Windows 7 is a Great OS, But it is Not Touch Screen Ready (video demo)

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer demonstrated HP’s soon-to-be-available Notebook Slate (no physical keyboard) running Windows 7 during his CES keynote in Las Vegas last night…

Gizmodo: HP’s Windows 7 Slate Device Revealed by Steve Ballmer

Here’s the thing though… I’ve had an Asus Eee PC T91MT netbook for a couple of months now. It has an 8.9-inch multi-touch screen in a convertible configuration (physical keyboard can be used in netbook mode or hidden to use in slate mode). Windows 7 is a great operating system. I happen to like it a lot and have upgraded my desktops and netbooks to it since it release. It is not, however, tweaked for touch use based on my experience with the T91MT. The problem is that Windows 7′s touch screen feature is a combination of the old pen-centric Tablet PC and the hand/finger-centric Surface Table. The result is something neither animal nor mineral. Many, if not most, of the feature remain pen-centric. Finger-tip touch control is an afterthought at best and simply ignored at worst. I recorded a brief video demo using my T91MT in slate mode (physical keyboard hidden in back of the LCD) to demonstrate some of the small but annoying issues I’ve run into over the past few months. And, note that these are just a few of the issues. There are many more.

Netbook
vidcast

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Microsoft Research Shift: Finger Touch Technique for Pocket PCs

Microsoft Research Shift page

This video demo comes from Microsoft Research. It illustrates how a Pocket PC designed to be used with a stylus can be used with a larger finger touching the screen using a technique they call Shift(not to be confused with the HTC Shift UMPC device). Looks like a good workaround for those of us who want to use our fingers with a stylus oriented Pocket PC. Let’s hope it moves from the labs to the real world soon.

Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Windows Mobile

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