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Microsoft shows off Surface Dial control possibilities in 5 videos

by Mark Tyson on 8 November 2016, 15:31

Tags: Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qadawf

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Microsoft launched the newest member of its Surface family, the Surface Studio AiO, late last month. Alongside the impressive large screened AiO PC Microsoft showcased an intriguing input peripheral, the Surface Dial. We only got a few glimpses of the possibilities the Surface Dial presented but yesterday Microsoft uploaded a quintet of YouTube videos to give us a more in-depth app-specific rundown of what the Surface Dial is capable of.

Adjusting an angle in a construction drawing

In the videos below you will see various apps, covering graphic arts, illustration in 2D and 3D, document editing, engineering and architectural design, and even writing and editing musical compositions.

Throughout the videos you can see how natural, intuitive, yet process accelerating the Surface Dial can be. Don't forget that it will be useful beyond these specialist apps with its radial menus and adjustments (on or off screen) useful in the upcoming Windows 10 Creators Edition OS. Furthermore, standard Office programs like Word, PowerPoint and OneNote, plus Windows Maps, Microsoft Photos, Paint, Groove Music and Spotify will make use of the Surface Dial, if you have one.

Microsoft has published a new overview video too, Windows App Partners speak about producing for the Surface Studio and Surface Dial here.



HEXUS Forums :: 5 Comments

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A lot of people will ignore this product only to return, after Apple releases their version, to proclaim that it's amazing and that everything has changed. :)
excalibur1814
A lot of people will ignore this product only to return, after Apple releases their version, to proclaim that it's amazing and that everything has changed. :)
Not so sure about that now… the amount of ‘professional creatives’, they're the ones that normally swear by using apple over windows, actually complaining about Apples recent laptop releases is higher than I've ever seen before. There are some actually saying they're likely to buy microsoft surface machines instead….

As to the videos….
1 - so it's basically an expensive mouse scroll wheel in that app.
2 - a protractor where you likely have to pick up and place it several times because of the size of the puck. Pretty sure most apps will be able to do those angles a lot easier.
3 - mental canvas looks pretty cool (3D/parallax) but doesn't the pen have pressure sensitivity so why do you need to adjust line thickness with the dial…thats what my wacom can do in photoshop.
4 - I'm sure my old nulooq did most of that, my 3dconnexion might too actually.
5 - I can see a use with the music side of things.
Know quite a few hardcore Apple guys/designers who are pretty stoked about the Surface Pro and the potential of the dial in general.

I mean for me, general day to day use it seems utterly pointless. But I'm not their target audience.

I wonder if we might finally see Microsoft's stuff becoming the “cool” hardware to have compared to Apple who are just stagnating?
LSG501
excalibur1814
A lot of people will ignore this product only to return, after Apple releases their version, to proclaim that it's amazing and that everything has changed. :)
Not so sure about that now… the amount of ‘professional creatives’, they're the ones that normally swear by using apple over windows, actually complaining about Apples recent laptop releases is higher than I've ever seen before. There are some actually saying they're likely to buy microsoft surface machines instead….

As to the videos….
1 - so it's basically an expensive mouse scroll wheel in that app.
2 - a protractor where you likely have to pick up and place it several times because of the size of the puck. Pretty sure most apps will be able to do those angles a lot easier.
3 - mental canvas looks pretty cool (3D/parallax) but doesn't the pen have pressure sensitivity so why do you need to adjust line thickness with the dial…thats what my wacom can do in photoshop.
4 - I'm sure my old nulooq did most of that, my 3dconnexion might too actually.
5 - I can see a use with the music side of things.

I'm one of those designers, back in Jobs' days I was almost a die hard apple follower. Even then there where signs that apple is leaving the pro space for a more consumer oriented target group (discontinuation of xserve and stagnation in macpro) but after the passing of Jobs, Apple went full on with the mainstream market.

They removed the workhorse macbook pro 17“ (the only one with matte screen option)
The new macpro was not a real workstation (what workstation don't have at least 4 HDD bays for your extensive content needs?)
Discontinuation of apple cinema display.
The pro applications from apple did a U turn to simplicity, leaving many tools that only pros cared about.
The OSX, the once faithful battler that served you without interrupting your workflow with nonsense system messages was first stagnant and then started changing to what windows used to be, the stupid system that was bugging you all the time with things that you don't care about, stealing your focus from what you do… and making it very heavy on hardware requirements (installed OSX 10.8 again in my macbook 6.1 and everything is blazing fast. With the latest OSX everything is on a ”oh god please kill me“ level of response, without really having any benefit over the older system)

The final blow now with the latest macbooks, removing functional keys that you usually pres while working without even looking at them (now you have to focus on that bar to see what you want), which can't work like the old Fn keys (you need to change track in spotify? you need to see spotify in the monitor too, so the bar change to spotify functionality.
Removing every USB that your costly equipment fit in and requiring you to have a lot of dongles with you (you can't even use your damn new iPhone 7 on it out of the box…)
And finally removing the sd card (whoever say you don't need it because you can move photos with wifi or the camera cable,you just have never moved over 300 shots in RAW format to feel how painfully slow is anything other than the sd card reader).

All of the above are a direct message to the creative community that kept apple alive before Jobs went back and save them. The message that ”we don't care about you, go play somewhere else".
Which it could be fine, if they didn't marketing all the time how much they care about the creative people and saying that they target their hardware and software at them.
Well ok my mother is a creative person too, she like to paint on the eggs every easter, maybe they focus on the casual creativity now, but still…

Anyway I had to say to someone all that, now I feel better :P

(for the story I have switched back in windows now and I see many creatives do the same or just stay with older apple hardware and software that still get their job done, fast, quite and efficiently).
The biggest problem with Microsoft in the past has been they have a great idea, sell it badly, discontinue investment of time and money improving it. With a lot of software they seem to make minor improvements only when a new OS appears, or with hardware often ditch it before the last one has run off the shelves because they sold too slowly. By the time people have gotten used to the idea its already gone.