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Thread: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pack

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    News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pack

    Struggling to make use of your touch-enabled Windows PC? Microsoft reckons its Touch Pack will help.
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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Whilst its biggest competitors continue to reap the benefits of multi-touch success, it seems Microsoft is still struggling to capture its slice of the touchscreen pie and may now need to turn its attention to its other touch-enabled operating system; Windows Phone 7, due on portable devices later this year.
    Well yeah. Touch works really well on a mobile scale device but who actually wants it for your average desktop?

    At worst it's completely impractical - the screen I'm using right now is sitting just over an arms length away from where I'm sitting, and at best it means you get grubby fingerprints all over your screen.
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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    It's only really suited to the mythical "kitchen PC" that people keep talking about in my eyes, because in any other situation you would be sitting down and hence too far away to touch the screen comfortably.

    Problem is that as far as I can work out, there's very little actual benefit to a kitchen PC... Squeezebox radio I can understand, possibly a TV, although it seems a bit extravagant, but a PC?

    I can't really see the attraction in simultaneously baking a cake and playing Runescape.

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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    The thing is its a very good aditional technology, there is some marchitecture term for these symphonic technologies that harmonise well with each other.

    My tablet PC was just the dogs bollocks when I was at uni, it was just brilliant, bit heavy, short on battery life, single core'd CPU. Within 6 months of starting working in the real world it was completely left in its box for 2 years.

    I sold it to a mate who's doing his PHd, this is a 4.5 year old machine now we're talking about and he uses it daily at uni. Even the anti-MS lot can't help but say its loverly.

    But this is the thing its very niche, I can't see the benefit for most users, I swear sony should give me money but a complete stranger asked me about it on the tube, they wanted something for backpacking down under, had been thinking of the iPad (wtf?! Marketing works!) within about 3 min they where just taken with that as the netbook++.

    So there is consumer demand, that is often based on ignorance of alternatives, as such the touch is great drum banging team in MS must be getting a lot more attention as the suites try and make it more mainstream. My fear is they will fail to look at things like OneNote, better integration with Matlab etc
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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    i can see touch possibly working on a laptops.......

    but i think, well personally i have a 23" screen tis a bit big for touching?
    Quote Originally Posted by MadduckUK View Post
    now that i think about the word "throttled" in a certain light... its not so far different to strangled really

    our boiler broke so we has no heating or hot water, this is the bloody result ^^

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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Quote Originally Posted by Georgy291 View Post
    i can see touch possibly working on a laptops.......

    but i think, well personally i have a 23" screen tis a bit big for touching?
    Agreed, it's all very well having touch on a screen a few inches across but I can't see it being so wieldy on something twice as wide ans your hand span!

    That said, as TheAnimus pointed out it could work reasonably well when used in addition to other inputs, especially in certain niches and with appropriate software support. I'm not sure about using the iPad/Pod/Phone as a comparison; Apple have done a stonkingly good job of marketing their devices but how many people would consider them for doing serious work (beyond emailing each other)?
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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    If they offer me a free multitouch overlay for the 26" monitor I use in the living room, then they might have a thing going! (We use it for doing those hidden items games as a fmaily, and it'd be so cool if we could all just prod at the screen when we see something instead of having to have someone "driving"). Otherwise I can't see touch taking off on desktops. Laptops, potentially, and slate / tablets obviously, but not desktops.

    That said, I can very much see the point of a kitchen PC - it's used for radio / TV / streaming and also for looking up recipes on the interwebs! And if you're baking a cake it's going to take an hour, so why not a quick casual game of zuma or peggle while you're waiting

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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Quote Originally Posted by Salazaar View Post
    Agreed, it's all very well having touch on a screen a few inches across but I can't see it being so wieldy on something twice as wide ans your hand span!

    That said, as TheAnimus pointed out it could work reasonably well when used in addition to other inputs, especially in certain niches and with appropriate software support. I'm not sure about using the iPad/Pod/Phone as a comparison; Apple have done a stonkingly good job of marketing their devices but how many people would consider them for doing serious work (beyond emailing each other)?
    saying that, i can also see touch screen working on huge screens. As i was reading that i was thinking my parents have got a 50" plasma tv in the living room. and well if that was touch screen it would be ideal for a htpc as all you would need to do is just to load up a video or bunch off pictures. saves keeping a ugly mouse near by
    Quote Originally Posted by MadduckUK View Post
    now that i think about the word "throttled" in a certain light... its not so far different to strangled really

    our boiler broke so we has no heating or hot water, this is the bloody result ^^

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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    There is also this overwhelming idea that people only use one method and worse yet that they only have one task they do.

    I have two media PCs in my flat, all they do is play videos + music etc. I'm half tempted to put something in the kitchen too.

    I have a dedicated WHS, that just sits sucking down power and making my inter PC use easy.

    I have a laptop for when I need to demo code on the go, I have an ultra portable for when I don't need much power, and a smartphone for when its even less.

    This kind of synergy is surely going to be more common. As little as 12 years ago I was still considered a freak for using the interwebbles, but now its quite common. Gates idea of a 'PC on every desk, in every home' has not just been met, but exceeded. People are buying integrated TVs with considerably more processing power than a computer I have which used to impress me with its ability to play starfighter 3000.........

    The Windows team need to make sure they can do as much as possible with all the hardware options, and for this they are very good. Its no surprise to anyone who's ever written a linux driver that most new hardware is developed on windows ecosystem even if its not a commercial endeavour, its just easier. MS know they need to use the scattergun approch to cover all their bases, just because they've done this doesn't mean that we have to use all the features!

    So I think there is a place for it, I'm just not sure where it is with current hardware, and current prices of hardware, but I really can't wait to find out

    (also despite been cosy with the windows platform, I really hope we get more competition and innovation on others, what gets my goat is the way people over praise apple, who are so horrifically awful to developers......)
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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Eeew, I hate the word 'synergy', it makes me think of coked up advertising execs...

    Good point(s) though, in certain (particularly non traditional) applications touch could be a really nice feature, though I'll still stick to my guns about the smeariness. Even the cleanest finger leaves a mark and on a pretty, shiny screen they really show up! As I found out with my Joggler.
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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Quote Originally Posted by scaryjim View Post
    And if you're baking a cake it's going to take an hour, so why not a quick casual game of zuma or peggle while you're waiting
    I tend to leave the room if it's going to take an hour

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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Quote Originally Posted by snootyjim View Post
    It's only really suited to the mythical "kitchen PC" that people keep talking about in my eyes, because in any other situation you would be sitting down and hence too far away to touch the screen comfortably.

    Problem is that as far as I can work out, there's very little actual benefit to a kitchen PC... Squeezebox radio I can understand, possibly a TV, although it seems a bit extravagant, but a PC?

    I can't really see the attraction in simultaneously baking a cake and playing Runescape.
    My wife uses a computer in the kitchen all the time. She streams music or puts on a hulu show while referring back to recipes. Makes unloading/loading the dishwasher, putting up groceries or cleaning down the surfaces more pleasant when she has something else going on, too.

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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Windows 7, Sence type interface in a carputer anyone?

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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Quote Originally Posted by caveman-jim View Post
    My wife uses a computer in the kitchen all the time. She streams music or puts on a hulu show while referring back to recipes. Makes unloading/loading the dishwasher, putting up groceries or cleaning down the surfaces more pleasant when she has something else going on, too.
    isnt there a simple thingy called O2 jogger for this?
    Quote Originally Posted by MadduckUK View Post
    now that i think about the word "throttled" in a certain light... its not so far different to strangled really

    our boiler broke so we has no heating or hot water, this is the bloody result ^^

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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    Quote Originally Posted by Georgy291 View Post
    saying that, i can also see touch screen working on huge screens. As i was reading that i was thinking my parents have got a 50" plasma tv in the living room. and well if that was touch screen it would be ideal for a htpc as all you would need to do is just to load up a video or bunch off pictures. saves keeping a ugly mouse near by
    Non computer literate people take to touchscreens much faster than other input devices (mice).
    Many never really get comfortable with the mouse/trackpad method.

    Contrast that to a touchscreen, open a webpage, and touch a link with your finger to navigate....
    - I'd even argue web browsing is often faster than a mouse, even for an experienced mouse user(!).

    Perfect on laptops , they work less well on desktops though, as you are further from the screen.

    Why have they been around for 10 years, but not taken off ?
    Personally I think its due to the need for a stylus and the loss of screen clarity that often comes along with them, and the lack of accuracy in earlier models.
    The latest screens are much better in all respects, especially capacitive screens.
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    Re: News - Microsoft attempts to rejuvenate Windows 7 Touch, relaunches free Touch Pa

    This touch pack is great fun, and its very helpful for showing off what a multi touch enabled PC/screen can do.

    I installed it when i bought my TX2 (capacitive multi touch laptop) and had lots of fun with it..largely around their microsoft earth application which works very well with multi touch, although I did have a play with some of the games too.

    I still maintain that capacitive multi-touch screens are the future for at least all laptops - they are just so intuitive to use and once you have started to use one regularly, I promise that you will be reaching out to touch the screen of almost any computer you work with, just instinctively. Browsing the web is a joy, looking through photo albums is easy, and even basic windows tasks like looking for a file or launching an app.

    It's very difficult to explain why it feels so easy, but it's just..natural I guess. Much 'nicer' to use than the old keyboard/mouse paradigm. Definitely less accurate and slower - no argument there but much nicer for a human to use.

    I don't see the same impact on consumer desktop screens for the reasons already mentioned here (reaching out etc is the biggest issue - distance from the screen) and things like the iPad/HP Slate have the big issues of no keyboard (still required imo, pen input/onscreen ones are fine for a few words but try typing out a post like this on one..it takes an age) and no comfortable way to hold and use. you can hold and look but try to use either and i bet you'll be reaching for some kind of support/mount.

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