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Everything posted by CoffeeFiend

  1. Same here Fully agreed on everything! That would have been a better solution in my opinion too.
  2. Yep. That's a common problem with everything that relies on web services or websites. Over time, companies change their terms of service and pricing (like Google who's doing just that for Google apps currently), they often remove features (like Google did recently with their "cloud" sync), there's the problems of independent "cloud" providers and websites "going 404" indeed, there's the problems of companies changing their online APIs requiring constant updates to your apps so they keep working (or sometimes they limit usage a lot like twitter recently, or they start to charge for it like Google Maps did), things like MS locking all your online accounts due to storing a photo on skydrive that might have looked kinda similar to something illegal, there's the worries that some companies might have a little too much information about you than what you like, and with all the recent identity theft and account/credit card numbers leaked or stolen, I'm not to keen on everyone having those infos. In related news: MIT professor: Windows 8 is a Christmas gift for 'someone you hate' and Is Windows 8’s Lack of Windows a Mistake?
  3. Oh, when it comes to work, we're totally locked-in to Windows, in more ways than I can count. But for the foreseeable future that'll be Windows 7. Virtually every piece of software we use (or even write) is Windows-only, and for the most part there are no suitable replacements for these apps (aside from Adobe apps and MS Office, both of which also run on the Mac) I think it's close enough that we can say complete.
  4. I don't see that changing anytime soon either. Sure, MS is trying to copy Apple harder than ever, but they're screwing up everything big time, and only copying the bad stuff seemingly... Just one out of thousands of possible examples: On the Apple side: On all iDevices, you have music you can sync with iTunes (v11 is fantastic BTW), which has a great interface, it has great "smart" playlists and such. It works seamlessly with their store. All your iDevices and PCs sync together and it just works, and there's tons of cool accessories for all of them. And the Remote app is incredible! From my iPad, I can remotely control iTunes just like if I was sitting at the PC, but from anywhere. You get all the categories (by artist, by album, etc), the artwork and everything. it's *really* slick and you can do everything easily (skip songs, seek, change volume, pause, etc) and it even works with the Apple TV (there's also AirPlay for that). There's even keyboard search and easy gestures. It all feels 10+ years ahead of everything MS has. On the MS side: They come up with PlaysForSure, except that it's anything but that. They abandon it (something MS loves to do!) for the Zune. The Zune is released too late in a well established and changing market, and without any advantages. It's a big failure and MS abandons it (oh, surprise!), along with their new Zune desktop app which was their best music player (another let down). WMP isn't really getting any meaningful updates (even losing features, like DVD playback -- even if you have the codecs!), outside of those annoying "buy in store" links in explorer. It's pretty limited in many ways. Virtually all 3rd party video players are FAR better, and when it comes to audio, it doesn't even sync with the most popular player (the iPod) which makes it kinda useless. It's pushing their own proprietary formats (WMV/WMA/VC1) which kinda suck (that's one thing they should abandon already) compared to the standard formats that work everywhere. Library sharing is a pain (doesn't work quite like you'd want it to, much like say, homegroups) and library management isn't much better (the album info search is particularly dumb). They support DLNA but it's too complicated for the average user, most devices kinda suck (especially compared to slick Apple devices), etc. MCE sucks hard especially when it comes to DVR usage (things like willingly disabling ATSC support in Canada -- thanks MS!), it's not really improving much, and with Win8 not only it's not updated AT ALL from the Win7 version but they also wanted you to pay extra for it, along with dropping support for playing good old fashioned DVDs. Oh, and MCE remotes: they've been out since the WinXP era but they feel kinda clunky, they're really not that useful and pretty much useless outside of MCE. It's nothing like having a remote with a touch screen LCD with a well designed user interface. For some strange reason, one is making money hand over fist, whereas the other is quickly becoming irrelevant and failing to sell any devices (mp3 players, phones and tablets)
  5. Yes, I believe it's pointless too. I already knew he had "deleted" it as well. I just found it funny that a game that's sold many millions of copies on Android and iOS (and is making them millions) is basically generating zero revenue as a Metro app. Not even enough to recoup the costs of porting it. If you want to make money selling apps, the Apple and Google stores is where the money is at and it's not going to change anytime soon with Win8 tablets like Surface failing pretty hard, and desktop users avoiding everything Metro like the plague it is.
  6. Not only Win8 is getting a lot of bad reviews, including the one from the usability guru last week, but this week brings another gem, on a MIT blog from a well known guy with a PhD in comp sci: Christmas gift for someone you hate: Windows 8. Seemingly some developers learn these lessons the hard way. In the first month alone, iOS made them £70,000, Android £50,000, and Win RT will bring in somewhere between £150 and £200... This will also serve as a lesson to others doing market research to see if its profitable to develop Metro apps.
  7. One could argue that they already have. Sure, cmd.exe is still there but that part is so trivial to replace (especially in such a primitive form), and there exists many good replacements for it (better ones) like console2. The thing though is that they've let it fall aside, much like a lot of other good stuff. Batch files (and to some extent cmd.exe) haven't been meaningfully updated in over a decade. And what mostly replaced it (vbscript primarily -- and what relied on it like classic ASP) has also suffered the same treatment (no meaningful updates since Win2k). Also, they've never put in the effort to give it a good suite of command line tools (something similar to what Linux has). It always felt second rate and very much under-powered. The current flavor of "command line" is powershell, and many GUI tools on server versions of Windows are merely front ends that create powershell commands (like tools to administer exchange). Sadly, these tools are getting metro-ified now... If you exclude powershell, Windows is by far the one with the least powerful "command line window". Nah. They're only copying the bad parts, and they're just not managing to produce anything attractive. They're failing real hard at copying Apple and other established markets, much like they were late with the Zune, when Apple was already selling iPhones and iPod Touchs that run apps and do far more than just a mp3 player. Too little, too late, along with a bad execution, a unattractive branding, a history of failures, a price point that fails to attract, a history of poor support, etc. That's priceless!
  8. It all depends on where you are located, which store you go to, etc. The apple store was full when I bought my iPad, and there were lots of people at Best Buy when I went to buy a cover for my iPad a couple days ago. The thing I don't see is people buying anything that runs Windows 8. I've seen more people buying Android tablets (and even Blackberry Playbook tablets) than Win8 tablets. But those numbers wouldn't look good so there's no reason to publish them. Especially when being dishonest easily makes you look good! It's nice to see Paul Thurott acknowledge NPD's numbers (that 40M licenses number is completely bogus) but his conclusion is pretty strange to say the least. That same PC hardware has always sold well, it's not like they started producing junk overnight, and those same OEMs are saying there's no demand for Win8, and all of a sudden, with the release of win8 (which gets a LOT of bad reviews) sales go down. Most people want the same old desktops or laptops they know well, and ideally with a real desktop OS on it. I now have a Mac Mini *and* an iPad, and it's not because the hardware ASUS/Dell/HP/Acer/Lenovo and others sell, it's because of the OS that runs on it. That's also why Surface tablets don't sell. MS is failing MUCH harder than any of the other OEMs at making a product that sells (much like with their phones) and yet they blame them all for not knowing what the market wants... Yes, everybody else is the problem Mr Ballmer! If Windows keeps going that way then it's over for me. I'll gladly pay more for Apple hardware not to have Win8 or anything resembling that. I'll update my Windows 7 PCs one last time to ensure they last a few more years and that'll be the end of it. I even have a couple co-workers who expressed a similar opinion (their next PCs will be Macs).
  9. That might be the case for smaller OEMs but I don't see Dell writing a purchase order for each and every single PC they have to activate. Then again, that's only a matter of accounting and it's very likely that this is how they proceeded. Just my $0.02 but we'll never know the truth, or actual relevant numbers, like how many satisfied customers they have who actually wanted it on their desktop in the first place.
  10. Yep! But it was Redmond that abandoned us first, that makes them the real traitors They made me buy my Mac Mini first (our 3 Win 7 PCs are our main computers still) and now an iPad. Nice! I can see lots more people doing just like me, and it's Ballmer & Sinofsky who are to blame for all this. Edit: I'm also buying the kids a 32GB iPod Touch for xmas... I can see why Apple is making so much money! Microsoft is trying to turn themselves into Apple, and all it's doing is driving customer interest away from them and towards Apple. Well done Mr Ballmer!
  11. Like I said, it wouldn't be just the wrong design, but I'd expect it to have the controls of the motorbike (handlebars and all), not having the freedom or fuel economy of the bike, nor the comfort, stability or security of the car either. Win8 is one of those that manages to get the worst of both worlds: it really sucks on the desktop (it feels primarily as a tablet OS), and all the the useful software is for a desktop (and as such sucks on a tablet), the battery life of a laptop, and the price of both combined... It just doesn't work at any level. By the way, I'm now the proud owner of a brand new iPad 4 (with Retina Display, just the 16GB model though).
  12. ...or a basic iPad that's actually a good tablet (or a very decent Android tablet if you prefer) with tons of good apps meant for touch (unlike Win8 whose only good apps are desktop apps, which suck on a tablet) and has good battery life, and a half decent laptop to go with it (which is better to write Office docs and email than with Surface anyway). Surface Pro is just a bad compromise of the two, much like Win8 is a bad compromise between a desktop and a tablet OS, failing miserably at both (but more so on the desktop side) It's like if Honda decided to stop selling motorbikes and cars, only providing a 3-wheeled car but that drives with handlebars as their "no compromise" solution
  13. In other news, while MS lies with numbers about their 40M licenses sold, it's well known that those sales aren't reflected in user statistics. NetApplications shows Win8 still under 1% for November, despite the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales. Yep, most of those 40M licenses sold are certainly sold to large OEMs for the next year worth of sales (which OEMs like Acer and ASUS are saying there is no demand for it), likely counting licenses given away to software assurance customers (who won't use 'em), those sitting on shelves of retailers like newegg (who also reported low demand) and so on. And they've even cutting the Surface expectations and sales in half. It's definitely not 40M users, and this say nothing about these users even wanting Win8 in the first place or their satisfaction with it. But that doesn't prevent easily distracted rabid fanboys from claiming that there's high demand and thikning that there's 40M happy users of that crappy tablet OS on their desktop. In other news, people are saying that the Surface Pro will be very expensive and have poor battery life compared to all other tablets (iPad, Android, etc). I'd have to say this is kinda obvious, and it definitely won't make a dent in iPad sales. Best case scenario for MS, it'll just eat into their already poor Ultrabook sales
  14. Nah. That's not quite it IMO. Some distros have a WinXP-like desktop (which IMO isn't exactly great) while others have this Unity garbage that's really no better than Win8. Still, this is just a relatively minor point when you look at the big picture. The real problem is that it doesn't run any of the important software Windows runs. I can totally forego Windows games and buy a console or something, but Linux just doesn't have the kind of software library Windows has (not even 1% of it). If Linux can meet someone's needs then his needs are extremely minimal, and chances are any OS would do in the first place (including Android and iOS). Businesses can't just stop using MS Office, Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Acrobat, Solidworks, AutoCAD, Inventor, Visual Studio, SQL Server and so on (WAY too much software to list). Having a XP-lookalike is one thing (I could live with that, even if it's a big step back from Win7) but losing virtually every single tool that makes a computer useful to me (besides of a web browser) totally kills it, without even considering all the Linux-related problems (it's no better than Windows, it merely has *different* problems) Sadly, I'd pick the absolutely horrible win8 over it with no hesitation (and with something like Start8 it's a complete no-brainer). Sure, it's really awful, gets in your way, is less productive and all, but at least it still runs useful software (and tons of games too, if that's your thing) which is the entire point of even having a computer in the first place. Having a good OS but without the software library never works. Just look at the repeated failures like OS/2 or BeOS (both a good OS, with very little software to run, very much like Linux). OS X, which is the only real contender, just happens to run lots more software, including MS Office, all the Adobe apps and much more. It's not a coincidence. The OS is just there to run the software. If the software doesn't even exist then the OS is pointless. By the way, if you guys think that Win8 is horrible, just wait for Windows Blue: Windows Blue: Microsoft’s plan to release a new version of Windows every year Windows Blue is Microsoft's future low-cost OS with yearly updates It's even worse! Just when you thought they couldn't possibly screw things further, Ballmer makes it happen once more! An awful phone OS on your desktop, but with forced yearly updates. They're already planning to make Windows 8 apps obsolete, and apps will also have to work with WP8. Windows apps (not traditional software) already suck hard, developing for them sucks too and makes no sense, and now they'll make it even worse. They just don't want us to bother I guess. I'm sure they'll still manage to make it even worse for people who still have a use for Windows (i.e. running desktop apps). It's really hilarious to see them want to copy Apple so badly, getting everything wrong in the process and somehow destroying their main product, without creating anything that even rivals Apple's mobile offerings (and without gaining any traction in that market). They're just forcing something awful on everyone who are stuck with Windows (a great way to make everyone hate it) TL;DR: Win7 is the new XP. Win8/Blue is the new MS Bob. They can't fire Ballmer soon enough.
  15. That would be really sad! Intel makes crappy motherboards and it would drastically reduce choice/selection. Other OEMs might still be able to buy CPUs and sell them pre-soldered to motherboards but it would still reduce choice by a lot. There would only be so many motherboard/CPU combos available from each OEM and in stock at different retailers. Edit: Yes, there's still AMD, but when their "high end" 8 core monsters barely compete with "entry-level" dual core i3's (especially if you ignore rendering benchmarks!) while consuming more than twice the power and that it costs 60% more too ($190 vs $120)...
  16. I don't know if I'd say rock bottom. I think it's always been pretty low, but with a different set of problems. There's tons of problems, which I'd like to split in 2 major categories: Development-related problems: -poor requirements or not understanding the problem to solve properly (the soft works great... but not doing what it needed to do in the first place) -the said requirements changing late in the development cycle, requiring major changes, resulting in rushed changes -poor project planning and bad estimates (all too common), leading to my next point: -managers pushing for the quick release of buggy and incomplete software because of time and money constraints -feature creep (the work for new features just piles on, without extra time to take care of it and often increasing complexity) -there's lots of old codebases full of cruft to support (like stuff that's no longer used and that nobody understands anymore) -software foolishly being rewritten from the ground up often producing something worse -outsourcing to the absolute cheapest place (only getting incompetent people who screw everything up) -making poor decisions as per what technologies to use (like thinking functional programming or RoR will magically make everything easy and perfect) -technology and developer tools changing too fast and developers being unable to cope with the said changes (especially true for MS products) -lots of software still being created in a way that's adapted to how programmers think and work -inadequate testing and QA (shipping low quality, buggy code) etc. And the other category, being mostly stuff end-users directly notice: -PCs from most OEMs being with tons of crapware (including trials) because of super thin profit margins and greed -too much apps installing unecessary background processes (like iTunes) -too many apps with their own sucky updaters (like Java) -too many apps with sucky installers (like Java), often with toolbars and other junk -add to that the problems brought by moving to a 64 bit OS, and WDDM drivers, and tighter security (like UAC) -increasingly complicated licensing options -increasing system complexity often makes for more complicated problems to fix etc (those are only a small portion of Windows-related problems, not even close to a complete list) and also, Windows 8 in itself is quite a disaster... Unfortunately, I wouldn't get my hopes up.
  17. Indeed. Saying that it's because people are unable or unwilling to adapt to changes is condescending and absurd. Loads of us adapted from 8 bit computers all the way to Win7 with zero problems, and that's including a lot of non-MS operating systems. But Win8 is just a huge step back in usability on a desktop and I will not have any of that. It seems to me like an OS only complete novices could possibly like. Highly inefficient, crippled, backwards and severely dumbed-down but it's probably easy to use by kids who've only ever used touch-phone like devices before and who don't need to do much besides checking facebook. I think it's by far the worst version not only of Windows, but of all their operating systems since MS DOS 3.x at least. It even makes Vista seem like a nice upgrade. If MS continues in that direction they're going to find themselves in big trouble pretty quickly.
  18. There's a few of us but there's very little programming talk around here. You'd be better off going to stackoverflow and other common sites really.
  19. It seems like Sinofski's gone! Good riddance! Now if only they can fire Ballmer then perhaps there's still hope for Win9! Then again, Julie Larson-Green sems to be responsible for awful and dysfunctional UI design in Win8, so I wouldn't get my hopes up too much. Edit: many other sites are now reporting that too, including Engadget. And here's Sinofski's letter. And MS' official PR regarding new leadership.
  20. +1 to that. It's the other way around.
  21. Thanks! The point was we now know that the "app bubble" won't make you rich unless you're very lucky. Developers know this. There's just not much of a reason to bother IMO. Doubly so when it's an app store for a platform with almost no users. I mean, iOS is on over 400M devices and Android on over 500M, with 1.3M new devices activated everyday. We know that Win8 has sold a measly 4M licenses, but we have no idea how many of those are sitting on shelves of stores or warehouses (MS is well known for counting many things like that in their Vista sales to inflate the numbers), we have no idea how many of those were sold to MS (just like they did to inflate their Surface sales, by counting their purchases of their own product for their own employees), how many bought it because it was a $15 downgrade and quickly realized that it wasn't worth that and promptly reinstalled Win7, how many are using it on a desktop while avoiding metro like the plague (those people won't be buying metro apps either) and so on. TL;DR: Why develop a Win8-only Metro app, when Win8 has almost no users and that Metro apps are avoided by Win8 users, and when you're unlikely to make money even when there are hundreds of millions of users? And since we're talking about deceptive, misleading and creative ways to measure Vista sales... We can only assume they're doing the same with Win8. But when you look at numbers that reflect reality... Like the market share of each OS which are hitting large amounts of websites, you quickly realize that Windows 7 beat it in early adoption rate five to one. And still, that's disregarding that 75% of Win8 users actually prefer to use another OS in the first place (twice as much preferring Win7 over it). It's not looking good by any stretch of the imagination. Meanwhile, WinRT is getting some pretty mixed reviews (how surprising!), its main advantage (MS Office) can't actually be used in businesses and doesn't include Outlook (not that most people care for an office suite on a tablet), half the space so far is taken by the OS (13GB used on a 32GB tablet) and updates will only make that worse, and since we're talking about updates, WinRT isn't exactly the impenetrable fort knox of security (oh, did you think you were buying a secure and hassle-free device?), and two weeks after Surface is out MS is already acknowledging hardware problems (I totally didn't expect that in a first generation MS device! RROD, anyone?) People also recently discovered that the sucktastic built-in Metro apps have ads (in a product you paid for!), but that shouldn't be surprising since they've done the same to the Xbox dashboard recently (who cares if you bought the console, the games, and are paying for Live! too? You're *still* getting ads!) Win8 is one huge bag of fail.
  22. If it really was (I don't see anyone who even plans on buying it anytime soon), we'd hear a lot more about it. Tech heads are like less than 1% of the population, and they tend to mostly stay current to be able to support it. They're also the group (which is where the fanboys are) that ran Vista even though it's pretty much synonym with "catastrophic failure" to 99%+ of the population. That means very little. And when you look at surveys that were done previously on Win8-heavy sites, the vast majority of the users claimed to prefer another OS. I see none of that happening anywhere right now, save for a few exceptions, mostly being popular angry birds-style games (which will do well on any platform) That's a big and fairly common misconception. App stores are filled with garbage, and it's typically hard to find the real gems (less money to make in a crowded market), besides the popular apps. Those popular apps (like angry birds) are just about the only ones making money, some say that the top 20% (which unfortunately will be somebody else) makes 97% of the money, other says that the bottom 80% (most people) shares 3% of the profit, others remind us that the vast majority fail hard, and there's almost no money being made on the Android store comparatively (Apple's app store made 6x as much last year). TL;DR: Angry birds-type of popular games will make money, others... not so much! And here we're talking about money being made from extremely popular devices (iOS and Android), not WinRT which will likely fail as hard as the Zune, or Metro apps on Win8 which most users seem to avoid like the plague... Nobody wants to develop for a userbase approaching zero. Start menu replacements will likely be the most common app to run on Win8, yes. jaclaz's steering wheel analogy says it better than I could.
  23. I'll make a wild guess and say you aren't one. Because it's the *complete* opposite as far as I'm concerned. To me, Win8 is the beginning of the end. By itself, it's a good enough reason to abandon C# and the .NET framework for something that can also run on other OS'es which are still usable on a desktop (keeping support for Win7 obviously), and if mobile is attractive at all, even port easily to devices that actually sell i.e. Android or iOS based. With MS making the desktop a 2nd class citizen, and making WinRT incompatible with 100% of what we're using (all desktop and x86 apps) and making that laughable "replacement" model (Metro garbage, or whatever it's called this week) only work on Win8, it's a good reason to never bother with it. Doubly so when MS deprecates and abandons its newer development technologies so fast. I see zero interest in all other devs I know to make Metro apps either (in part because none of them want to be stuck using it on their desktop). And with MS making Win8 such a terrible OS on a desktop, I don't those sales exactly increasing either, which is just yet another reason to consider developing for iOS and Android instead. TL;DR: Win8 is a developer's nightmare.
  24. The taskbar is Win7's best feature IMO. It's really a godsend. I only use the start menu as a last resort or for the common but not common enough to be pinned to the taskbar apps (then Win8 just replaces it with a awful smartphone UI). I mean, it's not like I can physically pin everything I use to the taskbar. As for Flip 3D, I've never actually seen anyone who uses it, save for Scott Hanselman when he uses it as a way to make people laugh in his lectures (just hold the buttons and go "Weeeee!" as windows just fly past). It's *far* too slow to react to be usable at all. In 2 really quick keystrokes, alt-tab switches to the previous app. Instantly. Whereas a quick tap of win+tab doesn't actually work, it just partially animates a bunch of large thumbnails appearing on the screen. You have to hold the buttons down and wait so very patiently, then you only fully see one full "thumbnail" at once (unlike alt-tab which shows all thumbnails in full at once), and it also takes forever to change focus after you release the keys. And if you think holding the keys down to make it automatically scroll through the apps is going to be of any help, then you'll quickly realize that by the time you've recognized the "thumbnail" of the app you want, it's scrolled well past it, requiring to very awkwardly win-shift-tab your way back. It's absolutely awful. Completely terrible. It easily adds couple extra seconds or more of pointless delay to a classic alt-tab operation which normally takes like perhaps 50ms. I don't think they could possibly screw it up worse than it is. Alt-tab works FAR quicker and better than win-tab to quickly switch back, and if you have to find the app when you have lots of them open then the taskbar is still faster and works better than Flip3D. It's shamefully bad. I completely agree. That's where Apple gets it right. Mission control (or exposé) works just like that (only it's way more responsive, it also manages different spaces (desktops) beautifully, it has a zoom function, it also works with touch gestures, etc) and it's absolutely fantastic! It's by far the best part of OS X in my opinion. That's one of my major gripes with Win7: not replacing Flip3D for something like that which is actually useful instead of just slowing you down.
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