Monday, February 01, 2010

iPad McRanty Pants

Six months ago, I warned of the dystopian future that could be kicked off by the then rumored Apple tablet, and now my biggest fears are being realized. Please don’t underestimate the gravity of the situation. The unveiling of the Apple iPad could be the opening phase in a transition that could change the face of personal computing as we know it.

Well oh-my-god someone alert the authorities - we got us a situation here. 

Oh wait, don't.  The thesis is a load of krep.

Somehow - by means unspecified - Apple selling a sort-of-tablet sort-of-iPhone-but-bigger will lead to a future of nothing but  devices displaying content approved by the Evil Dark Lord of Cupertino.  I guess these will be teevees but .. smarter?  Sort of?

What is it about Apple [1] that makes some people completely loose their shit?

The wholesale abandonment of desktops will never-ever fly in the environment they were designed for and where they were born: work.  The micro that yesterday was running a BOM application on the floor can run accounting software tomorrow can crank out letters the day after.  We don't just like that kind of flexibility in the office, we require it. 

If you can buy a micro-computer for the office you'll be able to buy one for the house [2].  Can you really picture a Michael Dell saying 'Welp, there is all this demand but, golly, we're only gonna sell to bidness.  Sorry!'

What there is a demand for - and I suspect the iPad will handily fill - is the Mom computer.  All those Moms and Dads and Joes and Janes who need to watch video or do Facebook or send email but get endlessly frustrated dealing the kazillion problems a Windows PC has and have no interest in playing system administrator in their own house and get deservedly upset for having to pay some mope a few hundred bucks a shot to clean up malware and run defrag.

The cost of owning a computer is - for the average person - a huge time sink of money and time.  The face of personal computing not a friendly avuncular bloke but a friggin' John Wayne Gacy clown.

Change the face of personal computing?  Jam the noise.  Bring it on.

[1] And other topics.  And oh shit oh dear don't even bring up the vi vs. emacs thing.  Jeepers.
[2] And the Linux Jihad is safe.  Hooray.


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