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Postby nelz » Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:02 am

guy wrote:If someone ever does a usable touchscreen system for the mainstream desktop, I will be first in the queue.


Provided they include the longer arms needed to reach a decent sized display. The ergonomics of using a desktop system are so different from a tablet or even a laptop. My pointing device is right next to my keyboard, my monitors are not.
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Postby wyliecoyoteuk » Sun Apr 29, 2012 8:27 am

One of the worst things about W8 is how badly it handles multiple displays, which is a big problem for businesses.
Good use of 2 or more displays increases productivity, and the low price of monitors these days make it a popular choice, but it seems that MS don't like that.
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Postby Ram » Sun Apr 29, 2012 11:24 am

nelz wrote:
guy wrote:If someone ever does a usable touchscreen system for the mainstream desktop, I will be first in the queue.


Provided they include the longer arms needed to reach a decent sized display. The ergonomics of using a desktop system are so different from a tablet or even a laptop. My pointing device is right next to my keyboard, my monitors are not.


Isn't what we have been saying since Unity was released... Another case of where Linux leads MS follows.

It's the wrong direction for desktops.

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Postby wyliecoyoteuk » Sun Apr 29, 2012 11:48 am

Actually, I think Unity is a much better mix of touch and WIMP environments than W8, in that it remains usable in either mode.
W8 is much less fluid. In effect, they have converted the start menu to the Metro touch interface as a kludge to get touch onboard.
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Postby Marrea » Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:04 pm

nelz wrote:Provided they include the longer arms needed to reach a decent sized display.

My sentiment entirely. I spend a great deal of my desktop computer time on detailed still and video editing, along with word processing and spreadsheets. I also prefer wherever possible to use keyboard shortcuts. For me a mouse and keyboard combination is the most productive way of working.

Touchscreen technology is anathema to me. Looks very impressive on the glossy adverts I suppose though and bound to attract the Twitter/Facebook generation, which is obviously the target market, not an ex-secretary, old fogie like me. :wink:
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Postby Marrea » Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:16 pm

wyliecoyoteuk wrote:Actually, I think Unity is a much better mix of touch and WIMP environments than W8, in that it remains usable in either mode.

Yes, agree wholeheartedly. Having read so many adverse comments about Unity I was pleasantly surprised when I started using it myself. I can't say the same about the Windows 8 interface, which is a mess.
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Postby guy » Sun Apr 29, 2012 2:46 pm

nelz wrote:
guy wrote:If someone ever does a usable touchscreen system for the mainstream desktop, I will be first in the queue.

Provided they include the longer arms needed to reach a decent sized display. The ergonomics of using a desktop system are so different from a tablet or even a laptop. My pointing device is right next to my keyboard, my monitors are not.

Except, an awful lot of "desktops" these days are on laptops. Or, if your eyes are not up to reading tiny writing half a mile away, dragged forward to within inches of your keyboard. Why deny us owls a preferred UI just because you eagles can't benefit until you get on the train?

Marrea wrote:Touchscreen technology is anathema to me. Looks very impressive on the glossy adverts I suppose though and bound to attract the Twitter/Facebook generation, which is obviously the target market, not an ex-secretary, old fogie like me

Like I said to Rhakios, once you try a decent implementation it becomes second nature.

If you swap that mouse for a touchscreen you might be pleasantly surprised. Of course, ATM finding an OS that lets you do that is the main problem.

Mind you, I'm already cussing the first worprocessor I am trying out on my Android because it doesn't recognise the intuitive cursor positioning and highlighting gestures that the Series 5 did, even though the web browser does. Might try a different one, there seems to be a reasonable choice out there.
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Postby Marrea » Sun Apr 29, 2012 2:59 pm

guy wrote:If you swap that mouse for a touchscreen you might be pleasantly surprised. Of course, ATM finding an OS that lets you do that is the main problem.

I remain unconvinced that carrying out an intricate Photoshop selection, for which I use a Wacom tablet and pen, would be possible by poking a stubby finger around the screen. :? Even it was, my face would be too near the screen to focus properly on what I was doing and I would probably end up with serious RSI in my hand and arm through having both in an unusual elevated position.
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Postby nelz » Sun Apr 29, 2012 5:05 pm

guy wrote:
nelz wrote:Provided they include the longer arms needed to reach a decent sized display. The ergonomics of using a desktop system are so different from a tablet or even a laptop. My pointing device is right next to my keyboard, my monitors are not.

Except, an awful lot of "desktops" these days are on laptops. Or, if your eyes are not up to reading tiny writing half a mile away, dragged forward to within inches of your keyboard. Why deny us owls a preferred UI just because you eagles can't benefit until you get on the train?


Note that I stated that desktops are different to laptops, because I was referring to a proper desktop system, not a laptop sat on a desk. One of the benefits of a separate monitor is that you can sit further away from it, which is a real benefit when your eyes get a bit older. I have far less trouble reading text on a couple of 22" monitors at more than arms length than I do on any portable device.

Even on a laptop though, touchscreens are less convenient. I have an Asus Transformer, one of the few devices to have both, and moving a hand from the keyboard area to drag something across the screen does interrupt my workflow.

However, on tablets and smartphones, as well as kiosk type devices, the touchscreen is easily the superior choice. Trying to force a common method of controls on such wide ranging devices will always result in undesirable compromises. I'll stick with the touchscreen on my tablet and phone and the trackball on my desktop, thank you very much.
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Postby guy » Sun Apr 29, 2012 5:25 pm

nelz wrote:
guy wrote:
nelz wrote:Provided they include the longer arms needed to reach a decent sized display. The ergonomics of using a desktop system are so different from a tablet or even a laptop. My pointing device is right next to my keyboard, my monitors are not.

Except, an awful lot of "desktops" these days are on laptops. Or, if your eyes are not up to reading tiny writing half a mile away, dragged forward to within inches of your keyboard. Why deny us owls a preferred UI just because you eagles can't benefit until you get on the train?


Note that I stated that desktops are different to laptops, because I was referring to a proper desktop system, not a laptop sat on a desk.

My point being that the OS on laptops is usually the same OS to be found on desk-bound systems.

One of the benefits of a separate monitor is that you can sit further away from it, which is a real benefit when your eyes get a bit older. I have far less trouble reading text on a couple of 22" monitors at more than arms length than I do on any portable device.

Ooh, you old eagle you. The older this owl gets, the more I pull it towards me. Now, where's that quote about enjoying the choice?

Even on a laptop though, touchscreens are less convenient. I have an Asus Transformer, one of the few devices to have both, and moving a hand from the keyboard area to drag something across the screen does interrupt my workflow.

I find it easier than groping for the mouse that just fell on the floor.

However, on tablets and smartphones, as well as kiosk type devices, the touchscreen is easily the superior choice. Trying to force a common method of controls on such wide ranging devices will always result in undesirable compromises. I'll stick with the touchscreen on my tablet and phone and the trackball on my desktop, thank you very much.

I have to admit, I'd hate my TV remote to get replaced by a touchscreen - or a trackball for that matter. ;)
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Postby guy » Sun Apr 29, 2012 5:28 pm

Marrea wrote:
guy wrote:If you swap that mouse for a touchscreen you might be pleasantly surprised. Of course, ATM finding an OS that lets you do that is the main problem.

I remain unconvinced that carrying out an intricate Photoshop selection, for which I use a Wacom tablet and pen, would be possible by poking a stubby finger around the screen. :?


Sorry, wrong Marrea. I was replying to the one who posted "For me a mouse and keyboard combination is the most productive way of working." :P
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Postby Marrea » Sun Apr 29, 2012 6:09 pm

guy wrote:Sorry, wrong Marrea. I was replying to the one who posted "For me a mouse and keyboard combination is the most productive way of working." :P

I can confirm that there is only one of me (some might say "thank goodness for that, one is one too many") :wink:

I fear this is getting a little too pedantic. The way I look at it a tablet and pen set is simply another form of mouse and the two are interchangeable. Neither require you to be waving your arms around in the air! :)

PS I've never had the misfortune to drop a mouse on the floor. You should make more space on your desk. Get rid of all the coffee cups and empty pizza cartons. :P
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Postby Ram » Sun Apr 29, 2012 6:09 pm

nelz wrote:
Note that I stated that desktops are different to laptops, because I was referring to a proper desktop system, not a laptop sat on a desk. One of the benefits of a separate monitor is that you can sit further away from it, which is a real benefit when your eyes get a bit older. I have far less trouble reading text on a couple of 22" monitors at more than arms length than I do on any portable device.


Am in the same boat, reading glasses needed.

nelz wrote:
However, on tablets and smartphones, as well as kiosk type devices, the touchscreen is easily the superior choice. Trying to force a common method of controls on such wide ranging devices will always result in undesirable compromises. I'll stick with the touchscreen on my tablet and phone and the trackball on my desktop, thank you very much.


Perfectly put.

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Postby nelz » Sun Apr 29, 2012 7:14 pm

guy wrote:My point being that the OS on laptops is usually the same OS to be found on desk-bound systems.


True, but that doesn't mean they should force a single UI on all users.

guy wrote:Ooh, you old eagle you. The older this owl gets, the more I pull it towards me. Now, where's that quote about enjoying the choice?


There are too many of them to choose from :P Seriously though, age tends to affect close up vision more, hence the need for reading glasses as the birthdays are whizzing by even more quickly.

guy wrote:I find it easier than groping for the mouse that just fell on the floor.


Ah, so you prefer a touchscreen interface because it saves having to tidy your desk? :D

guy wrote:I have to admit, I'd hate my TV remote to get replaced by a touchscreen - or a trackball for that matter. ;)


Have you tried one of those touchscreen universal remotes (or mythmote on an Android phone)? They're horrible because you have yo look at them to see where to press. Of course, that just highlights the horses for courses aspect of the whole issue, because with a TV remote device you do not want to look at the device.
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Postby wyliecoyoteuk » Sun Apr 29, 2012 9:18 pm

The metro interface being shoehorned into W8 (back on topic!) is just an example of cutting corners.
For those among us who use one or two applications, it will work well, for everyone else, it is counterproductive.
Touch will never be a productibve desktop paradigm, simply because it will reduce productivity.
In fact, WIMP interfaces are actually far less efficient than text entry (no mouse) interfaces in many applications.
We more than doubled the speed of our Service clerks work by giving them a terminal that did not support mouse input.
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