Thursday 3 January 2013

Retrograde Progression

Windows 8 start screen.  Nikon D7000
2nd January 2013

I have had no option recently to move into the current century; part of that has involved getting to grips with Windows 8 on a laptop.

Any new operating system and touchpads take time to get used to, but Windows 8 is 'entertaining'.

There are some really good features of Windows 8; it seems to be generally stable and reboots really quickly in the times it was not stable.

The new 'app based desktop' is a step backwards however.

It is not me being a Luddite and not liking change, rather I would like to use my laptop to actually work on multiple tasks at a time (like I am used to on unix and the older versions of windows).  Previous Windows versions always were best for 'light office use' rather than real engineering work, but it sufficed and had their useful features such as recognising even odd devices and being able to make a reasonable stab at a working driver when I plugged new hardware in.

It seems that Windows 8 has been designed to run on a touch-screen tablet or mobile phone.  If you have a laptop or desktop that could be capable of much more; tough.  The new 'apps' open full screen and any intuitive controls (such as mouse buttons doing much) seem to have been removed in favour of weird touch-pad swipe operations to control behaviours that are really hard to remember.   The desktop is now relegated to also being an 'app', however seems to be quite necessary when making any system changes (if you can find out where the options have been hidden).

I think I will power up the Raspberry Pi and go and sulk.

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