I was just discussing flashing taskbar icons with a friend, and I was thinking how it could be better.
Instead of the buttons flashing, how about them pulsating slowly and softly?
And as for the Start Pane (I still hate it!), can we please see "Quicklaunch Menus" like FLB? They're so much faster and easier to use than the "Start > All Programs > *wait 2 seconds for the list to populate* > Foo > Bar > Baz.exe" method.
I'd also like a way to specify that certain applications are /always/ collapsed into menus. Consider messenger conversations, they always fill up my taskbar, I'd like it if they were collapsed into a single (but really small) button that then showed a radial menu (so much better than list menus) allowing me to select the right conversation in just 2 mouseclicks.
All Programs doesn't take that long for me, because after I've setup my desktop and installed everything, I go in and organize it to my liking.
Currently, All Programs has folders "Games", "Microsoft", and "Tools", all of which are further sub-organized.
Maybe I'm just OC...
At Uni, where the all programs list comes from the overburdened network, it can take up to a minute to appear. Talk about annoying. On my own PC, it takes only a few milliseconds.
Besides which, all things I actually use regularly are in the favorite programs list, so I rarely need to use All Programs. I have loved the Start Panel for that list ever since it was first introduced in the Whistler betas. Of course, the first thing I do after installing Windows is switch it to small icons and increase the count of items for the list.
I don't like menus either and I also have a idea to improve them a lot. When appliction pakages app into installer and when he makes a shortcuts for his app, couldn't it just be just great if there could be some sort of first priority organization like that games belong to games menus. What I mean that first is what kind program it is(Games, Graphics, Multimedia...), then there is maker/publisher(SquareSoft, Adobe, Apple...) and after that program(Final Fantasy VIII, Photoshop, iTunes) and it's subgroups(Help, Manual, User Guide).
Making out a database of installed programs that that way finding a corresponding shortcut for menu could make it faster and easier to browse it around.
I like that menus will open fast as possible. I don't like to wait a 2-5 seconds for a nice fade. People who what that fade can have it, I don't want to deny that pleasure. But when browsing a menus where are about hundred application shortcuts and finding the one right is pain in *** with fades.
What I have seen from screenshots Longhorn has a somesort of searchable menu similar to GTK+2.6 stylish menu search. I think thats cool in GTK platform, but since I haven't tested it in longhorn I don't know for sure what kind of it is in it. That's made to reduce the menu leight in screen, I guess.
As for taskbar, change to allways group similar programs is a nice feature. And very usedful. But some kind of running applications lister could be nice feature too. That FLB looks nice. I gotta try it.