13.11.08

Review of Windows 7

Review of Windows 7, courtesy The Register:

http://www.channelregister.co.uk/2008/10/28/windows_seven_review/

And here's my take on parts of the article:

"The first thing you notice is the revamped taskbar, with chunky thumbnail icons, full-screen application preview on mouse hover, and "jump lists" - pop-up menus that expose key features directly from the taskbar, provided that the application was coded to support them, and recently opened documents for any application."

Why would I want this?  From the looks of it, now it takes me TWO clicks to switch applications via the taskbar.  And if I'm working on two projects simultaneously, I've got windows--say Word windows--from each project glommed into one button.  Can you say disorganization?

OS X does have some of the same problems as Vista with this, but it makes up for it by not requiring people to use app-switch methods to switch windows--for example, expose or the minimized dock windows.  Both are app-independent.

"The system tray area now has a customize option that allows the user to suppress notifications, annoying for developers but empowering for users. It is all about making Windows quieter and less annoying. The same principle is at play in the revised User Account Control (UAC), which offers a simple slider bar that lets the user decide the level of prompting it enforces."

I'm fine with the Taskbar thing--it never really bothered me in the first place.  But UAC?  I thought that was for security!  Basically, it's allowing people to turn off security features.  That is not a good idea, because it could let programs change things behind the user's back--what UAC was created for--and not notify them.  As well, now that there's an option to turn it down, what would prevent some application finding a way to hack that?  Especially given the propensity of users to not read messages but just click OK, it would only take one malicious program to take out this security feature. 

"In Windows 7 device vendors can customize what happens on connection, through the new Device Stage, a control center tailored for a specific device. Some Device Stage links can be advertising for add-ons and supplies, so there is a commercial aspect that may not always be welcome. The Device Stage is populated via a Windows metadata service, which means it can be updated at any time."

Sounds neat...until you consider your el-cheapo chinese KIRF.  Would you plug that in and risk getting some weird webpage from the manufacturer?  And would this be possible to download viruses from?  Hmm...

Well...hopefully it will be better than Vista.  Although that's not much of a challenge...

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