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Windows 8:Combining Desktop, Tablet Features "A Mistake", Expert Says

Full Start Menu Making a Comeback

Experts see this as an important step for a company that completely ditched the Start Menu with the transition from Windows 7 to Windows 8.

Outrage among PC users forced Microsoft to bring back the Start button for Windows 8.1 (released last fall), but that offering simply wasn't enough. The firm has faced continuing pressure from users to revive the entire Start Menu, which includes a complete list of installed applications.

User-experience expert Jesse James Garrett, who serves as the chief creative officer at design consulting firm Adaptive Path, says it's about time Microsoft focused on building an effective and accessible Start Menu for Windows 8. Garrett says that Microsoft's decision to revive the Start Menu is evidence that the Redmond, Washington-based firm has acknowledged that the Modern interface just didn't work.

"It was just too different," Garrett said. "I think they made a lot of decisions that make complete sense if you're bringing a completely new tablet  to market. But the PC experience is loaded with expectations that go back decades. That was completely up-ended by what they put in front of people."

Moving forward, it appears Microsoft's new plan is to create two very different operating systems: a desktop-based system designed for PC users, and another using the "Modern" interface targeting tablet users.

Overall, it appears Microsoft made a significant miscalculation in expecting that touch-oriented devices would overwhelm the PC market. While PC sales are declining, it's apparent Microsoft underestimated the influence of a still very large population of users who don't care for touch-based devices.

"I think the initial idea to combine desktop and tablet was a mistake because it assumed that tablets would be the next evolution of the desktop," noted Coty Beasley, a user-experience expert with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. "That idea certainly didn't take hold in the way Microsoft was expecting."

Microsoft will be hoping the changes to Windows 8 attract users of Windows XP, the aging operating system that will no longer be supported after Tuesday, April 8. Microsoft says it will finally stop providing security updates for Windows XP, which is now twelve years old.

(Source infopackets.com)

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