Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 31st Oct 2008 14:47 UTC
Windows Yes, we're still on the subject of Windows 7's user interface overhaul. We know what's going to change, we know what it looks like, but there's one important question that has not really been given much stage time: why? At PDC, one session was dedicated to just that question. Speaking is Chaitanya Sareen [.wmv], part of the windows user interface team. He'll place the changes in Windows 7 into context, talk about Windows' user interface history, and he'll explain why certain changes were made. An interesting insight into the goals of the Windows 7 interface.
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g2devi
Member since:
2005-07-09

Actually, the reason for the "inconsistency of opinion" is simple. People don't just want change, they want and *improvement*. When Win95 came out, everything was different from Win 3.1, but people jumped on it precisely because the UI of Win95 was far superior to Win 3.1. When XP came out, people balked. XP was superior to W2K functionwise (after the first service pack), but XP was just change for the sake of change. People eventually got used to XP and the last W2K holdouts didn't have much choice once the W2K EOL (but they at least had "Classic mode"), so XP succeeded.

Vista failed because it was change for the sake of change, with no redeeming features other than glitz and bloat.

It's too early to tell about Windows 7. I personally haven't seen anything yet of value over XP other than change for the sake of change and a hardening of the commitment to "the one true way -- no compromises". But Windows 7 is still nowhere near release, so there's lots of time for Microsoft to surprise us. So I'll reserve judgement on whether Windows 7 is another Win95 or another WinME.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Serophos Member since:
2008-10-11

And this is where you are wrong! Vista does a lot things different then XP not for the sake of making things different. Like it or not, there is a concept behind removing things like the "One folder up"-Button. Just click on any part of the path in the bread-crumb-thingie and you jump to any folder above in the tree. Getting two fodlers up now takes one click instead of two = improvement. This is just an example of course. Of course you can not make everyone happy, you always have to target Mr.& and Mrs. Average.

And even if there is no obvious reason behind a change: Sometimes you need to make a change to see if it is an improvement or not because in a lot of scenarios only reallife use will tell.

And now you say: But give me the option to change it back the way it was. And the answer is: This is exactly the thing that leads to the kind of "bloat" (I hate that term) that you are brandmarking. You need to have millions and millions of options and different user interfaces, maintain more code just to satisfy a small percentage of users (and they are small).

And if you do not like it, who forces you to upgrade? Just stick with your old computer from 1995. Mine still works perfectly at my parents house.

Reply Parent Score: 5

sorpigal Member since:
2005-11-02

And this is where you are wrong! Vista does a lot things different then XP not for the sake of making things different. Like it or not, there is a concept behind removing things like the "One folder up"-Button. Just click on any part of the path in the bread-crumb-thingie and you jump to any folder above in the tree. Getting two fodlers up now takes one click instead of two = improvement.


This is one of those 'improvements' that I don't like. Yes, it *can* be better and I generally approve of this feature. But... removing the "up one" button is *still* bad. If you have a long path and want to go up to a folder *just left* of the leftmost displayed it takes much longer than moving your mouse pointer once and rapidly clicking one button.

I like the vista 'breadcrumbs' navigation stlye. I liked it when people proposed it for GTK's file chooser dialog in 2005, I think MS implemented it just right. I think it's the one thing in vista they got exactly right. I think they were fools to remove the up one folder button.

This is what I *hate* about UI improvement wonks. Just because they've decided doing something else is 'better' for everyone they want to *force* me to do it. They do not realize that they are not all-knowing. This is like Nautilus spatial mode all over again. The message was: We know how you should be working, so we wont give you an option of doing what you want. Our way is better, just conform to our expectations!

Reply Parent Score: 2