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Windows 7: Mac User Considering Return to Windows

07 Nov 2011   #1
sydenie

Mac OS X Lion
 
 
Mac User Considering Return to Windows

That's right. One of the Mac faithful is considering a switch to Windows 8 when it comes out. Right now, I'm typing this up on my Macbook Air running OS Lion with an iPhone 4 in my pocket, but after looking at the new changes in Windows 8 I am considering switching back to Windows entirely next year as I find the Mac OS environment SUFFOCATING.

BUT

I was wondering about two critical features that the Mac have that I'm not sure that Windows 8 will have as well.

Will there be gestures/multiple full screen apps on Windows 8?

That's about the only two things that are convincing me to hold on to the Mac for now, but they are AMAZINGLY convenient for me. Not such a fan of Launchpad or Mission Control (rather buggy) but those things are critical to me.

Two-fingers back-and forward. Three-fingers to switch between full screens. And there is even compatibility for a whole host of customized gestures that I use extensively. For example, I've grown so dependent on the trackpad that I now use copy/paste/back/forward/bookmark/esc/tab switching/tab closing on it, to name the most important ones. I even have gestures to open applications for me, like Safari/Word for Mac/Mail/Notes/Documents/Downloads and gestures to duplicate the window snapping that I liked in Windows 7. And I honestly couldn't live without it now, even if I find the Mac environment severely limited in scope in terms of compatibility with many games/applications.

Also the full-screen applications would be efficient for real estate and task management (etc: I can gesture to the regular desktop from full-screen Safari in about half a second). and is a must-have.

There are a number of issues I have with switching to Windows Mango/8 phones as well, such as better outlook task sync, TellMe compatibility with tasks and the issue (for me) of getting Bloomberg for Windows Phone, but as this is a Windows 7 forum I won't get into detail. Other than those three issues I think the interface is great, anyways.

So yeah, that's basically my thought process about switching to Windows from Mac and I hope that people here can help me out with this.


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07 Nov 2011   #2
logicearth

Windows 10 Pro (x64)
 
 

There are gestures I know that much, but how many and if they are configurable? I do not know. What we have now the Developer Preview is unfinished, feature complete API but not feature complete UI and the like. Some of the videos do show off swipping to switch between full screen applications.

http://channel9.msdn.com/posts/Jense...e-Windows-8-UI
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07 Nov 2011   #3
sydenie

Mac OS X Lion
 
 

Thanks for the reply.

After taking a closer look at Windows 8, I'm convinced that they will probably have multiple full-screens built in. But that leaves the issue of the gestures still ambiguous.

Apparently Windows 8 right now supports only TOUCH gestures, and not trackpad gestures, which is rather inefficient especially if you want to lie back and relax. It is great for tablets or phones, of course, but is there any real indication that Windows 8 will support touchpad gestures?
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07 Nov 2011   #4
logicearth

Windows 10 Pro (x64)
 
 

Yes Windows 8 will support touchpad gestures, no doubt about that. Esp., as more of those touchpads become multitouch aware. Even Touch Mice will be supported. Microsoft Touch Mouse | Microsoft Hardware

Remember a touch screen is the same thing as a touchpad it just happens to be over the screen.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Nov 2011   #5
sydenie

Mac OS X Lion
 
 

That's nice to know. If I am able to duplicate the functionality that I have with the Mac at present, I'll be glad to leave that walled garden. The only thing that could be a game-changer for me is if Apple releases Siri for Mac (which would truly be revolutionary), but then again if that happens I can always switch back to Mac on my MBA.

...On second thought, I have a third inquiry about voice recognition on Windows 8. Is there any chance that there would be anything like TellMe on Windows? Furthermore, is there any chance of being able to dictate to Microsoft Office applications? That may seem a little far-fetched, but to bring it closer to home I'll ask if TellMe will eventually have Outlook calendar/task/alarm dictation. If it does then it will become a competitor to Siri for me, as I do not care about talking casually to my phone.
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07 Nov 2011   #6
logicearth

Windows 10 Pro (x64)
 
 

I haven't used Speech Recognition other then play with it for a few minutes...but Windows has had it since Vista.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Window...ch_Recognition
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07 Nov 2011   #7
sydenie

Mac OS X Lion
 
 

Of course, speech recog. Has been around for decades now, but only now has voice been refined to the point that it is practical. Vista and 7 I remember their speech options as error prone and limited. Tellme and especially Siri is a massive leap over that error boundary. Maybe the better question would be, will speech improve to the levels of google voice, tellme or Siri?
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07 Nov 2011   #8
logicearth

Windows 10 Pro (x64)
 
 

I don't see how TellMe or Siri are better then what comes with Windows. Microsoft has been working with and researching voice recognition for over 16 years. I think they have it down considerably. The errors that effect speech recognition are basically hardware and out of reach of the software to correct. For example bad microphones or slured speech.

What is provided in Windows is actually one of the best there is. However, if it is not good enough, third-party developers can easily plug their own in (Dragon NaturallySpeaking for example) . The Speech API that Microsoft provides allows just that, no walled garden. There are also several addons you can get if you need more. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...ch_recognition

A lot nicer then walled gardens where you are not depended on Apple to provide the "extended" functionality.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Nov 2011   #9
sydenie

Mac OS X Lion
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by logicearth View Post
A lot nicer then walled gardens where you are not depended on Apple to provide the "extended" functionality.
I couldn't agree more about the walled garden. But I'd disagree on Windows 7/Vista speech recognition being nearly as functional as Apple's Siri or even Microsoft's TellMe. There are critical differences that make Siri so much more practical than Windows speech recognition.

Unlike Windows, Siri doesn't require clear enunciation to interpret commands correct, nor do commands have to be worded a specific way. Because of integration with Apple's built in apps, Siri can move beyond simple interface commands (open Start menu, close browser, go back, open Word etc.) and directly accomplish tasks you need to complete. To a certain degree TellMe can duplicate this function.

For example, using Windows you would have no advantage over mouse users because to search for a certain item in the net you would have to say:
1) "Open Internet Explorer"
2) "Go to Google Search"
3) "Search terms"
4) "'Search"

whereas with Siri or TellMe you could simply say
1) "Search for search terms"

The difference is that with Windows you would have to navigate the GUI with your voice instead of your mouse, when it may not necessarily be the most efficient method of doing so. Combined with the processing period that the voice recognition would have to go through, one would often find that regular touch pads and mouses would serve better than voice.

That's not what I'm looking for. What Siri, Google Voice and TellMe provide that Windows doesn't are a way to command the computer not through graphical interface navigation, but direct access to the responsive program.

Apple has integrated Siri more fully than TellMe or Google Voice because it has not only integrated the Caller, Search, App, Music and Text apps into it's command UI but it also includes things like the Weather, Stocks and critically the calendar/alarm/reminders apps. That's what I would like to see in TellMe.

Furthermore, Apple currently has an advantage over the other speech interfaces because it directly references your words with its dynamic database in the cloud (which is why Siri requires a direct internet connection) to have a better understanding of what you say. That makes it's accuracy verifiably superior to what Windows currently has to offer.

That's why Siri for the Mac would be such a big thing. Right now though, it appears that Apple still needs to integrate it with it's native applications and more importantly, don't want to harm sales of the iPhone 4S.

If Microsoft would come up with something similar, then I would be grateful. But as of right now, I'd discount the current Windows voice recognition because it remains married to the GUI.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Nov 2011   #10
logicearth

Windows 10 Pro (x64)
 
 

So you want the Speech Recognition that is in Windows Phone 7? Which is the Speech API in Windows Vista/7 with Tellme added on.
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 Mac User Considering Return to Windows




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