OKAY, so I know not many of you are into the whole computer thing as I am, however yesterday I found out that Microsoft was releasing Windows 8 as a Developer’s Preview for FREE to anyone who wanted it. Naturally I started freaking out and wanted it right away. Hell, I even downloaded the Vista Beta when it came out years ago (and you thought the official Vista release was bad…)
Anywho, so I decided that I would put my two cents in, along with some fancy pictures, and review how it’s been this past… day.
NOTE – PLEASE CLICK THE PICTURES TO SEE THEM IN THEIR FULL SIZED GLORY– T.HANKS.
I’ve seen pictures of this and I’ve gone, “WHAT THE HELL IS THAT?” It looks like something that should be on a touch screen, or some form of tablet computer. This is going to be on desktops? You bet your ass it is. If you follow any other Microsoft projects or gadgets, it heavily resembles the theme of Windows Phone 7 with the “Metro UI,” which I do really like a lot. The tiles are called “live tiles” which means that they’re always changing; for example the Stocks tile will update you with stock info right on the screen, and when you click it the whole app comes up. It’s nice for real quick information. The weather is another handy one, which in this case is showing me the forecast for the next few days.
Seeing as this is a Developer’s Preview, I’m sure the ability to change the wallpaper or at least the background color will come in the main release of Windows 8 (or whatever it’s called by then), but for now I’m stuck with this… green. Which is not too pleasing, but that’s just me.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t grab a screenshot but before you get here, you go through the “Lock Screen” (yup, even on desktops), and it’s just a wallpaper with the time and date on it. You have to click and drag the picture up to get to the Login, or hit the Up Arrow. If there are any other ways of doing this, I don’t know.
But I will say something. It loads FAST. You’re up and able to use all of teh internets in a matter of seconds.
WINDOWS 8 APPS
Do you love right clicking? I know I do! YOU NEED IT TO DO JUST ABOUT ANYTHING IN WINDOWS 8.
In essence, right clicking in Windows 8 is like your mom making you hang out with the kid from school that nobody likes, or else you’re grounded if you don’t. So as you stare blankly at an open app wondering what the hell you’re supposed to do to make it work, try right clicking. I guarantee you that it will solve your problem. Wanna go to a new web page? Right click! Update Twitter? Right click! Save an Image off of a web page? Right click! Oh wait, for some reason that’s not an option anymore…
Don’t worry, Microsoft still left its shitty ass browser in this version of Windows. As seen in the upper left of the main screen, by clicking the Internet Explorer tile, you get the fancy new Windows 8 version of IE. (Is it IE10 now?)
As with all of the Windows 8 native apps, it shows it’s stupid ass face in eye gauging full-screen misery. Because of this, you have to right click to pull up the address bar as well as the tabs at the top, and then right click again to go back to the internets.
It’s a pain in the ass because I’m used to everything just being on the screen, but that’s not how IE10 rolls. One thing that gets me, as I previously mentioned, was the lack of the ability to Save an Image from a web page, or anything for that matter. I’m just assuming this only affects the Windows 8 native version, not the one you run on your ‘desktop’ which I will get to later on. And another thing, again, being in preview, it lacks the support for pretty much anything, Flash or Java, so you really can’t use it for much right now except general web browsing. No YouTube allowed.
This app which I almost overlooked is called “Socialite.” Really there’s not much to say about it, except if you’re a really dark, depressed, plain Facebook user, you’re going to love it. It’s the blandest app I’ve seen thus far, having a mainly black, sullen and downtrodden color scheme. It’s also very lacking in the feature department, but again, probably just because it’s a preview. You can see updates from other people, look at their page, however you can’t watch any videos that are posted, nor look at their photos or albums. Really needs some work.
I must say I love this app so far. Not saying it’s perfect, sheesh no, but it’s got a great looking interface, shows all of my tweets, my friends’ tweets, and I can even look at all of the tweets from specific people if I so choose. And, a bonus from this app is that it allows for uploading images into my tweets right from inside the app. Definitely going to make it a lot easier for me to spam my friends with stupid pictures I find and/or make once this bad boy goes Retail.
Another app that I absolutely LOVE. Mainly because I’m an avid fan of all things weather-related, but also because it looks so damn snazzy. Sure, it’s going to tell me that a major thunderstorm is going to roll into town right during papers, but how could I be upset when it’s showing me in such an awesome fashion? The backgrounds change depending on the time of day and the weather, AND they’re animated! So that fog was flying by the screen while I stared at the “60% Chance of Rain” slated for tomorrow. You also have the option of looking at the hourly forecast, which just skips by a few hours here and there, as well as setting up multiple cities and looking at every forecast at once. Really cool! I can’t wait to see what the other animations are~ Only one problem though. I don’t know how to make the tiles NOT GREEN. Hopefully this will be fixed with updates.
This app would be really cool if I took a lot of pictures. It’s pretty much just a crafty little way to ‘scrapbook’ your pictures and stuff into a little story to look over for years to come until Windows 9 comes out and Memories doesn’t work anymore. You can also add videos to it, which I find really cool. If I take a lot of pictures and or video at the Polar Bear Plunge, I will definitely be putting it up in this biatch. Check out this sample scrapbook it comes with!
FLASH CARDS (wtf?)
This little gem is one of a few little extra gamey, doo-dads they threw in there just so people have something to mess with. It’s got two modes: you can study and learn facts about the pre-loaded shit they give you, and then you can get quizzed on them. Here’s a little peek at a quiz:
OLD MAN JENKINS THE WINDOWS I WAS JUST GETTING USED TO?
In a move of “J/K LULZ” look what shows up:
Looks familiar, doesn’t it? “But, I thought Windows 8 was gonna be that tiled up doohickey!” Not the case. This is called “Desktop” and I guess it’s considered an app. Pretty much, any shit that doesn’t have a Windows 8 native counterpart can be run here. For instance, I’m running Windows Explorer, Microsoft Word 2010, and Windows Media Player on this bitch. The ‘snap’ feature is still intact where the windows can be dragged to the sides of the screen, and Aero is obviously still there as well. The only noticeable changes are that the windows are more squared-off instead of rounded at the edges, and the Start button on the task bar brings you right back to the tiled main screen instead of a Start Menu. That little feature confused the shit out of me at first.
“SWAPPING” / “LOCKING” ?
To be honest, I don’t know what the correct term is for this, but what I mean by that is Windows 8 apps have the ability to be dragged onto the screen with another app, and run as either a somewhat large or somewhat small version. For instance, while on the desktop, I can check my Twitter feed! Look:
What’s cool about this little feature is that not only can you be up to speed on all of your friends’ tweets / tweet yourself while you’re doing your computing activity, but that you can switch them around to the left or right sides, and even put any other Windows 8 apps in there. Here are some more examples!
It works very, very fast. You’ll also notice when using Windows 8 that there’s no closing of apps, unless you’re using the desktop with non-Windows 8 shit. When an app isn’t needed, whether you’re not running it or you’re not looking at it’s tile on the main screen, it suspends the app:
However the lack of ‘closing’ an app or program still doesn’t sit right with me. I still instinctively think it’s open, just plotting on when to eat up all my processes… What an asshole.
Well, it’s too early to tell how this is gonna be come release time. However, I really do like the whole interface, but it’s just going to take some practice and getting used to. I find myself clicking all over the place and losing track of what I’m trying to do just from trying to find what I was looking for. And since things move very fast, it’s easy to get caught up in windows just flying around everywhere if you’re trying to find a program you were using earlier. I don’t know if this is going to be much of a desktop success, either, but only time will tell. Oh, there’s also the “Windows Store” which will be active in later versions, and it will feature many apps that were written specifically for this OS. Once it has a good amount of native stuff, it’ll be much better to use. I would definitely be interested in buying a tablet PC with this running on it.
Wellp, thank you all for reading my nerd blog, hopefully you non-geeks found some humor out of this. I tried my best to keep it funny~