With Windows 7, the Start button would list a bunch of applications, for example, Word, Excel, Visual Studio. Then if I hovered over the application name a list of recently used files for that program would expand to the right of the name.
It was very useful - to get the application going with the file that you want, all in (almost) one click.
It seems there is no such equivalent in Windows 8 - I know I can get the Recent Places from the Explorer, but I still need to click a few times to get from "nowhere" to the file I want to open.
Have I missed something?