@magicalclick: I tried it out, it's not bad, but I can't find a way to do the adjacent borders resizing by default without using "Ctrl". Although I actually couldn't figure out how to remap any of the key-and-mouse combinations.... perhaps that's a limitation of the free version.
@magicalclick: Actually this seems promising... I'm surprised I haven't found it before.
I'm going to see if it can resize adjacent borders by default. Other than that my main hope would be to get rid of overlap entirely, but I'm sure it doesn't go to that extent.
Absolutely, I love options.
For me, the first of the two screen grabs on page 1 showing the 4 windows (Wordpad, et. al.) feels like a night and day difference in distracting elements, with the first being far simpler to wrap my mind around. The first is simply 4 familiar items, while the second screen distinctly feels like a jumble of lines and confusing shades that leads me to have to spend more effort to figure it out.
I guess you're saying the one without dark borders and less differentiation between the title bars of active and background windows feels easier to perceive for you.
No. I said no such thing. I was talking about skeuomorphism, not about using color to indicate different states. Maybe you initially meant something else when you used the term "skeuomorphism"?
P.S., This is all academic for me for I have the skills to turn Win 10 into something more amenable to my sensibilities (and as it turns out more like what I've already done to Win 8.1), but I fear a whole lot of Win 7 "holdouts" aren't going to appreciate the finer points of the "ermine in a snow bank" theme.
I personally don't like either the "snowbank" or Aero glass themes. Changing the W10 theme to use color to indicate focus seems reasonable.
You don't like overlap windows, but, others LOVE it. I see people refuse to snap or maximizes all the time. They LOVE overlap and I know exactly why. The windows size is still big enough (not tiny grid cell) and they can switch app without taskbar. It is a perfectly good use case.
I know, and again I am not trying to completely remove overlapping window mode. But I would like a good, contemporary option for tiling window management.
As far as people not using snap, perhaps if they tried a better system out then they would change their minds. Technology is just getting to the point that applications may behave well in a tiling window manager. It's kind of like the iPad... tablets were around before but barely used, but Apple designed the technology in such a way that people found useful.
That's not my argument at all. My argument is that it is not universal and that, second to its other issues, makes it not good.
You call it "training wheels", but I've found that when one is working at the limits of one's mental abilities on a complex task, one needs all the help and hints one can get. Put succinctly you don't need to be distracted to remember how to do something when you're concentrating.
I get this, and I've made that argument several times to junior developers. But I've made it in terms of reducing clutter, putting content first, and removing distraction. It's interesting that you are trying to make essentially the same argument in the opposite way... and I can't say that I buy into it.
That's pretty weak argument. For one thing, you should probably try to visit the control room of a real datacenter. They do run commands on command-lines but there is also plenty of monitoring screen for logs and graphs.
For the other thing, especially for developers, we usually do input (like writing code) on one screen and make the result shown on the other, some even prefer a third screen for viewing static documents like specs or calendars. Difficult to distinguish the active window is real usability issue.
IMO, even if they decide different shades of grey should be used in the theme, they should make sure there is enough color distance between colors to make sure people can distinguish between them.
I've been to a datacenter before, I know what you're talking about.
If you notice, I wasn't talking at all about the use of color or borders. So I'm in agreement with you there. And I also said that border shadows make sense for overlapping windows.
But skeuomorphism just for the sake of mimicking real-world objects is a form of training wheels for computers... something that might be useful for complete computer newbies, but most people who have used computers for more than a month or two can figure out what's what without it. For me, it's more distracting than helpful.
And probably the biggest problem with most skeuomorphism is, everyone does it differently. If you use two different skeuomorphic applications, I'm almost certain the buttons will look different, and perhaps even work differently. Skeuomorphic designers often create completely new control concepts instead of utilizing common components. Perhaps I wouldn't be so harsh on it if it were universal.
@magicalclick: That is an interesting idea.
I'm not sure what the PowerPoint reference is, I don't see any of that capability when I use PowerPoint. Unless it's a 2013 feature (I'm using 2010).
Although I'm still not convinced I would like this as much as a tiling window manager, because I would still need to nudge every screen next to each other and align them to be pixel perfect before I can hook them together. I'm also not in love with the idea that it would still have overlapping windows. (Don't get me wrong, I'd want overlapping windows to remain an option in Windows, but I'd like to be able to put Windows into a full tiling window manager mode that prevents overlapping windows much like tablet mode does in W10.)
I wish I could find a decent screenshot of a tiling window manager, but in my opinion most examples I can find online are rather ugly or bland... it's mostly used by a niche group, because until now the only apps that tend to work well are text based. But responsive universal apps might change that.
Windows doesn't do what I want today, and sorry but I don't have the time to photoshop what I'd like to see. Imagine Metro Snap but with more arbitrary splitting, and adding in vertical splitting, and you'll have a better idea of what I mean.
Yet I still find that desktop applications delineated with chrome that sets them apart from other screen elements are far easier to perceive and use than those crafted with no consistent theme, nor visual elements that help set them apart (OMG, the awful skeuomorphism everyone today loves to hate). Frankly, I find using Office 365 applications continually irritating because Microsoft has arbitrarily chosen to eschew the desktop theme. There is an ulterior motive there, and it's not to make these applications easier to use.
Sure, of course there needs to be a UI element for resizing, even in a tiling window manager. But consider Metro Snap, where two side-by-side windows share a resize border. I like this a lot. One of the reasons I rarely use Aero Snap is because I will inevitably need to resize one window, and then the other to match. It's that second resize that hurts productivity, and trying to line it up to be close to pixel perfect makes the entire sequence of actions to simulate Metro Snap take about 3-4 times as long.
But there is no reason apps participating in Metro Snap would additionally need their own borders. There is plenty of visual separation in Metro Snap. And there's no need for extra resize borders in Metro Snap... just like there's no need for resize borders in maximized apps. Come to think, I don't believe a version of Windows ever existed where maximized apps displayed window borders.
Shades of white and light gray with little to no differentiation between window contents and chrome simply don't accomplish that.
Chrome serves multiple purposes:
- To distinguish separate interactive elements. This is the most legitimate reason for chrome in my opinion.
- To distinguish separate non-interactive elements. This can be useful, although there may be other ways to accomplish this goal (e.g. Metro with the use of typography).
#1 and #2 are legit in my mind. #3, well, I find that "dummies" (to use your phrase) are actually the ones who need skeuomorphic crutch when using a computer. I don't need an app to look like a physical notebook in order to figure out that it's used for taking notes.
(But before I get trolled on this... I'm not saying all skeuomorphism is bad or wrong. I'll say it yet again: the traditional desktop overlapping-window environment is already a skeuomorph by utilizing 3D-like z ordering, so adding shadows or other elements to clarify that skeuomorph makes sense.)
I mentioned this on another thread... most people with the amount of experience you repeatedly claim, I find they consider text-based interfaces (about as un-skeuomorphic as they come) are the only true way to use a computer. Unless your desire for skeuomorphism resembles my parenthetical paragraph above, I would consider you the oddity.
That's not skeuomorphism. HoloLens has 3D elements in a 3D environment; skeuomorphism would be the use of 3D-styled elements on a 2D surface.
I just don't like overlapping windows. We need a tiling window manager interface for Windows. Metro Snap is a decent step in that direction, but I'd like to see this taken to the next level by allowing vertical divisions, and also allowing (reasonably) any number of divisions in either direction.
Then we can get rid of all these borders and drop shadows, and the minimize and maximize buttons, because none of that will be needed anymore (at least in that operating mode).
The nice thing about the new responsive UI in universal apps is that those apps should do much, much better in such an environment where apps need to conform to the space allowed instead of assuming they can take up a large chunk of the screen.
I have a highly sensitive device that can detect minute traces of millions of photons. It's even attached to my face.
I'm curious, why would I need a hardware device to tell me what my eyes probably already figured out?
Cameras have so many applications today that were never considered when they were invented. Perhaps chemical detectors will be the same.