Don’t worry, this won’t be a post where I’m raving about the incapacities of an OS and unreasonably bash one company and praise the other. I only want to highlight three things that I am missing when I’m working with a Windows machine.
If Microsoft added the following three things to their own operating system, I could work more efficiently and would like working with it a bit more. Please note: this is a personal opinion, it is not a fact, you don’t need to like it. It is my opinion.
I need more space
One of the features I used the most at my previous employer (and that I’m still using at home) is Spaces. It allows me to have a sheer endless amount of windows open on my desktop, switching seamlessly between them by navigating to other Spaces (read: virtual desktops). I can use apps in full screen or have a few windows arranged on another screen, and all it takes is a press of Ctrl+→ or Ctrl+← to switch between them, or Ctrl+<Number> to instantly switch to a dedicated space. This makes window management a lot easier for me.
Bourne-again cmd (bacmd?)
One of the most used apps on my mac is the Terminal, housing the bash. I can quickly dispatch my git commands, edit a file with vim or browse my file system. It’s all super fast and efficient. If I don’t know the details of a command, I can just “man” it – even the bash itself. What I also like is the simplicity of installing new tools via MacPorts or other package managers. Powershell on Windows might be powerful (as its name suggests), but I just can’t get along with it. CygWin or MinGW aren’t surrogates either, as they only add on top of the operating system and don’t feel natural. Maybe this will change with the Ubuntu Shell in Windows 10.
I need your touch
The last feature is (or are) Multi-Touch gestures. On my macbook pro, I can use my touch pad to enter Mission Control, switch desktops, fan out the windows on my current desktop, pinch and rotate pictures, zoom in and zoom out on websites, etc. (at work, I used the magic mouse for that). Again, this – combined with Spaces – makes my window management much more effective and just feels natural to me.
Feel free to leave a comment about the features I mentioned or features that you miss and do not hesitate to disagree (in a polite manner). 😉