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Windows 8 user interface ripped apart by Nielsen Norman Group

By Shawn Knight · 76 replies
Nov 20, 2012
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  1. Jane W.

    Jane W. TS Rookie

    I'm in the exact same boat. I have 3 x24" monitors and I often have 8+ programs running from Visual Studio, Sql Server, Filezilla, Virtual Machines, Remote Desktop, Photoshop, Outlook, Training Videos, multiple copies of Word/Excel, IM, etc. ...and as much as I'm trying to like Win8, it's a productivity killer. I tried very hard to use it for a couple of weeks, then had to go back to Win7 since my productivity fell off a cliff.

    It scared me when all the "on stage" demos always showed them flipping through a picture-book and showing me how nice it was for looking at family photos, and that I "could even see the weather" on the side (inside, I went "uh-oh"). I love the fast boot and better networking, but that's not enough to endure 4 or 5 clicks to what used to be 1 or 2, and then for their apps to go full screen on my 24" monitor? (it's like going from a power user to Dora the Explorer, and yes,...that is why the 5 year old kids are 'fine' with it.)

    I don't know why they are shunning people who need to be productive all day/night, and are throwing us off the bus for people who like to turn on TV, watch a movie, and look at digital picture frames. Microsoft has been so shocked at Apples sales that it's throwing its "cash-cow" user-base under the train for "new-blood" that it'll never find. Microsoft, you'll never be Apple, so stop trying, and use your strengths in the productivity world, not the picture-book world. (Apple will never be the platform of power users, yes there are a few, but that's not Apples market).
    czeshirecat likes this.
  2. HellcatM

    HellcatM TS Rookie Posts: 35

    Well apple fanboys just like shiny, pretty gadgets with icons so going by you, Windows 8 has just as much a chance with hits colorful looks and moves as apple has.
  3. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    Well, like the iPhone ad says. "if you don't have an iPhone, then you don't have an iPhone".

    M$, seeking the same universal appeal, should yank a page from the Apple playbook, and talk down to their new target demo, in the same condescending manner. To wit: "if you don't run Windows 8, then you're not running Windows 8".

    So now, what to call the Microsoft equivalent of "iSumers". Wait, I have it. "m$heep" That'll wake up the alligator on their shirts and bring out their wallets won't it? Meh, I suppose time will tell.
  4. HellcatM

    HellcatM TS Rookie Posts: 35

    The M$ is getting old, apple is the new evil empire who gauges and sues everyone they can. apple makes Microsoft seem like a teddy bear. apple is the one who was seeking the universal appeal that Windows has, and they did with idevices (or what we normal people like to call them, rectangles with icons). Microsoft is just trying to compete. apple is like scientology, you give them your money every time they ask for it (which is when a new shiny rectangle with icons comes out). I so can't wait until Samsung starts making phones with flexible screens. apple will wish they never bit the hand that feeds them. I'm hoping this phone is a Windows Phone...but if its an Android that would be ok too. As long as it takes away from apple I'll have a smile on my face.
  5. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    Right, and I'm going to stop using that acronym on your say so, this very minute.
    Try and avoid sweeping generalizations, and metaphorical pronouncements such as, "Apple is the evil empire". Apple is simply a corporation, and as such, it isn't the only game in town, to the end of good or evil.

    But granted given the choice between M$ and Apple, Apple is the "eviler" of the 2.

    Do you ever feel like a rat in a maze, running from one poisoned food tray to another. You probably should.

    See look, I know how to write in metaphor too....

    What exactly do you mean by gauges? "Gouges" seems like it would fit, but I've taken Thanksgiving Day off from mind reading.

    Always good to be checked up on by "we normal people". I like to call "normal people","those of us who can't stand being alone" so we give a huge chunk of our paycheck to a telecom to be named later".

    The sad thing is, when you have a patent on a "rectangle with icons", there's almost no limit to the amount of blood that one of Apple's corporate, iTicks" can suck because of it.

    Or dear, more metaphor...
  6. Exactly. Consumers are not 'yes' men. They buy a product that interest them and if it turns out to be horrible after a long tradition of buying products from some business then consumers should be obligated to voice their opinion of both like and dislike otherwise Win9 is going to be just as much a mess as Win8 is for many people.

    And let's be real about Microsoft here. They have had a habit now of pushing products onto customers & businesses despite criticism against the products as not suitable.

    Case in point, google Destructoid - I am officially done with the Kinect.
  7. HellcatM

    HellcatM TS Rookie Posts: 35

    apple is a company, but they seem to be doing whatever it takes to get rid of the competition. Before it was the mac vs PC commercials, now its suing others. apple some how gets these very general patents, patents that no company should get. The latest page turn patent has been used for years and even has some public domain usage to it. The problem with this is now that apple is patenting everything under the sun no matter if its a logical patent or not, so now every company is doing the same thing so they can get ready in case apple comes along and tries to nuke them. This is not the way the patent system was made. You don't patent a green icon with a phone on it, or a page turn, or rectangular objects with icons. You patent things that are hard to recreate, that if someone wants to figure it out they have to reverse engineer it. apple goes to far and its because they're scared, they want to be a monopoly because if they're not they might become second or third place. It doesn't matter if they're making billions upon billions of dollars, its not enough and if they keep getting away with it, it could hurt technology. Also apple tends not to want to share. I think they went into the patent agreement with HTC out of fear because they see the EU and others are getting angry. If apple had their way they'd bankrupt HTC, ban all Android OS gadgets and then they'd probably go after who ever is second place after that.

    Back in the day when Microsoft was doing questionable things I was against them. I was actually looking to make a mac clone and wanted to get away from Microsoft. Now Microsoft (because the government got on their ***) is playing nice. This is something that has to happen to apple, they need some sense knocked into them. Until that happens I'm banning apple, and I know they don't care because they have so many blind followers. A lot of them even say they know apple is doing wrong but they still buy they're stuff. apple will never learn unless they are made to learn.

    captaincranky, you seem to not think what apple is doing is wrong and that's your right to think that way. Just keep your crazy away from me.
  8. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    You actually don't know me, have an extremely truncated grip on reading comprehension, or you simply wouldn't say that.

    You're preaching to the choir, pity you can't her the singing.

    Why would anybody that implies that Apple's corporate lawyers are iTicks, (that's a euphemism for "blood suckers"), be considered to be on "Apple's side?
  9. HellcatM

    HellcatM TS Rookie Posts: 35

    People buy what they want. A lot of people didn't like Vista so it didn't sell well. The only company I think can twist peoples minds into buy their stuff is apple. If people don't like Windows 8 they won't buy tablets or computers with Windows 8 on them, then Microsoft will figure out what they did wrong and fix it in Windows 9.

    People say that every other Windows version sucks. That may be true, but in every other Windows version they try and test things out. ME didn't do well, it sucked but it was the first OS to try out the restore points. People didn't like Vista, but Vista was the first to add UAC which people didn't like but they fixed in Windows 7. Windows 8 is totally different with a new start menu. Should they have giving people on non-touch PC's the choice to login to desktop mode and have a start menu? Maybe...maybe not. I understand both sides. Windows 8 isn't a bad OS, you just have to get use to it. Its a different way of thinking and yes I do fear that they may take away the desktop all together. There is an advantage to having the desktop over the tiled start menu, but there are ways to get around those disadvantages. Will Microsoft figure it out? I hope so...I think so.
  10. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    U'm, I'd say they absolutely should have given that choice. Cause you know what I want to do most of all with my new OS. That would be smearing my greasy fingers all over a $1000.00 touch enabled 27" or so inch IPS monitor.

    Touch tablets are far from new, but save forRedbox kiosks and phones, they aren't terribly practical. Graphic artists have been using touch enabled tablets in conjunction with Photoshop nigh on a decade. And they make sense in that context, despite still having a keyboard and mouse at the ready. I'm not exactly why you just can't use the "Speed dial" function" in Opera for the news & weather crapplications in Metro.

    Call me when the bugs are thoroughly out of voice rec, not before.
  11. HellcatM

    HellcatM TS Rookie Posts: 35

    Microsoft wants to make an OS that spans every platform and if they let Windows on non touch computer stay the same that would have defeated the purpose. The whole idea is to make it easier on developers so all they have to do is make little changes to an app to run between a tablet, PC and phone, if they would have kept things the same as before then devs would have to write 2 full separate apps one for desktop machines and one for touch. This also ultimately makes it easier for users as well, they don't have to know 2 different OS'. Sure now there is desktop and tile start screens and basically it is 2 OS', but that's why they're pushing the tile OS so if/when they get rid of the desktop people will be ready. This could backfire on them, and as people with non-touch devices just stay in desktop anyway which would keep the demand for desktop versions of certain programs which might mean some developers may not convert their desktop programs into tiled apps. Only time will tell though, and we don't know what Microsoft has up its sleeves. Maybe very good Kinect integration? Or a better touch pad. Maybe if you have a tablet you can use that as a touch pad? Voice commands (which wouldn't work well in offices)?

    They brought out Windows 8 now because they had to and they took away the start button because they thought they had to. This could have also been Steven Sinofsky's idea and maybe they will bring back the start menu? BTW Microsoft tried to block the start button apps from being used in Windows 8 and now they're listed in the Store. Maybe that's a hint at whats to come? Maybe not?

    I know touch tablets aren't new. Microsoft has been trying to push them for many years as well. To bad they didn't come out with a good touch interface until now.

    I've been using Windows 8 since the Dev Preview and its not perfect but I think its going in the right direction. Its solid, fast and I see its potential. I like it better than mac os or Linux (although Ubuntu is starting to come together). I defiantly like Windows Phone better than ios. Android is nice, I haven't seen enough of BBOS 10, but I saw a little bit of Sailfish (Meego OS) and it looks pretty nice as well. I love Window Phone though.

    One thing I think Microsoft should have done is instead of Windows RT made Windows Phone the ARM tablet OS.
  12. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    Either that, or they forced him to resign because he wouldn't go along with it. I suppose none of us will ever be a bug on that boardroom wall..:mad:

    M$ is trying to beat Apple at its own game, by becoming the "New Apple". And that's a fruit you don't want to take a bite of, trust me on this on.

    All I see with Windows 8, is a corporate power grab against a multitude of loyal followers. They even had the same company that designed the Apple logo, design their new one. I gain some satisfaction from knowing they were probably bilked a couple of million bucks for that. And yet, that doesn't offset the pain of having to look at it.

    With the advent of M$'s app store, I see a veiled attempt to wrest control and input away from outside developers involvement, thus herding end users into buying from them.

    Since I'm not a software engineer, I can't say absolutely how easy or not it is to allow the end user his or her, choice of interface preference at boot. But seeings as how Rocket Dock can do it, how difficult could it be for the legion of developers employed by Microsoft, to accomplish this task.

    The start button and desktop aren't available at boot, because M$ doesn't want them available, not because they can't. They've gone another full mile toward pandering to the masses, and wresting control of the system in a manner that would make Steve Jobs proud.

    I'm not a gamer. I only fully use Windows because Adobe doesn't write for Linux, and WINE, is a PITA..

    And speaking of Adobe, they're well on the way to conquering software piracy, by offering software on a subscription basis. You can still buy the software at retail. But if, (or perhaps "when"), they pull the plug on that, there's not much the people that need the product will be able to do about it.

    The same goes for the new business models that aim to get rid of physical media. Once they do, they've got their suckers into your wallet, and say goodbye to disposable income. Something I always point out, "when DVDs are outlawed, only outlaws will have DVDs".

    I think this new incarnation of Windows is aimed right up the old cattle ramp for customer slaughter.

    Call it paranoia, call it an Orwellian fantasy, call it anything you like, but don't forget to call me from the cattle pen.
  13. HellcatM

    HellcatM TS Rookie Posts: 35


    Good article, good video.

    If Adobe offered a sub would that be so bad? Say its $10 a month and you get every update and upgrade as long as you pay. Knowing the price of Photoshop it'll probably be more like $25-30 a month though. What if it came out to be about the same amount as you'd pay for it in the store, except you would just automatically get the newest upgrade.

    I kind of expect Windows to go in this direction. Pay $6 a month and get every upgrade. Windows 9 come out, you get a pop up that says "do you want to upgrade to Windows 9?" You say yes, it downloads it, sets a system restore point and does the upgrade.

    The only downfall I see with this is Office. I only use Word so its not worth me buying the full Office suite.

    I agree Microsoft is trying to do certain things more like apple, but I don't think they're going as far as you think. They're taking the best of what apple does and leaving out the bad. I think they'd like all desktop programs to be remade into tiled apps, but I don't think they'll threaten a company to do so. I wouldn't doubt it if 10 years from now we still can run desktop apps within Windows. There may not be a desktop but I think you'll still be able to run the programs. But of course Microsoft would like every program to become a tiled app, it would be a constant stream of money coming in. Also apps tend to cost less than programs do. So I think you are a little paranoid. If this were apple I'd say you were right on the money.

    Physical media may go away. I think we'll still have thumb drives and later who know what. DVD's and blurays will be gone, but something will take their place.

    Here's my dream computer. I have a server at home which runs my main OS and all my programs are on it. I have a tablet which has Windows and I can save stuff on it but I'd only do that when I'm in an area with no broadband. Otherwise I'll log into my home server and get my home desktop from anywhere in the world and the same with my work desktop. This way you worry less about the hardware, processing power, graphics power of your other devices and you just have one server which can cost as much as a desktop. If you play games, you get a powerful graphics card, if you don't need the graphics power, go with lower end graphics, just like your home PC. You have one laptop or hybrid that you carry with you for work and play. If you go on vacation and didn't bring your computer, you can login at a friends house or at a cyber cafe.

    This is the way I see computers going, it may take 20 years because of the greedy ISP's and cell phone providers, but I think it will happen. And I think Microsoft and Google...maybe apple but if they don't get their **** together hopefully not...will be there to contribute to it in their own way.
  14. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    Ten bucks a month, yeah right: http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshop/buying-guide-subscriptions.html

    And that's only one product, there's a whole creative suite.

    I'm a rare thing nowadays, an anachronism who enjoys having things and pastimes that no one can pull the plug on.

    Most people don't need anything more than "Photoshop Elements". You can usually grab the almost yearly edition before the next one for $50.00 bucks. And it's yours to keep. Being forward thinking is groovy and all that, as long as being tacked onto your credit card, not mine.

    I use XP day to day, with up to date AV and browsers, it's an outstanding, bullet proof, stable OS, and I own it outright. No touch, no payments, my kind of OS.
  15. HellcatM

    HellcatM TS Rookie Posts: 35

    I did say most likely $25-$30 a month so I was on the button. I don't know how much the suite costs. I don't edit video that often and when I do I use Paint.net.

    I'm all for being paperless and medialess. I'm the type that likes on-demand, and instant gratification.

    I went from XP and skipped Vista and went to Windows 7 and now to Windows 8.
  16. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    It was about six. The extended version is more.
    This carries the stigma known as, "immediate infantile gratification".

    I have a lappy with a basic version of Vista on it. I guess the best you can say for it is, "it's an OS". Not bad, but not worth the upgrade from XP. The short answer, "meh".
  17. HellcatM

    HellcatM TS Rookie Posts: 35

    Looks like its $50 a month for the whole suite and you can upgrade for $30 a month. Depending on how often they come out with new versions and if you want to upgrade to every new version, it sounds like its about on par with buying it from a store.

    "immediate infantile gratification" lol well I call it futuristic thinking and/or thinking of the environment (no I'm not a tree huger).

    Vista actually was ok but Windows 7 is much better, faster and more secure. Windows 8 has much of the same security features as 7 plus a few more.
  18. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    Well, my credit card company consistently asks me to be "environmentally friendly" by foregoing paper statements. Were I to do that, they would pocket the paper, printing, and mailing costs. Erstwhile I, while supposedly feeling pretty darn good about myself, would bear the burden of absolutely needing internet service, would pay the same old extravagant interest rates.

    Mail me the statement, and hand me a DVD.

    You can't sell me on the logic of being tied to one source for your media, and meanwhile b***h about all the scrutiny and control you are allowing yourself to be put under by doing so. "I download everything. I couldn't be bothered going to Redbox". "The MPAA just paid of more judges, now the IPs are going to start handing out warnings. If you see the dichotomy there".

    And yeah, you can be without internet through no fault of your own. A driver around my neighborhood took out a utility pole, leaving me with no phone, no alarm, and no internet, begging to use the phone at my local bank branch.

    "OK" is basically a synonym for, "meh", "Meh", being but a point or two lower on the enthusiasm scale. It's what you get when you cross the superlative, "OK" with the emotional assessment, "but who cares".
  19. czeshirecat

    czeshirecat TS Rookie

    I agree with all people here who use windows as a tool with several monitors and a ton of applications running concurrently. Windows 8 sucks.
    I've got a "metro" equivalent on my Nexus 7. It's ok for looking at pics, playing music, sticking netflix on with a movie while I multitask on my pc or laptop. That only cost me £159. My PC cost me 10 times that and I expect to get more than windows 8 offers at the moment. It's shallow, it's doesn't boot faster on a 3 partition system (not that I think that a faster booting pc is important enough to even mention in reviews), and metro with Netflix fills the whole screen so I c
    ouldn't multitask with a single monitor. Might as well go watch the tv if I can't multitask.
    Why try to fix something that aint broke? If someone can't use a pc then give them a nexus/kindle/ipad mini.
  20. DAOWAce

    DAOWAce TS Booster Posts: 268   +39

    Vista became a good OS after Microsoft patched it up.

    People will never get off this bandwagon.

  21. MrBungle

    MrBungle TS Booster Posts: 151   +67

    I totally agree with your sentiments... my current project which is fairly large (I'll likely need another couple years to completely finish it) will be my last big windows application. After what I've seen MS do I'm going to build my next database with a web-based front-end, that way its more platform agnostic... It will work on Apple, Linux, or anything with a web browser. IF MS is willing to throw developers/power users under the bus then fine, I'll abandon them and do something else. I can see already this ship is sinking, I'm not going down with it.
  22. Who are these *****s? iIgree, these *****s obviously are legends in their own mind. I think the headline should be turned around to say "
    Nielsen Norman Group ripped apart by Windows 8 user interface
  23. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    Wow, you're exactly right!...! And it was about the time they renamed it, "Windows 7".

    BTW, good or bad, it's no longer supported. But, it still needs to be activated...Hmmmm....
  24. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,759   +2,431

    Perhaps, but aren't we all really , "legends in our own minds? So why be so angry and so bitter? In your heart you know you're right...:cool:

    Now go calm yourself down by rubbing your fingers all over your, "Surface". Make some obscene gestures on it, see what pops up.
  25. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,417   +3,434

    LOL, now I know why MS is heavily endorsing Windows 8. :) Brings a whole new concept to watching porn (touch here if you want to see something special)!!

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