Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Probably later this decade, Desktop WILL be gone.

  1. #1


    Posts : 5,707
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    Probably later this decade, Desktop WILL be gone.


    Now, I support metro design and the Start Screen and I believe that and the Desktop should mesh together. It should be Start Screen AND Desktop, not Start Screen versus Desktop.

    That got me thinking and playing around. I found out that you can literally close down the Desktop view just like an app can be. You have to have all your windows minimized, then the cursor turns into a little hand and you can close it down, resulting in the Start Screen.

    Now, this seems odd.

    It shouldn't really work like that on for the Desktop if the scenario was Start Screen and Desktop. That furthers my beliefs that Microsoft is going on the route of segregating interfaces, and not joining them together in a harmonious way. I still will use it as a Start Screen and Desktop. But this gets me thinking, the Start Screen literally can have almost anything pinned to it, somewhat like the Desktop. You can have people pinned to it, RSS apps, news apps, and the such. There is even the app snap feature, which I think isn't that great since it's split in either one third or two thirds of the screen and little manipulation. This sounds like the Desktop. Microsoft is calling Windows 8 the reimagining of Windows, but the Start Screen can't simply be just the reimagination along with the Desktop still being there? If one were to use the Start Screen by itself and use the features of it, it actually becomes what the Desktop is. The Start Screen is both Taskbar and start menu, the app switcher on the left side becomes the Live Preview thumbnails of the Taskbar. The App Snap is Aero Snap, and the swiping of apps is like using the Win+Tab key in Windows 7.

    That there is really what the reimagining of Windows is. The Desktop I bet, will be gone by the end of this decade and will be replaced with Start Screen and morphed into its metro design. Windows 8 is that transitional threshold to that future.

    Personally, I'm not actually against that happening. To be successful in the tech industry, companies actually have to kill their successful products in order to have something new and better. Granted, Start Screen isn't greater or better than the Desktop, but that could change in the near to distant future.

    I'm slightly excited to see that happen. It's a new generation of Windows, and we're living through the Start of the Future.

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  2. #2


    You didn't mention the "touch" aspect of the Start screen. That is what it is really what it is all about. But, I do not have a touch screen, and it is unlikely I will, for some time. But, what I would like to know - With a touch screen, can you prearrange shortcuts on the old familiar, desktop, (We are still in Windows 8 here!) so that they can be touch operated? I have browsed and cannot find any positive statement on this.
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  3. #3


    Posts : 288
    Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows Developer Preview, Linux Mint 9


    You always act as if you're pro on everything the Metro is and seeing the Desktop as getting obsolete. I think there would be improvements on the Start screen real soon but I still see the Desktop being alive by the end of this decade as suggested by the fact that its still is the more widely used platform today versus the tablet and the business world, I foresee Windows 7 being the new Windows XP as it will hold on as the most widely used Windows OS for many years to come. I don't see many business adapting to Windows 8 and the Metro in it because it takes an extra learning curve (which many of them would rather skip) and more money which may not be that necessary as Windows 7 can do the trick for them and would not take an extra learning curve (will take only a little from XP migrants). And the the Desktop concept is still the most widely used among Linux OSs. Full screen apps, even if it now has multitasking abilities still cannot be resized so technically, legacy apps would be the more suitable for most people who do multitask. I just don't like M$ insisting this would be the best and forcing this into people. They should still give the users a choice.

    But on the tablet platform, I do see the Start Screen and Metro apps having much better potential if only it gets more tweaking. Adding a close and minimize button into them would obviously give them advantage versus apps on Androids and iPads. This idea to me is very obvious and its a pain looking as to why they have not included those yet and just went on the trend on how tablet apps work on iPads and Androids.
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  4. #4


    Posts : 828
    Windows 7 x64 Ultimate/Windows 8.1/Linux


    I would highly doubt that Metro, in its current implementation, will entirely replace the standard Desktop environment, any time soon. As it stands, Windows 8 is essentially two shells, the 'standard' desktop built on Win32 and Metro build on WinRT. To me, at this time, they're a decidedly odd couple, attempting to share the same space and not doing very well at it.

    Don't get me wrong, there's a lot to commend Metro and WinRT, simple package type installation and removal, sandboxing, isolation etc., but there's also a number of areas where it fails horribly. Notably, applications are single instance and must run full screen, with the exception of two side by side. Metro applications that are suspended can be killed by the OS, without warning, if memory is required - tell me again why I have a multi-core processor and 16GB of RAM. As far as I'm aware, Metro applications must be downloaded from the Windows Store, which not everyone is going to embrace, especially developers, so the diversity of applications will likely reduce. The ergonomics of using a touch screen in a standard desktop environment, is against the widespread adoption, especially in business environments.

    It's quite probable that Windows 8 will be adopted quite widely, as there are a number of worthy features to drive the uptake, however, I think it's quite likely that Metro, unless things change, will be more of a niche, something used by those with minimal requirements and for those with small touch-screen devices. It's also likely it will be adopted in Kiosk type environments, places where a only a single application needs to be run at a time.
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  5. #5


    Of course MS will try to kill off the desktop in favor of a metro-style interface, but not for the reasons mentioned.

    For the past three decades or so, computers have been independent, stand-alone devices. This has given a lot of autonomy to the consumer... too much autonomy in the opinion of content providers. Content providers have been fighting a losing battle against the computer and its ability to instantly and cheaply create and distribute an essentially infinite number of perfect copies of visual and audio content... and the business model of content providers has always been built around copying and distributing content (which used to be costly to do, and generated the income which paid for everything else the media company did).

    The metro-style interface is designed to eliminate the independence of the computer... to tie it to the cloud, which can be controlled by business. Content providers have been trying to get back to the Good Old Days pre-VCR and pre-cassette ever since those disruptive technologies were introduced. And now they found a way to get the consumer to voluntarily surrender their autonomy, and do so for peanuts (a handful of zippy apps and vapid social media fads).

    And MS will go along with it because they are a content provider as well... software counts as content.
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  6. #6


    Adelaide
    Posts : 1,338
    Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 (64 bit), Linux Mint 17.1 MATE (64 bit)

    Exactly


    Quote Originally Posted by stevieray View Post
    Of course MS will try to kill off the desktop in favor of a metro-style interface, but not for the reasons mentioned.

    For the past three decades or so, computers have been independent, stand-alone devices. This has given a lot of autonomy to the consumer... too much autonomy in the opinion of content providers. Content providers have been fighting a losing battle against the computer and its ability to instantly and cheaply create and distribute an essentially infinite number of perfect copies of visual and audio content... and the business model of content providers has always been built around copying and distributing content (which used to be costly to do, and generated the income which paid for everything else the media company did).

    The metro-style interface is designed to eliminate the independence of the computer... to tie it to the cloud, which can be controlled by business. Content providers have been trying to get back to the Good Old Days pre-VCR and pre-cassette ever since those disruptive technologies were introduced.
    I agree with your assessment.

    This OS is aimed at people who think that "Facebooking" is real work.
    It is designed to "soften you up" for "Cloud-based" Windows.

    Quote Originally Posted by stevieray View Post
    And now they found a way to get the consumer to voluntarily surrender their autonomy, and do so for peanuts (a handful of zippy apps and vapid social media fads).
    "Like lambs to the slaughter."
    In fact it's even better than that, as the "lambs" are paying for it.

    Once you accept the idea that you aren't allowed to do anything on your own PC ("no user serviceable software inside") moving to the "Cloud" isn't as threatening.
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  7. #7


    Posts : 5,707
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by Vertex View Post
    You always act as if you're pro on everything the Metro is and seeing the Desktop as getting obsolete. I think there would be improvements on the Start screen real soon but I still see the Desktop being alive by the end of this decade as suggested by the fact that its still is the more widely used platform today versus the tablet and the business world, I foresee Windows 7 being the new Windows XP as it will hold on as the most widely used Windows OS for many years to come. I don't see many business adapting to Windows 8 and the Metro in it because it takes an extra learning curve (which many of them would rather skip) and more money which may not be that necessary as Windows 7 can do the trick for them and would not take an extra learning curve (will take only a little from XP migrants). And the the Desktop concept is still the most widely used among Linux OSs. Full screen apps, even if it now has multitasking abilities still cannot be resized so technically, legacy apps would be the more suitable for most people who do multitask. I just don't like M$ insisting this would be the best and forcing this into people. They should still give the users a choice.

    But on the tablet platform, I do see the Start Screen and Metro apps having much better potential if only it gets more tweaking. Adding a close and minimize button into them would obviously give them advantage versus apps on Androids and iPads. This idea to me is very obvious and its a pain looking as to why they have not included those yet and just went on the trend on how tablet apps work on iPads and Androids.
    Interesting perspective....
    I think if the Start Screen and touch and gesture take off, that will be further evolved and adapted over the Desktop. Honestly, if there was a metro styled version of Windows Explorer, the Desktop could be finished.

    Speaking of closing apps on touch screens, Windows 8 doesn't have window chrome on apps. They kept that for the Consumer Preview. With a touch gesture, and a flick, an app is closed. If you need to switch to a different app, there is an app switching bar on the left side to do that. If you need to a go a different app you don't have open, you go to the Start Screen. Windows 8 isn't traditional, it's breaking the traditional ways of doing the same things, but in different ways.
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  8. #8


    Posts : 5,707
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by Calico View Post
    I would highly doubt that Metro, in its current implementation, will entirely replace the standard Desktop environment, any time soon. As it stands, Windows 8 is essentially two shells, the 'standard' desktop built on Win32 and Metro build on WinRT. To me, at this time, they're a decidedly odd couple, attempting to share the same space and not doing very well at it.

    Don't get me wrong, there's a lot to commend Metro and WinRT, simple package type installation and removal, sandboxing, isolation etc., but there's also a number of areas where it fails horribly. Notably, applications are single instance and must run full screen, with the exception of two side by side. Metro applications that are suspended can be killed by the OS, without warning, if memory is required - tell me again why I have a multi-core processor and 16GB of RAM. As far as I'm aware, Metro applications must be downloaded from the Windows Store, which not everyone is going to embrace, especially developers, so the diversity of applications will likely reduce. The ergonomics of using a touch screen in a standard desktop environment, is against the widespread adoption, especially in business environments.

    It's quite probable that Windows 8 will be adopted quite widely, as there are a number of worthy features to drive the uptake, however, I think it's quite likely that Metro, unless things change, will be more of a niche, something used by those with minimal requirements and for those with small touch-screen devices. It's also likely it will be adopted in Kiosk type environments, places where a only a single application needs to be run at a time.
    I agree with the fact that the Start Screen right now can't take over the Desktop by a long shot. But I'm speaking about the further future of the Start Screen.
    By the way, I doubt you metro apps will be killed on your system. The only reason why it would that is on ARM tablets and low RAM tablets. I think the Windows Store will be successful because if you look at apple's app store, it's thriving. androids's app store has all the other apps, with ones of subpar quality. The Windows Phone 7's marketplace is thriving as well. I doubt that would be an issue, especially considering the Windows Store will be on every Windows 8 PC so the end user can find these apps easily all the time.
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  9. #9


    Posts : 828
    Windows 7 x64 Ultimate/Windows 8.1/Linux


    Quote Originally Posted by Coke Robot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Calico View Post
    I would highly doubt that Metro, in its current implementation, will entirely replace the standard Desktop environment, any time soon. As it stands, Windows 8 is essentially two shells, the 'standard' desktop built on Win32 and Metro build on WinRT. To me, at this time, they're a decidedly odd couple, attempting to share the same space and not doing very well at it.

    Don't get me wrong, there's a lot to commend Metro and WinRT, simple package type installation and removal, sandboxing, isolation etc., but there's also a number of areas where it fails horribly. Notably, applications are single instance and must run full screen, with the exception of two side by side. Metro applications that are suspended can be killed by the OS, without warning, if memory is required - tell me again why I have a multi-core processor and 16GB of RAM. As far as I'm aware, Metro applications must be downloaded from the Windows Store, which not everyone is going to embrace, especially developers, so the diversity of applications will likely reduce. The ergonomics of using a touch screen in a standard desktop environment, is against the widespread adoption, especially in business environments.

    It's quite probable that Windows 8 will be adopted quite widely, as there are a number of worthy features to drive the uptake, however, I think it's quite likely that Metro, unless things change, will be more of a niche, something used by those with minimal requirements and for those with small touch-screen devices. It's also likely it will be adopted in Kiosk type environments, places where a only a single application needs to be run at a time.
    I agree with the fact that the Start Screen right now can't take over the Desktop by a long shot. But I'm speaking about the further future of the Start Screen.
    So am I.

    By the way, I doubt you metro apps will be killed on your system. The only reason why it would that is on ARM tablets and low RAM tablets.
    That's not really the point I was making. As it stands, I can have two Metro applications running simultaneously, any others are suspended. That maybe appropriate on the average hand held device, but which ever way you look at it, it's a ridiculous limitation for a reasonably equipped desktop PC.

    I think the Windows Store will be successful because if you look at apple's app store, it's thriving. androids's app store has all the other apps, with ones of subpar quality. The Windows Phone 7's marketplace is thriving as well. I doubt that would be an issue, especially considering the Windows Store will be on every Windows 8 PC so the end user can find these apps easily all the time.
    Discounting hand held devices and looking at the comparison between the MAC and Windows 8, MAC users can still download applications from anywhere. If the only option for Metro Applications, is the Windows store, it can't, by it's very nature, be as diverse.

    You also have to consider the requirements for developing Metro applications, which are more complicated than similar platforms. Again, this is due to the way Metro is implemented. Personally, I'd hate to have to develop some database driven application to run under Metro, unless I could guarantee it would be the only thing running.

    If Microsoft want Metro to succeed, they're seriously going to have to rethink big parts of it. If the don't it will be severely limited. Personally, I think they should have a Windows 8 Metro Edition and leave it as an option in the other editions.
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  10. #10


    Posts : 288
    Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows Developer Preview, Linux Mint 9


    Quote Originally Posted by Coke Robot View Post
    I think if the Start Screen and touch and gesture take off, that will be further evolved and adapted over the Desktop. Honestly, if there was a metro styled version of Windows Explorer, the Desktop could be finished.
    The Metro Windows Explorer is a dream to you but how sure are you that will be better than the traditional "Windows" Explorer that's resizable, not fullscreen and much more easily switchable that many of us would prefer? Plus the legacy Windows Explorer has a great context menu that offers a wide variety of fucntions when you right click at stuff. Different people like to do things differently in their own ways so don't assume that most people are gonna think the same as you and embrace this over on what they think is better or easier for them because you can't expect most people to like a Metro styled Windows Explorer after the reason written above.

    I would still want the Metro apps to have a close button because its a far more obvious way of closing something down than tapping the top of the app then dragging it below. Which is easier? A single press at the upper right of the touchcreen where a close button is or is it tapping at the top portion and dragging it below the screen? A single press would of course take less effort and more ease and it would still retain the "traditional" way of closing an app. That could be a really important advantage over apps of iPads and Androids. Plus a minimize button that would minimize your app and it would now be sitting on the switching bar at the left, that's really great but yet M$ has failed to realize that or maybe just dumped that idea for the sake of this change or "reimagining" they say. Yes, Windows 8 is a big change but it still has to be on a concievable level where the "tradition" is not killed off for those of us who may have trouble to adjust and adapt. In the end of the day, it still must give us a choice and by then, more people will like it.
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Probably later this decade, Desktop WILL be gone.
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