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Windows Operating Systems Software Input Devices Microsoft Technology

Windows 7 Touchscreen Details Emerging 152

nandemoari writes "Microsoft has revealed more about Windows 7 and its support for touch screen technology. The system sounds impressive, however, reports suggest it appears to have a high error rate. In an early version of the system, Microsoft found some problems. For example, both the zoom and rotate functions worked less than 75% of the time, often because the computer confused the two. To rectify this, engineers redesigned the system so that it only looks out for gestures specifically relevant to the program being used. This made a significant improvement: the zoom gesture was now recognized 90% of the time. The problem is that even a 90% success rate may be too low. If you can imagine how frustrating it would be if one in ten keystrokes or mouse movements didn't do what you intended, you can see why touch screen technology will need to be even more reliable if it's to truly improve the user experience. PC Authority has a related story about statements from HP, who don't expect such technology to replace keyboards and mice any time soon."
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Windows 7 Touchscreen Details Emerging

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  • Can you imagine... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by djupedal ( 584558 ) on Saturday March 28, 2009 @05:23AM (#27368749)

    ...how much of a flop the iPhone would be if it had the same operational statistics?

    Can we face facts now as to MS's rudimentary implementations in regards to touch tech will never be more than a high school science project? Huh...please?

    Their efforts are nothing more than routine fluff to scam investors. C'mon...let's get real and let's all let MS know so they can get off the stage already.

  • Not convinced (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mattb90 ( 666532 ) <matt@allaboutgames.co.uk> on Saturday March 28, 2009 @05:24AM (#27368753) Homepage Journal
    I'm not convinced that the touch screens can replace a keyboard and mouse on a desktop, or even a laptop, for some time. Text is the big issue, and I can't see myself being able to achieve the same typing speed on a touch screen until there's some really good haptic feedback in place. While handwriting technology could come on leaps and bounds (and has done so), I already type faster than I can write, so this wouldn't be helpful to me. For the mouse there is definitely places where touch would work better, particularly for new users, but the precision of a mouse is better for certain applications (notably gaming) compared to stubby fingers and having them block your view of the screen. Even if Microsoft can get touch working nicely in Windows 7, it's still going to be quite some time until I'll be getting rid of my keyboard and mouse.
  • by PolygamousRanchKid ( 1290638 ) on Saturday March 28, 2009 @05:40AM (#27368811)

    At work, my Monitor is at the edge of my desk, my legs are up on the desk, and I'm leaned back as far as my chair goes. I could not reach the touch screen without leaning forward and up, and that would take effort. And I am a lazy-ass critter, why else would I work in that position in the first place?

    At home, things are no different, I usually work with my legs up on the sofa, sitting up, but leaned back on the comfy cushions. Again, touch screen out of reach.

    So this technology really doesn't interest me.

    Well, maybe if the touch screen came will a big, long stylus or I could use a sawed-off cue stick. However, I might get in the habit of whacking the touch screen with the stylus, when I get angry about something on the screen.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 28, 2009 @05:42AM (#27368813)

    There is a distinction between gesture recognition and direct manipulation. With direct manipulation there is no recognition (using fancy algorithms like used in speech recognition). Succesfull multitouch applications use direct manipulation.

    The basic mistake here is that MS is trying to make old programs to work with multitouch gestures. For multitouch the UI of the applicatios needs to be redesigned and reprogrammed. There is no way around that.

  • by spydabyte ( 1032538 ) on Saturday March 28, 2009 @07:36AM (#27369167)
    What do you mean you're with HP? They have a whole campaign [hp.com] devoted to desktop touch screens...

    As for most of the other blatantly wrong comments, I think it's incredibly important to develop this. Everyone is only considering touch screens as the main outputs. But what about a dedicated input being a touch screen. Like the Optimus Maximums [artlebedev.com], but extremely cheaper and more diverse. This one application voids both this post [slashdot.org] and this post [slashdot.org], the two highest rated comments in this thread. There are so many applications to multi-touch technology, and only R&D will get us there.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 28, 2009 @08:18AM (#27369357)
    Microsoft is trying to implement touch technology across an entire operating system and all its userland components.

    Apple has implemented touch technology on a specialized device with specialized hardware made specifically by Apple that, while quite impressive in what functions it can perform, is not even close to the broad range of tasks a fully fledged desktop/laptop computer and associated operating system performs.

    Which do you think might be slightly more difficult to implement?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 28, 2009 @11:30AM (#27370263)
    Then use windows ME. If you want one that works 99.9% of the time, try XP or windows 7

Machines that have broken down will work perfectly when the repairman arrives.