The artist's world

Discussion in 'The Tablet PC Life' started by Kumabjorn, Oct 12, 2015.

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  1. WillAdams

    WillAdams Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    The thing which really annoys me is people refusing to accept the fact that the two platforms are different, and that some people will have work styles or work flows on one which are more efficient than the other (though the Mac seems to mostly be a superset of Windows' behaviours, and it's rare for me to encounter a systemic issue which can't be addressed somehow).

    Here's my laundry list of things which I miss in Windows from Mac OS X:

    - Miller Column file browser (there are third-party options for this, but none of them have really clicked for me)
    - drag-drop into file dialog boxes (current work-around for this to Shift-right click on a file in Windows Explorer, use the Copy as Path menu option, then paste that into the dialog box and edit as needed)
    - pervasive PDF support
    - Applescript / Automator.app
    - Services
    - opensource programs w/ NeXT-roots such as Cenon and TeXshop.app
    - systemic support for rich fonts w/ large character sets
    - use of Control key for standard text editing shortcuts (control-t transpose characters, &c.) --- ability to remap all keys, including Caps Lock (so as to have Control next to the A key where it's supposed to be) --- unfortunately, laptops make this sort of key reassignment more difficult than it ought

    If anyone has real, meaningful solutions / alternative / improvements to the above, I'd be grateful.

    Examples of awkwardness using Windows:

    - select multiple .zip files in Windows Explorer and choose extract all --- only one will be unzipped
    - at the first line of text, but not the beginning --- press the up arrow --- nothing happens -- why not move to the beginning of the line? Why force using home to get there? Same thing at the last line, instead one has to switch to end.

    Lots more
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2015
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  2. IsaacKuo

    IsaacKuo Pen Pal - Newbie

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    The thing which really puzzles me is that Apple has never made a laptop with a Wacom sensor underneath the trackpad. MacBook trackpads have been large enough to theoretically fit a useful Wacom sensor, and many graphic professionals actually prefer a tablet sensor that isn't integrated with a display. That's good for a traditional laptop layout because touch/stylus on a wobbly vertical screen beyond the keyboard was always going to be a usability nightmare.

    But placing a Wacom sensor underneath the trackpad would be good for operating the stylus with one hand while operating keyboard controls with the other hand. It would be lappable and stable, and practically as quick to setup/stow as a traditional laptop.
     
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  3. WillAdams

    WillAdams Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    If were Apple, the change that I would make would be to have the trackpad be a removable unit, exactly the same size / shape as an iPod Touch / iPhone --- then have a mode where one slots a iPhone or iPod and uses that as the trackpad --- and allow developers to create customized graphical appearances / layouts when their app is foremost. Similarly, the storage on the machine would be used for the home directory / to log in the user associated w/ the device, and the device would be backed up to the laptop automatically.

    Agree a trackpad and active digitizer stylus would make sense.
     
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  4. darkmagistric

    darkmagistric Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    The idea of using the trackpad for that purpose isn't new.

    Ten1Design has had their inklet app out for a while now. Can't speak for its current build, but when I tried it a few years back I wasn't impressed.
    https://tenonedesign.com/inklet.php

    and who could forget the old w700 Lenovo put out a few years back. Technically not the trackpad, but a novel approach none the less. But I somehow doubt the graphic design community took any real notice of it w700.jpg
     
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  5. thatcomicsguy

    thatcomicsguy Pen Pro - Senior Member Senior Member

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    Ugh! I know, eh? That drives me crazy! And it's like that infrequent, sharp pain which lasts for not quite long enough to spur me to go looking for a solution, so it keeps on being an annoyance.

    The open-multiple-zip-files thing is also annoying, but it's instantly solvable by holding down a simple button, like Alt or Ctrl while double clicking on a group selection. -Which they don't tell you about. And which I've forgotten because it isn't made explicit.

    And that's the big problem with Windows. Many programs suffer from long learning curves hampered by uneven implementation of similar solutions. Once you've explored things, climbed the learning curve and mapped the shortcuts, they can be very snappy and very powerful, but it has been more than once that I've wanted to throw machines from windows. (Pun not intended.)

    Apple's effort to do away with that aspect contributes, I think, to the limiting of powerful options which arise from complexity and non-uniform perspectives on gui design. The best situation is where there's a good balance between the two approaches. I'm not sure it's entirely doable.
     
  6. WillAdams

    WillAdams Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    How is providing sensible defaults limiting? Please provide a concrete example of Apple providing a default which doesn’t make sense, and not having an advanced option which makes more.

    Why should I need a keypress to get a sensible behavior on a tablet which doesn’t usually have a keyboard attached?

    I’ve used Windows since Windows 2.11 — it constantly changes, but rarely improves in a meaningful fashion. That you can’t provide real solutions to any of my difficulties supports that point, no?
     
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  7. stoneseeker

    stoneseeker Animator and Art Director Senior Member

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    Really? Windows hasn't improved meaningfully since 2.11? Aren't we exaggerating a bit?

    The limiting factor of Apple is also their greatest asset, but it still is limiting. The walled garden approach to their hardware/software squashes diversity in favor of stability and control. I know your referring to OS functions, but you seem to be saying that macs don't create limits for their users throughout their pervasive ideology that less is more. If that was the case, these forums would look a lot different. We all come here because we are looking for something to fit our needs, needs that often mainstream computers can't meet.
    Windows indirectly creates diversity, creativity and options... and risk of course. Apple doesnt offer what i need in a machine, and that is a limiting factor. Windows certainly doesnt offer it by the OS alone either, but thanks to an OS like windows I can find a machine that caters to my specific needs... ie. A full OS tabletPC, something I doubt we'll ever see from Apple.
    I guess what I'm getting at is, even on an OS level, windows gives you more choice, something that macs prefer to avoid. Which ironically goes against their marketing of being the unique individual, creative, diverse, etc. The artist typically prefers more choice and responsability, which makes it ironic to me that apple has the rep of being the "artists computer".
     
  8. Kumabjorn

    Kumabjorn ***** is back Senior Member

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    But when you go on meets with other artists, what are they usually using for their art?

    Balbutio ergo sum
     
  9. YVerloc

    YVerloc Scribbler - Standard Member

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    PC. The idea that that Macs are for artists has never actually been true as far as I can tell. 20 years as a digital artist speaking. The only art related niches macs have ever dominated is graphic design and fashion photography, and even then only among those who went to college level school for those subjects. On the 90s Macs were way ahead on the desktop publishing side. So most of today's working graphic designers graduated in the 90s from college programs stocked with Mac based desktop publishing hardware. The rest of the entire field of 'computer graphics' (modeling, texturing, animating, rendering, special effects, compositing...), and digital art has always been dominated by PCs (especially since the death of SGI). The mac dominated niches are highly visible though. I just got back the Adobe MAX conference, and I'd guess that 80% of the attendees were graphic design folks and Mac users. That being said, I'll bet that 80% of the users of your typical digital art online forum (deviantart, for example) are PC based.
     
  10. WillAdams

    WillAdams Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    The context was that of interface.

    If it's so much better, why is it that the simple task of directing multiple applications to use a particular project directory has two straight-forward solutions in Mac OS X:

    - add the project directory to the Sidebar
    - leave the project directory open in the Finder, then drag-drop into the dialog box

    Your choice of single-click or drag-drop.

    By contrast in Windows, while one might be able to make use of Favorites, in some apps (roughly equivalent to Mac OS X's Sidebar), if that's not an option, then one falls back on the work-around which I mentioned:

    - find a suitable file in Windows Explorer
    - hold the shift key
    - right-click on it
    - choose copy as path from the resultant menu
    - get to the dialog box
    - put the text cursor in the filename dialog
    - paste

    Every project I work on at work in Windows, involves multiple applications, and often multiple files per application --- this sort of thing adds up, and really makes it hard to be reasonable or objective. Especially when much of Windows' diversity just proves out Sturgeon's Law.

    My apologies for the duplicate posts --- deleted.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
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