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[DailyTech] Windows 8 Usability on PCs for Novice and Power Users Blasted in Study

post #1 of 112
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Windows 8 has some good ideas but not for the PC form factor, the report's author argues
Quote:
Such sentiments have been compiled and perhaps most eloquently analyzed by Jakob Nielsen of UseIt / AlertBox, who compiled a rich, multi-page study on what he feels are the flaws of Windows 8.
Quote:
Because this column is very critical of Microsoft's main product, some people will no doubt accuse me of being an Apple fanboy or a Microsoft hater. I'm neither. I switched from Macintosh to Windows many years ago and have been very pleased with Windows 7.

I am a great fan of the dramatic "ribbon" redesign of Office (we later gave several awards to other applications that adapted this UI innovation), and I proclaimed the Kinect an "exciting advance in UI technology." I have many friends who work at Microsoft and know that it has many very talented usability researchers and UI designers on staff.

I have nothing against Microsoft. I happen to think that Windows 7 is a good product and that Windows 8 is a misguided one. I derived these conclusions from first principles of human–computer interaction theory and from watching users in our new research. One doesn't have to hate or love a company in order to analyze its UI designs.

I'll stay with Win7 the next few years and hope for better times with Windows 9. One great thing about Microsoft is that they do have a history of correcting their mistakes.


Source.
Edited by tpi2007 - 11/21/12 at 2:41pm
 
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post #2 of 112
Why not link to the actual report?
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post #3 of 112
Why not just link to the actual study?

Edit: Beat me to it.
post #4 of 112
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Homeles View Post

Why not link to the actual report?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TFL Replica View Post

Why not just link to the actual study?

Edit: Beat me to it.

I did, you guys were probably writing your posts as I was editing the OP to include it, it's the only link in the second quote.
 
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post #5 of 112
I'll repeat what I said on [H]:
Quote:
The lack of continuity between the Metro and desktop apps is a valid assessment. Also, didn't you have to learn and memorize where features were in Windows 7 as well? The only thing that helped was because it was mostly the same as Vista and XP.

Lack of multiple windows: use the environment with the device it was designed for. Don't use Metro for working on the desktop, you have a choice here. If you choose to use the Metro environment for work on a desktop, well, that's your own stupid choice.

Flat style. The icons light up when you move the mouse over it. It's not as undiscoverable as he is claiming it to be.

Low information density. That's the app's fault, not the OS.

Live tiles: You generally know what you put on your Start Screen, and Windows is built for multiple users. It does not have the sharing problems the iPad and Android tablets have. Again, this is also the app's fault.

Charms: Again, why are you using Metro functions on a desktop? As for Metro uses, a tutorial, which would most likely be included with every tablet, would explain most, if not all of the features. It's designed to be available at any time without getting in the way. As for unsearchable apps... that's again the app's fault. The comparison to websites is stupid because there's a large variety of websites with no set guidelines. Across all Windows 8 installations, functionality will all be the same.

Swipe: maybe valid, I have not used a Windows 8 touch-based device.
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post #6 of 112
Quote:
Flat style. The icons light up when you move the mouse over it. It's not as undiscoverable as he is claiming it to be.
No. Everything ever must have a border or be obviously a button.
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post #7 of 112
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsumi View Post

I'll repeat what I said on [H]:
Quote:
The lack of continuity between the Metro and desktop apps is a valid assessment. Also, didn't you have to learn and memorize where features were in Windows 7 as well? The only thing that helped was because it was mostly the same as Vista and XP.

Lack of multiple windows: use the environment with the device it was designed for. Don't use Metro for working on the desktop, you have a choice here. If you choose to use the Metro environment for work on a desktop, well, that's your own stupid choice.

Flat style. The icons light up when you move the mouse over it. It's not as undiscoverable as he is claiming it to be.

Low information density. That's the app's fault, not the OS.

Live tiles: You generally know what you put on your Start Screen, and Windows is built for multiple users. It does not have the sharing problems the iPad and Android tablets have. Again, this is also the app's fault.

Charms: Again, why are you using Metro functions on a desktop? As for Metro uses, a tutorial, which would most likely be included with every tablet, would explain most, if not all of the features. It's designed to be available at any time without getting in the way. As for unsearchable apps... that's again the app's fault. The comparison to websites is stupid because there's a large variety of websites with no set guidelines. Across all Windows 8 installations, functionality will all be the same.

Swipe: maybe valid, I have not used a Windows 8 touch-based device.

Your argument has one fundamental flaw: you say that you don't have to use Metro for working on the desktop, and that is just false, after all, isn't the argument of Windows 8 defenders that the Start screen is just a fullscreen Start Menu ? If you defend that you don't have to use it, then why isn't the Start menu present ? You can jump through all sorts of hoops to do the things you need in other ways, but it takes longer, so in the end your workflow will de hindered, as you may be able to use the Start screen for some things, but not for others (which the Start menu did). The Charms bar argument ? Yes, you may not use it, but again, it is part of the desktop now, how are people supposed to not use it ? It's supposed to be, among other things, the clunky replacement for the Shut Down and other options buttons. You can press Ctrl + Alt + Del and then press the Power icon and then select what you want the PC to do, but if that is the real replacement, Microsoft did an even worse job of explaining it (not to mention it's clunky and takes longer.)
Edited by tpi2007 - 11/21/12 at 3:00pm
 
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post #8 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpi2007 View Post

Your argument has one fundamental flaw: you say that you don't have to use Metro for working on the desktop, and that is just false, after all, isn't the argument of Windows 8 defenders that the Start screen is just a fullscreen Start Menu ?
You use it very, very rarely. And I'd argue that it's superior to the old start menu, once you've personalized and organized it. Stock, it's quite cluttered.
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post #9 of 112
to call this a study is misleading. it doesn't meet the requirements of an academic or scientific study by any means. it's pretty much a compilation of things he disliked, combined with the response of random office workers. of course those type of people are going to be confused, they've been using the same os and ui for the past 15-20 years perhaps.
post #10 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpi2007 View Post

Your argument has one fundamental flaw: you say that you don't have to use Metro for working on the desktop, and that is just false, after all, isn't the argument of Windows 8 defenders that the Start screen is just a fullscreen Start Menu ? If you defend that you don't have to use it, then why isn't the Start menu present ? You can jump through all sorts of hoops to do the things you need in other ways, but it takes longer, so in the end your workflow will de hindered, as you may be able to use the Start screen for some things, but not for others (which the Start menu did). The Charms bar argument ? Yes, you may not use it, but again, it is part of the desktop now, how are people supposed to not use it ? It's supposed to be, among other things, the clunky replacement for the Shut Down and other options buttons. You can press Ctrl + Alt + Del and then press the Power icon and then select what you want the PC to do, but if that is the real replacement, Microsoft did an even worse job of explaining it (not to mention it's clunky and takes longer.)

I use it the Start Screen the same way I used the Start menu, and that's as an application launcher. I don't use Metro apps (outside of a few games). So the way I see it, I'm not using Metro. Metro in my view includes the apps and the entire environment.

And I have repeated that I find the power settings in the Charms menu annoying, but I'm not shutting down or rebooting my computer 10 times a day.
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