In the coming weeks Microsoft is going to release Windows 8. Microsoft
is attempting to create and release an operating system that will run
on desktops as well as laptops and tablets. The look and feel of
Windows 8 is as different as the change from Windows 3.1 to Windows XP
back in 2001. Unfortunately, a generation has grown up with Windows XP
and people resist change, especially at first. So, I'm going to list
and explain the huge differences that you will find in Windows 8 and
how to work with those differences. For some Windows 8 may drive them to
buy a Mac, while for others the changes will be welcomed as soon as
they learn to get around the new operating system.
Here are the major changes and differences you will find in Windows 8.
- The new
Windows 8 boots into a tiled interface that will be familiar to users
of the Windows phone, but its unlike anything a normal Windows user has
ever seen. There are tiles for Mail, Calendar, Weather, People, Photos,
Apps, Messaging, etc. When you click on an app, the app opens
full screen. No borders, toolbars or other items to get in the way.
However, there is no X in the upper right hand corner to close the app
either. We'll discuss more of this interface in other articles on the
site. Its definitely gonna be a love it or hate it feature.
- No Start Menu
This will definitely be one of the hardest changes to adapt to. The
normal Start menu in the bottom left corner of the screen is no longer
there. If you move your mouse to the very far bottom left corner and
box will appear to take you to the Modern UI, formally known as the
- Cloud Based
When you setup Windows 8 for the first time, you are asked to register
an email address instead of a username. This email address is synced
with your Microsoft services that you may already have. Because its
cloud based, if you setup your email address on another computer as a
new user, a lot of settings including favorites, passwords and other
information will be synced with second computer. This is handy in one
way because your information travels with you, but there are privacy
concerns if someone knows your password on the second computer.
- Touch screen
Windows 8 will have touch screen support for Touchscreens and tablets,
but these features won't be very useful for desktop users running
desktops or laptops without a touchscreen.
- Faster boot
Windows 8 will boot faster than any other previous operating system.
Explorer 10 - two flavors
Microsoft introduces two different versions of IE in Windows 8, one for
the desktop environment and a different version in the Modern UI
(Tiles) environment. The desktop version is similar to other versions
of IE in look and feel, but the Modern UI version is unlike
anything you've seen. Very minimalist in nature, the URL field and
back/forward button are on the bottom of the screen with the rest of
the screen left to view the web page. No toolbars, borders, or anything
else to get in the way.
There are tons of other changes and features that we will explore of
the coming weeks. Getting used to these changes and staying productive
will be a chore.