Windows 8 shocker

Started May 7, 2013 | Discussions
lemon_juice
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Re: 'Emotional' my $%^&
In reply to digital ed, May 11, 2013

digital ed wrote:

Suggest you stay emotional and I will remain objective and leave it at that.

I take your suggestion but please don't tell us you will remain objective because you are not and never will be in subjects like this one.

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RedFox88
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ribbon is great
In reply to Simon Garrett, May 11, 2013

Simon Garrett wrote:

But MS has taken a number of poor steps in UI recently.  The ribbon interface, though visually pretty-pretty, is not well thought out.

I, and the software industry, completely disagree with you.  Microsoft's Office ribbon is now the industry standard for software with other major software moving to the ribbon as it offers a graphic view of software options in stead of pulldown menus with sub menu options that is geared far more towards the computer programmer than the average computer user.

I find things far quicker using a ribbon than pulldown menus primarily because the ribbon is horizontal and pull down menus are vertical.  It's elemental to how people read.

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RedFox88
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Re: Windows 8 shocker
In reply to skyglider, May 11, 2013

skyglider wrote:

Two things made Win8 sales look better after its release:

  1. Win8's release date was October 26, 2013, just in time for the 2013 Christmas sales.  People who bought new PCs for Christmas got Win8.

While true, it does not affect how sales "look".  Both Vista and Win7 were launched in the fall after Microsoft got its act together and realized they needed to launch in the fall instead of in the first quarter of the year to capture more sales.  Maybe even XP came out in the fall. It's been a while since their OS's have not been launched in the fall.

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digital ed
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Re: Windows8 Commercials in Asia
In reply to kelpdiver, May 11, 2013

kelpdiver wrote:

digital ed wrote:

Don't confuse the OS with the GUI. The GUI is the clothes on the person. The OS is the basic character of the person. Many on this thread are forgetting the difference.

Since you can't run Windows without the GUI, there really is no difference.

This is in stark contrast to unix.   While Jim may be picking and rejecting stray linux distributions based on these first GUI impressions, I rarely leave the shell.  Very rarely run X.   It's about the kernel, about the package system, about the memory utilization, and the tools it provides.

There is a great deal of difference to MS. With a robust OS the GUI can be changed. Win 8 is a very robust OS.

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Jim Cockfield
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You're making my point
In reply to raminolta, May 11, 2013

You're making my point.

Read through my last post again.

I pointed out that even though the linux kernel may be the same between many of the available distros, a lot of things are very different, and when I get a bad first impression of a linux distro (which as I pointed out, may be something as simple as the wallpaper, fonts used, menu launcher, etc.), I usually move on to another one, even if it's using my preferred desktop (KDE is what I normally use.

But I use the "Classic" versus "Kick-off"style menu launcher (changeable by right clicking on the menu icon and selecting one or the other), since it's dramatically faster to find what you want to start without moving right and left between categories, etc.; and I use the Elegance Theme (which defaults to great contrast for menus, apps shown running in the panel, etc.; versus the absurd defaults used by many other themes).

I also use a distro based on Debian Squeeze/6.0 (Debian's stable release up until last weekend, since new Debian Release called "Wheezy"/7.0 was just released.  I'd rather have rock solid stability versus a buggy "bleeding edge" distro for day to day use.

Although many of the Ubuntu based distros are well liked (including Mint), keep in mind that they start out with packages from Debian Sid (Unstable) for each new release, trying to work out the bugs in the packages before releasing each new Ubuntu release.  Debian has stable, testing and unstable branches (as well as Experimental if you want the absolute bleeding edge packages); and Ubuntu bases each of their new releases on Debian Unstable packages..

There are just too many choices available anymore, and I don't want to spend a lot of time trying to customize a distro to taste.

That was meant to be a parallel analogy to Win 8.  Even though it may be a good OS "under the covers" (and you may be able to tweak it's look and feel, install third party apps and launchers, etc.) if the UI gives users are bad first impression, it's not going to be well liked by many users trying it.

Yep... I can understand your frustration with the themes used by many modern linux distros, with poor contrast between the foreground and background colors in the panel, menus, etc.  That seems to be the trend lately (as the developers seem to think that kind of thing is "cool"). Sorry, I disagree.

That's what I mean by a bad first impression.

Sure, you can spend time customizing it to taste.  But, it's still going to leave a bad first impression when many users try it (and the Win 8 UI left a very bad first impression with me, as it's one of the most unintuitive UIs I've seen a a long time -- even when compared to many of the UIs that I didn't like when test driving many newer linux distros).

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MikeFromMesa
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In reply to malch, May 11, 2013

malch wrote:

"Microsoft is preparing to reverse course over key elements of its Windows 8 operating system, marking one of the most prominent admissions of failure for a new mass-market consumer product since Coca-Cola’s New Coke fiasco nearly 30 years ago."

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/2/330c8b8e-b66b-11e2-93ba-00144feabdc0.html

Well, I for one find it both interesting and encouraging that Microsoft is listening enough to admit the mistake and correct it. I didn't think Microsoft had it in it to do that.

+1 for Microsoft for fixing the issue. -1 for having it to begin with. Leaves it at 0 again.

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Bouldergramp
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Re: No Windows 8
In reply to malch, May 11, 2013

Dell sends me USPS mail advertisements for their products which I find strange because they have my email address.  The Offers are available from 5/13/13 - 5/31/13 at Dell.com/mayoffers.

Today,s mail is entitled "Equip yourself for success for less" and lists four nice computers, all with Windows 7 Professional operating systems installed on Intel Core I3 and I5 processors...no mention of Windows 8.

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Jim Cockfield
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Desktop verus Server use
In reply to kelpdiver, May 11, 2013

kelpdiver wrote:

digital ed wrote:

Don't confuse the OS with the GUI. The GUI is the clothes on the person. The OS is the basic character of the person. Many on this thread are forgetting the difference.

Since you can't run Windows without the GUI, there really is no difference.

This is in stark contrast to unix.   While Jim may be picking and rejecting stray linux distributions based on these first GUI impressions, I rarely leave the shell.  Very rarely run X.   It's about the kernel, about the package system, about the memory utilization, and the tools it provides.

I spend my fair share of time in terminals, too.

But, we're talking about desktop use, not server use.

For Desktop use, I want a something that increases productivity with good integration and features that make running GUI based apps easier.

For example, a menu launcher that's more practical that makes it easier and faster to launch applications by simply scrolling up and down through the available categories (Internet, Multimedia, Utilities, etc.) where you instantly see all apps in each category, without having to move right and left, etc. to see the apps available (which some of the newer launchers force you to do, making it slower to find and start the apps you want to use, as I certainly don't remember the exact program names to start all of them).

I also like a panel that lets me easily see what I'm running (including being able to look at specific doc files names, etc. when I have multiple copies of something open, move them to different desktops, etc.).   I also like having good notifications in the panel that integrates well with apps I use.

For example, I have KDE setup so that I see notifications about new e-mail from Thunderbird, when file sync changes are made with dropbox, with great integration with file managers (Dolphin in my case), notification about file downloads completion when using internet browsers, with one click access to the folders the downloads were saved to upon completion, etc. etc. etc.

If you run a lot of GUI based apps concurrently as I do (web browsers, image viewers and editors, file managers, document editors, and more), a decent desktop is a must have if you want to be more productive with multiple apps running concurrently in their own separate windows.

For my purposes, KDE provides that.

But I use a specific theme (Elegance, since it has great contrast by default with the foreground/background colors used in the panel and menus by default to increase readability) with well refined widgets that I use more often.

I also use a "classic" (not newer "kick-off" style) menu launcher with KDE (since I really can't stand the extra effort needed to launch apps using the newer style launcher with extra work moving right and left between categories, etc. to find what you want  -- even if some of the developers think that it looks "cool" to do it that way, since the newer style launcher used by default with KDE is just not as efficient).

My setup is dramatically more efficient than what you'd get with something like Win 8 (even if you're using the desktop versus newer style (formerly known as Metro) UI.

Now, I don't have all of the latest and greatest apps installed, since I'm using a distro with a Debian Squeeze/6.0 base right this minute (and I'll move to the newer Debian Wheezy/7.0 base soon, as it just went to stable status last weekend)     But, I'd rather have the stability offered by it versus put up with the bugs you often find in distros that are trying to use "bleeding edge" packages.

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skyglider
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Re: Windows 8 shocker
In reply to RedFox88, May 11, 2013

RedFox88 wrote:

skyglider wrote:

Two things made Win8 sales look better after its release:

  1. Win8's release date was October 26, 2013, just in time for the 2013 Christmas sales.  People who bought new PCs for Christmas got Win8.

While true, it does not affect how sales "look".  Both Vista and Win7 were launched in the fall after Microsoft got its act together and realized they needed to launch in the fall instead of in the first quarter of the year to capture more sales.  Maybe even XP came out in the fall. It's been a while since their OS's have not been launched in the fall.

My point was just that Win8's sales could have been a lot more dismal had it not been  for Christmas sales and 3rd party Start Menu fixes.  Nothing else implied.

Best regards,
Sky

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Simon Garrett
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Re: ribbon is great
In reply to RedFox88, May 11, 2013

RedFox88 wrote:

Simon Garrett wrote:

But MS has taken a number of poor steps in UI recently.  The ribbon interface, though visually pretty-pretty, is not well thought out.

I, and the software industry, completely disagree with you.  Microsoft's Office ribbon is now the industry standard for software with other major software moving to the ribbon as it offers a graphic view of software options in stead of pulldown menus with sub menu options that is geared far more towards the computer programmer than the average computer user.

I find things far quicker using a ribbon than pulldown menus primarily because the ribbon is horizontal and pull down menus are vertical.  It's elemental to how people read.

The concept of the ribbon interface is fine, but I don't think it's very well implemented.  It's visually appealing as it's more graphical.  It's quicker to pick out an icon out of a crowd of icons than to find a word out of a list.   I don't think it's a matter of horizontal vs. vertical, as both the ribbon and the menu system it replaced involve a combination of both horizontal and vertical.

The issue with the Microsoft ribbon is that it changes in appearance.  Take an Office product using a ribbon, and make the window wider and narrower.  As you narrow the window, icons change to smaller ones and then disappear.  Occasional users get the frustrating experience of "I'm sure that function was here yesterday".  It's still there, but the icon looks different today.  Or, if you've shrunk the window too far maybe it isn't there any more - just a remnant tiny arrow head, or a word instead of an icon.

It's the lack of stability that's the problem with Microsoft's ribbon, not the concept of a ribbon.

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Sean Nelson
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Re: ribbon is great
In reply to Simon Garrett, May 11, 2013

Simon Garrett wrote:

It's the lack of stability that's the problem with Microsoft's ribbon, not the concept of a ribbon.

You're absolutely right about the ribbon layout.   It drives me nuts sometimes.

The other problem with the ribbon is all of the real estate that it takes.   I keep my ribbon minimized, which means I have to click on one of the ribbon tabs to open it up and then click on the appropriate icon.   That means it's no faster than a traditional menu bar for me.

I actually find it faster to find things on a drop-down menu because I just have to scan one list.   With the ribbon I first have to guess which group is likely to hold the tool I want, then I have to scan the area horizontally AND vertically to find what I want.   And all too often I end up guessing wrong and then having to look at other groups - and occasionally other tabs.

Page breaks used to drive me nuts - on the traditional drop-down menus you'd choose "Insert -> Page Break" to add a page break to a document, yet they're nowhere to be found on the "Insert" tab of the ribbon.   There are a lot of other similar choices of tool location that I find to be very non-intuitive.

I've made peace with the ribbon, but the biggest reason I was able to tolerate it is because I've put my most frequently-used tools onto the quick access bar.  I still dread having to find some tool that I don't use very often.

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theswede
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Re: If true it's a good step, but Microsoft has other UI problems
In reply to raminolta, May 11, 2013

I don't use metro applications and I can still use Windows 8, running applications and then closing them by clicking on a button.

Except when a Metro app happens to start. Then you have no visual clue how to close it. You have to slide, or use hot corners, and you have to know how to do this. The OS does not help you.

Isn't that what makes Windows 8 a hybrid OS?

Before Windows 8 there was no concept as "hybrid OS", so what makes Windows 8 one is pretty much whatever it has which "normal" OS'es don't. If the lack of visual cues make a "hybrid OS" they will never take off.

Obviously you haven't used Windows 8 or, you knew there is a desktop there and all desktop applications are run in the desktop environment.

Obviously you haven't had to use Windows 8 or you'd know that when you start a Metro app it takes over and the desktop is not visible, and there is no indication how to get it back.

Lousiest design ever in a mainstream OS.

Aren't there in any OS designed for any interface (touchscreen or desktop). What make you think because there is a gesture that can't be seen, then the OS must be designed for touch screen. By that logic, all OS are designed for  touch screne including all previous windows.

Have fun beating your straw man.

In every operating system whether designed for touch screen or desktop there are certain UI aspects for which there is no visual clue.

Which is a non-sequitur. The point is that core operations, required to do basic tasks, are non-obvious and with no visual cue.

That is unprecedented in a GUI. And it's atrocious.

Click on the start button to get a list of the programs installed on their computer.

Again, obviously you have not used Widnows 8 much since whenever you install a new program, you have the option to have a shortcut in the start menu.

Option. Meaning when I sit down by my colleagues system I have no start button to click to see what software he has installed, and if I have memorized the way to get to the start menu I will still not know what he has installed, only what he happened to select the option to get in that menu.

A complete failure in design.

Otherwise, you right click on the metro screen to bring up all installed applications and choose which one to run or add the the default metro screen.

Completely lacking visual cue. I would never have guessed this, and I am likely to forget it since it's completely unintuitive.

Don't tell me there must be a visual cue for all this. There was no visual cue for any sort of right click in previous windows in any sense and users only learned them from each other or, they just discovered it by themselves.

And there was also no need for any sort of right click to do basic GUI tasks in previous versions of Windows in any sense. This is a design failure, pure and simple.

What makes you think it makes it bad for both.?

Having used it for both.

There are millions of content win8 users. Open your mind and stop the prejudiced opinion that windows 8 does not work for the desktop. Start using it with positive attitude and your negative feelings about it will gradually change.

Open your mind and stop the prejudiced opinion that I did not start from a neutral position about Windows 8 the first time I installed it. I did. And I learned quickly just how horrid it is.

Your prejudice is clouding your judgement something fierce. You seem too emotionally invested to have a rational conversation about Windows 8.

Already answered above. Right click on the metro page and you can bring up and see all installed applications. Don't tell me there is no viual cue to right clicking because you don't know about clicking and right clicking, you couldn't use any previous windows either.

My mother still does not know about right clicking and she has used Windows for over a decade without issues. Now she's switched to Linux, and she still does not know about right clicking.

Your prejudice blinds you to the truth; GUI's have never required right clicking for basic tasks. Only for more complex and administrative tasks. Windows 8 is broken from that aline.

Prophecy of the year. I don't care if MS will win or fail but, I find your prohetic prediction quite amusing.

In 1984 no-one believed IBM would ever be toppled from the top of the computing world. I have a feeling you'd have made the same "amusing" comment about someone predicting its fall then as well.

Lesson taught: big things will fail, don't question that and don't think Windows 8 platform may be just as good as other platforms and IMO, if it fails it is more likely for the reason I mentioned not for your reasoning.

Huh?

Corporations are not interested in upgrading because if what they have works, upgrading is a pure cost with zero benefit.

An overly generalized statement. By your logic, corporations should have never even switched to computers because it was pure costs.

You are conflating "is" and "ought". Re-read for comprehension and try again.

Does it make sense? They upgrade if they come to believe the benefit is worth the cost and at some point they may belive a fast modern touch screen interface or something else (whatever it is) is more productive than the ancient xp's they have.

Only if they are insane. Literally. Gorilla arm syndrome alone prevents a touch screen interface from being a workable solution for people sitting 8+ hours a day in front of a computer. It's a horrid idea, as has been known since the 1970's.

People who work with computers do not use OS'es. They use applications. If there is a benefit to a touch screen it can be added to XP (and has, for the few cases where it was useful). For the most part the applications are middleware or aggregate systems, highly dependent on underlying libraries and specific versions of display systems (like IE6). Changing to a new OS will require expensive changes in poorly understood systems, and in the end the corporation will have - the exact same functionality they did before the upgrade. Only it has cost them millions. What reason do they have to spend those millions?

Again nobody can be certain which platform will eventually win.

It must be comfy in your bubble where things come to an end, and someone wins. Where computer systems are not used indefinitely but at some point are done, and development just stops.

Unfortunately the rest of the world can't stay in that bubble, but have to live with that there is no "eventually win", but a continuous use of legacy and modern systems in a mix. IBM may have been toppled from the top of the chain, but their mainframes are still chugging along providing data to middleware written from the 1970's to today, which in turn feeds front ends which date from the 1960's to today.

The computing world is not heading for a platform which will eventually win (as if there's a competition going on). It's a huge scrap heap of OS'es and applications built on a multitude of hardwares which all have to work together.

Your comments on market and consumers are tainted by your emotional state and your bubble view on the world. You really ought to get a glimpse into the professional world of computing. It might open your eyes and removes some of the emotional gauze over your eyes.

Jesper

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Re: You're making my point
In reply to Jim Cockfield, May 11, 2013

I guess we differ in our opinion on Windows 8 being unintuitive. To me, it just has some differences from the previous windows that requires some learning: some people are unhappy with the learning curve and some just don't like the difference. I wouldn't call it less intuitive than previous Windows.

As per comparison between Linux and Windws 8, I perceive there is a significant difference: first bad impression of Windows on some is because it became somewhat visually different. However, nothing is really broken (at least at the level that is observable to most users), while in Linux distros, one  has to deal with things that are broken and don't work.

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malch
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Re: ribbon is great
In reply to Sean Nelson, May 11, 2013

Sean Nelson wrote:

You're absolutely right about the ribbon layout.   It drives me nuts sometimes.

The other problem with the ribbon is all of the real estate that it takes.   I keep my ribbon minimized, which means I have to click on one of the ribbon tabs to open it up and then click on the appropriate icon.   That means it's no faster than a traditional menu bar for me.

I actually find it faster to find things on a drop-down menu because I just have to scan one list.   With the ribbon I first have to guess which group is likely to hold the tool I want, then I have to scan the area horizontally AND vertically to find what I want.   And all too often I end up guessing wrong and then having to look at other groups - and occasionally other tabs.

Page breaks used to drive me nuts - on the traditional drop-down menus you'd choose "Insert -> Page Break" to add a page break to a document, yet they're nowhere to be found on the "Insert" tab of the ribbon.   There are a lot of other similar choices of tool location that I find to be very non-intuitive.

I've made peace with the ribbon, but the biggest reason I was able to tolerate it is because I've put my most frequently-used tools onto the quick access bar.  I still dread having to find some tool that I don't use very often.

Ribbons look pretty and that's just about their only redeeming quality. They chew up lots of real estate but don't make anything easier to find. My only peace comes from avoiding the darn things.

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dmartin92
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problems just like Vista ?
In reply to malch, May 11, 2013

I saw this article today:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-10805_3-57584029-75/microsoft-responds-to-extreme-windows-8-criticism/

And I was wondering, did they ever go so far as to defend Vista ? Were the problems that significant, with Vista, that Microsoft ever publicly responded to them ?

But yes or no, it's kind of like saying, was it this bad with the Titanic ? Or maybe the Titanic isn't a good example. That was a real disaster. The boat sank.

In any case, even if their "100 million copies sold" statement is technically true, I just don't trust them on that number.  Even if they are being honest, they aren't being frank.  And for them to talk about the "100 million copies sold" number, they just look bad when they say that, because the smart people know, that's not customers running into the retail store saying, "gimme Windows 8, I just gotta have that".

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dradam
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Re: ribbon is great
In reply to Sean Nelson, May 11, 2013

Sean Nelson wrote:

Page breaks used to drive me nuts - on the traditional drop-down menus you'd choose "Insert -> Page Break" to add a page break to a document, yet they're nowhere to be found on the "Insert" tab of the ribbon.   There are a lot of other similar choices of tool location that I find to be very non-intuitive.

Alt + I , B still works too.

I feel that, like the Ribbon argument, people find Windows 8 "less intuitive" simply because it is slightly different than what they have become used to.  But that, to be honest, is really a moot point.  Microsoft will bend to appease those that just can't be troubled to make even the most minimal effort and you'll all get your Start button back (though I doubt you'll be seeing the Start Menu ever again) and the ability to boot straight to the desktop to avoid that horrendously difficult step of clicking on the "Desktop" tile.

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dradam
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Re: problems just like Vista ?
In reply to dmartin92, May 11, 2013

dmartin92 wrote:

I saw this article today:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-10805_3-57584029-75/microsoft-responds-to-extreme-windows-8-criticism/

And I was wondering, did they ever go so far as to defend Vista ? Were the problems that significant, with Vista, that Microsoft ever publicly responded to them ?

But yes or no, it's kind of like saying, was it this bad with the Titanic ? Or maybe the Titanic isn't a good example. That was a real disaster. The boat sank.

In any case, even if their "100 million copies sold" statement is technically true, I just don't trust them on that number.  Even if they are being honest, they aren't being frank.  And for them to talk about the "100 million copies sold" number, they just look bad when they say that, because the smart people know, that's not customers running into the retail store saying, "gimme Windows 8, I just gotta have that".

No, they just slightly reskinned Vista after it finally had decent hardware and driver support, called it "Windows 7", and made bank.

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dmartin92
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Re: problems just like Vista ?
In reply to dradam, May 11, 2013

dradam wrote:

No, they just slightly reskinned Vista after it finally had decent hardware and driver support, called it "Windows 7", and made bank.

You're exactly right. The boat didn't sink.

Even if the bad reputation of Vista is widely known...

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dradam
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Re: ribbon is great
In reply to malch, May 11, 2013

malch wrote:

Sean Nelson wrote:

You're absolutely right about the ribbon layout.   It drives me nuts sometimes.

The other problem with the ribbon is all of the real estate that it takes.   I keep my ribbon minimized, which means I have to click on one of the ribbon tabs to open it up and then click on the appropriate icon.   That means it's no faster than a traditional menu bar for me.

I actually find it faster to find things on a drop-down menu because I just have to scan one list.   With the ribbon I first have to guess which group is likely to hold the tool I want, then I have to scan the area horizontally AND vertically to find what I want.   And all too often I end up guessing wrong and then having to look at other groups - and occasionally other tabs.

Page breaks used to drive me nuts - on the traditional drop-down menus you'd choose "Insert -> Page Break" to add a page break to a document, yet they're nowhere to be found on the "Insert" tab of the ribbon.   There are a lot of other similar choices of tool location that I find to be very non-intuitive.

I've made peace with the ribbon, but the biggest reason I was able to tolerate it is because I've put my most frequently-used tools onto the quick access bar.  I still dread having to find some tool that I don't use very often.

Ribbons look pretty and that's just about their only redeeming quality. They chew up lots of real estate but don't make anything easier to find. My only peace comes from avoiding the darn things.

I can't find a link to it, but I remember seeing an article describing how Microsoft did some focus testing to see what new features people wanted in the upcoming Office 2007.  When they got the results and saw that something like 90% of peoples requests were ALREADY available, the decided they needed to make them easier to find, and hence came the ribbon.

I would say that I am extremely good with the Office suite, and will admit that I was frustrated with the Ribbon when I first saw it.  I mean, how dare they change what I already know so well. But, after using it for a bit I am now able to see not only the advantage to myself, but to a more inexperienced user.  If I hadn't taken the time to give it an honest chance to win me over, I can imagine that life using Office would still be very frustrating to me.

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digital ed
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Re: problems just like Vista ?
In reply to dradam, May 11, 2013

dradam wrote:

dmartin92 wrote:

I saw this article today:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-10805_3-57584029-75/microsoft-responds-to-extreme-windows-8-criticism/

And I was wondering, did they ever go so far as to defend Vista ? Were the problems that significant, with Vista, that Microsoft ever publicly responded to them ?

But yes or no, it's kind of like saying, was it this bad with the Titanic ? Or maybe the Titanic isn't a good example. That was a real disaster. The boat sank.

In any case, even if their "100 million copies sold" statement is technically true, I just don't trust them on that number.  Even if they are being honest, they aren't being frank.  And for them to talk about the "100 million copies sold" number, they just look bad when they say that, because the smart people know, that's not customers running into the retail store saying, "gimme Windows 8, I just gotta have that".

No, they just slightly reskinned Vista after it finally had decent hardware and driver support, called it "Windows 7", and made bank.

My point re Win 8 exactly. Once you have a robust OS you can dress it up almost any way you want.

 digital ed's gear list:digital ed's gear list
Olympus E-1 Olympus E-3 Nikon 1 V2 Nikon D810 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8G ED +14 more
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