Introducing Clearer, an
unoriginal to-do application made exclusively for Windows Phone 7. It’s totally not a rip-off of Clear, one of the most popular and best-selling applications available only on iOS, because it’s “super sleek and metro”, and is a “much better version” of it anyway. Did I mention that it also comes jam-packed with “more features” and “cooler animations”? Innovative features like using a photo as a background to obscure text, and a rather vague “Even better animations”.
This isn’t the first time such a wildly disgusting show of inauthenticity has struck Windows Phone. There have been iOS “simulators” which were nothing more than poorly-cropped screenshots of iOS. There are truckloads of applications which are nothing but glorified RSS readers loaded with ads. And as a huge (and critical) fan of the Windows Phone platform, I am simply disgusted by the total lack of credibility and love for the platform. Windows Phone has always been about authenticity, but it’s becoming more and more apparent that Microsoft never truly believed in that by allowing such rubbish to taint the marketplace.
Critics of the platform have made note of the “lack of third-party applications” during launch and even to the present day, with Microsoft providing “We’re reaching # number of apps in our marketplace, so buy a Windows Phone” as their response. That Microsoft’s late entry was going to kill the platform. I have argued many times that Microsoft’s lack of third-party applications in the marketplace, as well as their late entry, that this would have been Microsoft’s greatest advantage. They were in the perfect position to set the highest standards of third-party applications in the entire mobile industry, beating that of Apple, and making a mockery of Android. Instead Microsoft pandered to the critics, played the numbers game which the program managers over in the Windows department know all too well, and tarnished what could have been Microsoft’s strongest brand, forever.
I’m over this, Microsoft. Get your shit straight, or I’m going with a company that actually gives a fuck.
Pretty much anything other than what they did at CES 2012.
More or less, every browser looks the same and behaves in similar ways. There’s basic navigation buttons, a bar for search and for URLs, and maybe a few more, depending on your browser of choice. It doesn’t matter what operating system lies behind the browser, or the device beyond that, you can ultimately expect it to be a similar experience for all.
It’s a layout that works great if you don’t expect to have many tabbed pages, and it’s one which works exceptionally if windowed rather than full-screen.
Browsers running as a full-screen application are known to waste space in the worst possible way. With multiple tabs on a widescreen display, tab management becomes a laughable irony. The titles of the pages are cut short, leaving a series of favicons which only further confuse users about the content of each tab.
This raises a great question. Why not focus on what you’re doing and only have a few tabs open?
Having a few tabs open doesn’t solve the problem. Should smaller displays be limited to only three or four tabs, and larger displays to upwards of eight? I don’t think so, because that simply just doesn’t resolve the problem. It takes a fair bit of time to sift through tabs, and English is a language which is written horizontally, meaning that having points or tabs along that same line interrupts reading and the text being read.
I believe that the best solution to handling tabbed browsing is with vertical tabs. Google Chrome had vertical tabs as an optional UI element in release 15, and was (tragically) removed in release 16. Opera has vertical tabs too, though the implementation is far from attractive.
Vertical tabs are a uniform width, regardless of how many tabs are open, so that you can identify the content of each tab. Their width also means that when a browser is running as a full-screen application, you have greater vertical real estate to play with, and with the prevalence of widescreen displays, their impact on webpages is minimal.
Microsoft’s OneNote is a perfect example of how effective and fast vertical tabs are, and it perfectly demonstrates everything that is wrong with horizontal tabs. Even with very few sections, horizontal tabs can get cut off when the window is at a small size. This doesn’t happen with the vertical tabs. They’re easy to sort through and identify. In fact, there really isn’t any need for the horizontal tabs, as the exact same functionality is present to the very far left.
Blah blah blah Google, please give me back my vertical tabs.
When Microsoft does it:
When Apple does it:
The point I’m making isn’t that these companies have different markets and products, but how they sell their news.
Finally published a rather old redesign of mine. While being far from my most preferred piece of work, it’s adequate.
Certainly considering revisiting some of my older concepts, and those I never quite finished. Who knows, I might even publish those.
The possibilities are incredible.