Timeline

Arguably the biggest feature new feature for Windows 10 is one aimed squarely at productivity. Timeline is part of the Task view feature that was previously in Windows 10, and accessed in the same way, either by clicking the icon on the task bar, or pressing Win + Tab. The idea of Timeline is to make it very easy to get back into a task you were doing previously or find some information you know you had open in a browser.

Sorry for the poor screenshot but Timeline isn't working for me

By default, Timeline is only set to go back a single day, and apps will be sorted by hour. You can optionally enable it to go back 30 days as well, which seems like a more useful method to have as the default.

You can also adjust how Timeline works in the Privacy settings. When enabled, Timeline will sync activities from this PC, and also sync them to the cloud, so you can access documents and information across devices. But if you’d rather not have that data collected, you can disable the cloud sync, the local PC activity collection, or both.

Focus Assist

Another feature added with the April Update which focuses on keeping you focused is Focus Assist. After clamoring for notifications on the PC after seeing their benefit in mobile, it quickly became apparent that, while useful, notifications can also be a distraction.

In previous versions of Windows 10, Microsoft offers a Quiet Hours feature where you could set the PC to not provide notifications depending on the time, but with Focus Assist, that ability is expanded upon.

In addition to being able to schedule a time when notifications are muted, you can now change what level of notifications come through, with a custom priority list. You could in theory mute all notifications except those you want to see, which sounds fairly useful, or you could just set a time where you want to get some work done and only have alarms appear.

There’s also additional new automatic rules for notification action when duplicating a display, which will be very beneficial to avoid embarrassing notifications when using a projector, as well as when gaming.

Enabled by default is also a summary of notifications that were missed while focus assist was on, so if you were gaming, you’ll get a handy summary of everything that happened while you were having some fun, so you can get back to work.

This is of course still coupled with the notification settings where you can enable or disable notifications per-app.

Focus Assist is the kind of feature that Windows 10 needs. Notifications are great, but they can be distracting when you’re trying to get some work done. It would be great if Microsoft added some more settings here to allow you to create more automatic rules, such as when you have an app open, or additional time slots rather than just the single time you can enable it now.

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  • ChristopherFortineux - Friday, June 8, 2018 - link

    Product is End of Life. But the issue is 'Security Update for Microsoft Excel 2002 (KB2541003)' Reply
  • t.s - Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - link

    One feature that android (on and off) and linux have that windows and mac/ios doesn't have: dark theme/mode. It would be nice too, if ms edge have inverse color that chrome has (extensions). Reply
  • ChristopherFortineux - Friday, June 8, 2018 - link

    Windows 10 has a dark mode across the entire system. MacOS is currently about to implement a dark theme. Selecting Settings > Personalization > Colors, Then at the bottom select "Dark" under Choose your default App mode. As for enabling it within Explorer that will require changes to core files through other means. You can choose dark colors for title bars etc and save the theme under the Themes tab. Reply
  • tamalero - Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - link

    This patch is buggy as hell compared to the past ones for me. For example.. clicking on timeline/task view instantly crashes windows explorer. Closing all my windows. Reply
  • cm2187 - Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - link

    Is the start menu working now or is it one of these “hard computer science problems”? Reply
  • sadsteve - Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - link

    Updated 9 desktops and 2 laptops with only one problem. My AnyDesk connection to my headless SageTV server no longer works properly. It connects and just sits there waiting for the screen to update. I have to plug a monitor into the server to get it to function. I've ordered a monitor emulator to fix the issue. Reply
  • Icehawk - Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - link

    Ugh. RDP was changed in this update and now it’s a UWP app :( yay it doesn’t work. Thankfully the old RDP is still available if you search for it.

    MS for the love of god stop with the UWP crap in the OS, it looks like garbage and have half the functionality of the original ones we all know and have been using for ages. Settings can go eat a donkey dick
    Reply
  • ChristopherFortineux - Friday, June 8, 2018 - link

    Everything will be built into new menus and functions. You are not going to change this choice. Maybe, change platforms. Reply
  • croc - Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - link

    I think I am beginning to see a pattern here... Fall updates for lots of new goodies, Spring updates to clean up the mess and maybe add a gadget or two. Reply
  • ChristopherFortineux - Friday, June 8, 2018 - link

    Process of evolving an OS. Build up features. Fix issues and resolve any messes that occur. Continue design directives. Reply

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