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Looking at Windows 8 from the disability community side of things

(5 posts)
  • Started 1 year ago by jmeeks49
  • Latest reply from LadyFitzgerald
  • Topic Viewed 1136 times

jmeeks49
jmeeks49
Posts: 631

Since everyone is talking about Windows 8 and the problems that it has let me address some issues from the disability stand point. I will list these out one at a time with minimum confusing.

1. The obvious, most people who are disabled are on a limited income and can't afford a touch screen computer unless they are going through a government programs.
2. people with disabilities have a hard time as it is to be trained on a different OS much less a different way to get around on it by touch some won't because of not being able physically to raise a finger or a hand to operate the computer by touch with out a 3rd party software vendor stepping in.

I could go on and on but we all know that Microsoft is betting the farm on Windows 8 and from where i am sitting they will loose a hell of a lot more than a farm. The next thing that we will hear is Microsoft going to the whitehouse and asking for a government loan to put them back in the black. Comments are welcome but i will not be switching to Win 8 just on the merits that i stated above.

Thank you,

John Meeks

Posted 1 year ago
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LadyFitzgerald
Posts: 2232

I've already stated my feelings about touch screens on desktops and laptops here several times. I have been dealing with adhesive capsulitis in my shoulders and hips for the past four years. The right shoulder still gives me enough trouble that anything more than an occasional screen touch or swipe would be painful (and, of course, I'm right handed). A mouse still is more precise than a touch screen or even a touchpad. Touchpads and mice (mouses? meeses?) require far less physical movement than large touch screens. Tablet sized touchscreens require less movement but what little precison large touch screens had disappears on smaller screens (hence the large, clunky tiles in Win8). Even nondisabled people will find touchscreens to be more tiresome to use than mice or touchpads, especially for long periods.

Touch screens make the most sense for small screens. For serious productivity, mice make far more sense. Even touchpads are better than all but the smallest touch screens. Learning to use touch screens is more intuitive than mice or touchpads so will be more attractive to younger users. The same will apply for those who love new technology. Touch screens have ben glamourized on TV, especially crime shows, so may initially attract people but once they actually have to use them over long periods, especially older and disabled people, they will lose their attractiveness quickly.

Posted 1 year ago
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LadyFitzgerald
Posts: 2232

Pity there hasn't been more response.

Posted 1 year ago
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jmeeks49
jmeeks49
Posts: 631

LF,

i understand your comments my apologies for not responding back before now my authoristis has been bad today but i am a little better. OK, to the subject at hand the metro interface is cumbersome for people with disabilities why? because some people have problems with range of motion they won't be able to operate the new line of computers that's coming out unless they use a voice recognition software. i think MS is on the way to a bust with win 8. Sure, it will sell but will it be comparable to what some people needs are? i think not but i guess time will tell.

John

Posted 1 year ago
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LadyFitzgerald
Posts: 2232

I wasn't lamenting on your lack of response (especially since I really wasn't expecting one). My comment was addressing the lack of response from others. Surely we aren't the only ones with handicaps here that could be affected by Win 8. My feeling is Win 8 will be a partial success--people will either love it or hate it, according to their needs--but, overall, it will be another Vista and Win 9 (or whatever they will call it) will be a response to peoples objections to Win 8., similar to what Win 7 was to Vista. What's going to hurt M$ is their trend toward abandoning heavy users who need multiple windows, accurate, rapid input, data storage space, etc. Granted, tablets are going to become more popular for the casual computer user who only emails, lightly surfs the internet (unlike me who often has a half a dozen or more windows and/or tabs open at a time when researching something), reads books, listens to music, and generally just plays with it. Serious photo editing, word processing, spread sheets, CAD (especially 3D), music notation (no way I could do that on a tablet or a touch screen), anything that is RAM and storage intensive, etc. simply cannot be done well on a tablet or touch screen. Tablets will never replace laptops and PCs for serious computing and gaming, leastwise not in my lifetime.

Their trend toward cloud computing is, at best, premature because not everyone has 24/7 access to a broadband internet connection and/or cannot afford the bandwidth that would be required, assuming it's available. Their trend toward an Applelesque walled garden is curious (and could prove fatal) since that walled garden is what keeps most users from adopting Apple systems.

Sorry about your arthritis. I suspect mine is not as bad as yours but I still know how much fun Uncle Arthur can be. I had trouble getting to sleep last night because of arthritis pain and muscle cramps in my hands after a couple, three hours off and on with a Dremel tool yesterday (I'll be paying for that and the lack of sleep today).

Posted 1 year ago
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