Thursday, 1 September, 2011

Windows 8 - Introduction

At Computex 2011 in Taipei, Microsoft gave us the first preview of Windows 8. More specifically, they showed us the tablet functionality of Windows 8. Surprisingly, this tablet functionality isn't a separate program like Windows Media Center is, instead, it’s a rebuild of the existing Windows Explorer shell. This new touch UI created with the same metro design language as Windows Phone 7, is dynamic, glanceable and very easy on the eyes with its minimal design and oodles of style.

Contrary to what other media houses are reporting, as was said specifically in the Windows 8 showcase, all versions of Windows 8 are coming with this UI as the default UI and there will be no specific tablet version of Windows 8. All versions of Windows 8 will be tablet ready.
When you buy a new PC, and you boot it up, the new Metro UI will be the first thing you see on every version of Windows 8 from Starter to Ultimate on everything from x86 to x64 to ARM, touchscreen present or not, THIS IS the new UI for windows going forward.
Amazingly enough you can still access programs in the legacy Windows desktop environment without logging out of your account and logging back in. In fact, you can run the traditional windows desktop in a panel alongside a modern metro UI app in its fully functional form. No fiddling to go back to classic windows, its there and ready for you whenever you need it.
app list
Just launch Excel and it pops up in the classic Windows Desktop
alligning side by side
Using the touch UI gestures, you can align metro apps alongside the Classic Windows Desktop
YouTube - Building -Windows 8- - Video #1.mp4_snapshot_03.14_[2011.06.08_20.33.35]
And there you have full reverse compatibility with “Old Windows”
For the people out there saying, “it’s stupid to have the touch UI as the default on systems that won’t have a touch screen,” remember this, if the UI is good enough for your giant meaty fingers, then it should be a snap for the one pixel precision of a cursor tip.
For Microsoft to get people to used the “tabletised” Windows 8, they need to make the tablet UI front and centre when you first use Windows 8. For now the main challenge will be replicating all the main functionality from the traditional explorer in the new “metro explorer” so users don’t feel like they have one hand tied behind their back.
Just as Paul Thurrott showed interest in, right now I personally want to see how Windows 8 makes use of accelerometers to transition Windows 8 from landscape mode to portrait mode. As we all know, with previous versions of Windows, that transition has been nothing short of jarring and uncomfortable to use when compared with the buttery smooth animation of the iPad.
This I hope clears up a bunch of hooha that has been going on as a result of insane amounts of FUD as a result of misinformation and transmission of said misinformation


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