OS X should take some tips from Windows...

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by Oats, Jun 3, 2004.

  1. Oats macrumors regular

    Jan 8, 2003
    New York
    I love OS X and the mac. I grew up on the mac, but now I use Windows in the business world daily, and there are a few things which I wish that Apple would "copy" from windows.

    1) Menu bars in each App window, as opposed to the shared menu bar which changes every time you switch apps.

    2) You can change the size of a window from any of the 4 sides! On the mac, you have to get your mouse to the far bottom right to resize a window. This is annoying and often difficult if that portion of the window happens to be off the screen.

    Maybe minor things, but I have come to appreciate the windows interface more and more, it allows me to be more productive. Anyone agree?
  2. russed macrumors 68000


    Jan 16, 2004
    1) i like it that the bar is just for the app. in use. when i first switched i ffound it odd but now im used to it and think it is far better. i think it makes the screen less cluttered as less space has to be taken up with application bars and also is far better for letting you know which app is in use.

    2) i see your point here but i have never noticed this so i suppose i cant find a need for it. however one advantage of apple's version is that there is no need ofr a border all the way around the application so it kind of makes it look neater, i think!

    well that is my opinion!

    oh and also it has to be said, the less os x is like windows, the better in my opinion!
  3. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus


    Jul 24, 2002
    1) This has always been this way on the Mac. If MS had copied Mac OS better to start with you would not find this annoying! Seriously though they might be able to make this an option for switchers, but what would happen to the Apple menu and the menu extras (clock and so on)?

    2) Interestingly some Apple Apps (Pro App Framework based I think) enable this: FCE 2 certainly does (and if you have 2 windows touching it will resize the other so as it gets smaller).
  4. abhishekit macrumors 65816


    Nov 6, 2003
    akron , ohio
    well i like the menu bar at thetop, infact it would be a discomfort if apple changes it to separate menus..
    and i hv no opinion of the second point, as never really thought bout it..

  5. jxyama macrumors 68040


    Apr 3, 2003
    #2 is a good suggestion. apple is being stupid for not adding this feature. there's no UI advantage to be gained by enabling resize at only one corner.

    on the other hand, #1 is completely useless. unless the app you are interested in is the front, its menus are useless. in windows, you don't invoke commands on the menu in the apps that are in the background. so what are those menus doing in the background? nothing - just taking up space on the desktop and providing irrelevant information. they way OS X works is much better in this regard because only what's useful and relevant is shown at any given time. it may take some time getting used to, but it's definitely based on a better UI principle.
  6. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Jan 6, 2004
    when i switched i found the menu bar rather annying at first, but once i learned the keyboard shortcuts and realized that the interface was less cluttered i was a much happier person, since i only have a 12" powerbook and not much screen room its great that my windows dont have to be huge because a third of it is a menu bar, instead its all neat and tidy, and universal for each app, instead of haveing to search for the tool bar on the app whereever it is located i can command tab to the app and know that the toolbar is up on the top, this just works better for me personally, to each his own, and the resizing issue, i like the zoom function which auto sizes the window, again this is personal preference
  7. ingenious macrumors 68000


    Jan 13, 2004
    Washington, D.C.

    No I do not agree! :D

    1) It's nice to have your screen so cluttered! I hate having programs show up in my taskbar when they're open. I know it's stupid, but it's just a pet peeve.

    2) I like the four corner thing. It makes it to where I'm not always accidentally resizing my windows.
  8. Applespider macrumors G4


    Jan 20, 2004
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    Don't agree with 1 - I like one menu at a time - with clearly defined structures for where the preferences for that program are. I do use Windows at work and finding the 'options' for an app can be a nightmare

    The resizing would be good tho - like you say it's tough if the resize corner ends up off the screen.

    I'd like a 'history' button in the finder so I can see the most recently used files/folders I've been into - I find that really useful when I'm emailing attachments that I've been working on earlier that day that are strewn across the HD
  9. theimacguy macrumors regular


    Mar 7, 2004
    I think they should change the zoom button to a full screen button like in windows.

    Just a thought. :cool:
  10. stcanard macrumors 65816


    Oct 19, 2003
    Just in case there's any doubt as to the general opinion on this issue

    Absolutely not. That's one of the things I hate the most about the Windows interface, is the wasted real estate of having a menu bar in every window. It took me about a week to adjust to the Mac way and now I hate going back.

    Plus there's the whole Fitt's law issue there.
  11. parrothead macrumors 6502a


    Sep 24, 2003
    Edmonds, WA
    I agree, when I work on the PC at work the thing that annoys me the most is when I accidentally grab on one of the edges and resize the window. In the main application I use (Sigmascan) it ALWAYS causes a crash when this happens and it is really annoying. :mad:

    As far as the first point goes, I don't like the way that windows leaves the menus connected to the window. It is so nice on the Mac to be able to go to the top every time instead of having to look at ugly windows font and color scheme and have to search out the menus.
  12. blue&whiteman macrumors 65816


    Nov 30, 2003
    listen to this man. he knows whats up.
  13. Krizoitz macrumors 65816


    Apr 26, 2003
    Tokyo, Japan
    This is a BAD idea. First its a waste of screen real-estate.
    You can only use one menu at a time so providing multiple un-useable windows is a waste. In addition providing a menu in each window means that the menus are constantly changing location, this is bad from a UI perspective.
  14. Gaz macrumors regular

    Aug 15, 2002
    London, UK
    1. The UI principle is that if you know where something is going to be you can move the mouse there quicker. i.e. The menus remain static and through repition there is less cognative load as your mind doesn't don't need to 'search' for the menu as you already know where it's going to be...hence the "start button"

    Also as stated above it's not good practise to show users options that are not currently available. You end up with information overload.

    And another point...research has shown that the fastest things to navigate to on a screen are the edges with the corners next...hence the hot spots for expose. With this priniciple in mind you can see it would be faster to move the mouse the top edge where the menu will always be.

    2. Agree with you...it's just annoying as it is.

    However you're on the right track...Mac OS X has lots to learn from Windows...and the only winner at the end of it is us.

  15. 4409723 Suspended


    Jun 22, 2001
    Also from an ease of use way of thinking:

    If you have to go to a menu on an individual program you have to move towards it slow down and stop. If the menu is at the top of the screen you can just throw your mouse up because you know it will stop.
  16. adamjay macrumors 6502a


    Feb 3, 2004
    #2... i totally disagree.

    In Safari, and Terminal (which are really the only 2 app's that i resize windows in) the main thing i LOVE is the clean, borderless design of the windows. I'm not a fan of an extra border on the bottom or the left. Adding resizeability to all 4 corners would certainly clutter up the windows further more (especially the bottom left in Safari). It works at the bottom right because its beneath the scroll bar. The way that Windows gets around this is by changing the look of the cursor when it is at the corner for resizing... and that's one of the things that i never liked about windows: too many things going on. (The little mickey mouse glove hand that appears when you mouse over a link is bad enough) Less is more, and this seems to be Apple's view as well, so i wouldn't expect Apple to adopt this.
  17. strider42 macrumors 65816


    Feb 1, 2002
    number 2 sounds OK, but I don't think its a big deal, but 1 is totally wrong in my opinion. the global task bar makes so much mroe sense to me. Why should I have to move my mouse to a different location depending on what window I have open. There's only one program, so why shoudl there be a menu bar for each window. They all do exactly the same thing. I also find it very sueful for telling which app is on top. The global task bar is, in my opinion, the single most defining characteristic of mac OS and perhaps its best attribute.

    One of the things I hate about windows is how inconsistent it is. excel has a single menu for all its windows, outlook doesn't. it drives me crazy and it stops you from using dual screen efectively in windows. Apple got it right with the menu bar. There is a lot of logic and well thought out ergonomics behind it.
  18. legion macrumors 6502a

    Jul 31, 2003
    I agree with the OP.

    I understand why Apple did #1... but I think it is outdated now. Relative distances become an issue. Say you have a screen and have laid out multiple windows (tiled) from different apps so you can work with different info from each. When you make each window active (say the one located in the bottom left corner), the menu is always at the top. However, in Windows, that menu bar is within easy reach. You can adjust something there, make your next app window active just above your previous window and adjust something there without having to go to the top each time. Also, take for instance multiple monitors. You've blown up Word on the left screen and photoshop on the right screen. Well, the menu bar will only stay in one screen so you have to cross monitors to get to settings for at least one app. Both cases are bad for speed. The other thing is that some programs let you use more than one application at once (eg, if a non-restricted modal window is up, you can change paramenters on it and something in the background at once; another case is something like an always-on-top audio mixer where you can adjust things on it and say a background sequencer.)

    As for resizing from all edges, I don't understand Apple on this.
    A) You can code windows without a border and have it be resizable in Windows XP.

    B) Sometimes it's handy to have resize restricted to one direction. For instance, say you have 3 sides just where you want them but just want to stretch out the fourth side. Grabbing corners in OS X, you run the risk of changing 2 sides. Grabbing an edge in windows limits only that dimension to being able to be adjusted, so everything else stays where it is. If you do it from a corner, then you can adjust two dimensions simutaneously (just like OS X.) That's very handy.

    C) If you have problems accidentally resizing, why are you clicking and dragging there anyway? First, the icon changes to tell you what you're doing and second, you move a window from its title bar.
  19. flyfish29 macrumors 68020


    Feb 4, 2003
    New HAMpshire
    I happen to totally agree. Why would you want more menu items? Screen size is important to me and when Apple makes the interface save space it helps improve screen size. For instance, the loading status bar that goes across the web address in Safari saves room at the bottom where it used to be in some browsers. In a sense it makes the screen 1/4 in bigger...the more they do that the more text that you can read without scrolling, etc.

  20. GiantsFan macrumors member

    May 15, 2004
    san jose OR riverside, Cali
    Apple should make the apple key on the keyboard trigger the apple icon on the tool/menu bar, like how that microsfot icon key triggers the start menu.
  21. Applespider macrumors G4


    Jan 20, 2004
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    Bad idea! That 'Windows' icon key does nothing aside from bring up the start menu.

    The Apple key is the equivalent of the ctrl key and we need it for all our keyboard shortcuts...
  22. legion macrumors 6502a

    Jul 31, 2003
    THe Windows key is a shortcut key that is used with letters and such to bring up a lot of things. It's best to know what you are talking about before posting
  23. Applespider macrumors G4


    Jan 20, 2004
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    Sorry - should have clarified in the original post. Yes, you can use it with letters to navigate through the menus which is v useful - and I use it for that regularly - tho I find the Alt + letter more useful. But for many people, all it does is bring up the Start Menu often when they were aiming for Alt or Ctrl. I was just trying to say that the Apple key acts more like the ctrl key and it's more useful like that than bringing up a limited Apple menu.
  24. socokid macrumors newbie

    Mar 31, 2003

    Answer to #1: I couldn't disagree more. The Windoze way is wholely confusing. When you close the last window, the app quits (where's the menu item to quit when the last window is gone? That's why it does it that way). I would much rather have the app open until I TELL it to quit. Even with no windows open. I also love having the menu bar in the exact same place, every time, for every app. At the very top of the monitor. No hand-eye jockying at all. Just move your mouse up as far as you want (it stops at the top!), and click your menu! Easier.

    Answer to #2: This one is funny to me. Since when is clicking the little green button that is on every window "difficult"? Try it. Move your browser window off to the bottom right of the screen, hiding the resize corner. Now, click the green button. Amazing isn't it? The magic green button also works for windows that are too big. Resizing from one place isn't that bad at all. It's consistent. And if you are going to resize a window, who cares where you do it from? The VAST majority of the time you will be doing it from the bottom right anyway. If you need to hide the app, just option click on the DT. Done. I see the point, but it's so minor that it's nearly not worth mentioning, in my opinion. I have never wanted for such an action.

    Lastly, I can't stand the ergonimics of Windoze "hot-keys". It's completely uncomfortable, you have to lift you hand to use them. Control? My thumb has to move over two more keys, removing my hand from its normal keyboard position to perform everyday key-combos. I like the position of the Apple (command) key MUCH better.
  25. 7on macrumors 601


    Nov 9, 2003
    Dress Rosa
    Your wish is my command

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