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Touchscreen Laptops, Whether You Like Them Or Not

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the give-the-people-what-they-may-or-may-not-want dept.

Displays 398

An anonymous reader writes "With CES all wrapped up, an article at CNET discusses a definite trend in the laptops on display from various manufacturers this year: touchscreens. Intel and Microsoft are leading the way, and attempting to grab the industry's reins as well: '... just to make sure the touch message was crystal clear, Intel issued an edict to PC partners during its CES keynote: all next-generation ultrabooks based on its "Haswell" chip must be touch.' With tablets and detachable/convertible computers coming into the mainstream, it seems the manufacturers have something to gain by condensing their production options. The article says, 'What does that mean to consumers? Your next laptop will likely be touch, whether you like it or not.'"

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I want Gravis Ultrasound To Work in My Computer (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42573825)

To heLL mit touch-screen!

What's the big deal? (5, Insightful)

innocence18 (897646) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573829)

It's nice to have there as an option if you want it, if you don't care for it, don't use it.

Re:What's the big deal? (2, Insightful)

Nossie (753694) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573837)

removing the start menu was an 'option'?

Not heard that before - I wish Metro was an option, which unfortunately in its current state - it's not.

Re:What's the big deal? (4, Insightful)

innocence18 (897646) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573865)

We're talking hardware here, not software, not Windows. Try to stay on topic....oh...this is /. As you were.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

Nossie (753694) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573887)

Oh I'm sorry - did they mean it will come with an option for XP tablet edition or Win 8?

If not then my comment is perfectly valid. Cant have the hardware without the OS to support it.

Re:What's the big deal? (5, Funny)

innocence18 (897646) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573919)

Relax! I'm sure you'll be able to install your favourite version of Linux on it, and then cry about how the hardware makers won't release open source touchscreen drivers for you even though you don't want to use it.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

Nossie (753694) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573969)

Well I'm writting this now on Win 7 - even though, I admittedly use Windows mostly for games these days. I just cant bare to move to Win 8 :-/ and I believe by the time it's a viable solution (another year maybe?) something else will have came along.

I run a mixed house of unixes, I expect my screens to get bigger in the future - not smaller. I might not be your average joe that's quite happy with a *tablet*, but I'll certainly NEVER get out my seat to touch my 30"+ screen

I believe Microsoft have screwed this generation of desktop PCs and I don't have the confidence that they think everyone will throw away their computers and jump to mobile. Especially when those that are truly 'mobile' are not buying MS products.

For the next 8 months at least Microsoft will have a mix of XP tablet OS / Vista lashback that they may never recover from.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

innocence18 (897646) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574009)

You already have a Windows 7 license? Awesome, you'll be able to put that on your new touch enabled laptop and use it's inbuilt touch capabilities too. The future has never looked brighter for you :-)

Re:What's the big deal? (4, Funny)

reboot246 (623534) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574181)

I just cant bare to move to Win 8

Nobody is asking you to take your clothes off. We couldn't bear that.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573963)

As a matter of fact, Windows 8 Pro allows for a downgrade to Vista (dunno why anyone would do *that*) or 7, possibly even XP (again, no real reason to do it).

Besides, if the start button and Windows 7-style start menu are all that you're missing, there's plenty of alternatives to bring them back.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

Nossie (753694) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573989)

You bring up some good points, however I don't think even the stardock alternative brings back the fluid feel of Windows (never thought I'd have those words in the same sentence!) The addons just feel clunky and if I do a fresh install I lose my desktop???

Maybe I just don't want to support a company that actively disables things to force customers to use something else? I'm half holding out that they will relent for SP1.

Re:What's the big deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42573917)

Metro is off-topic concerning the touchscreen push by Microsoft?

Shill.

Re:What's the big deal? (2)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573903)

I've had Windows 8 for three months now and I haven't used Metro in two and a half months. Sure, it takes a whole 30 seconds to find a Start menu replacement and another couple of minutes to install and configure it how you like it. Yes, it sucks Windows doesn't have one by default that you can turn on, but it's no big deal to get one yourself. Personally, I like having the choice of numerous Start menu replacements - most of which have an option to boot right to the desktop. And don't start bitching about how you need a third party software... Windows has been the only OS that's built from the ground up by one entity (MS) for at least ten years.

Re:What's the big deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574033)

Modern UI is optional. There are many start menu replacements if you want that. Go get one.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

Nossie (753694) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574069)

and they are all pretty clunky when you get past the initial view. I'm probably one of the few that goes into the start menus and enables context menus to speed things up I guess.

Re:What's the big deal? (3, Insightful)

gbjbaanb (229885) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574037)

but the OP has it right - I didn't mind at all when flatscreen displays were cheap enough to replace CRTs, and no-one minded when they were replaced throughout the entire portable PC range.

In this case, touch-screens will simply be a cheaper option than the standard flatscreen, so manufacturers will install them.

Now... the problem comes when silly old Julie Larson-Green (of Ribbon and Metro infamy) comes along and says "hey, changing all that old working stuff with anything new will make me look good" and puts a table interface on all PCs. Nor if Shuttleworth sees this and thinks that the mobile interface is taking over the world and so all desktops need roughly the same interface too (to be fair to Ubuntu, their desktop interface isn't designed to be touch-only unlike Metro).

Just don't blame the hardware manufacturers for software 'designers' mistakes.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

Nossie (753694) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574089)

I just think that being so destructive with the GUI is pretty much Microsoft throwing their userbase under the bus in a sacrifice to catch up with apple - which - if at all appears to be VERY slow. With this much change to the setup, companies especially will consider whither remain with Win 7 at the best or switch to another OS entirely - because they know they will have to train it out to all the desktop users.

I can't wait until every screen is a touchscreen - regardless of what it's on. But encouraging people to use it by force (simply to try and simulate their phone OS or vice versa) is suicide!

Re:What's the big deal? (5, Insightful)

mupuf (2617831) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573857)

Oh, it is a big deal.

There are two technologies for touch screens:
- Resistive: It means adding an extra layer on top of the screen, reducing the brightness of the screen or increasing the backlight resulting in a lower battery life.
- Capacitive: As far I know, it is only possible on current screen's surface. It would need some sort of glass like on smartphones. This increases the price of the laptop and makes it more susceptible to breaking if the glass is of poor quality.

The end result in both cases is a higher price ... for no purpose at all. But I guess the average joe would like to have a detachable keyboard and get a tablet.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

innocence18 (897646) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573873)

Mass adoption means a drop in price point.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

aix tom (902140) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574053)

Of course the price point of mass produced "more stuff" will almost always be higher as the price of mass produced "less stuff" in the laptop.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573991)

If it takes a capacitive touch screen (the only type that makes sense for most devices these days) to get a decent slab of glass on most laptop screens, I'll take it and might even use it.
I'm not buying another laptop without some decent glass covering the screen - two screens with uneven backlighting and god-knows-what-the-hell-this-is dirt that won't come off are enough for me.

Re:What's the big deal? (4, Interesting)

mpe (36238) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573999)

There are two technologies for touch screens:

- Resistive: It means adding an extra layer on top of the screen, reducing the brightness of the screen or increasing the backlight resulting in a lower battery life.
- Capacitive: As far I know, it is only possible on current screen's surface. It would need some sort of glass like on smartphones. This increases the price of the laptop and makes it more susceptible to breaking if the glass is of poor quality.

The end result in both cases is a higher price ... for no purpose at all.


There's also the matter of the screen wearing out. Even perfectly clean fingers are abrasive. People also frequently wear jewelry containing very hard materials on their fingers. Never mind a layer of glass you'd really want mono-crystaline diamond!

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

Nossie (753694) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574125)

Really? even with glass? I never thought of it that way even though I guess phones and tablets are all hardened but the only screens I've seen wear out are the ones with the squishy stuff underneath (and yes I realise that's possibly one of the worst 'technical definitions' ever.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

realityimpaired (1668397) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574153)

There's also the matter of the screen wearing out. Even perfectly clean fingers are abrasive. People also frequently wear jewelry containing very hard materials on their fingers. Never mind a layer of glass you'd really want mono-crystaline diamond!

Cell phones seem to be doing ok... my phone's a year old and there's no wear visible on the screen at all, though there is some grease that I have to wipe off from time to time. Gorilla Glass is quite nice... :)

You're correct that the glass will eventually wear out, but the timelines that people usually keep a laptop are such that it's not likely to affect most of us. And those that it will affect, the screen's replaceable. There are also polymers that can be spread on the glass to restore a clear finish, but they'd adversely affect the effectiveness of the touch screen. That being said, if you're trying to keep a 5-year old laptop alive, you're probably not going to be all that worried about a touchscreen.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

ByteSlicer (735276) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574071)

The end result in both cases is a higher price

The end result will be grease stained glossy screens that are unreadable outdoors or near windows.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

abigsmurf (919188) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574093)

If you are seriously worrying about how hard wearing the screen on a laptop is... you probably should take a good look at how you treat your laptop or consider buying a rugged laptop.

Sure it'll add extra cost, just like the bluetooth that most people don't use, the ethernet that most people don't use and probably dozens of other of ports and hardware features that add cost but aren't used by the majority of users.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42573877)

Just pay for it, but don't use it.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

innocence18 (897646) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573913)

You mean like I fork out for hardware that has USB 3 ports even though I only own USB 2 hardware??? No wonder I'm broke and spend all my time lurking on slashdot.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573929)

Very few people use all of the options on their cars either. I don't use AM radio, but it's nice to know it's there if I ever want to.

Once you get above the base model, most options are packaged together... if you want the built-in computer, you may be forced to also get the sunroof. It's a way of cutting costs.

Re:What's the big deal? (2)

Pembers (250842) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574141)

Very few people use all of the options on their cars either. I don't use AM radio, but it's nice to know it's there if I ever want to.

Agreed, but (unless the radio is very badly designed) having circuitry for AM reception doesn't interfere with FM or digital reception. Whereas a touchscreen is an extra layer of stuff between your eyes and the pixels, which reduces image quality or has to be compensated for. A better car analogy might be that the air conditioning is always running, and the "off" switch just diverts the air flow to the outside of the vehicle...

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

MitchDev (2526834) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574095)

Yeah, and how much more will these touchscreens cost compared to regular laptops?

What touch laptops mean (1, Informative)

phayes (202222) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573833)

For this consumer & everyone I influence it means that thes laptops will not be bought. Touch & vertical screens do not go together.

Re:What touch laptops mean (2)

ericloewe (2129490) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574011)

a) You don't have to use it.

b) It actually works in some situations. Especially when you'd normally only have a touchpad.

Re:What touch laptops mean (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574131)

If touch screens are all that is available, no, we don't have to use it... but we still have to PAY for it. It is also one more thing that can go wrong.

What? (4, Interesting)

Psicopatico (1005433) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573835)

Only touch-screen enabled notebooks here?
Sorry, no sale for you.

My money will go to the manufacturers who will provide "old school" displays.

Re:What? (5, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574017)

My money will go to the manufacturers who will provide "old school" displays.

Here's your VT100 sir.

Re:What? (2)

realityimpaired (1668397) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574261)

That's your choice. My money will go to whoever offers me the best price for the specs I actually want. If that happens to include a touch screen, ok then. There's no reason I have to actually use it just because it's there.

By the time I'm ready to replace my current laptop, I will probably not have a choice about touch screen. At that time, I'll be looking for a 11.6" or 12.1" laptop with enough grunt to run e17, a browser, and my chat clients, which should be doable in a $200 netbook. (it's just about doable today, for $350)

Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (3, Insightful)

SimonTheSoundMan (1012395) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573841)

From experience I haven't found anything worse than a desktop or laptop with a touch screen. They are ergonomically bad, after 10 minutes I get pain in my wrists and elbows. The only place I have found desktop sized touch screens to be useful is when stood up, for example at a point of sale.

Also, my desktop monitors are too far away to touch when sat down, the screen is a good 6-8 inches further than my reach so they have to be moved uncomfortably too close which doesn't just hurt my neck and eyes, but I have no room to fit my keyboard in front of the screen on my desk when bought closer. When lounging with my laptop the screen is either too close when sat down or when semi lying down too far to touch. Don't get me started on finger smudges.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (1)

coastwalker (307620) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573871)

All it needs is a single case of work related injury and no business is going to buy anything slidy interfaced unless you can pick it up. Result warehouses full of unsold shit laptops.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (5, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573879)

From experience I haven't found anything worse than a desktop or laptop with a touch screen.

From experience I know you are spouting wild hyperbole.

They are ergonomically bad, after 10 minutes I get pain in my wrists and elbows.

OK, so use the touchpad. Oh, you're complaining about laptops with only touch for pointing input? Why didn't you say so?

My lady has a Fujitsu Lifebook T900 with the combo digitizer. When I am demonstrating something to her I can lean over her shoulder and touch the screen, which is fantastic. And the system folds over into a tablet, which is great for art since it has a Wacom/multitouch digitizer.

Don't make the mistake of thinking that touch is bad, because it isn't. Exclusive touch is bad on a device with room for another input device.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (1)

innocence18 (897646) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573901)

Exclusive touch is bad on a device with room for another input device.

Also just as bad are those touch machines that also come with someone who holds a gun to your head and tells you to keep your hands of all alternative input devices. I'm sure all the machines we're talking about will be of that variety.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (1)

91degrees (207121) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574025)

Dammit! And the consumer's going to be the one who has to pay for the guy with a gun!

"My lady" - LOL! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42573927)

You idiot.

Re:"My lady" - LOL! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42573967)

I know what you're implying, and it is socially and morally incorrect to do so. We live in 2013! You can't just go around suggesting that it's wrong for the ladies of other Slashdot commenters to have penises these days. It's sexist, it's misogynist, and dare I say it, it's even extremely racist to do such a thing.

You know what, maybe she was born a man. Maybe she still has a penis, testes and a scrotum. But that DOES NOT mean that she cannot also be a lady. And that DOES NOT mean that you can deny her the right to be called a lady.

Times have changed, and it is imperative that you change with them. Your outdated views are a relic from times gone by, when prehistoric notions of gender and sexuality ruled our society. Women today are free to have male genitalia, and it is not your place to suggest otherwise.

Re:"My lady" - LOL! (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573975)

You idiot.

Don't be jealous. It is unbecoming.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574359)

Thanks but you keep buying those junker laptops. Im sticking with Apple. They build simply the best notebooks out there...and no they dont stick stupid touch screens on them. They know all about touch screens. They did what everyone celse could bot do....they made the tablet a winner. So you keep being the consumer tool you are....ill buy on performance and build quality.....ill stick with apple.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573895)

Better still - offices are obliged (here, anyway) to follow ergonomic guidelines for health and safety. Guidelines which are quite clear in not permitting office workers to sit too close to the screen, as this may cause eyestrain potentially leading to more serious conditions. So, touch on desktops in a business environment is dead in the water.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (3, Insightful)

devent (1627873) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573983)

It's because you are not the targeted consumer.
I notice now for a while that everyone (Google, Apple, Microsoft, Intel,) is moving to consumption-only PCs. The "app-markets", touch for everything, 16:9 monitors, Secure Boot, DRM schemes for video and audio output.

Touch is good for video, music, and games. It is horrible for production or creating of content. But neither the big IT companies nor the big publishers want you to create anything on your computer. They want you to be the consumer-only, like TV.

It's a sad thing, the imprisonment of the PC user. From a business perspective it makes perfect sense. The IT players are now big, they divide the market under them. They do not want a free computing experience. If they would have their way, they would make laptops now without mouse or keyboard.

It's really ironic. Now that every home have more computing power then anyone needs and Smartphones are moving to have the same computing power then desktop PCs and the individual have more and more information to their fingertips, the user is more and more enslaved. Copyright laws, the direction of the IT and entertainment industry.

I'm so glad right now for GNU/Linux and the open source community. I think in 10 years it will be the only force to ensure that I can still plug-in my keyboard and mouse to my laptop/desktop and do whatever I want with my devices.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (1)

91degrees (207121) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574005)

Why are you using the touch screen for several minutes at a time? You still have a keyboard and a trackpad, surely. Touch just complements that. So if you want, rather than use the trackpad to press the "submit" button, you could touch the actual button.

Re:Laptops are the wrong form factor for touch (2)

tverbeek (457094) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574087)

At my day job we have a fleet of laptops used by field workers. For several years we've been buying them TabletPC machines so they can do checkbox selecting and such more efficiently than with a trackpad. A year and a half ago the latest hardware refresh came with touch suppport as well. We showed it to them. And I can tell from watching them when they come in with tech problems, or even just looking at their screens, that they aren't using it.

What Might Make Sense (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42573891)

What might make sense is if "monitors of the future" could be used either vertically or horizontally (or to basically generalize, 0 = degree = 90). Then you could place the monitor at 20 degrees and use touch for drawing things/poking screen on those applications that support touch, or for standing over the monitor to review a design of some kind (CAD, structural diagram, etc). Then put the monitor back upright when its time to crank out a document or write some code.

It does not have to be an "either/or" situation. A monitor flat on the desk with touch has some practical uses But at 90 degrees touch is useless.

Electromagnetic digitizer (1)

drolli (522659) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573907)

Please. I like my wacom tablet, my X41tablet thinkpad and my galaxy note 2.

On a big screen, i want a pen, not a finger

Re:Electromagnetic digitizer (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574283)

On a big screen, i want a pen, not a finger

If you have a big screen, you'd better hope your pen is huge.

Seriously though, what *I* want is both. They exist, but they're small so far.

Try it, you'll like it (5, Insightful)

jamesl (106902) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573915)

The anti-touch commenters here echo the comments of anti-mousers decades ago -- "Not for me." We know how that worked out.

1. Until you work with a touch enabled laptop, you have no basis for comment about touch enabled laptops.
2. Until you work with a touch enabled desktop, you have no basis for comment about touch enabled laptops.
3. After experiencing touch enabled laptops and desktops, different people will have different opinions but nobody should feel obligated to force their opinions on others.
4. I have two months experience using a touch enabled laptop computer and I love it. Your mileage may vary.
5. I have no experience with using a touch enabled desktop computer so I have no comment.

People are different and different people use computers in different ways. Some are amenable to touch and some are not.

Re:Try it, you'll like it (1)

YukariHirai (2674609) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573931)

The anti-touch commenters here echo the comments of anti-mousers decades ago -- "Not for me." We know how that worked out.

Well, yes. Some people still don't like the mouse. Some use it anyway out of necessity, others bend over backwards to avoid using it.

Re:Try it, you'll like it (1)

innocence18 (897646) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573937)

I hope someone mods this as off-topic. There's far too much common sense in these comments to be a part of this thread!

Re:Try it, you'll like it (5, Interesting)

ubersoldat2k7 (1557119) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573945)

I've never tried a touch screen laptop/desktop but what I'm pretty sure (and also every one of my coworkers who for some reason comes to stick their fingers in my display) is that I DO NOT LIKE FINGER PRINTS IN MY SCREEN.

I can handle finger prints in my phone or tablet because I use them for a few minutes but when you're staring to the same screen for 8 hours straight, I can't handle it.

Re:Try it, you'll like it (2)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574013)

I've never tried a touch screen laptop/desktop but what I'm pretty sure (and also every one of my coworkers who for some reason comes to stick their fingers in my display) is that I DO NOT LIKE FINGER PRINTS IN MY SCREEN.

My experience touching the screen of a Fujitsu Lifebook T900 with the combo wacom/multitouch digitizer is that you really don't see the fingerprints. Whatever coating they used is a winner. It might be a problem in direct sunlight, but this display isn't daylight-viewable; you can have it with wacom+multitouch+indoor, or you can have wacom+outdoor, but that's it. But I typically don't use a laptop outdoors, and when I do I position myself so that the sun isn't creating screen glare. Unfortunately, the best coating for indoor use and the best coating for outdoor use aren't the same. Fortunately, this isn't a problem for me.

Perhaps you should get some seat time with a machine like this before speculating wildly. I know you will probably speculate wildly anyway, but why not have some basis for it first?

Not then, not now (2)

jabberw0k (62554) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573971)

Starting in 1984, I worked at Digital Techniques, who made the TouchCom series of "public access" touch-screen computers. Touch-screens are intuitive for accessing information, but for creating anything we generally used a Summagraphics tablet.

Could you get much work done if someone were holding their hand in front of your screen, and their finger utterly obscuring everything around your cursor? Even if that someone is you...

You moron (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574029)

Glad to see that you didn't "feel obligated to force [your] opinions on others." LOL. You cretin.

The fact that you actually LIKE touch screens speaks volumes too.

Re:Try it, you'll like it (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574063)

The anti-touch commenters here echo the comments of anti-mousers decades ago -- "Not for me." We know how that worked out.

CLI is still superior to the GUI from where I sit. How exactly did you think it worked out?

Re:Try it, you'll like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574189)

The anti-touch commenters here echo the comments of anti-mousers decades ago -- "Not for me." We know how that worked out.

CLI is still superior to the GUI from where I sit. How exactly did you think it worked out?

well, if touch gets a userbase similar to GUI today, and non-touch a user base similar to those who prefer CLI today, then Intel and Microsoft might be making the right bet.

Re:Try it, you'll like it (3, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574193)

CLI is still superior to the GUI from where I sit. How exactly did you think it worked out?

The CLI lets you do more with your computer. The GUI helps many people do more with their computers. For you, the CLI is more powerful. By some measurements, the GUI is more powerful. That's exactly how I think it worked out.

Re:Try it, you'll like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574099)

Lenovo's been doing touchscreen's for year's, you still have a mouse folks....and a keyboard, it just sometimes nicer to star trek style UI's once and a while.

Re:Try it, you'll like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574119)

http://shop.lenovo.com/SEUILibrary/controller/e/web/LenovoPortal/en_US/catalog.workflow:category.details?current-catalog-id=12F0696583E04D86B9B79B0FEC01C087&current-category-id=D724E2FAFCE46441FA6DED239D61F101&action=init

Re:Try it, you'll like it (1)

tverbeek (457094) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574111)

Our field staff have touch enabled laptops.
Most of them do not use the touch capability.

Re:Try it, you'll like it (1)

Bayoudegradeable (1003768) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574349)

nobody should feel obligated to force their opinions on others.

ha ha ha ha! New here, are ya?

Glossy screens are terrible. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42573933)

You can just not use the touchpad. The real problem is the disappearance of matte screens. I hate glossy.

Re:Glossy screens are terrible. (1)

Mike Frett (2811077) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574001)

I agree with you there Mr. Coward. Glossy is blah...and a real eye-sore.

Re:Glossy screens are terrible. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574073)

Thirded. If I want to see my face staring back at me all day, I'll look in a fucking mirror. My computer screen should not be reflective.

Re:Glossy screens are terrible. (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574245)

You can just not use the touchpad. The real problem is the disappearance of matte screens. I hate glossy.

Seconded. Surely the gloss camp always says how glossy makes the colors come out better, but you can get good color with matte too, if you want.

I want a touch monitor... (5, Funny)

crow (16139) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573939)

I want a touch monitor on my desktop at work. I want to program the computer to play a loud "stop touching me" every time one of my cow orkers touches it. Maybe I can finally stop having fingerprints all over my screen.

Re:I want a touch monitor... (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574105)

now that is *the* killer app for all monitors, bring on touch-enabled screens!

Re:I want a touch monitor... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574115)

I want to hug you.

Re:I want a touch monitor... (1)

sidthegeek (626567) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574149)

Stop hugging me!

Re:I want a touch monitor... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574325)

Funny, I'm that guy that touches everybody's monitor in our office. I was thinking it would be really annoying because when I touch it to show what I'm talking about it would mess with the focus.

Re:I want a touch monitor... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574345)

http://inception.davepedu.com/

I don't care. (1)

magic maverick (2615475) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573943)

I really don't care. I recently bought a new laptop (my previous one had lasted almost six years) and I deliberately bought one with a touchscreen. More than that though, it's a Lenovo X230 tablet, so the screen can rotate and become a tablet. It's a Wacom screen, and comes with a pen (touching it with your filthy dirty fingers will achieve nothing in the way of interaction with the OS).

My new laptop is good. Most of the time it works as a laptop, but sometimes I whip out the pen and use it for pointing. Sometimes I use it for drawing. It's great for drawing. Sometimes I use it for writing (kanji practice, diary, whatever). I wouldn't trade my touchscreen for a non-touchscreen. I'm happy to suggest that you investigate a pen-based touchscreen for yourself. I have no comment on finger-based screens, and would probably suggest they aren't worth it (lack of finesse).

But that new laptops come with touchscreens? I don't care. I am planning on using my current laptop for the next six years or more. Next time it comes to buy a laptop, I'll buy one with a touchscreen.

Re:I don't care. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574031)

More than that though, it's a Lenovo X230 tablet, so the screen can rotate and become a tablet. It's a Wacom screen, and comes with a pen (touching it with your filthy dirty fingers will achieve nothing in the way of interaction with the OS).

You know, these days they have tablets with both wacom and multitouch. If you bring the stylus near (while it is not in the holder, of course) then the touch is disabled. This is about twice as enjoyable to use as a stylus alone IMO. Touch is great, touch-only is bad.

What do people really want? (1)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573949)

Intel seems fixated on the idea that users want some sort of convergence device that combines a tablet with a traditional PC. They see the iPad's sales numbers and think: "If only it had a keyboard and ran a PC OS..."

Adding a touch screen to an ultrabook doesn't address the fundamental flaw in such an approach: users interact differently with touch screen devices than PCs. Slapping a touchscreen on top of an OS that isn't really geared to the way users interact with a tablet device won't address that; all you wind up with is a device that does many things poorly, For example:

You wind up with a UI designed for keyboard and mouse; with programs that primarily rely on a keyboard for input. Sure you can navigate with a touchscreen but will still be forced back to a keyboard for most work unless software developers add in touch input capability beyond just an onscreen keyboard. Without that, you have a big touchpad that needs a keyboard anyway.

Screen resolution is more important on a tablet than a PC. The iPad's Retina display makes it really good as a reader; to do a similar display on a PC quickly drives up the cost. So you wind up with a cost vs quality issue; making the tablet part less compelling.

Portability suffers as well. Tablets are nice because of their size; which makes them ideal for casual reading, email, watching video or web browsing. You can easily carry an iPad around all day where a PC quickly gets cumbersome.

Along with portability is battery life. Most tablets have really good battery life relative to PCs. A tablet that goes dead twice as fast as those on the current market is not very compelling; or you have to add expensive batteries to get reasonable useful run times which drives of cost. Alternatively; you could add big batteries but that then hits the portability issue.

Is convergence possible? Sure, and I think it will happen but it will be driven by software, not hardware. Once the software delivers an experience that lets people use a PC less and less the transition will occur. At that point, however, your less likely to see a laptop with a touch screen than a tablet that has a wireless external keyboard / trackpad for times when a finger on screen just won't cut it.

Re:What do people really want? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574081)

Intel seems fixated on the idea that users want some sort of convergence device that combines a tablet with a traditional PC. They see the iPad's sales numbers and think: "If only it had a keyboard and ran a PC OS..."

Intel is not the only one. That has been a dream of some users since time immemorial. The problems as I see them are twofold. One, intel processors with cojones are power-hungry heat monsters. There exist very powerful and functional convertible tablet PCs, but they are fat and ugly. There are sleek and slim tablet PCs, but they are weak and powerless. Two, PC operating systems are crap for tablets so far. OSX had to be changed so much as to be virtually unrecognizable, ditto Linux, and Windows still stinks on a tablet no matter what you do to it and it always has — and keep in mind I've actually used tablet PCs of every generation starting with the GRiDPad 1910 on which you couldn't even run GUI Windows that I know of. (It's got a V20, minimum configuration is a 286...)

Once the software delivers an experience that lets people use a PC less and less the transition will occur. At that point, however, your less likely to see a laptop with a touch screen than a tablet that has a wireless external keyboard / trackpad for times when a finger on screen just won't cut it.

This does seem to be the most logical form factor. If only EEE Slate PCs had a decent CPU, I would probably have this already.

WATCH some Intel PC Commercials (5, Interesting)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574185)

WATCH TV Commercials, it is how the designer envisions their products to be used. Take cars. Have you seen a single car ad where the advertised car is in a traffic jam? No? Then that car SUCKS at it. Isn't shown in a crowded city with LOADS of other cars, cyclists and pedestrians leaping out of the way for the advertised car? Then it SUCKS at city driving. Doesn't talk about safety or road handling (as in sticking to the road as opposed to speeding) then said car will kill you.

Now look at Intel and even MS commercials for how they see their new products being used. Windows 8 is ALL about media CONSUMPTION, Intel is all about meetings, light choices, consumption, trivial work flows. That is how they envision their computers being used, not for just sitting down for 8 hours and getting some boring but necessary work done.

http://oldcomputers.net/oldads/old-computer-ads.html shows you how old ads pointed at the business applications of a PC, what it could do for your business. Look at modern PC ads... where is the productivity?

Well, it is there... if you world is like the world of "Friends" where a dozen white people spend about 5 second a day at work yet can afford spacious apartments in the heart of Manhattan, then the Intel/Windows ads reflect your work flow. Nice for you. The rest of us sit behind a computer screen, hopefully a big one and enter data all day long. Doesn't matter if that is actual data, code or image designs, we have to do a LOT of it to pay our bills. And then holding your hands up in the air HURTS. Not inconvenient, not different, not going against muscle memory, actually fucking bloody HURT.

Try it right now, READ JUST this story, holding your arms in front of you. If you manage it for longer then 5 minutes, you qualify for the navy seals. And that is not entirely a joke, part of military training is pain exercises like holding your arms up for a long time, they tend to add weights because it looks though but just holding your arms stretched for long enough hurts.

The reason Windows/Intel want you to work this way is because their marketeers LOVE the idea that using a computer is about making a few choices "that picture, that point on the presentation" and the rest is thinking sitting around work. It is NOT, Star Trek STILL isn't real, using a computer for most of us is barely different from sitting at an assembly line putting components in place. Just think about it, just typing this post is just sitting and hitting keys in the right order. Where do I need to touch the screen? What part of this work flow is improved by having a touch screen? Having to raise my hand to hit the preview button?

If you screen setup is right, the preview button is JUST under eye-height because the line you are typing on should be at eye height so you don't have to bend your head down. That means you have to lift you hand 20 centimeters on my setup. That is NOT convenient.

If you are thinking of buying a touchscreen, take your existing PC/laptop and just pretend but NOT for 5 minutes, for a month, day in day out, every working hour.

If you then still think it is a good idea, go ahead.

Want more proof? The Wii. Sold massively, then failed on selling games because hard core gamers do NOT want to swing their hands around for hours at end. It WORKS for casual use. Is your PC use casual? No? Then get a Wii Gamepad Pro and leave the touchscreens to the TV world were you can earn a living without ever going to work.

Nope Nope Nope (4, Interesting)

gelfling (6534) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573957)

My company would rather go to Lenovo or Toshiba and pay them more for custom built machines that have stripped down functionality to give to the drones than hand out laptops that could be perceived as having features that directors and executives have. Like the 'pilot project' we're running for iPads for higher middle managers and executives while Corporate has ALREADY announced that iPads don't meet Corporate security standards.

Re:Nope Nope Nope (2)

vlm (69642) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574019)

could be perceived as having features that directors and executives have

Not having touch means much better picture quality and longer battery life... I could see the drones getting sore elbows from using the touch screen and having to stare at greasy fingerprints and shorter battery life, while the execs get a superior non-touch screen experience.

One killer feature touch phones have that touch monitors and touch laptops have is I rub my phone on my belly before using it to wipe off the top layer of grease. This scales up to tablet size. Not gonna work on a laptop / monitor or a big screen TV.

Re:Nope Nope Nope (1)

gelfling (6534) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574129)

To say nothing of the obligatory shrieking from CNN with a story about how touch screens are going to kill your baby with contact germs and chemicals. You know that's happening.

Re:Nope Nope Nope (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574207)

Not having touch means much better picture quality and longer battery life...

What the hell are you talking about, and also, what the hell are you talking about? Digitizers draw very little power, and they interfere with image quality very little, if the difference is even perceptible.

Re:Nope Nope Nope (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574299)

Every touchscreen laptop I've seen has a shiny screen (which I won't buy), as well as a "rippled" surface. I want a non-shiny and flat screen.

I just bought a new non-touchscreen, non-shiny and non-rippled screen laptop, in part to get one while this was still an available option. And, since Win8 is pretty much unusable without the shiny, rippled touchscreen, I wiped it and installed Win7 on the computer.

I won't run a newer version of Windows unless Microsoft provides a reasonable way to disable "the interface formerly known as Metro". If they won't do that, then I'll run Win7 and/or Linux.

You do whatever you want.

To be precise: touchscreens that respond (1)

cellocgw (617879) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573981)

I can't count how many of my business coworkers stick their grubbies right onto the LCD display to point out some word or graphical feature. Why they do this I can't figure (they forgot there's a mouse?), but if new machines all have touch-response, they're going to be in for a bit of a surprise :-)

Re:To be precise: touchscreens that respond (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574203)

Is it a liquid crystal LCD display?

This also means no more matte screens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42573993)

There's nothing I hate more than glossy screens, they make a device completely unusable for me, and unfortunately touchscreens and matte displays don't seem to mix that well (and even if they buid them eventually, the fingerprints will probably be very bad).

It's all about (5, Interesting)

overshoot (39700) | about a year and a half ago | (#42573997)

Keeping up the price of the final product. If the production cost gets to the point where it's totally dominated by the CPU and operating system, the competitive advantage for ARM or other processors running Linux becomes compelling. Therefore, load up the basic system with enough other high-cost features to hide the "Microsoft tax" and "Intel tax."

Those of us who remember netbooks will recognize the intended series of events.

Screen Resolution (2)

yurik (160101) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574023)

The reasoning on Intel's part seems to be that unless the laptop gains as much usability and "coolness" factor as the recent tablets have, Intel will be looking at a considerable laptop market shrinkage. And since Intel is by far better positioned in the laptop as oppose to tablet market, it is as critical for them as it is for Microsoft.

On the other hand, what Intel seems to be missing is that the screen resolution also plays a significant role in user's device appreciation. Microsoft does not seem to have as much say about this (strangely), but Intel could have added minimum resolution to the list of their requirements.

As long as... (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574101)

... i can install linux on it and all hardware is supported by it (and not just one distribution, there are several touch optimized linux distributions/desktops that could be more fitting for you for that devices). Booting also android could be good too

... I can use (better yet, they have it installed) other pointing devices so i can choose when use the touchscreen

... could be turned into mostly a tablet for consumption only tasks

If only runs windows 8 are good but expensive paperweights for most uses.

These aren't new (1)

Paul Slocum (598127) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574137)

We've had Panasonic Toughbooks at my job for years with touch screens. We never used the touch screens much when working in the office, but the it's often very useful when you're out in the field or at some place other than your desk.

Touch + Windows 8 = OS doesn't suck that badly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574225)

I picked up a Windows 8 touch Samsung notebook. Very nice design. When I did this, Windows 8 was no longer the OS I disliked - quite the opposite. Many common things that I used to have to do, (like adjust network settings) were such a chore with the mouse or keyboard. With touch and the relatively well thought streamlining of the OS, I get right to where I want to be very quickly with little effort. Some folks say that your arms will get sore with stretching them out over the keyboard, however that is for prolonged periods of time on touch centric/only apps. For any applications that are completely touch driven, that is where you would use a tablet machine. There are several notebook/tablet combo computers available now too - I haven't done my homework on that too much. I just use a tablet at home mostly (when I'm lazy), a desktop at the office and on the road or at a customers, the touch notebook.

I remember many times in the office (for years and years) we'd always joke and start touching our LCD displays (on desktops) for simple things, and as absurd as it was (knowing touch wasn't commonly possible on the workstation we were using) everyone seems to agree that it would be helpful the odd time to have some form of direct touch interface to the computer. Much like voice recognition: I remember in the 90's, all you would ever hear is how we would be talking to our computers, well, seems we will be touching them a lot more before we talk to them - more accurate, less frustrating when the recognition software gets it wrong.

Try it - you won't hate Windows 8 as much - and I hate to say this, but touch on the notebook is kinda fun to use. Reminds me of when the mouse got real popular. Touch does get the screen all full of finger prints, but while the screen is energized, you don't really see it anyway.

It's actually kinda handy. (1)

Zawahiri (963352) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574241)

Back in the Vista days, I used a convertible HP tablet with a capacitive screen until the heat sink on the GPU broke loose and the entire machine roasted itself to death. But shoddy construction aside, I discovered during the time I owned it that having a touchscreen was occasionally useful as an auxiliary control device. I'd even pay a little extra for the feature as long as it didn't reduce the image quality of the screen as this HP did (because of the extra layer required).

Do I want to be forced to use a touch screen because some myopic corporate jackass found his new shiny rock ? Hell no. But sometimes it is useful for pushing submit buttons or for selecting icons and stuff.

Old joke (1)

rush,overlord,rush! (1995452) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574251)

"I have upgraded my computer's OS to Windows 8, why didn't my monitor become touch-screen?"

Because of ergonomic guidlines... (3, Insightful)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574269)

touchscreens may be literally out of reach.

So because Windows 8 is a failing mess... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42574271)

... we now have to pay more for higher priced laptops because Microsoft worked out a deal with Intel to save them? Sounds like there's now a market for Superbooks or Extremebooks, thin laptops that exclude touch and save consumers money.

Like it or not (4, Interesting)

markdavis (642305) | about a year and a half ago | (#42574291)

>"Your next laptop will likely be touch, whether you like it or not."

So all laptop/notebook/netbook/ultrabook/whatever-name-is-in-vogue models will:

1) Be more expensive
2) Be considerably heavier (glass is not light)
3) Be more fragile
4) Have lots of screen glare (yep- glass)
5) Have something else that can malfunction
6) Have a larger bezel (which is more wasted space)

Because that is what you get with touchscreen technology right now. Thanks again, Microsoft/Intel, for "leading the industry" because choice is a bad thing.

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