Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 2nd Jun 2011 00:39 UTC
Windows It's 2am here (edit: I'm done writing, it's 2:38am now), and I really ought to be sleeping right about now, but for some stupid arbitrary reason, the D9 conference is held at honestly irresponsible hours for us Europeans (and we rock, damnit). So, here I am, MacBook Air on my lap, camomile tea (the Empress of Teas) in my cup, because Microsoft just had to show Windows 8's new interface for the first time at this ungodly hour. Oh, and they unveiled some more interesting stuff about Windows 8. Update: The videos from D9 are up. Mossberg talking to Steve Sinofsky, and the Windows 8 demonstration by Larson-Green.
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RE[2]: Nice work Microsoft!
by steve_s on Thu 2nd Jun 2011 17:23 UTC in reply to "RE: Nice work Microsoft!"
steve_s
Member since:
2006-01-16

How much of the work that I do all day could feasibly be done on a touch screen? I'd say 100%.

I'm a programmer, web developer, user interface designer, and mobile app developer. There is nothing that I do that could not be done on a touch-screen based computer as efficiently as I do today using a keyboard and mouse.

I'm not saying that it would be feasible for me to swap to a touch-based computer today - I'm talking about what will be possible in a few years. I'd like a large screen, as big as my plasma telly but with at least twice the resolution, that's either horizontal covering a desk top or angled up a little like a drafting table. Given that I don't think I'd want a physical keyboard getting between me and the screen, or a mouse and pointer getting in the way of me more directly interacting with the UI.

Fingers will obviously be the main interaction method for touch UIs, but for fine details you'll grab a pen. I rarely need to do such fine work myself though.

What will make this practical is redesigned user interfaces that bear touch interaction in mind. UI controls that are small and fiddly don't work - things need to be bigger and more tolerant of fat fingers. Using apps made for today's desktop UIs with fingers isn't going to fly - it didn't work too well for pen-based tablets either.

To restate, I firmly believe that 100% of my work could be done using a touch-based computing environment. Were I a graphic artist, a movie editor, or a musician I'd say the same. Pessimistically I'd say that in 10 years time this will be norm for all of these use-cases. Optimistically I expect that within 5 years touch will be dominant for all new machines and software.

The more pertinent question is what work do you think cannot be done feasibly on a touch screen, given a suitably designed UI?

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