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Last week I picked up the ModernMix app from Stardock, it is a tool that allows the “modern” windows apps to be displayed in a window on the desktop. It works very simply once it is installed, start any modern app and when you want to take it to the desktop, press F-10; you will switch to the desktop and the app will now be in a window. Hit F-10 again and back to full screen you go. There is also a “boxes” icon displayed in the upper right corner that you can use to switch modes or exit the app.

 

ModernMix also remembers the last mode that the app was in and the next time you launch it ModernMix will display the app in that mode. So if you want to always use the kindle app on the desktop you don’t need to do anything more than just start the app and it will be displayed on the desktop.

 

Some people might be wondering why you would want to use a modern app on the desktop, I’ll give you my reasoning. I still use the desktop a lot, with my software development tools, and it’s nice that I can have Evernote or a downloaded reference book on the Nook app on the desktop at the same time as my programming tools. It keeps me from having to constantly switching from the desktop to a full screen app to reference something. It also keeps me from having to install both the modern app and the desktop version of an app on the same machine to get the same usefulness of having the modern app on the desktop.


I’ve tested Email, Nook, Kindle, Evernote Touch, One Note, the Video app and a few others and all of them worked without any problems on the desktop. The only modern apps that I had any problem with on the desktop are games. Probably from the way that games write to the screen. The games didn't break; you just couldn't see everything on the game screen.

 

I’m so impressed with this app I think Microsoft should buy the app from Stardock and roll it into Windows 8.2. Not that I think they actually will. For $5 this app is a no-brainer if you spend any significant time working on the desktop.

 

http://www.stardock.com/products/modernmix/

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