Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 4th Mar 2013 18:26 UTC
Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu "Canonical has today publicly confirmed that they are working on a new cross-platform displayer server for Ubuntu. Called 'Mir', the X Window Server replacement is tasked with 'enabling development of the next generation Unity'. Which, in yet another about-turn, is to be rebuilt in Qt/QML." It'll be used for all Ubuntu variants (phone, tablet, desktop), and the first version will be released come May.
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RE[6]: Finally
by Nelson on Tue 5th Mar 2013 06:32 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Finally"
Nelson
Member since:
2005-11-29


Agree with you there, and I think it is a welcome improvement. But if they can't manage to build a desktop environment around it that doesn't suck ass, it's going to flop, just like WPF and Silverlight, albeit for different reasons.


I don't think they're going to build a Desktop environment as we know it. Period. I just can't see them going back at this point.

I do think that Metro Style apps will become a lot more powerful. The XAML stack will become more feature filled and support more scenarios.

They'll presumably show a lot of love to Mouse+Keyboard users. They don't really need to do much to dramatically improve the experience.

What they need more than anything is a standardized generic gesture driver for laptop touchpads. Every new Laptop with Windows 8 I saw did swiping gestures on the touchpad differently.

It ranged from completely terrible to mildly amateur. Its a nightmare. This needs addressing.


Personally, I hope they continue to improve it and make Metro in Windows 9 something that is actually usable.


Well just look at the growth from WP7.0 to WP7.5 to WP8. Its night and day. With some time behind it, Microsoft will mature the platform to be very powerful.


Whoever it was that decided that right mouse button menus were no longer relevant, and that horizontal scrolling was a good idea on the desktop should be summarily executed.


Right Mouse buttons have never been particularly discoverable, in my own analytics, people that use my apps and don't use tablets have a hard time discovering the App Bar (opened by a right click).

I've always seen the context menu used as a dumping ground for options which is annoying. There's a better way in Metro.

But Metro allows you to write Context Menus pretty easily using Popups (which is how they were made under the hood in WPF/SL. In fact, you can easily port the WP7 ContextMenu from the SL Toolkit if you want, there's a better one in Callisto a WinRT Toolkit).

I just don't think context menu's fit into Metro. A combination of app bars, content as chrome, and flyout menus can address all of the context menu scenarios.

The focus on horizontal scrolling is an artifact of their stupid obsession with 16:9 aspect ratios. I hate it. It makes portrait views on tablets useless. My Surface feels like a skateboard in portrait mode.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[7]: Finally
by WorknMan on Tue 5th Mar 2013 08:32 in reply to "RE[6]: Finally"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

Right Mouse buttons have never been particularly discoverable, in my own analytics


This is a typical response from developers. They look at various statistics and decide 'well, since 90% of people aren't using this, we might as well take it out', thereby alienating the other 10%.

Personally, I think there's a way to please both camps with the same product, but nobody seems to even be making an attempt these days. Even Google is dumbing down Android, claiming that things such as SD cards are too complicated, and so they just rip it out.

This is what I like to refer to as the war on power users. I guess I shouldn't be surprised though, since it seems that any minority group in this world are the ones that get shit on and ignored.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[8]: Finally
by Nelson on Tue 5th Mar 2013 09:30 in reply to "RE[7]: Finally"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29


This is a typical response from developers. They look at various statistics and decide 'well, since 90% of people aren't using this, we might as well take it out', thereby alienating the other 10%.


Well, its more important in mobile where every bit counts with code size since it helps cold boot time.

If I can shave time off of my app startup by loading less code or dependencies then that's obviously a trade off I'm going to make.

Not that Context Menus add that much more code, but its my philosophy in general. Its also less code to maintain, less XAML to be parsed so you have a simpler visual tree, etc.

Windows Phone deals with the appbar nicely by having the three dots and slightly transparent mini bar "..." hinting that you can swipe up.

Windows 8 offers no hints that there might be an app bar, its hit or miss. maybe there is, maybe there isn't. Its dumb.

I think its fundamentally the problem right click has though, either its there or the user is burned because he didn't get gratification for an action.

I opted for a solution where the app bar auto-shows when you select an item, and the buttons in the app bar are contextual. That way there's no right-click guess work, and it serves the same purpose as a right click menu albeit with a little more mouse travel.


Personally, I think there's a way to please both camps with the same product, but nobody seems to even be making an attempt these days. Even Google is dumbing down Android, claiming that things such as SD cards are too complicated, and so they just rip it out.


Its hard. Touch and Mouse don't map 1:1 all the time. To beat this App Bar example to death, while swiping from the bezel is fun and natural with touch, its weird and awkward with a Mouse, and right click (or Ctrl+Z) feels like an afterthought.

Likewise with Right clicking on an item for a context menu vs long pressing for one. They don't map 1:1 so you either implement one, the other, or both.

I think Windows 8 is good, very good, but they didn't get this aspect of it quite right. There's still more than a trivial amount of work to accommodate mouse and keyboard users.


This is what I like to refer to as the war on power users. I guess I shouldn't be surprised though, since it seems that any minority group in this world are the ones that get shit on and ignored.


Above I was nitpicking and being specific, but I do get your point in general that there is an overall simplification of everything in UX.

That's not too bad, and I welcome it, so long as the knobs are still there behind the scenes. Hide it in the registry, a group policy, an obscure control panel applet, whatever, but give me my knobs. Let me tweak things if I want, if I break the warning stickers, let me do what I want.

This is a little less likely on phones because the carrier relationships are fragile, but on tablets, it should be possible and pretty much is, at least on Windows 8 tablets.

Reply Parent Score: 4