PMLogo Windows Without Windows
By: John Hollingsworth


Is there an alternative to square dialogs for managing data?

What if icons could be displayed in geometric patterns anywhere on the screen?

Why not use graphics to manage patterns of notes, bookmarks, files and data?


Traditional Lists, Tables, Hierarchies and Square Dialogs
Table
  
Hierarchy


Lists, tables hierarchical diagrams and square dialogs have been used to display data since the first computers in the 1940's. These forms of display are based on graphical bookkeeping methods going back to the beginning of written language. The first Macintosh and Windows interactive graphical interface computers first created in the 1980's simply allowed many square dialogs to be used at one time.

Linear displays are great for structured data that logically can be grouped in a list or table. Hierarchical displays are great for sets of data that all fits the structure of a single hierarchy. Dialogs are great when excess white space is not a problem and the user is doing just one task.

Unfortunately most real world data is not structured for us and people must deal with large amounts of data with complex or unknown Associations and missing data. Unstructured complex data rarely fits a list, table or hierarchy format without ignoring data or fabricating data that really did not exist, just to fit an existing square format.

Dialogs cover and waste space


Square dialogs waste most of the available screen space on computers and tablets. Square borders on dialogs imply containment and relationships between things which may not accurately reflect the complexity of the data. Square dialogs hide all other information behind the dialog in front.

Tables do not show Associations


Lists, tables and hierarchies do not have any easy way to visually represent Associations between things. Even if a database stores Association information, the Associations would be hidden and hard to manage.


Transparency
Transparent dialogs can be confusing


Apple, Google and Microsoft have all added some degree of transparency to square dialogs in their operating systems, but do not promote its use for building non-square applications. Square dialogs with transparent background and visible borders tend to be very confusing and resulted in few desktop applications using transparency.

Applications trying to use transparency have not been willing to literally "think outside the box". Unfortunately smart phones and most tablets do not support this type of application transparency.

Is this a better way?
  
To manage visual patterns than this?


We have all become so familiar with the current paradigm of square phones, tablets and dialogs that people have stopped demanding more from the companies who build graphical interface software and devices. Most people have been conditioned to the idea that digital information can only be provided in small amounts and computers can only do one thing at a time.


Visual Patterns
How to add to a pattern?


We often memorize topologically complex data using mental pictures. When we encounter new things that fit a known criteria, we add Objects to our mental picture of the existing data.

The human mind evolved complex visual pattern management abilities to handle the complex sets of Objects we see, hear, touch or imagine. By creating patterns on a computer screen that replicate our mental image of a complex asymmetric set data, we can use those subconscious pattern management abilities to interact with data patterns in a database.

Without the ability to easily store visual patterns of data, people have no other option than to memorize patterns in a world where the complexity and number of patterns grows every day.

To display multiple large complex unstructured interactive data geometries, we need a way to use "Windows without windows".

Interactive Views


Pattern Manager software creates "Views" on the desktop from data stored in a Pattern Database.

Views are semi-transparent geometric patterns of Objects that interact with desktop icons, folders and applications.

Views make better use of the available real estate on the screen than square windows.

Views can be drawn faster than the average human mind can retrieve a memorized memory pattern of the same data.

Each pattern you create in your database is one less pattern you need to memorize.


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