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Opening Windows 8: Rethinking the missing Start menu

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You may not realize that Microsoft has actually been a proponent of the tablet PC for more than a decade. In fact as early as 2002 they were releasing a tablet PC version of Windows. For numerous reasons previous generations of the Windows tablet PC simply didn't work for most people. The interface wasn't particularly tablet friendly, the operating system was too power hungry, and PC hardware ...

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I completely agree, LeeC22; making two more distinct versions of Win8 would have made a LOT of sense. In fact, it makes so much sense, I get the feeling that's how Win9 will pan out, in the end...

There are so damn many applications that simply preclude using a touch panel, as you, I, and others have already noted. Yet, in Win8 you have the dichotomy of using a mouse (or Wacom tablet or light pen or...etc.) AND touch-screen interface that grudgingly - if at all - acknowledges your preference for the alternative input. Ugh!

All they really would have to do to redeem Win8 in my eyes is to make the interface kluges supporting touch panels completely optional, without having to install external hardware. Sure, keep that touch layer available, but only *IF* the user wants it.
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Let's face it. A touch screen environment belongs in only two places in an active dispaly setting and a tablet on the go setting. In a classroom, in a boardroom, in a newsroom, the user is up and moving and needs this tool. An on the go user may need speed to react properly. These are the only places that seem useful.
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