Windows 8 delivers the most radical changes to the operating system we have all came to love. That’s especially true when it comes to ease of use and familiarity, and not a lot of users are pleased with what they saw.
After reinstalling or upgrading to Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro, the operating system with the new Start interface is presented. It looks neat and very organized. What’s not to like? But here’s the bad news, the new Windows 8 interface is built from the ground up for touchscreens.
You really can’t blame those users who have developed a distinct disliking for Microsoft’s new operating system.
But here’s the good news: Even with Windows 8, users do not need to give up their beloved mouse and keyboard. Only the start button was sent to retirement.
Windows 8 and the New Gestures
Windows 8 is designed to detect some important gestures that can be entered by your finger and the mouse. They may not seem accessible to the user at first glance, but they’re just around the corner.
Wipe from the Right Edge to the Left
If you wipe your finger from the right side of the screen to the left, it will open the left side of a sidebar with system commands that Microsoft has christened as “Charms.” If you use a mouse to move the cursor, move it to the upper right or lower-right corner to display the Charms. In addition to the Charms, the current time and date are displayed in the lower right area.
In Charms, you have access to the entries “Search,” “Share,” “Start,” “Devices” and “Settings.” Tablet owners can quickly switch back to the start screen or share the currently in-app content by email or in a social network. Under “Settings” you have quick access to all important settings on your PC.
Wipe from the Left Edge to the Right
If you wipe your finger from the left edge to the right, all recently used apps appear in the side bar. After that, you can simply tap an app to launch it.
For mouse users, move the cursor to the upper left corner and then drag the mouse down. With one click you can now select the desired app or go to the Start Center (which is the last entry at the bottom left).
Some apps also support the display of information in the sidebar. Windows display information about the app at work on the desktop’s left area. This includes, for example, the Weather app. Drag it while holding the left mouse button from the left sidebar to right. The current weather information is then displayed in the left sidebar. If you want to hide the info again, just pull the app to the left and you’ll go back to the desktop.
If you are on the starting screen or in an app, then you can show the app settings by wiping from the bottom up. Mouse-owners only have to click with the right mouse button anywhere in the app window to display the bottom sidebar. The commands that are displayed in the sidebar depend on the particular application. In the Skydrive app, for example, you can create a new folder on the lower sidebar or upload files to Skydrive. In the maps app, you can check the bottom bar to find a place you’re looking for or create a new path marker.
Close App by Dragging
Even if they are no longer used, apps stay active in your PC’s memory. If you still wish to completely close an app, then just drag it into the bottom of the screen.
When using a mouse, you must take a similar approach: Open the appropriate app. Move the mouse pointer to the top edge until it changes to a hand. Press the left mouse button and hold it down. And lastly, drag the app to the bottom of the screen.
Tiles – Press for More Information
Some tiles provide the user with more details if you hold it down with your finger. This could be, for example, image information for a photo or additional commands. You can simply hold your mouse cursor over the tile to show the same info.
Tile Tap to Select
For completeness, if you need to pull up a tile, then just tap your finger or use the left mouse button.
Mounting and Rotating
Zooming and rotating are often needed on touch devices to increase photos size or to realign it. In Windows 8 you get this job done using two fingers. To zoom a photo, simply tap with two fingers on the photo and then pull your fingers away from each other. If you turn the finger around clockwise, then the object is rotated. Users of a mouse can zoom by simply holding down the keyboard Ctrl key and use the mouse wheel.