Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 26th Jun 2013 16:41 UTC
Windows Microsoft has released the Windows 8.1 preview for download, but they region-locked it to 13 specific languages, and Dutch is not one of them. So, even though my Surface RT has been completely and utterly English from the day I bought it, I can't install Windows 8.1 and tell you something about it. Those of you who can download it, why don't you tell us what it's like - or you can head to The Verge who got early access. In case you couldn't tell, I'm a little annoyed that we're arbitrarily being left out once again.
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Start Button Useless??
by Fusion on Wed 26th Jun 2013 17:33 UTC
Fusion
Member since:
2005-07-18

Looks like they've added the start button, but it appears to just bring you to the Metro overlay/home screen. (See 1:10 in the preview video.) Way to make the jarring Windows 8 "START" experience more accessible via mouse.

Lame sauce.

Can someone who downloads this please confirm?

Reply Score: 4

RE: Start Button Useless??
by drcouzelis on Wed 26th Jun 2013 18:26 in reply to "Start Button Useless??"
drcouzelis Member since:
2010-01-11

I don't use Windows, but that is what Microsoft said they were going to do. They "listened to the users" and added the Start Button, but there is no Start Menu. Clicking it just returns the user to the Windows 8 home screen.

Reply Parent Score: 5

v RE[2]: Start Button Useless??
by lustyd on Wed 26th Jun 2013 18:35 in reply to "RE: Start Button Useless??"
RE[2]: Start Button Useless??
by UltraZelda64 on Wed 26th Jun 2013 21:30 in reply to "RE: Start Button Useless??"
UltraZelda64 Member since:
2006-12-05

It's a button, yeah, but I would hardly call it a "Start button" when it doesn't even bring up the expected "Start menu." And except on phones, tablets and other small touchscreen-based systems, the "Start screen" is no replacement for a traditional mouse-driven menu on larger, high-resolution screens.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Start Button Useless??
by Bobthearch on Thu 27th Jun 2013 03:27 in reply to "RE: Start Button Useless??"
Bobthearch Member since:
2006-01-27

I don't use Windows, but that is what Microsoft said they were going to do. They "listened to the users" and added the Start Button, but there is no Start Menu. Clicking it just returns the user to the Windows 8 home screen.


According to this CNN article, "...many Windows users were upset about radical departure from the typical Windows interface, especially the lack of a Start button. The button is back, and now it leads to a list of all your applications."

http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/26/tech/gaming-gadgets/microsoft-keynote...

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Start Button Useless??
by Fusion on Wed 26th Jun 2013 22:21 in reply to "Start Button Useless??"
Fusion Member since:
2005-07-18

To be more clear, I *like* Windows 8 for its overall performance and *some* of its UI-related optimizations. (Even feels snappier than Win 7 on the same hardware.)

My opinion related squarely to the 'Menu' situation... that was the point of my original 'lame sauce' gripe...

Win 8's full-screen ("start menu") feels more like a schizophrenic merging of a HUD (chock-full of *currently* mostly useless items) with the Win7/Vista (indexed-searchable) Start Menu. Full-screen overlays like this may make sense where screen real estate is severely lacking AND where *heavy duty* multi-tasking is less necessary---e.g., tablets and phones. My desktop, however, has a 27" display (which I bought) to show multiple apps/info simultaneously.

Press the Win 8 Start menu, and my current apps and desktop (EVERYTHING) disappears. I'm presented with several large, useless TILES that (mostly) link me to single-use (metro style) 'apps' that I will never use on a desktop. (At least not in their current iterations...). The net impact here is that I get to traverse the mouse (and my eyes) over 27 inches of useless crap, just to find something. If I type a string of text, hopefully I was just looking for an stand-alone application.....because if I was looking for an "app" buried inside the cluster F@*# known as Control Panel, then I get move my mouse (or tap a bunch of tabs/arrow keys/enter) to select "Settings" sub-search...or "Files" to find a file. Then I get to move my mouse (or tab/arrow/enter) over to the complete opposite side of the screen (along with tracking my eyes over there) to select what I was looking for. (Hopefully I didn't type my search term incorrectly, or I've got a couple more trips in store.)

Win 7 menu is less obtrusive and more to-the-point. My eyes and mouse remain fixed in a narrow (read: useable) area, while the rest of the desktop and apps are all visible in real-time at glance. Maybe I'm following directions from a webpage HowTo that involves several steps deep into the start menu.... maybe I'm keeping an eye on an activity output... maybe I'm just watching a movie. Type a string into the menu, and I get ALL results (applications, docs, control panel apps), and all is wonderful with the world.

Point is: if I'm *WORKING* in "desktop mode", that means I would like to remain there... until I specifically *CLOSE* desktop mode. Using the 'start menu' as a tactic to attempt pulling me out of my functional, multi-taskable desktop, into a flat-but-flashy arguably useless Metro UI works against what I am trying to do.

Don't get me wrong, I don't oppose a metro-style HUD of sorts. Apple's dashboard implementation, for example, gives a good balance of HUG elements that can be easily called upon for a quick "what's up" state of affairs. Also helps minimize clutter from desklets/applets.

Sigh.

Reply Parent Score: 10