Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 4th Jun 2010 11:39 UTC, submitted by Amix
Morphos And the MorphOS team continues to expand their hardware support. They released MorphOS version 2.5 today, which adds support for Apple's eMac computers (the 1.25Ghz models, the 1.42 models have not yet been tested). Of course, there's also a whole load of fixes and improvements, too.
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Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

MorphOS, like all operating systems, expects me to understand invisible and intangible background processes that change the state of the computer according to commands I execute. Take for example, the cipboard. We take this for granted, but it is an awful piece of UI if there ever was one. You click copy and *nothing happens*. You are expected to understand what is happening within the black box. There’s nothing tangible here with which a new user could expect to understand "copy". When you photocopy something, you get the result straight away. Not when you move to another photocopier and punch a button to get your copy from the previous machine.

The problem I have found with MorphOS—for which it cannot be blamed—is that as it has a small team of developers behind it who are all knowledgeable in the ways of the Amiga and they design and implement the OS according to their knowledge of this black box. As an outsider, where do I fit into this equation? Should I be forced to learn how the black box behaves when I prod it just because that’s how everybody before has done it and I shouldn’t complain; or shouldn’t this be redesigned so that it’s easier to understand to begin with.

How can I review something that is asking me to adopt it as a full time platform, suffer all the difficulty learning it just so that I can be "fair" about it. I can’t. All I can summise is that it is a technical achievement for the makers, it presents itself well and it has a varied and interesting community. I was going to try adopt the OS for a month but I couldn’t wrangle a free licence out of the development team so it put paid to that idea and I can’t get more out of the OS than booting it up and tinkering with it—which is neither fair or realistic when it comes to reviewing. What I did find was an awful lot of bugs—genuinely broken stuff, not only ignorance on my part. This is why I look forward to trying the new version to see what changed.

I would only want to write something if I could do the OS justice. If anything I am more inclined to write about the issues of newcomers to alternative OSes than MorphOS itself specifically.

Reply Parent Score: 1

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Take for example, the cipboard. We take this for granted, but it is an awful piece of UI if there ever was one. You click copy and *nothing happens*. You are expected to understand what is happening within the black box.

How could it be done otherwise without a visually bloated interface which displays endless amount of popups like "I copied something !", "I cancelled something !", "Oh, look, I just found a Wi-Fi network around ! Be sure to try it out !" ? Such a popup is fine for something which happens rarely, not for something which is done everyday.

You say that nothing happened, however I see that...
-> The "copy" link got highlighted when the mouse was hovering it.
-> When I clicked it, as soon as the command was acknowledged, the OS made the popup menu disappear as visual feedback.

In my opinion, for a function as commonly used as copy and paste, it is safe to assume that the user will take a week to get used to it, if he/she is going to use this feature for 10 years long.

My sqrt(2) ct however...

Reply Parent Score: 2

Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

http://releasecandidateone.com/221:a_services_menu_for_iphone

Is one possibility. We have to copy and paste so much because apps just don’t talk to each other in a meaningful way.

Reply Parent Score: 1

AmigaRobbo Member since:
2005-11-15

So you want a windows (95) clone? For every single 'alternative' OS?

If so count me out of your great dream.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

For goodness sake, what is with jumping to such a OMGWTFBBQ conclusion? NO, of course I don't want a Windows 95 clone. Defensive, much? Get a grip dude, I love operating systems and I want smarter ones, including the alternatives. Did you not see this before? http://camendesign.com/krocos

Reply Parent Score: 1

Raffaele Member since:
2005-11-12

MorphOS, like all operating systems, expects me to understand invisible and intangible background processes that change the state of the computer according to commands I execute. Take for example, the cipboard. We take this for granted, but it is an awful piece of UI if there ever was one. You click copy and *nothing happens*. You are expected to understand what is happening within the black box. There’s nothing tangible here with which a new user could expect to understand "copy". When you photocopy something, you get the result straight away. Not when you move to another photocopier and punch a button to get your copy from the previous machine.


Pardon me but I am not capable to see your point.

What is the difficult you find in copy function?

Is the icon remaining the same and not becoming ghosted and then you are unable to understand you clicked and copied it in clipboards?

Do you prefer that the icon will change its state and becoming ghosted until it has been copied to desired position?

Edited 2010-06-05 09:07 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

*sigh* You're not quite understanding. Don't over react. Copy/paste is just an example where the computer changes state in a non-obvious way. It's obvious to you and I because we understand what is happening; but a computer beginner could not understand that there is such a thing as the "clipboard" when it is never mentioned in the UI. Have you ever asked yourself how come you know it's called the clipboard?

I remember clearly the first time I ever came across cut / copy / paste. It was 14 years ago and I was using Microsoft Draw on Windows 3.1 and I was playing with making shapes and looking through the menus where I found cut / copy / paste. I assumed that these functions were for drawing markings for where one would physically cut and glue the paper on your printout. You can laugh all you want, but you have _all_ done this at some point with computers, where you made some assumption that wasn't true because the computer's intentions were not obvious.

UI is hard. Don't take your privileged position to be neither common, nor the absolute truth--because when we're old, we're going to be coming across lots of new UI that the kids think is plain obvious but makes no sense to our desktop-orientated upbringing.

edit: typo

Edited 2010-06-05 09:58 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1