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Author Topic: "surface" app  (Read 2381 times)
John Camp
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« on: January 05, 2014, 11:29:53 AM »
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I tried to find a Luminous Landscape start page app for my Surface Pro 2 tablet, but couldn't find one. Most sites, even small ones, have them. Are you guys going to create one?
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Slobodan Blagojevic
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« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2014, 11:41:56 AM »
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Have you asked Microsoft? Given how many people use their tablets, I am sure they can provide a personalized customer service to each one of them Tongue Grin
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BJL
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« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2014, 12:54:36 PM »
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I tried to find a Luminous Landscape start page app for my Surface Pro 2 tablet, but couldn't find one. Most sites, even small ones, have them. Are you guys going to create one?
There is an App for reading LuLa on major "mobile" platforms: http://www.tapatalk.com but it does not cover Windows.

Why not just create a desktop shortcut to the website? That works better for me on my iPad than fiddling with a special app for each site; those apps usually deliver less content than the website. For me, "internet portal apps" are only useful on devices like phones, where the screens are so small that websites laid out for traditional computer screen sizes are too cramped. Even then, providing a "mobile" version of the site (m.luminous-landscape.com ?) seems a better solution these days, with the enhanced capabilities of HTML5.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2014, 01:00:22 PM by BJL » Logged
Hans Kruse
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« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2014, 01:44:29 PM »
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On my iPad I use Coast http://coastbyopera.com/, which has a nice way of handling tabs as icons on the start (top) screen and in this way it is fast and easy to go to many different websites that you regularly will peruse. It does not run on Android, but Chrome is good for handling tabs so keep one tab for LuLa always and you are there quickly.
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John Camp
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« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2014, 06:55:56 PM »
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Have you asked Microsoft? Given how many people use their tablets, I am sure they can provide a personalized customer service to each one of them Tongue Grin

Microsoft tablets are not exactly tablets, in the sense that the iPad is -- mine runs the full Windows Office suite, plus anything else Windows can run, which is still about 93% of the computer market...including, of course, Lightroom and Photoshop. It has 256G of memory and 8g of Ram, and 200G of cloud space free for two years, should I need it. It also has a decent keyboard and is lighter than a Mac Air. So it's not exactly an iPad, which is more like a large telephone without the phone (I've had two. I now get along with just the iPhone.) And no browser tab is easier that access through an app. You simply turn the Surface on and tap the app with your finger, and the site pops up. The Online Photogapher has two available apps that do this...

But that's not what I was asking. I was wondering if there's an Lula app; since I can't seem to get an answer, I guess the answer is 'no.'
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BJL
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« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2014, 11:42:01 AM »
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I was wondering if there's an Lula app; since I can't seem to get an answer, I guess the answer is 'no.'
Actually, I did give the answer, sort of: the closest thing to a dedicated LuLa app is Tapatalk, which however does not support any "desktop OS" such as the Windows 8 of your Surface 2 Pro.

By the way, what do you mean by this:
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… start page app for my Surface Pro 2 tablet ... Most sites, even small ones, have them.
Are there sites with dedicated Windows apps for reading them, as opposed to using a web browser?  Or are you expecting your Windows 8 device to have mobile app support akin to what iOS, Android and Windows Phone devices have?

While celebrating the array of software that can run on your "Windows laptop with a touchscreen but no keyboard or track pad" you might take this opportunity to realize that when it comes to "mobile software", designed to work well on a device with no keyboard or trackpad, the Surface product line is for now severely lacking. This is why many of us view it as suffering from a hardware/software mismatch.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2014, 11:43:37 AM by BJL » Logged
John Camp
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« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2014, 12:46:02 PM »
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BJL,

I don't know if you've looked at the Surface. Basically, you turn it on, and you get an opening page like on a telephone, with a lot of small boxes (of varying size) on it. These represent simple underlying apps that will take you directly to wherever you want to do -- Word, Excel, note-taking programs, National Weather Service, or specific websites. So, you turn it on, tap "TOP," and The Online Photographer" opens up. There is apparently no such app for LuLa. With these apps, you don't have to open up anything else, or go anywhere to do anything, you just touch the app, which can be downloaded from the Microsoft app store. The specific website apps are free. Google has about seven of them.

When I want to go to Lula, it's not a great hassle -- I go to the search bar and type in lumin or some such, and as soon as I start typing the Surface looks for previous searches for the same name, and "Luminous Landscape" pops up. I touch that and I'm good...but an app would be nice.

are you expecting your Windows 8 device to have mobile app support akin to what iOS, Android and Windows Phone devices have? While celebrating the array of software that can run on your "Windows laptop with a touchscreen but no keyboard or track pad" you might take this opportunity to realize that when it comes to "mobile software", designed to work well on a device with no keyboard or trackpad, the Surface product line is for now severely lacking. This is why many of us view it as suffering from a hardware/software mismatch.

I'm not really here to defend Surface. I bought one, which serves my needs, but maybe not yours. But yeah, I do expect it to work like IOS, Android and Windows phones, at times, and it does. (If I understand your question.) I really don't need a million apps -- nobody does -- but it gives me everything that I have on my iPhone except a phone connection, which I no longer need, because my iPhone is good enough for that. It has an optional keyboard that's about as good as what you get on a laptop (I'm a professional writer, and I can type on anything) and quite a good trackpad. I'll add that I personally own two iMacs, a Mac Pro, and a Mac Air and an iPhone, which are my main working machines, so it's not like I'm a Windows fanboy. I just find that the Surface is a useful machine, seemingly (at this point) more capable than either iPads or Mac Airs (heavier than an iPad, lighter than a Mac Air) and I'll probably use it to replace my Mac laptops while traveling; but I'm still experimenting with it.

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BJL
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« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2014, 02:21:46 PM »
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So, you turn it on, tap "TOP," and The Online Photographer" opens up. There is apparently no such app for LuLa.
I am still struggling to see why it is worth the creation and downloading of an entire app for each website, rather than just creating a shortcut to the website on the home page. Can't Windows 8 do that? (If indeed some websites are going to the effort of creating Windows 8 apps just to simulate home page shortcuts, maybe it cannot.) [UPDATE: PierreVandevenne has shown that it is possible.] And after your rehashing of the clichéd trash-talk that "an iPad ... is more like a large telephone without the phone", I will not resist the temptation to point out that iOS can achieve what you want via the "Add to Home Screen" option in Safari, and I am fairly sure that Android can too.

I'm not really here to defend Surface.
And I am not here to criticize it as a laptop alternative with some partial "tablet" functionality as a bonus, or as suitable for your needs. But you invite unfavorable comparisons by your claims of its superiority over the iPad in your second and third posts of this thread --- which you must admit is ironical when you asking for help with a problem that the iPad and Android tablets do not have.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2014, 04:35:57 PM by BJL » Logged
PierreVandevenne
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« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2014, 02:35:11 PM »
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Wouldn't the generic Windows 8 method work?

http://howto.cnet.com/8301-11310_39-57550849-285/how-to-pin-web-sites-to-the-windows-8-start-screen/
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OldRoy
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« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2014, 03:14:38 PM »
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Never mind the missing LL app, what about the bl00dy firmware? Multitudes of Surface Pro 2's (I have the 128 GB version) are currently deranged on account of a severely faulty December "update". In my case the update didn't update but left me with a looped process that required strongarm tactics to escape from. The system restore function in Win 8 version also gave me some headaches.
Win 8 is OK, basically. If you're going to have an OS which can be used on everything it's going to be something like this. Don't mention Apple; as an Apple enthusiast in the 80s I now detest everything about the company. But many Surface 2 users are currently experiencing a range of serious malfunctions such as severely reduced battery performance.

At present I'm not installing any updates until I hear that there is a global fix for the mess MS have created. Too many symptoms to list here but for anyone interested, take a look at the MS forum for the device http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/forum/surfpro2-surfupdate/system-firmware-update-121013-fails-to-install/b2163f4b-9019-4508-a931-45c44fbbeb9c

Of course it doesn't help that it seems no longer possible to check the patches by looking at the MS knowledge base before installing them. You can however check after installation - assuming the updates haven't broken the device. If anyone knows how to get round this I'd be interested to hear it.
Roy
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BrianWJH
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« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2014, 04:28:43 PM »
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Of course it doesn't help that it seems no longer possible to check the patches by looking at the MS knowledge base before installing them. You can however check after installation - assuming the updates haven't broken the device. If anyone knows how to get round this I'd be interested to hear it.
Roy

Roy, there is an Update History page that shows what each update contains and like all o/s platform updates these days the update points are rather vague in terms of actual technical content and more aimed at non-technical consumers which is the major market for these devices.

Brian.
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John Camp
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« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2014, 06:02:53 PM »
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Roy,

I don't actually blame the tablet for Microsoft's firmware screw-up -- it's something that has happened on all computers, including both Macs and Windows machines. But: the current information is that the fix will be released on Jan. 14.

BJL,

Perhaps I'm using the wrong term when I say "app," although that's what they're called in the Surface literature. These *are* shortcuts. That's all. Instead of being in the bookmarks bar in Chrome or Safari, they're on the opening page; instead of clicking on them, you touch them, just like you do with an iPhone or an iPad. And I'm not dissing the iPads in any way, I just gave one to a grandson for Christmas. They just don't do what I want. I want a hybrid machine that I can travel with and use as a laptop and that provides the word processing software that I use (Word) and the photo processing software (Lightroom and Photoshop) and that I can turn sideways and use as a book reader, like a Kindle. That's all I'm saying. If you prefer the iPad, god bless you and I hope you enjoy it.

Pierre,

Yeah, that'll work, I do that with a Windows 8 laptop, but I'm lazy and was wondering if there's a download. If not, I'll do a generic. I just think it would be kind of good for Lula if the site provided an nice-looking app.
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Farmer
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« Reply #12 on: January 06, 2014, 07:29:45 PM »
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It's a marketing opportunity.  Some sites take advantage of it.  With a couple of clicks, those with no computer literacy or with developer level (and everything in between) can add a customised shortcut for quick, easy access.  Often, it will be to a mobile or tablet-specific option to enhance viewing.  It's a great idea.

Yes, you can do numerous similar things across all platforms from "add to home screen" to "pin" to "add shortcut" etc etc.  John's request was simple, reasonable and useful which is to say quite different from a number of the responses to date.

LuLa would possibly benefit, possibly not, but the effort involved in creating and providing it is fairly minimal and provides an additional opportunity for people to discover the site (if they're in the marketplace/app store/etc and search on photography (and related) it would come up, even if they're not looking specifically for the site).

(and before anyone gets their knickers in a knot, I use Windows, OS X, Android and iOS regularly and whilst I have preferences they are not vendor-based)
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Slobodan Blagojevic
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« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2014, 09:19:21 PM »
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In the time it took to debate the issue, someone could have gotten a software-engineer degree and do it themselves Wink

#firstworldproblems
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Slobodan

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« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2014, 09:27:34 PM »
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haha - true :-)
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Pete Berry
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« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2014, 09:55:45 PM »
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John, maybe I've misinterpreted what you're saying, but it's hard to believe that there's no simple way to create a home screen  or favorites page "shortcut" - or equivalent - on your Surface.

My 10" Asus Android tablet easily creates bookmarks, which can be, among other things, saved on the bookmarks page, the whole page saved for offline reading, or, most conveniently, saved to the home screen for online opening with a touch. It works just as quickly from my tablet home screen as opening a "favorites" link on my Win7 desktop.

Pete
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OldRoy
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« Reply #16 on: January 07, 2014, 05:47:52 AM »
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Roy, there is an Update History page that shows what each update contains and like all o/s platform updates these days the update points are rather vague in terms of actual technical content and more aimed at non-technical consumers which is the major market for these devices.

Brian.
I'm well aware of this. Didn't I make my point clear? Up to now  you could always visit the KB site and see what the patches entailed before installing them.
Now I'm in a situation  where I'd like to know, come the Big Fix, (said to be on Jan 14) exactly what's involved. This is a disgraceful mess given that the SP2 is  flagship product. I waited until its release on the assumption that v2 would be a fully debugged device. I'd strongly advise anyone contemplating buying one to wait a while until competitors have at least an equally, if not better, specified equivalent. It's basically quite a nice product but overpriced by far and you can buy a decent notebook plus a Samsung Galaxy tablet for the same price!
Whilst typing this (on mains power, as usual) the screen brightness has jumped up and down twice - something that happens unpredictably all the time. There are many other issues but I can't be @rsed to list them as someone's bound to deny that they exist.
Roy
Edit. Well, someone has exonerated the device itself on the "5h!t happens" basis.  Having been a constant user of MS os's since NT 3.5 I've seen a few screw-ups. But this as far as I can tell is quite precisely a screw-up applicable to the Surface Pro rather than a generic Win 8 screw-up since it appears to be connected with the firmware in this device. Buy something else!
« Last Edit: January 07, 2014, 05:52:19 AM by OldRoy » Logged
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