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Old 11-03-2013, 01:35 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by BobReg View Post
Please don't stop there. Got the download link??
do a google search for "start button replacements" or "classic shell" for "windows 8"

start8 is the one I chose.

startisback is a popular free one

classic shell is a more comprehensive solution for simplifying the interface
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:07 PM   #42
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The Metro interface, while useless...
still don't get why people hate the metro interface, waiting for someone to give a reason.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:11 PM   #43
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still don't get why people hate the metro interface, waiting for someone to give a reason.
it's cumbersome, slow, and "Feels" like a different OS

probably subjective.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:13 PM   #44
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it's cumbersome, slow, and "Feels" like a different OS

probably subjective.
how is the original start menu not cumbersome and slow?
edit: Wait are we talking about the same thing? I'm talking about the metro interface for opening desktop programs (as opposed to a vertical list start menu)
Edit: I like the boxes and the potential for customizing. I open programs much faster this way than with a vertical start menu. It's easier to manage than a start menu (easy to clean / remove stuff you don't want there).
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:27 PM   #45
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probably just horses for courses. I find the vertical start menu super quick, the separate metro screen not so much.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:30 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by Argitoth View Post
how is the original start menu not cumbersome and slow?
edit: Wait are we talking about the same thing? I'm talking about the metro interface for opening desktop programs (as opposed to a vertical list start menu)
Edit: I like the boxes and the potential for customizing. I open programs much faster this way than with a vertical start menu. It's easier to manage than a start menu (easy to clean / remove stuff you don't want there).
I dislike Metro because it's obviously designed with touchscreen users in mind. It's basically laid out like your typical smartphone screen with big icons and boxes so stuff is easy to hit with your finger. Using a mouse though it feels like a mindless waste of screen real estate and it gives you no clear overview when browsing for stuff.

A vertical menu with folders is obviously suboptimal for a touchscreen, but with a mouse it's much nicer IMO. I mean, why should my apps be spread out over like four screens that I have to scroll through when it can all fit into a compact menu that fits on a small part of one screen? It just makes no sense.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:41 PM   #47
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I mean, why should my apps be spread out over like four screens that I have to scroll through when it can all fit into a compact menu that fits on a small part of one screen? It just makes no sense.
I dunno man, I just like the boxes and the logo pictures inside those boxes. It's just easier than a vertical start menu based on my experience, and I am just baffled to know that so few computer-savvy people agree with me.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:46 PM   #48
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http://www.elanhickler.com/_/elan_hickler_start.png

Look how much room there is. I just quickly made my icons smaller just for this picture... You really need to see more than this at once?

I had enough room for everything that I currently need quick access to with the normal size (4x bigger), and that's the size I am using currently.

Edit: But the beauty of this is that you can make icons small and large simultaneously. You can have a section of less-used programs as tiny boxes, more used programs as bigger boxes. To me it's not only functional, it's visually appealing. My brain can memorize the box positions easier than a vertical list.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:46 PM   #49
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The Asus X401U is a pretty nice laptop, I picked one out for a friend who needed a new laptop for school, and she loves it. Not a single problem so far. The build quality and finish are great. Never used it with an audio interface though, so no idea how it performs, beyond "good enough for basic student usage."
I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea here: the X401U is a nice little computer but it is NOT what you should choose if you're looking for a DAW laptop. It just happened to meet my requirements in terms of price, performance and portability. It's fine four roughing out musical ideas with midi and virtual instruments when I'm on the go, but it's definitely a bit under-specced for bigger projects.

Surprisingly it runs games pretty well too, maybe not the latest and most graphically intensive ones but still. I did not expect that so that's a nice bonus.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:51 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Argitoth View Post
http://www.elanhickler.com/_/elan_hickler_start.png

Look how much room there is. I just quickly made my icons smaller just for this picture... You really need to see more than this at once?

I had enough room for everything that I currently need quick access to with the normal size (4x bigger), and that's the size I am using currently.
It's questionable interface design, pure and simple. Having icons AND text will let you spot stuff quicker. And the bigger the area you have to scan to find what you're looking for, the longer it takes. Especially with no text and no discernible sorting scheme.

Edit: what I'm getting at is, a vertical alphabetical list of folders or shortcuts is quicker. Because we're used to reading.
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:54 PM   #51
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http://www.elanhickler.com/_/elan_hickler_start2.png



names where I need it, small boxes where I need it. MY BRAIN LIKES IT, OK!?!?!
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Old 11-03-2013, 02:56 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by Argitoth View Post
MY BRAIN LIKES IT, OK!?!?!
That's fine

My brain says: ouch, that's a lot of colors and big boxes sorted completely randomly over my entire screen.
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Old 11-03-2013, 03:01 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by cerendir View Post
Edit: what I'm getting at is, a vertical alphabetical list of folders or shortcuts is quicker. Because we're used to reading.
Not to be picky but IIRC scientifically... the brain can understand react to symbols colors much faster than decoding text and it's meaning. It's evolutionary in nature and one reason most everything we see has turned into pictures/icons/colors even outside of computers.

That being said, what is slow, is grasping something that is outside of what we are immediately used to because it is uncomfortable and slow at first, to get its benefit (if any) is to spend the time to get past that initial WTF to realize those benefits, again if they exist.
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Old 11-03-2013, 03:08 PM   #54
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Not to be picky but IIRC scientifically... the brain can understand react to symbols colors much faster than decoding text and it's meaning. It's evolutionary in nature and one reason most everything we see has turned into pictures/icons/colors even outside of computers.
True, but text AND icons is faster than just an icon, or just text. I'm fairly sure Fitt's Law backs me up on that one but it's been a long time since I studied it.

And no, a menu with folders is not optimal either (as the folders all look the same and we need to read the titles) but then again it's laid out alphabetically and vertically so I would think it's faster than a grid of icons that wraps at some arbitrary number.
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Old 11-03-2013, 03:58 PM   #55
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I would think it's faster than a grid of icons that wraps at some arbitrary number.
But you can move icons around and prevent arbitrary wrapping, for the record.
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Old 11-03-2013, 06:03 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by Argitoth View Post
I like the boxes and the potential for customizing. I open programs much faster this way than with a vertical start menu. It's easier to manage than a start menu (easy to clean / remove stuff you don't want there).
The Start menu was "verticalized" in Windows NT6, and thus limited in its potential already. In previous Windows versions one could unfold subdirectories (program groups) across the screen horizontally the further the more nested subfolders there were. I am generally content with 2 level organization, though. But those two levels are more compact in a meny layout.

If the main Programs directory contained more items than could be displayed in one column, the start menu had an option to start drawing another column. The default choice was, however, a slow vertically scrolling list.

Since a Windows 98 explorer update (don't remember which one) and in Windows 2000, Start menu items also became draggable from one directory to another. This was however rather cumbersome, as the menu might accidentally close if the user wasn't precise enough in his dragging, and the process had to be repeated. For this reason, start menu groups could be faster to sort in 2 or more permanently open explorer windows (which looked like Win 3.11 Program Manager groups). The user was free to make the choice to use either method. He is not free anymore.

Last edited by j7n; 11-03-2013 at 07:00 PM. Reason: screenshots
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Old 11-05-2013, 02:40 PM   #57
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I've been using Windows since 3.11 so I'm quite familiar with the changes the interface has gone through, for good and for bad. Thanks

All I was trying to say was that a vertical menu is more intuitive with a mouse/keyboard interface as you shouldn't have to be mousing all over the screen to reach stuff you need. Moreover, isn't the Metro interface basically the Windows desktop all over again? A wide empty space for storing big shortcuts and widgets. Why do we need a second desktop? Couldn't MS just have added the Metro functionality to the existing desktop instead?

No matter though. As JBM said, it takes seconds to revert it back to the look and feel of previous Win versions and that extra hassle is more than worth it. I'm back to being pleasantly surprised now x)
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Old 11-05-2013, 03:02 PM   #58
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1. press Win key
2. type first few letters of the thing you need
3. press enter or click it with mouse, it's usually the first thing in the list

Beats searching metro and start menu with my eyes. What can I say, I love to type
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Old 11-06-2013, 10:30 AM   #59
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Moreover, isn't the Metro interface basically the Windows desktop all over again?
You know, you really talk big about the vertical start menu, how it's faster and intuitive as if it's a fact. I'd SO love to challenge you to a speed duel for opening programs, metro vs start menu.

Metro: CLICK CLICK DONE!
Start Menu: Click... move mouse to "programs"... wait... move mouse to a program folder... wait for it to open, click. Ok, you could click those things open instead of waiting, but that's still 3 clicks, one more click than metro.
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Old 11-06-2013, 01:47 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Breeder View Post
1. press Win key
2. type first few letters of the thing you need
3. press enter or click it with mouse, it's usually the first thing in the list

Beats searching metro and start menu with my eyes. What can I say, I love to type
Yeah, it's nice that this functionality has remained on the Metro interface.
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Old 11-07-2013, 08:36 AM   #61
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I didn't intend to oppose you, cerendir, and quoted because this was the most relevant post in this particular thread. I saw another post elsewhere made by an "early adopter" where they claimed that the Seven start menu was small and constrained, whereas Metro took advantage of screen space. The menu was small because it wasn't exactly a menu anymore.

Nothing wrong in allowing the menu to be searchable. It is indeed quicker to run "regedit" than mouse to where the link is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Argitoth
move mouse to "programs"... wait... move mouse to a program folder... wait for it to open
The normal Start menu that I described has a menu delay, which can be set to a small value if the computer is fast enough to create the menu without a noticeable pause. No "waiting" or "clicking". I don't know about the Seven "menu". Since you can display Metro, I conclude that your PC is fast (probably all PCs are fast enough for a normal menu now).

I hate how Microsoft thinks they can decide what is best. The metro is nothing but a launchpad for amusing "apps". (And the desktop is just a virtual directory.) If they wanted to offer such an interface, they could have without putting in opposition to the desktop or "menu" as such, which has been part of UIs since forever.

Perhaps the metro launchpad could be made easily accessible from the desktop with an option to automatically open it on boot for those who want it. The desktop had its disadvantages as a place for storing shortcuts: their position could get lost if the screen resolution was changed. In that way Metro is superior to the desktop, but not to a menu.

Take Reaper. File -> New is where it's always been, not unlike in Microsoft "ribbon", Preferences is at the very bottom of the Options menu. They can be accessed with Control-P, which was carried over from Winamp into Foobar, into here. The mixer is vertical at the bottom, and looks broadly the same whether it is black or gray. That's excellent. Now, if Microsoft had their say, they would make the faders inverted somehwere at the top right and given no way to drag them back to their place.
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Old 11-07-2013, 10:20 AM   #62
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Take Reaper. File -> New is where it's always been, not unlike in Microsoft "ribbon", Preferences is at the very bottom of the Options menu.
This comparison is wrong. REAPER would copy microsoft if it was more efficient and screen-space-saving. But it's not. So REAPER remains with the classic menu. Microsoft programs don't need to be efficient like REAPER does. The ribbon takes time to get used to, but it's an attempt to move to something better. It's an attempt! And I applaud any effort made for advancement. And if Microsoft didn't think outside the box, it would be many more years before we get something that is truly progressive.

Basically, I'm arguing that Microsoft is doing something different. And it may not be great, but without this effort, "great" will never come. If you disagree, then go back to your old folks home.
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Old 11-07-2013, 01:41 PM   #63
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You know, you really talk big about the vertical start menu, how it's faster and intuitive as if it's a fact. I'd SO love to challenge you to a speed duel for opening programs, metro vs start menu.

Metro: CLICK CLICK DONE!
Start Menu: Click... move mouse to "programs"... wait... move mouse to a program folder... wait for it to open, click. Ok, you could click those things open instead of waiting, but that's still 3 clicks, one more click than metro.
I wasn't really talking about the fastest way to launch something. I was talking about navigating the start menu vs navigating Metro, for example in order to find a specific program that you don't run often enough to warrant a shortcut.

Who the hell uses the start menu for quickstarting apps anyway? That's what launcher bars and docks and even desktop shortcuts are for
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Old 11-07-2013, 01:43 PM   #64
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Who the hell uses the start menu for quickstarting apps anyway? That's what launcher bars and docks and even desktop shortcuts are for
The number of differences between us continue to grow.

I prefer to have NOTHING on my desktop except a nice background image. Maybe the recycle bin. And that's it.
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Old 11-07-2013, 01:55 PM   #65
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The number of differences between us continue to grow.

I prefer to have NOTHING on my desktop except a nice background image. Maybe the recycle bin. And that's it.
I never said I use desktop shortcuts, I said that's what they're for. I do use the desktop but mainly for storing temp files and reminders and stuff like that.

I do use something called FreeLaunchBar though.



Edit: that's Win 7, but my 8 desktop is laid out the same way.
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Old 11-07-2013, 01:57 PM   #66
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I like my desktop 100% clean, as well. I use the taskbar for most used apps, everything else is Win+type search->enter to run, or some pinned start menu programs that I use from time to time.


FreeLaunchBar, interesting - I'm using 7stacks. Similar deal.

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Old 11-07-2013, 02:02 PM   #67
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I do use something called FreeLaunchBar though.
Hey, now we're getting somewhere, something we can agree on. I might give that a try.
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Old 11-07-2013, 02:38 PM   #68
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Hey, now we're getting somewhere, something we can agree on. I might give that a try.
Haha, glad to hear it

It's a nice little app, basically Windows Quick Launch on steroids. Lots of custo options.
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Old 11-07-2013, 03:43 PM   #69
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I like my desktop 100% clean, as well. I use the taskbar for most used apps, everything else is Win+type search->enter to run, or some pinned start menu programs that I use from time to time.
^ Same here. The only difference is My Desktop tends to be used like a "Desktop" in the analog world, daily stuff ends up there then I clean up at the end of the day. I was already using search instead of a start menu since Vista so I've long broken the habit to navigate the start menu old or new. So I never noticed the start menu issue really because I haven't depended on it for several years.

The exception is when I get lazy then use "Hide Desktop Icons" and pretend it is clean; now that is a wonderful feature.
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Old 11-07-2013, 05:42 PM   #70
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The exception is when I get lazy then use "Hide Desktop Icons" and pretend it is clean; now that is a wonderful feature.
Embarrassing story of my life.
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Old 11-07-2013, 06:04 PM   #71
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Embarrassing story of my life.
I'm glad I'm not the only one.
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Old 11-07-2013, 08:13 PM   #72
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Embarrassing story of my life.
Quote:
Originally Posted by karbomusic View Post
I'm glad I'm not the only one.
Is three enough for a support group?
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Old 11-07-2013, 09:57 PM   #73
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Hey... I'm still swimming in the mind-mush that is the awesomeness of ED's post, where the image he included is of his actual post (but without his post image). Additionally, his post count (in his image) matches his current post count at the time of his (and my) posting.

http://forum.cockos.com/showpost.php...0&postcount=66

Here's an image of his post with his image of his post without his image of his post:

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Old 11-08-2013, 07:07 AM   #74
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I heard there was no such thing as a free launch...
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Old 11-08-2013, 01:00 PM   #75
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I like my desktop 100% clean, as well. I use the taskbar for most used apps, everything else is Win+type search->enter to run, or some pinned start menu programs that I use from time to time.


FreeLaunchBar, interesting - I'm using 7stacks. Similar deal.
7Stacks looks very interesting and apparently works in Win8. Downloading now.
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Old 11-08-2013, 01:01 PM   #76
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I heard there was no such thing as a free launch...
Apparently NASA was told the same thing about their shuttle program!!
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Old 11-08-2013, 04:57 PM   #77
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7Stacks didn't work for me on my Win8. I just kept getting an error whenever I tried to create a stack. I tried running as admin but that made no difference.
What I have found though is a really useful free app called CoolBarz which allows me to take all my shortcuts off my taskbar and add them to Coolbarz which I then use as a launcher. Works great for me on Win8.
http://www.bryntyounce.com/coolbarz.htm
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