What operating systems do wrong. A better Computer.
I have made another article explaining AirData in depth (if you haven't read this article you dont know what I'm talking about). Click here to read it.
Before I begin let me just say that I am a huge Apple fan, I own almost all of their products. This is posted in the Apple Core Forum because I didn't know if I should post this in Microsoft tribe or in the Apple Core, and because I love Apple, I chose Apple Core.
After trying both Mountain Lion and Windows 8 I feel like there are many things still lacking from both operating systems. In this article I will go over what I think operating systems should incorporate in order to be successful.
What Operating systems currently do wrong.
It is time to move past 3d icons. For a while now Operating systems have been cluttered with icons that attempt to look 3d, but fail and also operating systems mix flattened icons with 3d icons together. For example on my dock about half of the icons are 3d and half of the icons are flattened. It is time to choose either flat or 3d, and in my opinion flattened is much better.
Windows 7 has the same issue as well
Windows 8 does a good job of flattening its icons, but it has many issues of its own which I will get to later. Flattened icons just look better and give a minimalistic appearance. The post Sputnik8 made on a new Windows Desktop UI shows this.
(Sputnik8 Windows Desktop UI Concept post)
As we all know PCs have a much larger variety of applications, however many of these applications tend to be dangerous (virus's in case you didn't understand what dangerous ment). Mac OSX does not have such a variety however Mac applications tend to be relatively safe. (That is how it is in reality, do not start a PC vs. Mac war over it). There needs to be a sensible way for companies to deliver applications that they can say is safe and quality app. This doesn't have to be something as drastic as what apple does for its iOS apps, but at least they try.
Pop Up Notifications (Mainly PC)
Both operating systems get tons of pop-ups daily, mostly when the computer boots up. There should be a unified place for all of these pop-ups to go to. I know Mountain Lion came with notifications however I still get the same amount of pop-up notifications as I did when I was on Lion. Pop-up Notifications also distract us from the task we are trying to complete. Whenever we hear a beep from a notifications we have to read it which distracts us. The computer should be able to handle some tasks on its own and be intelligent enough to answer the pop-up for the user.
Windows 8 UI issues
Windows 8 is a great release which comes with many great features and UI updates but it still has UI issues.
Full screen Apps (PC)
Full screen apps are great. They use as much screen retail space as they can get. The issue in Windows 8 however is that there are some apps such as Start, Task Manager, Control Panel, etc. which should be full screen apps because it pulls you out of the environment you were in to make a quick change.
The best example of this is the start menu.
When you go to launch an application, or do a simple search you are taken out of what you are doing and the User interface you were in to a full screen start. When you are done with start you leave the Metro interface of start and go to the legacy desktop once again.
A better way to do this is to make the start menu overlay on top of whatever you were doing so you are not taken out of the work you were doing.
Windows 8 tries to use 2 UI styles in one OS release and it just doesn't work out. The user is often taken out of the beautiful metro UI to the old UI. A good example of this is when a user is in the new Microsoft office and they try to open a document. They are taken out of the Metro UI to the old UI.
There should be a unified UI style across the OS, from start to documents to desktop.
Trial Software (PC)
Another big issue is when you turn on a new computer, it is loaded with trial software and junk. Instead of using your computer right when you turn it on the user is stuck deleting all of the junk from the new computer.
There are many more issues that I could go on about however I would like to move onto what an ideal computer should be like.
What a Computer should be like
When I speak of what a computer should be like, understand that I do not propose we add these features to an existing operating system, these ideas are for the ideal new operating system.
A computer should be able to incorporate AirData (see the AirData paragraph below) nicely with a clean UI that does not distract the user and provides the ideal environment to be productive, to access content and to create content. An ideal computer should come with all of the software that the user would need (an office suite, flash, etc.) however should not contain demo software or software that the user obviously does not need.
A perfect example of this is from the excellent work that YJWWBC did in his post titled An Alternate Windows 8 Experience.
Below is the image of his work (these images are coming directly off of his/her post). You can click on the images to enlarge them.
One important thing that computers are missing is moving/syncing data between devices easily. If a user has more than one computer then the user should have all of the files they have on 'computer 1' to be on 'computer 2' as well without having to transfer the files manually.
This is how it will work:
When a customer buys a computer for the first time they will also buy a certain amount of space (250 GB, 500 GB, 1 TB etc.) on a harddrive in a server farm. The customer will also register an account with that company which will be linked to that hardrive. When the user first turn on their computer they will be asked to log in with that account. They use the computer as if it was a normal computer, save their files wherever you want (desktop, my documents, my pictures etc.) and log in as if it were a local account. When the user buys another computer they have the option to buy more disk space or leave it as is. When they turn on their new computer for the first time they will be asked to log in with their account, and their files will start to load in. Their files are not actually stored locally however they are stored in the cloud. The computer will load the icon of the file and the name of the file instead. The file icons and names will load in to the same location they are in on the users other computers (desktop, my documents, my pictures etc.). When the user double clicks on a file it will then the computer will download the actual file. The computer will also load the users preferences such as their desktop image. When the user buys an new computer, or lose, or break their computer, all their data is still available. I call this system AIRDATA. I understand that there are many similar systems like this however they are for businesses not for average consumers. This system will be for average consumers.
Built in NFC
I say built in NFC because there are many uses that NCF poses in a personal computer which could make using the computer easier for the end user. This is more of a job for developers and designers to create 3rd party products which can creatively take advantage of NFC in computers, however it involves the computer manufacturers because there has to be NFC in the computer to begin with. With NFC it could be easier to transfer files between mobile devices, it could be easier to connect to external peripherals, and it could be easier to log in to the computer as well as online accounts. In fact if you have NFC in computers you could buy a NFC key chain which links to your airdata account making it easier to log in to devices. There could be PUBLIC Microsoft surface like tables (not surface like tablets, the old surface tables) (coffee shop, common areas, colleges, lounges) where when you put your key chain down it logs you in and loads all your files. IF YOU HAVE GOOD IDEAS FOR USES OF NFC IN COMPUTERS, POST THEM IN THE COMMENTS.
Have a closed software pool
By this I mean only allow downloads from developers that have been approved and are trusted. Or only have downloads from applications which have been tested and checked by the company (a little iOS rubbed off here). this will only work if the company have approved hundreds of thousands of applications by launch day. This will 100% guarantee the computer is, and will always be, virus free.
That is all I have for this post. Please feel free leave any questions or comments