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Eight Things Windows Needs Before I'll Use it Again

Filed under
Microsoft

Windows 7 is better than Vista. Great. But saying that is like saying you'd rather catch the common cold instead of swine flu. I've demoed the release candidate for Windows 7, and I can safely say that I still don't like it. Aside from the default options being obnoxious and hard to use (the icons for running applications are identical to the directly-adjacent Quick Launch icons; running programs have no text to show you what they are; unless you have the hardware to back up the Aero interface, you can't get the window previews to help you, either), there are several things I need to see in a Windows operating system before I'll even contemplate switching back.

1. Multiple virtual desktops — Windows is pretty much the only significant operating system that does not support this. Mac OS X's desktops may not be implemented very well, but they're there all the same. My cell phone has multiple desktops. Why can't Windows get with the program on this? It's an invaluable feature which reduces clutter. I think you'll find that clutter reduction is centric to many of my needs.

2. Application organization — When I click on the Start Menu in Windows, I have a list of programs to sort through which aren't even alphabetized until I tell them to be. The list is huge, presenting me with a different "folder" for each program I have installed. When I have to go looking for a program, I want to be able to look in one of these "folders" that tells me what type of program it is. Is it an Internet program? A productivity program? Is it a minor accessory? One of my programming applications? Keeping this kind of organization to programs keeps the list short, which would be a blessing considering the tiny, half-height, scrolling list of applications which contains six times as many programs as will fit in its frame. Microsoft tried implementing something like this with games when they launched Vista, but that doesn't work automatically for everything because it's layered on top of the existing system, not integrated as part of the system. The way they implemented it required you to open a new window just to see your shortcuts. First of all, that's counterintuitive. Secondly, it clutters my desktop.

3. Useful window management —

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