Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 5th Mar 2014 18:42 UTC
Windows

What's missing on all non-Microsoft platforms, as it turns out, is a formalized way to view at least two mobile apps side-by-side on screen. This is a feature that Microsoft added to Windows 8 and then improved dramatically in Windows 8.1, and while many desktop users scoff at its simplicity, it remains a key differentiator. Windows, as I've noted before, is unparalleled when it comes to productivity, even in the mobile world.

Pretty sure Google will introduce windowing support soon in Android, possibly within the next 18-24 months (Android 5.0, perhaps?). It seems inevitable. iOS, on the other hand - we'll see.

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Well...
by Kochise on Wed 5th Mar 2014 18:53 UTC
Kochise
Member since:
2006-03-03

It has been demoed on Android for quite a long time. Samsung have its own implementation in the Note. What are they waiting for ?

Kochise

Reply Score: 4

RE: Well...
by Morgan on Wed 5th Mar 2014 18:57 UTC in reply to "Well..."
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Came here to say this. I've played around with it on a Note 2, and while it's not 100% perfect, it's close enough for most use cases I can think of. I can imagine how much better it is on the Note tablets with 2560x1600 resolution.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Well...
by elzurawka on Wed 5th Mar 2014 19:31 UTC in reply to "Well..."
elzurawka Member since:
2005-07-08

My Samsung S4 has this feature. It only works with a subset of apps, but i can Watch a youtube video while browsing the Internet, or writing an email. But it is still far from perfect. Would be great if it was a native feature in Android.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Well...
by calden on Wed 5th Mar 2014 22:05 UTC in reply to "Well..."
calden Member since:
2012-02-02

Actually that has nothing to do with what Google is working on. Think Chrome OS but in Android. Samsung's Multi Window is gimmicky at best.

Reply Score: 1

panzi
Member since:
2006-01-22

"Windows, as I've noted before, is unparalleled when it comes to productivity, even in the mobile world."

On the Desktop I find Linux+KDE much more productive (bugs aside). All the global hotkeys, the ease with which one can install all kinds of compilers, development packages and IDEs, terminals like Yakuake and the fact that nearly every application is scriptable through D-Bus is IMO really unparalleled.

Reply Score: 9

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

On the Desktop I find Linux+KDE much more productive (bugs aside). All the global hotkeys, the ease with which one can install all kinds of compilers, development packages and IDEs, terminals like Yakuake and the fact that nearly every application is scriptable through D-Bus is IMO really unparalleled.


In regard to scripting/hotkeys for apps, you have tried Autohotkey on Windows, no?

And what happens when you install a non-KDE application?

Reply Score: 3

panzi Member since:
2006-01-22

Most gnome applications also support D-Bus, but yes, they do not integrate in the global hotkey system nicely. For a special case I made a bridge: A plasma widget that is controlled via global hotkeys and controls via D-Bus whatever music player is currently running (vlc, amarok, audacious, I even made a web socked based plugin for spotify).

Reply Score: 3

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

A plasma widget that is controlled via global hotkeys and controls via D-Bus


Is that connected to the flux capacitor? ;)

Reply Score: 6

OpenGLCoder Member since:
2006-10-17

"On the Desktop I find Linux+KDE much more productive"

... You've picked the one major thing Linux excels in (programmer/hacking tools) to "address" the notion that Windows is unparalleled in productivity. Bear in mind, 99% of computer and tablet users aren't programmers and their productivity is really enhanced on a Windows machine because of the consistency of the experience and the fact that there is only one way to do things. Once they mastered Windows, they could forget about the fact that it was Windows they were learning and go about getting their real work done -- for years. Linux is fun and exciting and has a million techy-ways to accomplish any goal to the detriment of simplicity. You can look to the success of VB6 to illustrate my point (Although as a real programmer, I hate VB6). This is where Windows excels -- the Business/VB6/"I don't program at home for fun" crowd.

Reply Score: 4

Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

From your nickname, how is OpenGL going on Linux ?

Kochise

Reply Score: 3

OpenGLCoder Member since:
2006-10-17

OpenGL is great in general on any OS with drivers that support it, really. The key things that differentiates the OpenGL experience are the vendor's drivers. I think Valve will be really pushing the hardware vendors to deliver quality drivers. SDL 2.0 is a nice step forward for game developers on Linux or any platform for that matter. If anyone isn't using SDL 2.0, they should be. NVIDIA's and Intel's drivers are already solid on Linux. AMD has some room to grow there, so we'll see.

Reply Score: 4

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Wait what? Only one way of doing things on windows? I think you have it confused with OSX.

Your example of VB6 doesn't make much sense in this regard. There were multiple ways of doing things in VB6 as well. What exactly was VB6 better at ? Creating windows programs? Well Ok. That's probably true, but the competition wasn't linux, but Visual C++ and Delphi.

Is a single version of windows more consistent than all the linux distros and desktop environments put together?

Yes.

Is it more so when comparing it against a single distro's version of a desktop environment?

No, not really.

Edit, Didn't he just write this: http://winsupersite.com/windows-8/what-heck-happening-windows

I guess he's play both sides for page views.

Edited 2014-03-05 20:48 UTC

Reply Score: 4

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

When you realize he writes a book on Windows 8 a lot of this makes sense, he's in it to sell his book.

Reply Score: 5

OpenGLCoder Member since:
2006-10-17

VB6 was better for people to write programs that automated or performed some small business task that they would have to pay a human to do otherwise or reduce the amount of work they themselves have to do. There are multiple ways to do things in VB6, but not for basic business programmers. Of course the more knowledge you have, the more possibilities there are with any language, but bear in mind the goal isn't to write a Windows program or a Linux program or an HP-UX program -- the goal is to write a program that does X (Not X11, mind you). VB6 was great at allowing hacks to do things like connect to an Access DB and automate some portion of their business and make them more productive.

"Is it more so when comparing it against a single distro's version of a desktop environment?"

Umm... yea. Windows is way more consistent than Linux distros at delivering a consistent experience across product upgrade lifecycles. Gnome 2/3, KDE 3/4, Ubuntu Pre-and-post Unity. You name it, how the user has to learn to use their system changes moreso on Linux than Windows - until Windows 8, that is.

Reply Score: 2

Nth_Man Member since:
2010-05-16

> Windows is way more consistent than Linux distros at
> delivering a consistent experience across product upgrade
> lifecycles. Gnome 2/3, KDE 3/4, Ubuntu Pre-and-post Unity [...]

A KDE 3 user can easily utilize a KDE 4 system; apart from exceptions, all the things are where he expects them to be. Unlike what it happened with the transition from Office without ribbon to Office with ribbon, Windows 7 to Windows 8, etc.

Edited 2014-03-06 01:23 UTC

Reply Score: 6

panzi Member since:
2006-01-22

Well, but that's what I do. They should have said: "Windows is more productive for boring office stuff, if you have a work load low enough that you don't need multiple Desktops." For graphics/font stuff you would use OS X, for 3D stuff OS X or Linux and for scientific stuff Linux (iPython and R). So what leaves that Windows with? Office and games. And my hope is that the latter will shortly be solved for Linux.

E.g. how do you install Steam on Windows? Go to some web page and download a binary and click through some annoying setup. Linux: sudo yum install steam (or sudo apt-get install steam). And under Windows almost every game you install through Steam requires a different DirectX version to be installed in addition. No such thing on Linux. The game downloads and is done.

Ah and for the server Linux is more productive anyway (yum install ruby rubygems postgresql nginx jboss nodejs sshd ...). Also are there any render farms, grids etc. that aren't running Linux? There might be a reason for that. ;)

The embedded marked seems to be divided between Linux and QNX (depending on the requirements). Who builds their custom Windows kernel to support their custom embedded hardware? Can anyone besides Microsoft even do that? Again, Linux is more productive (as in you can build a product using it).

Reply Score: 6

OpenGLCoder Member since:
2006-10-17

I know that's what you do... that's what I do, too. That's why I said '99% of users'. We're the '1%' - and there is no occupy movement who wants to get in on our '1%' - I mean c'mon, in the general population, who in their right mind would do what we do. I was just stating that productivity as insinuated in the article wasn't referring to those of us hunched over our keyboards pushing our glasses up and drinking mountain dew while looking at a tiled window manager and xterms.

Reply Score: 2

delta0.delta0 Member since:
2010-06-01

Why are we drawn in such a negative light ?

I don't wear glasses, I very rarely drink mountain dew, but I do use KDE and spend most of my time with konsole open and connected to multiple servers. Who uses xterm nowadays ?

your not just the 1%, server admins, advanced computer users any one with more than 2 brain cells can get productivity improvements by using a modern Linux Distro, but use whatever your happy with. I personally feel completely locked out using Windows, its just not designed for me.

Reply Score: 2

OpenGLCoder Member since:
2006-10-17

I am comfortable on any OS with a compiler. I wasn't shedding us in a negative light, I was using stereotypes for apparently misplaced humor. Didn't mean to offend.

Reply Score: 2

moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

for 3D stuff OS X or Linux


Given the quality of their graphics drivers, this is a joke, I assume.

Reply Score: 3

zima Member since:
2005-07-06

You speak from a perspective of a ~developer, not user; you don't have all the high quality productivity apps that Windows users enjoy.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by tylerdurden
by tylerdurden on Wed 5th Mar 2014 20:26 UTC
tylerdurden
Member since:
2009-03-17

Microsoft "discovers" the tiling window manager. News at 11.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Comment by tylerdurden
by zima on Sat 8th Mar 2014 15:09 UTC in reply to "Comment by tylerdurden"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Windows 1.0 was kinda tiling.

Reply Score: 2

Apples to Oranges, again.
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Wed 5th Mar 2014 20:39 UTC
Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

You shouldn't compare full blown windows with Android or IOS for desktop productivity features. Its a stacked deck.

Of course Google's chrome and Apple's OSX can handle multi window on notebooks just fine. And Windows Phone, can't handle multi window.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Apples to Oranges, again.
by drcouzelis on Wed 5th Mar 2014 20:59 UTC in reply to "Apples to Oranges, again. "
drcouzelis Member since:
2010-01-11

No kidding, the article and the summary and the comments here have all left me horribly confused as to what I'm supposed to be comparing. O_o

Reply Score: 4

RE: Apples to Oranges, again.
by jared_wilkes on Wed 5th Mar 2014 21:04 UTC in reply to "Apples to Oranges, again. "
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

It's also horrible logic to predicate "productivity" on one criteria (multi-app multitasking and a tiled-UI); productivity needs to be examined by evaluating numerous (maybe innumerable) vectors (app capability, app availability, ubiquity, general ease of use, discoverability, and numerous other factors).

Reply Score: 3

RE: Apples to Oranges, again.
by bert64 on Thu 6th Mar 2014 09:30 UTC in reply to "Apples to Oranges, again. "
bert64 Member since:
2007-04-23

And windows doesn't handle multiple desktops by default, making it pretty much useless for all but the simplest levels of multitasking (ie only a small step ahead of android).

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Apples to Oranges, again.
by zima on Wed 12th Mar 2014 23:35 UTC in reply to "RE: Apples to Oranges, again. "
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

So just install an app which brings multidesktop to Windows... (you know, that's the role of operating systems in general, to enable applications)

Reply Score: 2

Re:
by kurkosdr on Wed 5th Mar 2014 21:03 UTC
kurkosdr
Member since:
2011-04-11

Pretty sure Google will introduce windowing support soon in Android, possibly within the next 18-24 months (Android 5.0, perhaps?)


Isn't that a bit wishful thinking? There is no word from Google they are interested in this, lest Android "transformer" tablets compete directly with their beloved ChromeOS.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by Lorin
by Lorin on Wed 5th Mar 2014 22:50 UTC
Lorin
Member since:
2010-04-06

Samsung has been doing that for quite some time and it can even handle 4 apps on the screen at once.

Reply Score: 4

Nice.
by Windows Sucks on Thu 6th Mar 2014 05:09 UTC
Windows Sucks
Member since:
2005-11-10

Yet no one cares.

Microsoft always had multitasking in their tablets and phones. Way before the iPhone and iPad and Android. Yet they got smoked in mobile because people mostly consume on mobile not produce.

Reply Score: 3

Do we need general multi-window?
by leos on Thu 6th Mar 2014 06:47 UTC
leos
Member since:
2005-09-21

I feel that similarly to multi-tasking, I'm not sure I really need true multi-window support on a tablet. iOS locked down multitasking to only things that they thought made sense to run in the background (music, GPS, some limited background tasks, etc). And it worked. Saved battery life and prevented people from having to worry about killing those apps that were slowing down their phone.

I feel it is the same thing with multi-window. I don't need the ability to dock any arbitrary tablet app side by side with another. It wouldn't make any sense for most apps. It could make sense in certain situations, like instructions (we've been asked by clients whether our task-sequencing app could run side by side with another app) or maybe movies (if you have ADD). Not much else makes sense. Maybe enable multi-window when outputting to a TV but not on the tablet itself.
On the iPad it's easy to switch between two or three recently used apps (hand swipe right) so it's not too difficult to work on two apps and very quickly move between them, without trying to squash either of them into a space they weren't designed for.

Edited 2014-03-06 06:49 UTC

Reply Score: 4

ezraz Member since:
2012-06-20

Instructions/PDF's/text/emails, maybe IM/Skype, that's about all I'd want to be able to pin to a side or corner on an iPad. and even then, i think i'd use that feature maybe once a year, but it would be nice for it to be there.

but you are right, it's so blindingly easy to multi-task on iOS. about the only thing you can't do with it is show two apps on the screen at once.

Reply Score: 1

leos Member since:
2005-09-21

Instructions/PDF's/text/emails, maybe IM/Skype, that's about all I'd want to be able to pin to a side or corner on an iPad. and even then, i think i'd use that feature maybe once a year, but it would be nice for it to be there.

but you are right, it's so blindingly easy to multi-task on iOS. about the only thing you can't do with it is show two apps on the screen at once.


Good point on the IM. That would make sense. The other way to do this could be to allow quick-reply in notifications.

Reply Score: 2

MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I have this Dell Venue tablet, which isn't really a tablet (I found out).


These Metro apps can apparently multi window with other apps and so far I don't like it.

I think it was the Facebook app, I clicked on an external link and the screen was split in two: Facebook and Internet Explorer. Both were annoying to use with those dimensions. I'd prefer to have IE opened full screen and when I close it I'd expect to be returned to Facebook.

When I use a desktop OS I tend to have one application in full view also.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by gloucestershrubhill
by gloucestershrubhill on Thu 6th Mar 2014 07:13 UTC
gloucestershrubhill
Member since:
2010-08-10

*Something about webOS, which I love but you were too bored to give a proper trial, but I can also no longer be bothered with because I've moved on to other platforms that - while much worse - are at least successful.* Bastards. Efficient, responsive, NEOLITHIC BASTARDS.

Reply Score: 3

And i care why?
by The123king on Thu 6th Mar 2014 13:41 UTC
The123king
Member since:
2009-05-28

Tablets are devices for consuming content. When was the last time you tried browsing the internet whilst watching a film? Or playing poker whilst checking your emails? Multitasking on tablets is IMHO not a "killer feature". There's not a single time when i scream at my iPad because it can't multitask, mainly because i myself struggle to multitask too! And fo those odd times when i do need to watch 2 things at once, most of the time the second application is either desktop/Windows only or just makes so much more sense using a keyboard and mouse.

The conventional desktop isn't going away, and neither is the mobile interface. They're like wooden spoons and dessert spoons. One you use to make the cake, and one you use to eat it with.

Reply Score: 4

RE: And i care why?
by kristoph on Sun 9th Mar 2014 02:44 UTC in reply to "And i care why?"
kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

Whereas I sort of agree with this it would sort of helpful to be able to, for example, drag and drop content from one app to another.

I agree that otherwise this is a sort of lame feature that I can see myself using on a tablet.

Heck, even on my desktop machine I typically maximize an app on one (the laptop) monitor and then either maximize another app on the main monitor or, on occasion, to a split screen when a specific task calls for it (like when I am debugging code I might have the code open on one half and the browser on another).

Reply Score: 2

RocRizzo
Member since:
2014-03-06

ANY mobile platform allows people to multi-task.
They do it all the time when they drive and read their freakin' e-mail.
Perhaps Windows will help them crash more efficiently. Like so that they are not seen on the road any more!

Reply Score: 0