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Got Windows 8? Desperately missing the Start menu? +Rob Pegoraro has a suggestion.
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Steven Vaughan-Nichols's profile photoJohn Ireland's profile photoHayder Abbass's profile photoEd Martin's profile photo
18 comments
 
Wow sounds like the rebirth of the norton commander days
 
Well I got my token copy of windows 8 for $40 loaded it on a spare ssd and I have goofed with it a bit because I know after Christmas I'll have people asking me about it and expect me to support it so...
 
At least on a giant touchscreen like that you can operate it by headbutting icons in frustration.
 
+Alan Cox That's pretty much how I feel about Metro. I had to edit out a lot of swearing in my most recent Win 8 piece. 
 
"How to add a Start menu to Windows 8" ... the very fact you would have to says a lot about 8's design.
 
And they fired the head of the windows 8 division. Sorry I'm getting off the ship it's clearly going down.
 
"How to add a start menu to Windows 8" says a lot about your bias, more than the need for the actual Start Menu.
 
Bias towards what productivity? It takes me two clicks more to open a end user installed application (if it works at all).Nope sorry bias is not the word I'd use.
 
+John Ireland This doesn't have anything to do with what I want. It has everything to do with what Windows users want. These products wouldn't exist if there wasn't a market for them. 
 
As a Windows user (and Linux user), I don't see the need for it.  Nor do many (I would argue most in the end) other W8 users.  The system they devised works quite well, and a "start menu" isn't anymore efficient in terms of "number of clicks."  Old way, click on start, click on pinned program (two clicks), new way hit start key, click on pinned program/app (two clicks).  Quite honestly most of this sounds like the same belly-aching I heard when Ubuntu switched to Unity or Apple switched to OSX.  One big difference here is that the change was pulled off without breaking compatibility.  I hear stories all over of how people's programs were "broken" and I think this is BS, I have yet to find a single program of mine (and I have a lot) that worked in W7 and does not work in W8... it might be that some "power users" out there are not as good as they think, or simply don't know how to use compatibility settings.  Hell I even got switchable graphics working from an older W7 driver and that is a real bugger to do in things such as Linux.
 
+John Ireland To each their own. If W8 works for you, as is, so be it. It doesn't for me, but, again, the real point is that a lot of ordinary users clearly do want a Start button. I find myself reminded of programs like Norton Commander and XTree back in the days when MSFT didn't have a good file manager. Could you use a PC without them? Sure. Did other users want an alternative. Yes they did. 
 
And to expand on that analogy... did the lack of that feature sink MS?  Nope, I used Norton commander back in the day, but remember quite a few people didn't (in fact most of my floor at a engineering school, didn't).  What I like about W8 is that they are finally taking touch computing and natural interface seriously.  Windows has always had the best voice and handwriting recognition in the business (sorry, my wife's Siri types like she is drunk) and now pairing this with real gesture based interface is the first step to a true post-PC world (read as post-keyboard, mouse paradigm).  My Surface is a light-weight PC rather than an overgrown smartphone (like my wife's iPad and the multitude of Android tablets I have tried) and while there are compromises at this point W8 works as well as a keyboard and mouse system when you learn it (no different from learning W95 after W3.1).
 
So the truth comes out, you bought a surface. I guess you would like it's your only choice.
 
Yeah I bought a Surface, I also upgraded my old HP tm2 and a Core2Duo Desktop to W8 and they all work great.  My wife has an iPad and I have tried various flavors of Android and found none of them comes close to W8 at actually making a "PC" with natural interface.  Android and iPad are really nothing more than mild advancements on the Palm/WM paradigm but lack any significant integration of handwriting or voice recognition (yeah, yeah Siri... again back to the drunk texts).  The keyboard/mouse paradigm will die and I think MS has made the first real progress in that area.  Did Apple innovate, yes, but has stagnated.  Does Android offer options, yes, but most of it is aping Apple.  MS has created a new interface, maintained backwards compatibility, and set up a future. 
 
We'll see John. I think this is another incarnation of "windows me"
 
The reason the created windows 95 was to satisfy the people who where using the norton commanders of the world. I see this as a step back for windows users. Maybe it's time windows dies?
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