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Windows 8 - Deeper Impressions


JorgeA
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Math is supposed to be easy in the age of computers! Table-3 has all Microsoft at 2.9% ( :lol: ) which is up from 1.9% one year ago. Jeez. Ironically it is still behind Blackberry ( :lol: ) too.

What should really worry them is that WP8 has been out for over six months and they either still can't / just barely pass Blackberry which just got released at the end of Q1 ( and in the USA later still ). That is the big story IMHO. I think there is gonna be a back and forth this year for 3rd place but it won't matter in the long run because they both will eventually have Linux nipping at their heels within a year. China is going into it and I suspect this is the end-of-the-line for WP. Just a hunch.

If WP8 goes down, it knocks out one of the legs of the strategy -- to ultimately standardize the device interfaces -- that supposedly motivated the big Metro push in Win8 (the other two legs being tablets and PCs). With one less type of device to sell apps for, from a developer's viewpoint it arguably makes writing Windows apps that much less attractive.

--JorgeA

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Adobe releases free Photoshop Express Windows 8 app ( NeoWin 2013-05-17 )

The free app, Photoshop Express, is now available for download in the Windows Store. Versions of this same software were previously released for iOS and Android. The Windows 8 version allows users to make simple edits to photos such as cropping, rotating and more. It also has a color slider that can adjust an image's exposure, contrast, clarity, vibrancy and more. The free app has 15 filters that can be used to give photos different looks as well as an auto-fix feature that automatically adjusts an image's brightness, exposure and shadows.

While Photoshop Express is free, the app also supports two premium features that can be added to the program for an extra fee. One is the "Looks Pack," which adds some extra photo filters for the app beyond the free ones for $2.99. The "Noise Reduction Pack," the other add-on, is designed to minimize grain and speckling in pictures. It can be accessed for $4.99.

5AboBRn.jpg

( image source )

Photoshop ReTard Edition. And, there's the hook too - DLC ( like in-game purchases ). :yes: Well they got the target demographic mSheep all neatly corralled in a walled garden just waiting for them. Naturally the often-mentioned MetroTard-in-chief cannot help but to jump in to the comments, say something ridiculous and get slapped around for a while. :lol:

DotMatrix:

But, but, I thought Photoshop wouldn't work in Metro...

This is utterly hilarious. The shill school must have low standards. I guess payment is depended ONLY on the word count or the amount of threads, not the content.

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"Ergonomics" is right! Can you imagine sitting hunched over that screen for more than ten minutes at a time? Or if not hunched over, then hyperextending the back of your neck to look down at the screen. Maybe the idea for this furniture was thought up by a chiropractor... :whistle:

:lol: Somewhere way back in the thread I suggested Microsoft must be buying stock in touchscreen Monitor manufacturers, and also in cleaning supplies for regular screens. I think we can add physical therapists and drug companies to that list too due to related treatment and prescriptions!

If you look at that picture closely ...

dKlEqUo.jpg

... that scenario is like a dream come true for all manufacturers involved especially if kids are around. Furniture that looks like it will be scrap within a year. Wireless Mouse and Keyboard just waiting to bounce off the floor without even a cable to possibly save it. Paddles or controllers of some kind that inevitably will become flying objects or spend their time bouncing off the glass. Back-free stools to aid in posture development. And knowing how things are designed these days it looks like a typical top-heavy object just waiting for a tipping point. So the manufacturers love these situations primarily because they built-in job-security from sure-fire replacements. Go to it kids!

Like I mentioned above, I just can't remember anything expensive being necessary to get for kids from our parents generation. The only thing I can think of was the periodic bicycle every 5-10 years, and even with a whole litter of kids the cost for all of them forever would be less than a cellphone or calling plan, let alone additional laptops, tablets, AIO and all the status symbols ( clothes, sneakers ) that are also desired. This is not an old fogey b!itchin', just highlighting the strategic shift in target demographic that the tech industry ( and all others ) have cleverly chosen. I'm not aware of a lot of parents capable of saying no, at least not as many as one or two generations ago. I guess I'm very cynical about this. :lol: Whatever. I expect a day will yet come when people tire of all the bleeding and slam their wallets shut, that day will be a marvel to behold. The shakeout will be ferocious as all manner of companies fall like dominoes, especially those that survive on the optional wants from peer-pressure.

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Like I mentioned above, I just can't remember anything expensive being necessary to get for kids from our parents generation. The only thing I can think of was the periodic bicycle every 5-10 years, and even with a whole litter of kids the cost for all of them forever would be less than a cellphone or calling plan, let alone additional laptops, tablets, AIO and all the status symbols ( clothes, sneakers ) that are also desired. This is not an old fogey b!itchin', just highlighting the strategic shift in target demographic that the tech industry ( and all others ) have cleverly chosen. I'm not aware of a lot of parents capable of saying no, at least not as many as one or two generations ago. I guess I'm very cynical about this. :lol: Whatever. I expect a day will yet come when people tire of all the bleeding and slam their wallets shut, that day will be a marvel to behold. The shakeout will be ferocious as all manner of companies fall like dominoes, especially those that survive on the optional wants from peer-pressure.

Well, to me the actual "sign of the generation" is/was the skateboard.

Today kids get their nice high tech skateboard brand new as a gift.

In my day you had to go around all the workshops in the area begging for some used (but good enough) ball bearings in order to be able to assemble with some more scrap parts, also begged from the carpenter, the drugstore, etc. a cart. (and no, it is not to be confused with soapbox carts - which however we never at the time called "gravity racer").

The result was an almost deadly wooden thingy looking somehow like this:

http://www.midnightrumors.com/?p=625

slittino.gif

which we used to throw ourselves down every possible (steep) slope.

The winner was usually the one that somehow managed to get home for dinner without (visible) harm. :whistle:

(and no, helmets, knee pads, etc. were not available - and actually if someone would have come out with them he would have been called a sissy ;))

...and we LIKED it!

jaclaz

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Less than a month ago, we reported that Hewlett-Packard had introduced a Chromebook, suggesting a crack in their formerly solid comitment to Windows machines.

The crack seems to be widening: H-P has now come out with an Android tablet.

I guess they're hedging their bets.

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA
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Here's some information on the "why" of the big push for getting off Windows XP. I mentioned earlier that I can't think of a technical reason considering that it's recommended replacement, Windows 7, gets viruses just as fast as WinXP did years ago with or without the firewall. In fact I spent the past two days cleaning out some backlogged customer computers, all Windows 7 SP1 normal non-privileged standard user accounts with malware ranging from mild to full blown FBI ransomware. ~sigh~ FYI, none of these customers have any clue whatsoever. They apparently click on anything and everything, and skip using a hardware firewall router altogether jacking the ethernet from their cable or FIOS modem directly into the computer. The ones with routers somehow found a way to make them completely unsafe by opening all ports or something. Whatever makes their life easier at home for their laptops I guess. For all practical purposes we are still in 2001 when XP arrived without a firewall and broadband got popular and well, you know the rest. Nothing has changed, especially Windows vulnerabilities.

So contrary to the massive amounts of FUD being spread, you know: "WinXP is NOT safe! Win7 has better security!", the problem with staying on WinXP is clearly not related to that at all. Anyone who fixes Windows problems can tell you that. No, the problem is artificial and arbitrary. It has nothing to do home users either, but it has everything to do with corporate licensing. First up, Thurrott ...

Short Takes: May 17, 2013 ( Thurrott 2013-05-17 )

Sticking with XP? It Will Cost You

As we race toward the April 2014 retirement of Windows XP—that’s the date when Microsoft will formally stop supporting the ancient OS—the firm is trying an ever-evolving strategy aimed at getting hold-outs to switch to a new OS (which I think we can all admit will be Windows 7, not Windows 8). The latest (not so new) message? Sticking with XP will be more expensive than upgrading. Based on a 2012 IDC study, the theory goes like this: Using XP today results in lost user productivity time and IT support and Help desk costs that are actually more expensive than the cost of upgrading. “Windows XP users are saddled with 7.8 additional hours of lost time per year compared with their colleagues using Windows 7,” IDC claims, noting that the typical large organization can save an incredible $700 per year by upgrading. I don’t have a handle on these numbers, but I will say this: While I appreciate the notion of stretching out an investment, sometimes you can hurt yourself trying to do the right thing. XP is going away folks. Let it go.

We'll leave aside the typical patented Thurrott sloppy mistake: "ancient OS" ( WinXP SP3 is newer than Vista RTM and SP1, and just a year older than Win7 RTM, you big dummy ). What he is describing here is Microsoft book-keeping, taking another bite out of these companies dumb enough to sign on for support contracts. They haven't yet figured out it would be cheaper to buy them all standalone one-time rather than shoveling money endlessly into the Redmond money pit. Whatever. They will learn eventually. Probably in the interim many Windows XP computers will now be retired without any replacement whatsoever. Folks that live near big companies would do well to watch for discounted computers in their area or be sure to visit the recycling center and bribe the workers for a few units.

Moving on, here is an article with details on Microsoft's extortion operation ...

Microsoft: Staying on Win XP will cost Indian biz ( ZDNet 2013-05-17 )

By comparison, the cost of not migrating will be approximately US$300 per seat/user for the first year, followed by almost double the cost in the subsequent 12 months, should they choose to opt for a custom support contract to stay on Windows XP after Microsoft ends support for the OS on April 8, 2014, the study showed.

IDC said the difference in cost is primarily due to the extended support and additional cost of support due to "incompatible devices/apps/drivers".

Now the endgame is visible - broken drivers from planned obsolescence between Windows versions. It is arbitrary and capricious. I suspect it is also illegal here in the USA, or should be, and now we know why their agreements and contracts are so secret, and why the OEM backroom deals are also kept under wraps. It is to stave off the FTC and Justice Department. The only real difference between Microsoft ( and similar companies ) and the Sopranos is that one is fictional on TV. The fictional family distributes garbage collection services and Microsoft distributes IT services. This move against Indian companies is akin to the Sicilian enforcer they brought in to rough-up un-cooperative local businessmen.

The point is that there is no real reason for anyone to move from a Windows version that works, unless you are easily cowed into submission by corporate FUD. Home users have no excuse to fall for it though, you own your computer, keep it and all the software. There will come a time when you won't be able to easily own one again. For the corporates I recommend you call their bluff if you can manage them yourselves ( and why shouldn't they? ). Oh yeah, if you read the articles there are "regulations" requiring businesses to have computer systems that meet certain criteria, specifications that Microsoft no doubt had a hand in writing and had supporting whitepapers that they financially sponsored. How convenient. Am I the only one that sees all the conflicts of interests here? Allegedly these regulations keep everyone's data and finances safe. Well how's that working out in real life? Can we see a report of all the thousands of hacking cases, passwords, credit cards, customer data lost in just the last couple years. Guess what, they will have no doubt all met the vaunted Microsoft standards and regulations yet were still utterly compromised. So the upgrading cycle becomes nothing but a self-serving make-work job-security scenario that benefits one institution ... wait for it ... Microsoft.

EDIT: typos, clarity

Edited by CharlotteTheHarlot
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Nonsense of the day:

http://www.pcworld.com/article/2038912/windows-8-wont-hit-critical-mass-in-enterprises-forrester-says.html

Johnson recommends that IT departments first and foremost accelerate and complete their Windows 7 migrations, because this move from Windows XP will put their enterprises’ IT infrastructures in much better shape to accommodate Windows 8 machines.

"better shape"?

Either an infrastructure (whatever it is :w00t: ) is "compatible" with Windows 8 or it is not.

And no, I cannot see ANY way in which an infrastructure with ONLY Windows 7 "clients" may be in any way "in better shape" than one that has already been tested and found working for several years with XP's and at least 2 years already with BOTH XP's and Windows 7's.

One thing is "complete migration" to Windows 7 (that I believe very few companies did) as well as "no windows 7 machines" (that I also believe very few companies are into) and another is "mixed environments with any possble flavour/type of XP, Vista :ph34r: and 7 + Server 2003 and Server 2008 and Server 2008 R2 - and possibly even a couple 2K servers" which is most probably the "average" situation.

jaclaz

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Maybe by the time the Enterprise Channel gets off XP and hits Windows 7, Microsoft will have made some tool that lets them manage the online component of Windows 8. But if the old trend of OS usage in the enterprise holds true, Windows 8 will be skipped just like Vista was.

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That was a good follow-up to last week's devastating analysis of the true state of Win8 sales. Here's a good set of observations:

When it comes to obfuscating Windows figures, Microsoft has form. Redmond originally boasted that it would shift 400 million Vista PCs in two years. In this story from May 2007 we find Bill Gates claiming 40 million licenses for Windows Vista had been shipped since the preceding January.

(Strangely, the same 40m number resurfaced not longer after Windows 8 had launched - when Microsoft's Tami Reller claimed punters were upgrading faster to Windows 8 than they had upgraded to Windows 7.)

We later discovered that licenses were going out, but simply lining the shelves of distributors' warehouses. The channel then responded to what customers wanted - by giving them Windows XP.

One wonders if and when Microsoft will relent on Windows 8, as they did with Vista.

Another really good excerpt --

Some years ago Symbian's former CEO Colly Myers talked about manufacturers compromising their devices by integrating different functions badly. He noted:

I used to think you could convert a lot of things [to an all-in-one smartphone] but I'm older and wiser, I think. You end up with a 'spork' - a combination of a spoon and a fork. It's no good as a spoon and no good as a fork.

And perhaps that's the problem. Microsoft has "sporked" Windows: the desktop, non-touch version of Windows is much more cumbersome than it needs to be. By doing so, Microsoft has made the pure-bred alternatives much more attractive.

Browsing around The Register's site I found this article suggesting that Microsoft kill Metro in Win8 and focus instead on developing their phone OS for tablets:

The Metro experiment is dead: Time to unleash Windows Phone+

Is this the moment for Windows Phone 8, the overlooked diamond in the Redmond rough, to shine?

Now that Microsoft bigwigs have realised that cramming their desktop operating system into a touchscreen tablet format was unwise, to put it generously, how about scaling up the smartphone cousin to capture the exploding mobe market and the tablet world? That'll leave desktop users in peace with a desktop OS.

Let's set the scene for this turnaround, and it starts with the dismantling of Metro[...]

The Charge of the Metro Brigade may have made sense when the route to gaining tablet market share involved simplifying a PC into something that could be operated by a fingertip and slotted comfortably into an A5 envelope. But the market has changed in the past three years: smartphones grew bigger and became more sophisticated. With five-inch displays now common place and "phablets" appealing way beyond gadget geeks to reach some unlikely parts of the market, it now makes more sense to enhance Windows Phone rather than cripple the desktop.

--JorgeA

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More interesting articles from the past week ...

Interview: We chat with the creator of Classic Shell ( NeoWin 2013-05-20 )

Dot Matrix appears in the comments and p***es everyone off. It's quite staggering how he's able to generate so much controversy even on a fanboy infested site like Neowin. He even begins to annoy the Windows 8 fans.

There are more than enough hints that he's a paid shill, but are his superiors aware of his "work"? He drives more people away than he converts.

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I love this guy's blog, I popped in today to see what he's been up to and lo and behold he's writing about Win8...

The problem as I see it, the people who design these programs have become way too clever for their own good. And just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should. The people who designed Windows 8 lost sight of the fact that for most people the computer is a tool to get work done, it is not a [***] video game.

Surprisingly only one MetroTurd in the comments section...

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I love this guy's blog, I popped in today to see what he's been up to and lo and behold he's writing about Win8...

The problem as I see it, the people who design these programs have become way too clever for their own good. And just because you can do something, doesnt mean you should. The people who designed Windows 8 lost sight of the fact that for most people the computer is a tool to get work done, it is not a [***] video game.

Surprisingly only one MetroTurd in the comments section...

:thumbup

Reminds me of the TV commercial about 12-14 years ago, where the webmaster at the office was showing off how to make a little globe spin on the company's site, and the boss asked something like if he could link up the sales orders with the inventory database, and the web whiz shook his head and answered, "I don't know how to do that..."

As @Formfiller says, this cyclist's blog is a good example of a "normal" user's perspective on Win8.

What ever happened to the old adage of If it aint broke, dont fix it. Microsofts motto seems to be, If it aint broke, work on it until it is.

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA
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