Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

[ZenKey] Suggestions, tricks, thoughts, for the minimalist

  1. #1

    [ZenKey] Suggestions, tricks, thoughts, for the minimalist

    I just posted this. Thought it could use it's own thread to isolate and collect suggestions or ideas for ways of running Windows 8x in such a mode.

    ….I need to fully explore this new zero desktop-icon/zero-taskbar/zero-toolbar thing. The path of ZenKey; using the Winkey to access literally everything - all documents and functions, without exception.

    Maybe I can create a theme with 1-pixel width window frames, and instead of calling them "frames" they are called "event horizons". More stuff like that. Sounds scheme all ancient gongs. A version of Chrome that is a widget the size of a URL box - etc.

    ..One Winkey to rule them all

    [Edit – ONE GONG sound, hit almost exactrly the same, but recorded from, and within, different spaces for different resonation/timbre signatures.

    Much more of less.

    So Windows 8 opens up to the Start screen. I have removed all panels, and as HippsieGypsie has kindly pointed out, I can use Winkey-D to access the desktop (which itself is empty), but I might first just use the Start screen for exactly what it is to me – a search platform that I type into. So, rather than going to the desktop first, I would type in “fire” and Enter, to open Firefox. Etc.

    Q: I have 8. Is there any way to remove the large “Start” at the top left of the purple page? How about the entire User block at the top right?

    Winkey-C – brings up time & date from anywhere, so you don't need the taskbar for that, and can auto-hide it.

    Other ideas? Tricks? Studies in minimalism with Windows 8?


      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2

    Portsmouth Hants
    Posts : 772
    Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center

    A picture tells a thousand words... Despite this being a thread about Minimalism, I think that a few screenshots - perhaps actual and idealised (i.e. mucked about in an editor - a la Vogue photoshoot) would give readers a good idea of what you are trying to do, and how we might help - no?
    What strikes me about typing onto a blank screen, with nothing appearing in front of me, is have I completely misspelled something I cannot even see?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3

    I feel so not understood.... : )

    Below are the Desktop & Start screens respectively.

    The bold question above is how to clean up the start screen. I've already got the desktop clean, as you can see. But I covered the "Start" and User name/image in the Start picture below using MS Paint.

    The f
    irst order of business is to get that, if possible.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails ZenKey, a desktop.png   ZenKey, a more simple Start screen.png  
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4

    Sheit. Google-Bing shows “ZenKey” already exists. Perhaps he had the same thought: a completely empty screen, and run as much as possible from minimalist keystrokes – windows poping up only as needed - like little emerging thought clouds.

    That link shows it was created just two months ago. (I have no relation with whoever that is.) I'm generally a big chicken on installing anything not open source – unless it's universally accepted as okay. TBD.

    [Edit - Except his seems more about precluding the mouse. I love the mouse. But only when it can be more elegant than keystrokes....

    I especially love a ThinkPad “Nub”. I've had a ThinkPad since the beginning.]
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5

    Sleep Methods?

    Alt-Tab over to empty desktop (~3) | Alt-F4 (2) | down arrow to sleep (~2) | Enter (1) [= ~8 keystrokes, or combos (mileage may vary)]

    Ctrl-Alt-Delete (from anywhere – old school) (~2) | Mouse over and hit the Power button (~10 in keystroke time equivalency) | select Sleep (1) [= ~14]

    Win-C (2) | mouse over and select Settings (~10) | select Power button (1) | select Sleep (1) [= ~14]

    Win-I to control panel/setting charm (2) | select Power button (~10) | select Sleep (1) [= ~13]

    Am I missing anything easier?

    I don't have a friggin' sleep button on my wireless keyboard. Bummer. That would be [= 1].

    Maybe you can map an F-Key to = “Sleep” in Windows across all apps?

    Winkey-G looks unused. "Goodbye.." How do I map that?

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6

    Portsmouth Hants
    Posts : 772
    Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center

    Control Panel, Power Options, System Settings, Choose what the power button does (maybe "Change settings that are currently unavailable"), When I press the power button, on battery / plugged in and select sleep so the power button sends the machine to sleep (and wakes it up again).

    To turn off, or restart, make shortcuts to the shutdown.exe program (hibernate or hybrid are here too, if your power configuration allows this) - Shawn Brink has made a tutorial Shut Down Shortcut - Create in Windows 8 with links to a bunch of related shortcuts at the end of the tutorial.

    Any shortcut can have a CTRL+ALT+[key] keyboard shortcut allocated - it is in the properties of the shortcut (step 5 of the tutorial) Just click your cursor in the shortcut key box and type a letter, like "G", and the shortcut is CTRL+ALT+G
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7

    I manually created a Brink Shutdown shortcut icon and pinned it to my Start menu. It works. But then I removed it quickly because it does not follow the path of Zen. The path of Zen has nothing on the Start menu, or the desktop, or the Taskbar. Nothingness. The path of Zen accomplishes everything via minimal keystrokes.


    So yeah, it goes against my nature to abandon the keyboard, but I changed my power button to “sleep”, per your direction.

    So now I just reach down to the tower under the desk and zap her to sleep. Mission accomplished. One button.

    But I feel so dirty. Unclean.

    I would prefer to somehow assign the Win-G key combo to make the machine sleep - if anyone knows how to conjure that.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8

    Portsmouth Hants
    Posts : 772
    Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center

    First you must create the path of Zen, O Grasshopper, and name the folder Zen in which to place your shortcuts, and they will be clean. And thence you must seek guidance whereon you place the Folder of Zen, that it is in the path of your environment so that all will execute therein.

    Young Padawan, if you would learn the mysteries of Powershell then you will become as invincible as the forgotten sages of MS-Dos and the ancient mysteries of Batchfile editing, having only Edlin as their weapon.

    Yea, thou shalt become as mighty in stature as the dark lords of Linux, as they type in their dark terminals the runes of Bash.

    It is said that a journey starts with an single footstep, and that footstep is placed on the desktop, since that path begins in light and ends in enlightenment. And on that desktop thou shalt place your shortcut to the path of Zen, and place it close to Recycle bin as a reminder that all must perish, that the circle of life is one with the path and with reincarnation. And if the sight of icons on your desktop offends thine eye, do not pluck it out but right-click the desktop, select view and uncheck "show desktop icons".
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    I feel so understood!!

    Now how do I get Winkey-G to activate “Sleep”?

    Create a batch file, located in a path directory, ….?


    Powershell me some instructions, oh blind master of the flying guillotine.

    There shall not be shortcut icons. That would be like leaving footsteps upon the rice paper as Kwai Chang attempts to leave the Shaolin temple.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10

    Portsmouth Hants
    Posts : 772
    Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center

    Ask the great seer of the Google eyes command to sleep and be lucky for therein lies a temple of ['} superuser with such a request as yours, and great wisdom is imparted to those who seek within.

    The mystery of wielding the winkey may reside in the powers of third parties, whose wisdom is not always freely given and such shortcuts may not be lightly taken.

    Alas, My powers fail me as advancing morn approaches and I must seek the shelter of zzzzs. For you, a callow acolyte whose sun has barely set, the night is young, and the search for enlightenment must progress by you alone until you feel as weary as I, for your cup is as yet empty.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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[ZenKey] Suggestions, tricks, thoughts, for the minimalist

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