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Windows 8 - Deeper Impressions


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#51
tomasz86

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Here is a nice article about the development of Windows UI.

post-47483-1123010975.png



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#52
CoffeeFiend

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Here is a nice article about the development of Windows UI.

It has a few good points for sure. KDE 4 was a WTF, and GNOME 3 even more so (don't even talk about Unity). However, Win8 just takes the cake. That's yet another reason why I'm most likely getting a Mac next: Apple is the only one that hasn't screwed up yet (and still has lots of software I want and need to use).
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#53
tomasz86

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By the way, isn't the speed dial feature used in many browsers basically the same thing? In order to open a new page you need to close/minimize the current one or open a new tab to do it... I use Opera but I don't think it's different for others.

It DOES make sense on a tablet (I've got one) where you need as much screen space as possible.

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#54
Joseph_sw

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when win8 was annouced, it came with promise to run on both x86 processors & ARM processors.
and somewhere along that promise it also said that apps writen specificaly for win8 would able to run both on x86-based win8 & ARM-based win8.

http://www.withinwin...ial-transcript/

[Walt Mossberg> And every program that runs in desktop Windows will run on
[Steven Sinofsky> It's Windows.]
[Walt Mossberg> any/all hardware.


so, how can that be? considering the fact of vast differences between x86 vs ARM archictectures...
some begin to speculates that MS will adopt the classic xBase/Clipper p-codes apporach,
or JavaVM bytecodes apporach,
or something like Flash ActionScript p-codes.

Therefore new apps designed for win8 will not in binary form that natives to CPU instructions anymore,
but rather in binary intermediate-codes, that will be interpreted (or JiT/AoT compiled) by win8.
One could said what win8 is an OS scale javaVM-like or and OS Scale flash player.


Then, developer preview arrives.
Those who spout above theories immediately recognized the WinRT as the intermediate-codes,
after all WinRT have no other purpose, benefit, nor any other justified reasons of being there.

Somewhere in the development MS probably realized for winRT to works,
it need unified/consistent environment (or ecology as MS term) that can exist both in x86 systems or ARM system.
And thats where Metro comes in, to force the unified environment to any Windows 8 users,
regarless wether the Metro actually mets windows users needs or not.

Edited by Joseph_sw, 15 February 2012 - 08:41 PM.


#55
CoffeeFiend

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and somewhere along that promise it also said that apps writen specificaly for win8 would able to run both on x86-based win8 & ARM-based win8

Perhaps he meant that Metro apps would run on both? Either ways, that video's almost a year old. Things might have changed since then.

Here on Win8's blog you can read (WOA = Windows On Arm):

WOA does not support running, emulating, or porting existing x86/64 desktop apps.

That's pretty clear. Different CPUs with instruction sets, different architectures, etc. It probably won't even have a classic desktop to use with your apps. It might only support Metro apps. And also: ARM devices not running x86/x64 code also means that *none* of the existing drivers work.

Therefore new apps designed for win8 will not in binary form that natives to CPU instructions anymore,
but rather in binary intermediate-codes, that will be interpreted (or JiT/AoT compiled) by win8.
One could said what win8 is an OS scale javaVM-like or and OS Scale flash player.

No. You can still compile native binaries for x86 and ARM CPUs (e.g. using C++) so long as you manually compile for both, or you can C#/VB which works on both (if you leave the project settings to AnyCPU obviously). But in all cases you have to use WinRT (and XAML, again, just the Metro stuff). You can't run native x86 code/apps on an ARM CPU, nor the inverse. There's also the HTML + JScript option which is basically just a web page in a fancy browser (not what developers want or expect). They leave you with only one choice (well, unless you really want to count HTML as a second?) which happens to only work on Windows 8 too.

I don't even understand why someone would want an ARM tablet that runs Windows 8. Or why you'd pick that over an iPad, Android device or anything like that.
Coffee: \ˈkȯ-fē, ˈkä-\. noun. Heaven in a cup. Life's only treasure. The meaning of life. Kaffee ist wunderbar. C8H10N4O2 FTW.

#56
JorgeA

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Any similarities ? :P

Posted Image

Posted Image

LOL

The tiling and limited multitasking in Metro remind me of Windows 1.0. So we've "advanced" into the past either 22 or 26 years.

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA, 15 February 2012 - 10:06 PM.


#57
Joseph_sw

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just look at this ancient but visionary stuff: VisiCorp Visi On (1982/1983)
Point of interest:

A very interesting feature of Visi On is the way it was designed.
It was designed to be portable to other OSes such as CP/M or Unix, or to other CPUs besides the 8086.
It did this by providing a kind of non machine specific "virtual machine" (called the Visi Machine) that all applications were written for.
Only the very core of Visi On (called the Visi Host) was machine specific.

Applications were developed in "Visi C", a fairly restricted subset of C designed for maximum portability.
The development environment was Unix based and included a non-graphical version of the Visi-Host that let portions of Visi-On applications be run and tested on Unix.

Sounds kind of like Java doesn't it? And Microsoft is only just now starting to re-write their Windows applications for their .net environment to help accommodate major CPU changes coming up in the future.

you could easly see paralels between what VisiOn capable of vs what Win8'Metro want to be.

#58
JorgeA

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Here is a nice article about the development of Windows UI.

My favorite bit from that article:

And what is it with people trying to fix what isn't broken?

Amen to that!

--JorgeA

#59
CoffeeFiend

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you could easly see paralels between what VisiOn capable of vs what Win8'Metro want to be.

In a very large sense, perhaps. But they're rather different technologies. Metro is a new "menu" and visual style design, not something that makes your apps magically run everywhere on everything. WinRT is how you make graphics happen on the new Windows (using XAML markup or code). It's just a common "presentation" platform. You can still compile ARM-only or x86-only apps this way. But yes, having a common UI for every device helps somewhat.

And what is it with people trying to fix what isn't broken?

That could also mean "never change anything" or "never innovate" in some ways. I'm all for change -- so long as the replacement is at least as good as what it replaced. I guess there's a fine line between "stale or outdated" and "with excess or for no good reason".

Then again, especially on the developer side, MS abandons lots of reliable and proven "mature" technologies, then pushes new stuff that doesn't catch on, then changes its mind, then pushes more new stuff that makes you wonder WTF they're thinking.

A couple quick examples? MS abandons C programmers (no C99 compliant compiler after over a decade and it's not planned), ditto for classic ASP (no meaningful updates since Win2k), C++11 support lagging behind GCC (yes, open source GCC supports new C++ features better than MS' flagship Visual Studio Ultimate 2010 that costs $11899) and so on. Then they push for new technologies like Silverlight and WPF which fail to gain significant adoption (only to replace them already). And now? All this brand new Win7 stuff we haven't half implemented yet (e.g. jump lists, task dialogs, etc) that you're just barely starting to use? Forget about all of it! Now learn this Win8-only WinRT stuff. Oh, and by the way, we're pushing aside the desktop, all the software you use and killing backwards compatibility as well. Multitasking is passé while cloud (Azure) is the future! And we're still supposed to be all excited about a phone touch-screen interface on our desktops now I guess, because Windows ARM tablets and WP7 phones are the future, right? I just don't see this ending well.
Coffee: \ˈkȯ-fē, ˈkä-\. noun. Heaven in a cup. Life's only treasure. The meaning of life. Kaffee ist wunderbar. C8H10N4O2 FTW.

#60
JorgeA

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And what is it with people trying to fix what isn't broken?

That could also mean "never change anything" or "never innovate" in some ways. I'm all for change -- so long as the replacement is at least as good as what it replaced. I guess there's a fine line between "stale or outdated" and "with excess or for no good reason".

Good point. I was thinking of it in the sense of "change for change's sake."

Improvements are always welcome: the Windows 95/98 desktop worked much, much better than the Windows 3.x Program Manager. But I don't see any point in making changes because a given way looks "stale" or "outdated." What makes a UI "outdated," anyway -- just because it's been around (and worked fine) for some time?

It's like saying about automobiles that having the gas pedal to the right of the brake, with the emergency over to the left, is a stale old "legacy" interface, and it's so cool to use dashboard buttons instead, with the gas to the left, the emergency in the middle, and the brake over to the right. It's not "cool," just silly.

When I point this out to fans of "change for change's sake," they look at me with glassy eyes and call me a "hater." No: I simply don't see any purpose in changing the way I interact with my machines, just because. I'd rather use my equipment for purposes beyond itself, than waste time relearning how to use it. :boring:

(yes, open source GCC supports new C++ features better than MS' flagship Visual Studio Ultimate 2010 that costs $11899)

:o :crazy:

--JorgeA

#61
tomasz86

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Posted Image

post-47483-1123010975.png


#62
JorgeA

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tomasz86,

Excellent graphic! B)

I wonder if I can turn that into my Windows 8 wallpaper...

--JorgeA

#63
tomasz86

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Haha, it's not mine :lol: I just found it somewhere in the Net.

Edited by tomasz86, 16 February 2012 - 05:27 PM.

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#64
CoffeeFiend

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The flag was too familar a symbol for the Windows we know and love. So for the MS Bob 2012 Win8 they designed a new logo. It's like if they want to send a message: This isn't the Windows you like and expect so we've changed the logo to reflect that. Not only Win8 is awful, but now even its logo is. This things screams "mediocre".
Coffee: \ˈkȯ-fē, ˈkä-\. noun. Heaven in a cup. Life's only treasure. The meaning of life. Kaffee ist wunderbar. C8H10N4O2 FTW.

#65
JorgeA

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So for the MS Bob 2012 Win8

ROFL

I, too, feel like jumping out that window. :angrym:

Here's another take on the new Win8 logo. Check out the comments by "TheDissolver" and "RobL777":

Multitasking multi-pane re-positionable screens is the "killer app" for this OS; Metro has no place on my desktop/laptop.

In 2016, they will change the name of the OS to Tiles.

Win8 might be the next New Coke. Note how the negative reception by a "small," "vocal" minority of tasters was actually the more accurate harbinger of the general public's reaction to the product. Oh, and how the company downplayed those negative opinions... Oh, and how the Coke chief said consumers would not have the choice of sticking with the classic, legacy, stale old boring square formulation...

EDIT: A commenter on the Ars Technica page, "Crackhead Johny," had the same New Coke take.

Luckily, now it looks like Extended Support for Vista will now last into 2017, and into 2020 for Windows 7. So I won't need to learn a new OS for another 8 years or so.

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA, 18 February 2012 - 01:46 AM.


#66
JorgeA

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Three more notes on Windows 8 (pre-Consumer Preview):

  • If a Windows Update is available and you drill through the settings to see what updates are available, and then you click on the "more information" link, Metro (and not Desktop) Internet Explorer opens to the page. This means that, if you wish then to move on to other Web pages, you will do so in Metro IE, which runs without plugins and for which the security and privacy settings are unknown. This could have an impact on your browsing security and/or privacy. You can of course switch to Desktop IE, but that takes an additional action compared to the current state of affairs, where you can simply move on directly to wherever you want to go next.
  • Speaking of Windows Updates, the Metro version of the update feature provides merely a general statement that updates are available, and the total size of the updates. There is no breakdown of what the updates are, or an explanation of what they are intended to do. Another step in the lobotomization of the computing experience.
  • Finally, AllThingsD reports that the only desktop software that will run on Windows on ARM are certain Microsoft Office programs:

Sinofsky also said that the Windows-on-ARM machines will come with several Office apps — Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote — that have been tuned to run in a very battery-efficient manner. But Sinofsky said that, although those applications will run in the traditional Windows desktop, they will be the only programs allowed to do so, other than components of Windows itself.

“There are no other compiled dekstop apps that are available,” Sinofsky told AllThingsD. All of the other apps for Windows on ARM will be the new-style “Metro” apps.


A glimpse into the future of computing?

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA, 22 February 2012 - 01:48 AM.


#67
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Another note:

I went to download Classic Shell for the purpose of testing the feature to restore a functional status bar in Internet Explorer 10 (desktop version). IE10's SmartScreen Filter prohibited the download, claiming that it was malware, and offered no choice to perform the download anyway.

The SmartScreen Filter for IE8 in Vista approved the download, as did the reputation function for Norton 360 v5. A N360 scan of the contents found nothing objectionable. Further scans with Malwarebytes Antimalware and with Spybot Search & Destroy indicated nothing suspicious about the Classic Shell file.

So the question is -- is IE10 a limited-functionality browser, whose opinions override everybody else's and permit no getting past its imperial edicts? Or is the IE10 filter so much better than anyone else's, that we should just accept its decisions?

Firefox 9.0.1 did allow the download, and scanned it at the end, no problem. However, FF did not inform me where it was downloading it to, and moreover the browser started to update itself without asking. I closed the update window; maybe that stopped the download THIS time.

So IE10 gets an F and Firefox 9 gets a D+. What is it with all this removal of both awareness and choice from the user?? :realmad:

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA, 22 February 2012 - 01:21 PM.


#68
CoffeeFiend

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There are no other compiled dekstop apps that are available,” Sinofsky told AllThingsD. All of the other apps for Windows on ARM will be the new-style “Metro” apps.

That's what I was saying earlier. Win8 on ARM is a Metro-only version of Windows -- and even then, Metro apps compiled with native x86 binaries (e.g. a C++/WinRT app) won't work either (not without recompiling for ARM specifically). So it offers absolutely nothing over an Android tablet or an iPad which both already have a vibrant market place, tons of devs, tons of apps, a far wider selection of tablets, etc. I mean, what's the point of Windows if it's without all the software that makes it useful in the first place, and also without all the drivers, without the backwards compatibility and basically everything else "regular old Windows" had going for it?

Honestly, it might as well be a Windows Phone 7 device -- one which can't actually phone. The interface is like what people would expect on such a device, you won't be surprised when you find out it's locked down much like Apple's iDevices, you don't expect a phone to run regular old Windows apps and so on. People would also know to avoid it and they'd be spared from wasting time with it and returning it later. Then again, I bet you can find plenty of decent entry-level laptops with a uncrippled Win7 today than what the average Win8 ARM tablet's going to cost when they'll be out in a year.

As for IE10 I honestly couldn't care less. I haven't been an IE user since 2003 or 2004 and couldn't be happier. Since I got rid of it we never caught malware of any kind, and the other browsers are overall: better featured, have better interfaces/usability, don't force you to update your OS to get the latest version, are faster for the most part (IE9 is still a dog according to the V8 benchmark, Peacekeeper benchmark, Kraken benchmark and others), etc. And most importantly for me they all have a large number of useful extensions and tools for different tasks ready to use. I only use IE as a last resort (the odd crappy website that uses ActiveX controls for example). It's no wonder IE's market share has been steadily declining for years. I don't see this trend reversing anytime soon either.
Coffee: \ˈkȯ-fē, ˈkä-\. noun. Heaven in a cup. Life's only treasure. The meaning of life. Kaffee ist wunderbar. C8H10N4O2 FTW.

#69
JorgeA

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I mean, what's the point of Windows if it's without all the software that makes it useful in the first place, and also without all the drivers, without the backwards compatibility and basically everything else "regular old Windows" had going for it?

Bingo!

Paul Thurrott made a similar point as you in Windows Weekly (click on the Audio link and go to about 57:20 till 59:00). Without desktop software, there's no particular reason to own a WOA tablet vs. an iPad. And Thurrott's a Windows 8 booster!

--JorgeA

#70
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there's no particular reason to own a WOA tablet vs. an iPad

or an Android tablet, or even a BlackBerry PlayBook for that matter. All are better than a Win8 tablet, and most likely all will cost less too (except perhaps the iPad which might be about the same price). I'm considering buying a PlayBook this weekend in fact. $250 for a high quality 7" tablet, 32GB of storage, a high quality 1024x600 multi-touch LCD, 802.11n and Bluetooth, a nice fast dual core ARM CPU and 1GB of RAM, GPS, USB and HDMI ports, 2 decent cameras, it plays most HD video, etc. And yes, all BlackBerry apps, and now Android apps as well!

A Win8 WOA tablet with all of this (see MSI WindPad, ACER Iconia Tab, HP Slate, etc) would at the very least cost twice as much and I really don't see how it would be better in any way.

And this is coming from someone who has been a MS fanboy for over 2 decades (Win8 will seemingly put an end to that)
Coffee: \ˈkȯ-fē, ˈkä-\. noun. Heaven in a cup. Life's only treasure. The meaning of life. Kaffee ist wunderbar. C8H10N4O2 FTW.

#71
belgianguy

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I just don't get what they are thinking in Redmond. I've been developing by using Microsoft tools for all of my young life (but have picked up Ubuntu/Eclipse/NetBeans along the way). Wasn't it Ballmer who yelled "Developers, developers, developers"?

I get why Microsoft is doing this. Mobile markets are flooding with iPads and Androids, and they needed to do something. Yet, instead of going with a sound strategy, they decided that desktop users and efficiency are second class citizens to tablets and touch.

I've developed with the Kinect SDK, I've developed with the Surface 2.0 SDK, I've developed with .NET 4.0's Touch SDK (WPF and XAML, what a waste of time in retrospect). While these human computer interactions sure have their uses in their specific context, they by no means are a better alternative for every action. Yet Metro does just that. I can't understand Microsoft is betting the farm on some stupid user interface gimmicks. While they probably see this as a way to leverage the flagship Windows platform as a last-ditch attempt to break into the phone/tablet market, in my eyes they did nothing else than 'infecting' something that was healthy before: Windows for Desktop. Now, Windows 8 tells you it's the Metro way or the highway. But when the highway allows for easier travel than the Metro way, I won't hesitate. Especially since backwards compatibility seems to be out of the window (pun intended), there should be even less friction to switch to another OS entirely or force those unconvinced to just sit out the Windows 8 disaster-in-progress.

How could they do this to their loyal userbase? What has gotten to them that their shills online representatives are pushing changes that are a net decrease in productivity and at best arrive at a draw in ideal circumstances? At the moment, to me, buying Windows 8 means paying to become less efficient, more constrained and having to navigate through a cluttered mess touch-based user interface with hardware (mouse and keyboard) that doesn't complement the software. Hardware that is capable of pixel-precision (you know, not suffering from the fat-finger problem), able to drag and drop over multiple monitors (let's see them do that by touch). While Touch and Kinect are interesting novelties, and shine in 'bursty' usage scenarios like games and entertainment (fatigue being the limiting factor), I don't see myself programming by touch, nor by Kinect. I absolutely hate what they have done. Synofski seems to be Microsoft's attempt at their own Steve Jobs, yet with twice the arrogance and none of the brilliance.

Something I thought I'd never say: If they don't change course, I'm well willing to ditch Windows completely. Sitting it out isn't an option for someone who works in IT. Never was I this happy with what I had on Windows 7, Visual Studio (+addins) is a joy to work with, and the OS just works. I hope they realise that if Windows 8 falls flat, their mobile branch dies along with it. No use for a tablet or a phone that shares the UI paradigm with something nobody buys/uses/wants. And flipping the bird to people who like to get something done (and maybe even develop for said platform) is something that doesn't sit well with me. Is a tablet user (solely consumer) really that much more worthy than a desktop developer (consumer + producer)? With the usage statistics of IE6 proving to this very day that corporations hate change and have a turning circle larger than the biggest cargo freighters, this change in user interface will anger that part of the market that provided so much support for them in the past.

I've been a loyal fan since Windows 95, but now I just don't see it. And it seems it's not just me who thinks that Microsoft is too much into, or for that matter, too out of, touch.

Edited by belgianguy, 25 February 2012 - 08:08 AM.


#72
CoffeeFiend

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Fantastic post :)

Mobile markets are flooding with iPads and Androids, and they needed to do something. Yet, instead of going with a sound strategy, they decided that desktop users and efficiency are second class citizens to tablets and touch.

Precisely. Instead of making a mobile product that sells based on its own merit (something they're incapable of IMO), they decided to make the desktop painful to use, giving it an awful interface that makes no sense -- because then we'll want "that thing that makes the desktop suck and that angers you" on our mobile devices too? I see that as yet another reason NOT to buy one.

While they probably see this as a way to leverage the flagship Windows platform as a last-ditch attempt to break into the phone/tablet market, in my eyes they did nothing else than 'infecting' something that was healthy before: Windows for Desktop. Now, Windows 8 tells you it's the Metro way or the highway. But when the highway allows for easier travel than the Metro way, I won't hesitate. Especially since backwards compatibility seems to be out of the window (pun intended), there should be even less friction to switch to another OS entirely or force those unconvinced to just sit out the Windows 8 disaster-in-progress.

You summed up my thoughts better than I could have. They won't make their mobile devices attractive to me -- even as a long-time MS fanboy. They're just killing the desktop instead (the only market segment they had) by alienating all of its users and developers.

Something I thought I'd never say: If they don't change course, I'm well willing to ditch Windows completely.

That's what's extremely worrying. Lots of us long-timers, fanboys, programmers and enthusiasts that have been with MS for over 20 years are now perfectly willing to ditch Windows altogether. That's what's actually happening -- not that we're all lusting for their mobile devices that don't sell, never sold and most likely never will. All of a sudden, the lifeblood of Windows are thinking "how about I run these Windows apps in vSphere or in a terminal server, and find replacements or ports of other apps to other platforms?" MS or Windows certainly won't die overnight, but they're forcing us to start a migration away from their platform and making us consider their competitor's offerings. If Windows is going in that direction, now what computer am I going to use for Photoshop or AutoCAD or to sync my iPhone? Yes: a Mac. MS just sold a Mac. And if I'm now a Mac user, what platform am I going to develop for? And thus by killing its Visual Studio sales, they'll also kill their SQL Server sales. MS is going to hand over its market to Apple, on a proverbial silver platter.

Never was I this happy with what I had on Windows 7, Visual Studio (+addins) is a joy to work with, and the OS just works.

Same here. We had it *so* good. Win7 and VS2010 are a truly fantastic combo. And just like that, they take it all away. Win8 is an abomination, and even VS11 is doing some questionable changes that have its users rather upset (everything is now grey). Yes, they're working on making the interface suck (thankfully 3rd party themes should fix most of it) instead of trying to compete with C++11 support, useful C# features besides async, improving refactoring or anything else that might actually be useful. Right now it doesn't look like it's worth upgrading to regardless of the price.

3 more days until we see if the sky is really falling.

Oh, I'm working on a fairly large C# project, but thankfully the only hardware it uses is a USB communication device. So worst case scenario (yes, there's always Mono too), we'll still be able to use Win7 in a VM, passing through the USB device to the VM 10+ years down the road. It's sad that Win8 is forcing us to consider what we'd do without Windows before it's even released. Edit: well, there's also a Cyclone Pro programmer but that's also a USB device (or used stand-alone, or via TCP/IP or via RS-232 so no worries at all here)
Coffee: \ˈkȯ-fē, ˈkä-\. noun. Heaven in a cup. Life's only treasure. The meaning of life. Kaffee ist wunderbar. C8H10N4O2 FTW.

#73
jaclaz

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OT :ph34r:, but not much ;) search for "revolutionary" on this page :whistle: :
http://www.microsoft...s.aspx?id=19004

:angel

:lol:

Abd - still OT but not that much - a comparison related to design evolution:
http://reboot.pro/16395/

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz, 26 February 2012 - 11:10 AM.


#74
CoffeeFiend

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search for "revolutionary" on this page :whistle: :
http://www.microsoft...s.aspx?id=19004

Yes, that sounds like a technology we should adopt! I hear it has a bright future :lol:
Coffee: \ˈkȯ-fē, ˈkä-\. noun. Heaven in a cup. Life's only treasure. The meaning of life. Kaffee ist wunderbar. C8H10N4O2 FTW.

#75
belgianguy

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Never was I this happy with what I had on Windows 7, Visual Studio (+addins) is a joy to work with, and the OS just works.

Same here. We had it *so* good. Win7 and VS2010 are a truly fantastic combo. And just like that, they take it all away. Win8 is an abomination, and even VS11 is doing some questionable changes that have its users rather upset (everything is now grey). Yes, they're working on making the interface suck (thankfully 3rd party themes should fix most of it) instead of trying to compete with C++11 support, useful C# features besides async, improving refactoring or anything else that might actually be useful. Right now it doesn't look like it's worth upgrading to regardless of the price.

3 more days until we see if the sky is really falling.

Oh, I'm working on a fairly large C# project, but thankfully the only hardware it uses is a USB communication device. So worst case scenario (yes, there's always Mono too), we'll still be able to use Win7 in a VM, passing through the USB device to the VM 10+ years down the road. It's sad that Win8 is forcing us to consider what we'd do without Windows before it's even released.


Oh my, I knew they were redesigning VS11, but this is bad! Eclipse looks vivid compared to that. I didn't know colors were forbidden! Using a bland gray, CAPS and :::::: as spacers, what were they thinking? Were they thinking at all? Did they already name the theme?
How about "Depression" or "Suicidal" ?

A tool that is mainly used by developers to be productive with shouldn't be put in the hands of designers to give it a set of fake boobs and a lip-job. Especially so in the case of VS: under the hood is where the core improvements should be made. A groundrule should be: If an alteration does damage productivity and/or efficiency in the least, that alteration should not be made, especially not in an IDE.

For starters, it would be so nice to have VS not flat-out crap itself and crash when I get a bit outlandish with XAML. Styling should be an afterthought and is probably best left to the developer to customize. I don't want to think about what this redesign already cost, what the re-redesign is going to cost, let alone what the end-user eventually will have to pay for this unholy mess.

I don't get Microsoft's sudden infatuation with giving up so much in the domain of efficiency and productivity to satisfy some designer's temper tantrum. Unification of design is nice and all, but it should never come at a cost of productivity and/or efficiency. And it's that capital sin Metro is guilty of. Metro works for simple things, single-use applications. Like stepping through a set of picture, or cycling through a set of Twitter messages. When things get complex and advanced, Metro is far too clumsy with its big texts and its gluttonous usage of screen estate. It are those complex programs one cannot use with touch in mind. As I've said before, in my eyes Metro doesn't bring anything useful to the desktop. On the contrary even.

While I thought they'd be open for criticism, the main trend I see is that everybody who doesn't outright adore Metro is considered to be an outcast, someone who "doesn't get it", the Windows version of a leper. Microsoft might be getting cosy with the prospective tablet owners, but someone is going to have to code these apps for said tablets. And those who code for a living aren't doing it on tablets as far as I know. Your hands would be reduced to bloody stumps in a moment's notice due to the verbosity of XAML alone. Good luck getting an app ecosystem started if you treat your developers like dirt.

The last thing they should be doing is flipping off the guys and girls who do their programming. At the moment they're making their life that much harder by being obsessed with some sort of Cupertinian fetishism. It sure as hell isn't going to make programmers flock to the platform. I've been looking around for other options.

All in all, I feel the people who want to use their computer to get something done are getting the Milton Waddams (Office Space) treatment by Microsoft.




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