, powering innovation. Our results suggest IT leaders should worry less about whether they're getting enough resources and more about the relationships they have with business unit peers.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Must Reads Oct. 21, 2014
InformationWeek's new Must Reads is a compendium of our best recent coverage of digital strategy. Learn why you should learn to embrace DevOps, how to avoid roadblocks for digital projects, what the five steps to API management are, and more.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
A roundup of the top stories and trends on InformationWeek.com
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.