A recent patent by Microsoft reveals a new feature that could make its way into Windows 8. The patent calls it Direct Experience, and it basically speeds up the execution of media, and maybe other data, in the operating system.
This is done by circumventing some of the necessary steps to play media. In Windows 7 for instance, a user would have to start the computer, or resume from standby, login, wait until the desktop loads, before the appropriate application can be launched to play the media files.
Direct Experience checks for media to play before login. If media is found it can automatically launch a maximized media player and start playback mode.
Fig. 4 shows the user experience. The direct experience application needs to be loaded with the press of the button, but it may also be initiated by inserting media like USB devices into the computer.
The patent goes into further detail, and can be viewed in full here.
Described is a technology by which a computer system operates in a mode that is different from a general purpose operating mode, upon detection of a special actuation mechanism coupled to the computing device. For example, actuation of a special hardware button may boot or resume a sleeping computer system into a direct experience upon actuation, including by launching a special program corresponding to that button. The computer system may thus enter a mode in which it mimics a special purpose device such as a consumer electronics device, e.g., a dedicated media player. When in a direct experience, the computer system may also operate in a constrained/sandboxed mode in which operating system limits available functionality to less than what is available when running as a general purpose computer system, e.g., keyboard operation and/or file access may be limited. Different actuation mechanisms may correspond to different modes.
A feature like Direct Experience would be especially beneficial in mobile computing, considering that the devices might need less battery power to operate in Direct Experience mode. It also adds to the usability of the device, considering that it will speed up media playback considerably.
What’s your take on this? Would you like to see this in Windows 8? Let us know in the comments. (via Being Manan)