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I have fiery words for Metro haters.

    General discussion

  • To Microsoft:

    I think you're doing a great job of pushing a unified platform for future phones, tablets and computers. Keep at it.

    To the rest of you:

    How backwards do you have to be to cling to a 41 year old computing paradigm? The desktop metaphor was invented at Xerox in 1970! I'll agree with you that the desktop has served us well for four decades, but the confusion that arises from it can't be more obvious today.

    I see people everywhere who can't even manage windows properly. Ever notice the people who have a bajillion windows open but are oblivious to the fact? And then they ask themselves where everything is. What about the people who systematically close every window that pops up if they don't know what it is? And then they ask themselves where everything is. We all know those people. They don't need windows. What they need is an interface that is easy to understand.

    For those who fear the sudden big change, have you noticed how transitional the Windows 8 interface is? You have to be the worst IT around to think that people will freak out over the interface change. I thought imaged machines typically made use of application shortcuts on the desktop and taskbar? Your users don't even have to see Metro if you set up a system correctly. Pin Office and the browser if you choice into the taskbar and they won't ever have to touch the Start button.

    A phone operating system on a desktop? Are you kidding me? Do you even realize how WinRT empowers developers to more easily create ever more unified and streamlined apps on Windows? Window management is a mess on every platform! Stopgap fixes like Flip 3D and Exposé are barely helping the fact that windows are confusing to most people. I'm not even mentioning all the horrendous looking apps created in Win32, .NET or whatever. Face it. A smartphone is easier to use than a computer not because the phone runs dumb software, but because the way it runs simply makes more sense. Metro isn't a phone interface. It's a device-agnostic interface that will make devices easier to use, whether they're phones, tablets or computers.

    If you think Metro should be a strictly phone and tablet business, you've already been brainwashed by the guys in Cupertino. Why three classes of products? Why a computer, a tablet and a phone? Strategy of a company that just wants to sell more junk. If a tablet can run Windows, it'd better be able to do everything a Windows computer can do. Don't give me two different user experiences just because I'm switching from touch screen to mouse and keyboard. Apple is trying to make OS X look more like iOS. Microsoft is turning Windows and Windows Phone into a single platform. Take a guess as to which approach is better in the long run.

    So suck it. Don't like Metro now? I hope it grows on you for your own sake.

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 4:07 PM

All replies

  • I have never been a MS supporter, by Windows 8 is really impressive, maybe not for its new features, but for sure it's a new paradigm in computer interface, and that's the real and important point for me. As you say, keep at it. It's great to see something new and fresh, and moreover, closer to the path that computers are taking today and in the near future.

    Good job!

     

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 4:30 PM
  • New paradigma? We are all disabling Metro and all we get is exactly the same Windows 7 with the awful Ribbon.

    Too many people wanting to be genius and reinvent and reimagine no matters if they make things worse with their reinventions and reimaginations.

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 4:51 PM
  • To the rest of you:

    How backwards do you have to be...?

    You don't use multiple windows much, nor do much complex work, do you?

    I've watched people work using multiple full-screen apps, switching back and forth, and forget the details between one and the other.  Getting the details right is important.

    Try this as an experiment...  With your OS today, open a web page and make it full screen.  Now open a blank WordPad window and make it full screen.  Now transcribe the first few sentences from one to the other, without using copy and paste.

    Now try the same experiment with both windows side by side.

    This kind of activity, where information from one source is used in another activity, happens all the time with people who use their computers for real work, while you're off playing Angry Birds.  And you can be damned sure the guys who programmed Angry Birds had multiple windows open on their multiple-monitor desktops.

    The future is not all fun and games!  So stop making out like a toy UI is good enough.

    -Noel


    Sunday, September 18, 2011 5:04 PM
  • Haters gonna hate. I agree with you at that ribbon isn't the best of ideas for Explorer, but at least we can minimize it and keep the all the controls just a couple clicks away. I still think it's time to move away from actual windows altogether though. You're entirely missing the point if you're disabling Metro: Metro is Windows. You may as well go back to whichever version of Windows you recently got tired of complaining about, or even join the emacs vs vim argument.
    Sunday, September 18, 2011 5:12 PM
  • P.S., I don't hate Metro, I just want to be able to control it, and not have it blitz my mind every time I hit the Start button.

    I can imagine, as a developer, having a 3rd touch-screen monitor on which the Metro UI is displayed full time to augment my existing two monitors displaying the Aero Desktop.  Then I can have the best of both worlds.

    -Noel

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 5:12 PM
  • Try this as an experiment...  With your OS today, open a web page and make it full screen.  Now open a blank WordPad window and make it full screen.  Now transcribe the first few sentences from one to the other, without using copy and paste.

    Please enlighten me as to which scenario you're thinking of in which I would not have access to copy and paste.

    Next, +1 reason why we have the desktop version of IE. Want your side by side windows? Go to your desktop.

    Furthermore, +1 reason why they have Metro Snap. Open Wordpad full screen on desktop. Snap immersive IE on the side. Done.

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 5:16 PM
  • It was an illustrative example.  I've personally watched a lot of people work that way, where they try to remember a phrase or a function name or whatever then switch windows and type it.  I've even had some, upon my suggesting they tile a couple of windows on the screen, say that they prefer using only one app at a time, even while they make typos and transcription errors, so I'm clear on the fact that my way of thinking isn't everyone's.  I certainly don't suffer from cognitive overload.  The only reason I have two big monitors is that I don't currently have room for three.

     

    There are simply many, many scenarios where multiple sets of information are needed simultaneously, at a glance, all on the screen at the same time.

     

    It's ridiculous to think, even with Metro Snap providing (somewhat restricted) multi-windowing, that it could provide a substitute for the ability to arrange one's desktop as one wishes.  It is an oversimplification of a Desktop that needs to stay every bit as powerful as it already is, if not get more powerful.

    That you could think it could just shouts that the stuff you do with your computer is more simplistic than what some others do.

     

    Now, I'm sure I can get advantage from a touch-screen interface - even to the point where I have a separate monitor that hosts Metro.  This would allow for use of Metro-only apps, for getting things working with the touch screen, and a whole host of other advantages, but...  I need the Aero Desktop where it is and I need it to STAY there.

     

    -Noel

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 6:17 PM
  • I have yet to try Windows DP on a multi-monitor setting, so I'll have to get back on that. My one hope for that scenario is for touch to not change the position of the mouse.

    I should add that I don't hate the desktop. It has its uses, namely I wouldn't dream of programming inside of Metro. I'm a web developer, and I look forward to using both UIs together for work, not just one or the other.

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 6:27 PM
  • One other thing...  Someone at some level seems to think that having multiple things on screen at once for "at a glance" use is important.  Why else would all the little active Metro tiles be showing current information, such as the MSFT stock ticker, weather, or what //build/ sessions are happening?

     

    Frankly, I see nothing here that hasn't been accomplished before on the Desktop (e.g., Gadgets).  This is just an unsophisticated and disintegrated way to do it.

     

    -Noel


    Sunday, September 18, 2011 6:29 PM
  • An example of where metro would fail is writing an essay WITHOUT plagiarizing, you could switch back and forth between office and IE, but it would be easier to have them side-by-side. Also, what about programming? esp. if you are new to programming... it would be easier to print the tutorial out then write the program, which would be backwards in time.

     

    Don't get me wrong, Metro has its plus's, even on desktop, but it is not all-conquering.  

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 6:34 PM
  • As I've said, I fully agree that the desktop has its uses. That's why Microsoft is including it.

    About desktop gadgets and live tiles... frankly, the gadgets are butt-ugly most of the time and consume more resources than they really should. They're a half-baked answer to the OS X Dashboard. I just turn off the entire thing. The importance of aesthetics can be answered simply: would you use something that works, or something that works and is pretty? You'd be swimming against the tide picking the uglier option.

    My ire is mainly against the people who flat out reject Metro without a second thought.
    • Edited by Soaa- Sunday, September 18, 2011 6:49 PM
    Sunday, September 18, 2011 6:49 PM
  • Well, I've been running Windows 8 DP in a VM since Microsoft made it available, all day, every day, and poking around to see just what it can do - especially in light of what *I* do every day, which is to develop software and run a business.  My comments are now well beyond "first impression".

     

    There's resistance to change, and then there's insightful review, based on experience.  I'd like to think I'm squarely in the latter category. 

     

    I've been an early adopter of all that Microsoft has released so far, and I'm proud of being able to make it really sing - my Windows 7 environment is the most productive and powerful one I've put together yet - but I see a definite LOSS of ability to concentrate if hitting the Start button blitzes me with a brilliantly colored screen replacement.  The integration simply HAS to be better, and I will never agree that a hobbled one or two window desktop with 48 point type is going to be anywhere near as useful as the current Windows desktop, on which I can arrange things as *I* see fit.  It doesn't matter how well integrated the Metro Apps are with charms.  The value *I* add is in being able to combine (usually under the influence of coffee) the information I get from reference materials, along with a bit of creativity, into new products.  The better / more accurately / more quickly *I* can do that the more I succeed.

     

    Like anyone I'd love to be able to push things around on the screen with my finger and play fun games on a 20" monitor backed by teraflops of graphic power.  Unfortunately it's proven rather difficult to make a living doing that.

     

    -Noel


    Sunday, September 18, 2011 7:29 PM
  • To Microsoft:

    I think you're doing a great job of pushing a unified platform for future phones, tablets and computers. Keep at it.

    To the rest of you:

    How backwards do you have to be to cling to a 41 year old computing paradigm? The desktop metaphor was invented at Xerox in 1970! I'll agree with you that the desktop has served us well for four decades, but the confusion that arises from it can't be more obvious today.

    I see people everywhere who can't even manage windows properly. Ever notice the people who have a bajillion windows open but are oblivious to the fact? And then they ask themselves where everything is. What about the people who systematically close every window that pops up if they don't know what it is? And then they ask themselves where everything is. We all know those people. They don't need windows. What they need is an interface that is easy to understand.

    For those who fear the sudden big change, have you noticed how transitional the Windows 8 interface is? You have to be the worst IT around to think that people will freak out over the interface change. I thought imaged machines typically made use of application shortcuts on the desktop and taskbar? Your users don't even have to see Metro if you set up a system correctly. Pin Office and the browser if you choice into the taskbar and they won't ever have to touch the Start button.

    A phone operating system on a desktop? Are you kidding me? Do you even realize how WinRT empowers developers to more easily create ever more unified and streamlined apps on Windows? Window management is a mess on every platform! Stopgap fixes like Flip 3D and Exposé are barely helping the fact that windows are confusing to most people. I'm not even mentioning all the horrendous looking apps created in Win32, .NET or whatever. Face it. A smartphone is easier to use than a computer not because the phone runs dumb software, but because the way it runs simply makes more sense. Metro isn't a phone interface. It's a device-agnostic interface that will make devices easier to use, whether they're phones, tablets or computers.

    If you think Metro should be a strictly phone and tablet business, you've already been brainwashed by the guys in Cupertino. Why three classes of products? Why a computer, a tablet and a phone? Strategy of a company that just wants to sell more junk. If a tablet can run Windows, it'd better be able to do everything a Windows computer can do. Don't give me two different user experiences just because I'm switching from touch screen to mouse and keyboard. Apple is trying to make OS X look more like iOS. Microsoft is turning Windows and Windows Phone into a single platform. Take a guess as to which approach is better in the long run.

    So suck it. Don't like Metro now? I hope it grows on you for your own sake.


    you do realize that apple is also working to unify their devices right? or did you not see what they were doing with Lion? MS is just taking it one step further before apple. but they both believe in going in that direction. so yeah thats the only thing i had to say about your OP
    Sunday, September 18, 2011 7:47 PM
  • An example of where metro would fail is writing an essay WITHOUT plagiarizing, you could switch back and forth between office and IE, but it would be easier to have them side-by-side. Also, what about programming? esp. if you are new to programming... it would be easier to print the tutorial out then write the program, which would be backwards in time.

     

    Don't get me wrong, Metro has its plus's, even on desktop, but it is not all-conquering.  


    you do realize they aren't forcing you to use IE in metro right? when you go to the desktop there is IE right there. or the browser of your choice and you can still snap them to the side for the side by side viewing. i don't understand how people can say things like this. its blatantly misinformed
    Sunday, September 18, 2011 7:51 PM
  • One other thing...  Someone at some level seems to think that having multiple things on screen at once for "at a glance" use is important.  Why else would all the little active Metro tiles be showing current information, such as the MSFT stock ticker, weather, or what //build/ sessions are happening?

    Frankly, I see nothing here that hasn't been accomplished before on the Desktop (e.g., Gadgets).  This is just an unsophisticated and disintegrated way to do it.

     

    -Noel


    At-a-glance use _IS_ important to many users. Especially those who have trouble operating computers with their current interface systems. And when not in "developer-mode" I find the Metro-style interface a very nice place to spend my time.

    But the point of what you are seeing in this developer preview is as an example of possibilities. It's up to developers to take advantage of the framework and do something cool with it. Of course there's nothing new in the examples shown here (many of which aren't even going to be in more official versions of Windows 8), because it's a developer's job to make the new stuff. And gadgets that sit on your desktop are much less sophisticated (in my opinion) than an active tile in Metro that displays info at a glance in a pleasing manner that you can click into quickly for a full-screen, immersive experience without all of the unnecessary junk cluttering up your screen space.

    After getting over the shock of a completely altered interface, I'm finding that Metro is actually pretty amazing and has a lot of potential. Especially as a developer; I can't wait until I can get my test system stable enough to try out some ideas I have for it. And since I can still use it in exactly the same fashion as I do on my normal (Windows 7) developer machine I'm very excited about seeing how it evolves on into the beta.

     

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 8:01 PM
  • Right... except for the fact that Metro apps don't really close. If you want to switch from one to another you have to to go through 10 other apps to do so. I understand that Microsoft has probably cooked in some auto-terminate feature, where it kills the app if the system needs more memory... but I have 16GB of RAM on my main computer. This means I'd have dozens of apps still open, even though I DONT USE THEM.

    Now, on the desktop with the taskbar, I currently have 20 or so windows open, and I can just easily open one by clicking it using Windows 8, it's a lot harder to do this.

    People WILL freak out over the metro interface because it slows down operations. I dare you to try to add a shortcut to Excel to the desktop.

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 8:13 PM
  • Ehh? What's wrong with an Excel shortcut on the desktop or in the taskbar?

    I don't mind the apps that don't close, but I agree the could be managed better. It's not an inherent flaw in the Metro system, but a flaw in the implementation of that aspect.

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 8:31 PM
  • Adding shortcuts to the desktop is much harder to do in Windows 8. Either you have to navigate to the exe in Explorer, or you have to use the shortcut wizard. What I'd always used to do is just drag from the start menu to the desktop. Takes 3 seconds, now it takes 15 or so.
    Monday, September 19, 2011 1:03 AM
  • My plan is to continue with SL and WPF and the XAML for Windows. I do however plan to spread my wings a bit. Summarized my thoughts last night in this blog...

    Microsoft Windows 8 METRO and BUILD- The Good, Bad, Ugly, and WWTD
    http://realworldsa.blogspot.com/2011/09/microsoft-windows-8-metro-and-build.html

    I do think Microsoft shot themselves in the foot and killed Silverlight Politically:
    http://realworldsa.blogspot.com/2011/09/political-side-of-silverlights-death.html

    I am a XAML lover, but Microsoft has really damaged any chance of it being used in most enterprises.

    I do not like METRO for the enterprise:
    http://realworldsa.blogspot.com/2011/09/metro-microsofts-embarrassing-try.html


    Tad Anderson
    Monday, September 19, 2011 1:12 AM
  • Adding shortcuts to the desktop is much harder to do in Windows 8. Either you have to navigate to the exe in Explorer, or you have to use the shortcut wizard. What I'd always used to do is just drag from the start menu to the desktop. Takes 3 seconds, now it takes 15 or so.

    Good call on that!
    Monday, September 19, 2011 1:55 AM
  • Right... except for the fact that Metro apps don't really close. If you want to switch from one to another you have to to go through 10 other apps to do so. I understand that Microsoft has probably cooked in some auto-terminate feature, where it kills the app if the system needs more memory... but I have 16GB of RAM on my main computer. This means I'd have dozens of apps still open, even though I DONT USE THEM.


    Press the Windows key, click on the relevant tile. There's no need to go through 10 other apps to get anywhere.
    Monday, September 19, 2011 7:51 AM