Tuesday, September 20, 2011

iPad: the lessons of Windows 8

iOS as Android systems are multitasking. Although the technical details differ, the operation is the same: one application is displayed full screen, you can quickly switch from one application to another, and a notification system provides quick access to information behind the plan.Windows 8 goes much further: taking advantage of the ingenious system of window management in Windows 7, it can "snapper" an application to an edge of the screen while another application holds most of the rest of the screen.

It is safe to use two applications at once, move content from one application to another without undergoing a window system: a good compromise between the traditional and multitasking multitasking "light" of IOS and Android .

OS X itself could learn from Windows 8: full screen mode Lion is limited to one application isolated from the rest of the system. Several applications iPad trying to get past this limitation: Desktop, for example, can cut the screen into two, for example to browse the Internet on one side and write another. The Windows system 8 has the advantage of elegance, simplicity and flexibility (Microsoft forcing the developer to provide).In iOS like Android, applications can be used as service: this allows Mail to open a PDF in iBooks, or application to share pictures of Android a shot directly on Facebook. Again, Windows 8 goes further: it has a central division, which allows to call functions in another software. No need to "jump" in the application to send a tweet Twitter: Twitter is just the application that you are currently using. Apple is just beginning to move in this direction with the integration of Twitter as a service in iOS 5, but we doubt that the Cupertino company opens the system to third-party developers. Here, Android holds the rope.

 Integration with the cloud

Android as iOS 5 communicate with the famous "cloud". Specialist of the cloud with Windows Azure and Live Services (whose roots are to be sought in the Microsoft Network in 1995 ...!), Microsoft has gone very far in thinking: rather than proposing here and there taking advantage of features Internet, Windows 8 is supposed to be an OS "stateless".With Chrome OS, Google has deported the whole OS in the cloud: it connects with a lightweight terminal that is not much more than a browser on a remote session that is not much more a directory of webapps. Microsoft has taken a different approach: it created its first session with his 8 Windows Live ID, but the OS itself is truly local. His condition, for against, is permanently synchronized with the cloud.

You finish level 2 of a game on your laptop? Level 3 is on your desktop PC. You have subscribed to three new RSS feed you? They were added to the work. All your settings are saved and on your live account, and developers can use Azure in addition to synchronize their applications.Android as iOS leave some functions and some applications (mail, contacts, calendars, etc..) To provide a semblance of sync, but are far from providing a system as deep. With icloud, Apple approaches it a little more, and developers can use the Game Center to synchronize the state of parts of a game between an iPhone and iPad. But on both platforms, there is no synchronization as extensive, with all the advantages of the approach Google (all machines are synchronized) and all the benefits of the approach Apple (all data are local).We could continue the list, with features more or less important: the fact is that Microsoft's proposal, despite its obvious flaws, is full of qualities and is ultimately very appealing. From an OS like Windows has huge flaws, but has many qualities: Apple and Google will have to successfully densify their mobile OS without the complexity.

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