I love headlines like these.
Makes me laugh.
I love headlines like these.
I love headlines like these.
Makes me laugh.
It’s time we move beyond technical specifications when deciding on a tablet to buy.
While geeks will nit pick over memory slots, removable batteries, customizable configurations and “openess”, Joe and Jane average could give a rat’s ass. MG Siegler did a great piece on The Death of the Tech Spec back in November of 2011.
The everyday consumer wants to know if it’s enjoyable and easy to use. That’s it. Technical specifications are important, but they shouldn’t lead the conversation. Regular people don’t know the difference between capacitive or resistive touch screens. What’s important is how the screen responses to their touch.
So while product reviews at The Verge are extremely thorough and well presented, they miss the point. Especially their product comparison charts — like the one they did comparing the iPad (3) with the competition.
Now, as I mentioned, there’s valuable information in their comparisons, but it’s no way for the majority of non-geeks to make a buying decision.
It’s about as helpful as having a comparison chart for some of my favorite bands (click to enlarge):
Can you tell from the chart above which band is ‘the best’?
Does how loud a band is in concert help you decide whether to get their newest album?
Does how many chords they use per song tell you anything about great they are at composing music?
Docking points from tablet not having a removable battery is like docking points from a band for only having a drummer and a guitarist (like The White Stripes). Or giving more points to a band because their guitarist uses a bow to play their guitar (actually Page does get extra points for that).
The 1980’s and 1990’s were part of the Windows Era and during the Windows Era consumers did not choose their operating systems for two reasons. First, Microsoft had a monopoly on personal computers. Second, even even when there were options outside of using Windows, IT departments made the buying decisions, and usually choosing Windows made their lives easier even if the other options they had to choose from were designed better (although it’s likely there weren’t any other options to choose from).
Since the iPhone launched in 2007, the flow of influence continues to reverse more and more, putting consumers in control of what gets adopted in the workplace. Tell me many how many high profile executives you can now spot, dicking around on iPads during meetings? I’ve worked with some Fortune 500 companies and I’ve seen a lot. I’ve also seeing a lot of iPads in business class on planes (and just as many in couch, for that matter). It’s awesome because IT can’t tell the CEO of your company his iPad isn’t supported on their network. Fuck you, guy. It is now.
For the first time in their lives, regular people are realizing you can have fun using a personal computer. No Windows Explorer, no force-quits, no CRTL-ALT-DEL, no viruses, no security prompts. Using a computer can be fluid, seamless, fun. An experience.
Like listening to one of your favorite bands.
Adobe just released a new tool called Shadow, allowing you to have multiple mobile devices in-sync and ‘shadowing’ whatever you’re viewing in your desktop/laptop browser to ensure the integrity of your design across platforms.
If it’s as good as it looks in their video it could be a huge time saver for anyone involved in the quality assurance (QA) phase of projects.
From the NYTimes:
Already surrounded by machines that allow him, painstakingly, to communicate, the physicist Stephen Hawking last summer donned what looked like a rakish black headband that held a feather-light device the size of a small matchbox.
Called the iBrain, this simple-looking contraption is part of an experiment that aims to allow Dr. Hawking — long paralyzed by amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease — to communicate by merely thinking.
The future is now.
A new report is out on the top ten dying industries in the United States. There’s little that’s a surprise, but it is dismaying to see the list anyways. These are good industries that provided (and still do, in a couple cases) valuable services to the American people.
Among the lowlights on the list are #4, DVD, game, and video rental; and #6, recordable media manufacturing. This is one of those industries that has little real value left to it. Because information is now mostly weightless, there just is no space for an industry that relies on physical media as the lynchpin of their success. When these industries disappear, it won’t be necessary to shed a tear for them because the real product they dealt in, information, will still exist. The delivery method will have changed, that is all.
A couple of the industries that made the list do so purely from the effects of outsourcing. Shoe manufacturing, apparel manufacturing, hardware, all of these industries are hurting in the United States not because we can’t do them or because there is no longer a buck to be made. Rather, American businesses are taking advantage of the fact that the developing world has yet to have its workers’ rights movement, so wages are low. That’s it. No unions plus lax labor laws means that foreign workers are ripe for low pay and, in many cases, outright exploitation. There’s not much that can be done here in the states to reduce the outflow of manual labor to countries where it is cheaper. The burden, unfortunately, is mostly on the workers of those countries to fight for the rights that American workers did over a century ago.
It’s #2 on the list, newspaper publishing, that is a real downer. As I’ve written on this site before, newspapers are more important than their profitability. They don’t just move information from point A to point B. Newspapers are content generators, that put a lot of time and resources into getting the stories they publish right. Without newspapers, the idea of accountable government or business would be laughable. At their best, newspapers shine a light into the darkness. But with the coming of the internet, their profit model has been severely damaged, reducing the amount of resources they can commit to reporting. Former venerable institutions like the Philadelphia Inquirer and Los Angeles Times are being eclipsed by pseudo-journalistic sites like HuffingtonPost.com, which does little original reporting. The downfall of newspaper publishing is not something to shrug one’s shoulders at, like with Blockbuster falling apart. It is a genuine tragedy.
AT&T said last month that when Nokia’s new Lumia 900 phone went on sale April 8, it would benefit from the company’s biggest product introduction ever, exceeding even the iPhone’s.
The big day is here. But nearly all 39 AT&T stores within proximity of Times Square in Manhattan were either closed for Easter Sunday or did not answer phone calls. The few that were open did not have the handset in stock.
This is probably the last chance Microsoft has to prove itself relevant in mobile space as the traditional desktop PC is pulled from it’s position as the computer for everyday use.
So what do they do? (I say they because former Microsoft executive Stephen Elop is running Nokia and made the decision to move all their smartphones to Windows Phone)
They launch their flagship phone on Easter Sunday. When everything is closed.
When I see Microsoft/Nokia continue to make fumbles like this I wonder if it’s something deeper than the fact Microsoft was run by an engineer who doesn’t understand Human Experience and design until it was run by a man who knows neither engineers and developers nor design and Human Experience.
People half-jokingly have said Bill Gates has Asperger’s Syndrome due to his social deficiencies. He understands how computers and software work inside and out, but it’s the people who use his software he never seems to have a clue about.
So my theory is when Bill Gates stepped down as CEO of Microsoft in 2000 he transferred his inabilities to communicate with and make software for humans to the rest of the company –via some hybrid human/computer virus — and subsequently, Stephen Elop and Nokia.
What else could explain such a fucked up product launch?
Actually, it could also be the people at Microsoft and Nokia aren’t humans at all. Remember how the alien at the beginning of Men In Black wore the skin of that farmer to disguise himself?
Yeah, something like that could be happening too.
I can’t pass up sharing this. I got an email from someone who’s trying to sell a rare piece of computer history on eBay (they were responding to my listing on Craigslist and saw I had a tech-related site).
Here she is:
How much memory did she have? Oh a whopping 4-8 Kilobytes. For comparison, my MacBook Pro has 8,388,608 kilobytes of of memory (8 gigs).