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Excitement in Technology?
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Feb 10, 2013, 05:16 PM
 
Anyone else here feel progressively less excited about the technology industry as years go by?

I remember when I got to university and having ethernet and the ability to watch the Stevenotes in real time was the greatest thing ever. I'd get excited when MacWorld rolled around, and got pretty excited for the products.

Then in 2005-2007 I remember being excited for the Gaming industry and the Wii-PS3-XB360 generation. And then the Smartphone(2007) and tablet(2010) revolution.

For the last couple of years, i've been less excited about the Apple keynotes and the gaming industry and maybe just technology in general. I mean we're getting new consoles from the big 3, and i cannot sense any excitement personally nor among my peers. The last Apple product I purchased for myself was my original iPad in April 2010 (3 years ago!), and i haven't felt the urge/excitement to upgrade or buy new products since.

Maybe it's just getting older? Combined with the fact that Steve isn't there to get me excited about this stuff?

Any else feeling the same?

Discuss...
     
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Feb 10, 2013, 05:44 PM
 
I feel the same. I thought for a while it was just working in the Apple channel and it occurred to me it might just be age but I'm actually inclined to think that rate of progress has plateaued (Is that how you spell it?).

As great as the iPad is, its just a big iPod Touch. Announcements like the iPhone or Wifi back in '99 were massive leaps forward. Its difficult to see another one like it coming. I guess those new transparent handsets will be quite funky but its really more of a gimmick than a technological leap.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Feb 10, 2013, 10:00 PM
 
I don't think it's a plateau as much as the commoditization point.

This is a big deal, though. We have someone alive right now who will become President, and their entire lifetime Twitter feed will be available to us. The previous President didn't use email, and that was acceptable (if cause for some ribbing).
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 12:34 AM
 
I'm enjoying the improvement in automobile tech, what's possible now. We're building a Kirkham all aluminum Cobra replica, with all the new modern toys and it's been a lot of fun.
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Feb 11, 2013, 01:54 AM
 
Guess what, we're getting old. That's why.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 04:20 AM
 
Originally Posted by Sealobo View Post
Guess what, we're getting old. That's why.
Yep.

Very little of what happens after we hit about age 25 has the power to really excite us.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 04:58 AM
 
Commoditization is one aspect, but I think we have been spoilt by the rapid pace of innovation of the recent years. Roughly on a 3-year schedule, we've seen the introduction of revolutionary products/ideas, but that's certainly not sustainable, at least not on that level.

Also, I think undervalue iteration and commoditization to a large extent, both of these are invaluable. Just compare a car from the 1980s to a car from the last 5 years: the gap is huge. A modern-day Golf offers the same comfort and performance as a luxury-class sedan from the 1980s (e. g. a Mercedes E-class). But it's more economical and safer. Or take flight: it took many decades from being a pass-time for two crazy brothers to something everyone can afford. In case of the iPad, I think the real explosion is still to come when tablets displace computers as main stream computing devices where people do everything, from doing their taxes, writing Dear Santa letters and editing your photos to watching movies and listening to music. This day has yet to come. Times are boring for those, who are ahead of the curve, Hawkeye!
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Feb 11, 2013, 10:20 AM
 
Originally Posted by Sealobo View Post
Guess what, we're getting old. That's why.
Bingo. I've been setting up my mother on a tablet the past week, and its an Android so I'm mucking through only by my wits. And I was explaining to her that 5 years ago I'd probably have been able to use it no problem because I'd have researched the thing thoroughly in the hopes of one day owning one and nowadays I make enough money that i can buy one if I need so I don't really keep up anymore. Its a strange dichotomy.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 11:09 AM
 
Revolutions are always fun and exciting until they become the norm. I think I'll be pretty excited, as I now wait for the Quantum revolution Hopefully it happens before we all die.

When it does happen we will all be talking about the latest space pad, space pod, spacemac, and iTeleporter.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 12:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Bingo. I've been setting up my mother on a tablet the past week, and its an Android so I'm mucking through only by my wits. And I was explaining to her that 5 years ago I'd probably have been able to use it no problem because I'd have researched the thing thoroughly in the hopes of one day owning one and nowadays I make enough money that i can buy one if I need so I don't really keep up anymore. Its a strange dichotomy.
But one that Apple's products neatly settle.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 12:51 PM
 
There is a new Mac Pro coming out in the very near future. How couldn't you be excited about that.?
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 01:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by angelmb View Post
There is a new Mac Pro coming out in the very near future. How couldn't you be excited about that.?
I can only hope they find a way to make it even bigger.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 04:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by angelmb View Post
There is a new Mac Pro coming out in the very near future. How couldn't you be excited about that.?
Because it'll be the same unbelievably expensive, unnecessarily powerful, over-the-top desktop that's completely out of most users' price range?

But seriously, I think part of it is because the technology market has become oversaturated. It's difficult to get excited about a particular new product when there are eleventy billion clones - from reputable brands, mind you, not just Chinese knockoffs on eBay - already available.

Think about just Apple products (since that's what were all here for, right?) and what products actually revolutionized the industry.

The 1984 128k Macintosh made personal computing a possibility. It was affordable and easy-to-use compared to IBM PC clones. Microsoft followed with its own mouse-driven graphical operating system, but the original Mac is what got the ball rolling.

The iMac brought Apple's focus back to the consumer market after it had languished for quite awhile in little more than education and a little business/enterprise. It was colorful when every other machine was beige. It was cute and appealing to teenagers and hip yuppies. Regular people started buying Macs again.

The iPod completely changed how consumers obtained and listened to music. It was sexy, compact, and significantly easier to use than any other hard drive-based digital audio player on the market. As the hardware got cheaper to manufacture, the price went down, and competitors were able to edge into the market with similar products (like the Zune, which everyone hates but frankly I loved, and it's the only thing that's coming to mind right at the moment).

The iPhone, as we all know, was what brought smartphones to the consumer market. Previously, they were an expensive niche product with poor software and clunky, ugly hardware. The only people with Windows Mobile phones were businessmen whose companies couldn't or wouldn't invest in the BlackBerry/BES ecosystem. While iOS is no longer at the top of the market, it's undeniable that it had a huge hand in creating the market in the first place.

And finally, the iPad started the tablet craze. There are a lot of premium competitors out there, but again - it got the ball rolling.

Apple has run out of things to innovate, and they have opted to seriously limit the capabilities of iOS. The iPhone 5 is a nice hardware bump, but iOS has little to offer anymore. It's still almost identical to what it was several years ago, aside from a handful of pretty generic "features" (like the introduction of cut and paste, or the notifications system, which was not even remotely the first of its kind). At this point, Apple needs to catch up with what's happening in the technology market, with both PCs and mobile devices. iOS is stunted compared to Android and Windows 8 RT.

And, unfortunately, OS X has done precious little in real innovation since Tiger. It's changed in appearance, and there have been under the hood changes (like dropping PowerPC support, updates to Xcode, etc.), but for the most part it has stagnated. Microsoft has introduced some pretty significant changes to Windows in the same time frame, particularly with Windows 7 (which was an enormous success in both consumer and enterprise markets) and Windows 8 (which I know people here are more than happy to openly mock, but I will say that it's pretty ballin' on a touchscreen PC).

Looking outside exclusively Apple as a frame of reference, the fact still remains that the market is just completely saturated with products. New stuff is being introduced so frequently that it leaves you reeling, trying to figure out what's actually worth getting excited about and what is just a reinvention of the same tired technology (like the iPad Mini or the seven thousandth Android tablet with the same specs as all the other ones). The really big major technological advances, like transistors and the death of the CRT, are over and done with.

I was just talking to bf about this the other night, and what was going to happen with LightPeak before Apple got involved. The original idea was to start to commoditize optical data interconnects and move toward all-optical technology. We have reached a total wall in power and speed with copper. The laws of physics have made it impossible to go further, which is a huge reason why CPUs stopped getting faster in pure frequency (GHz, etc.) and why they're fitting more cores onto a single die instead. I'd venture to guess that optical - or something similar - is going to be the next big technological leap.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 05:27 PM
 
That's a lot of text to remind us you're not that big a mac fan.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 05:28 PM
 
That's really all you got from that?

I'm not going to pretend like Apple didn't do things to seriously revolutionize technology in the past thirty years. We wouldn't be where we are today with digital media or smartphones if Apple hadn't provided the catalyst for that technology. The problem is that such revolutionary innovation has stagnated. It's now just the same thing warmed over.

Apple's not the only culprit, either. It's happening everywhere in IT.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 05:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by angelmb View Post
There is a new Mac Pro coming out in the very near future. How couldn't you be excited about that.?
I actually am a little bit excited by this.

I think the next big revolution in tech will be the consumerisation of 3D printing. Replicators will change the world quite a lot and they are definitely on the way. Maybe 10 years from now they will be everywhere. I can see the iPhone 12 being a schematic you download so you can print your own.

I wonder if the printers themselves are something Apple has any interest in at all.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 07:23 PM
 
I would LOVE a 3D printer, although I'd probably just print out video game character miniatures...
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 09:08 PM
 
Im kinda surprised that some of you are "excited" about a new Mac tower, or were you guys being sarcastic?

I think i lost any excitement for desktops when Apple introduced the TiBook. Although i did end up buying an intel iMac when they came out.

I guess we are older, and the industry has plateaued a bit.

I wonder if in 1999 we were all so interested because Apple was in a do or die type situation, and now their sustained successes seem more like a norm, and so kinda boring.

I dont know if anyone realized, but its been 13 years since OSX was released. The old MacOS lasted 16 years(1984-2000). Crazy eh? And iOS is now over 6 years old? That seems like eons, especially for a mobile OS. I think id be excited for a refresh of the UI of iOS.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 09:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post
I dont know if anyone realized, but its been 13 years since OSX was released. The old MacOS lasted 16 years(1984-2000). Crazy eh? And iOS is now over 6 years old? That seems like eons, especially for a mobile OS. I think id be excited for a refresh of the UI of iOS.
This is part of what I was trying to say.

Right now, something like the iPad Mini just isn't all that compelling, in large part because of how stale iOS has gotten. By comparison, Android has seen some major overhauls starting with Honeycomb. Granted, ICS didn't come out until late 2011, but Apple has quite a bit of catch-up to do now if they want to stay competitive. Hell, even the BlackBerry OS has changed significantly between OS 5 and 6. I'd definitely be interested in seeing what Apple can do to really revamp/update iOS.
     
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Feb 11, 2013, 10:43 PM
 
I think none of us are excited about the Mac tower because we know it will be majorly overpriced for what you get. If they can knock about a $1000 off of it, then I'll be excited.
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 12:14 AM
 
The Mac Pro had better be fanf***ingtastic, otherwise I'll just keep running the Frankentosh beast (liquid cooled 2x Xeon E5-1660s @4.6GHz).
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Feb 12, 2013, 12:48 AM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
That's really all you got from that?

I'm not going to pretend like Apple didn't do things to seriously revolutionize technology in the past thirty years. We wouldn't be where we are today with digital media or smartphones if Apple hadn't provided the catalyst for that technology. The problem is that such revolutionary innovation has stagnated. It's now just the same thing warmed over.

Apple's not the only culprit, either. It's happening everywhere in IT.

I agree completely, although I'm not sure that Windows 7 or 8 will have really changed the industry significantly, likewise for individual Android features (although what I think Android has the potential to change is the proliferation of these devices and their resulting impact on business).

I would bet that lulls like this just happen though, and they are not always the result of laziness or a lack of focus or something.

Is technology art in a way? Sometimes what dictates the success of art is whether the market will buy it and support it, but what the market supports is not always an accurate indicator of the quality of that art. Could there be some fantastic ideas that Apple and other companies have discussed, but they aren't developed because these companies cannot come up with a good marketing strategy and a way to monetize enough to cover their development costs?
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 12:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
This is part of what I was trying to say.

Right now, something like the iPad Mini just isn't all that compelling, in large part because of how stale iOS has gotten. By comparison, Android has seen some major overhauls starting with Honeycomb. Granted, ICS didn't come out until late 2011, but Apple has quite a bit of catch-up to do now if they want to stay competitive. Hell, even the BlackBerry OS has changed significantly between OS 5 and 6. I'd definitely be interested in seeing what Apple can do to really revamp/update iOS.

Can you provide some examples to somebody who hasn't used Android very much? I'm not trying to argue, I'm honestly ignorant to Android features, and while I can look these up I'd be interested in what has been appealing to you personally.
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 12:51 AM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
The Mac Pro had better be fanf***ingtastic, otherwise I'll just keep running the Frankentosh beast (liquid cooled 2x Xeon E5-1660s @4.6GHz).

Why do you guys even want the new Mac Pro? Why don't you just do what Shaddim has done here? Seems like a superior option to me.
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 01:08 AM
 
People who want Pros need them for mission critical applications.

An important aspect of suitability is going to be how many unwanted variables a system can eliminate.
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 05:10 AM
 
I can throttle it down when doing something important, but it's run @100% on all cores (CPU and GPU) for weeks at a time and never missed a beat. The "burn-in" was 48 hours of Linpack IBT, no errors.
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Feb 12, 2013, 05:29 AM
 
I meant the variable of having to trick the OS into thinking it's running on legit product, and not having Apple, as well as developers, working on the same set of hardware as I am.

If I'm going to be in a closed ecosystem, I may as well reap some benefits.
( Last edited by subego; Feb 12, 2013 at 06:01 AM. )
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 05:44 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Why do you guys even want the new Mac Pro? Why don't you just do what Shaddim has done here? Seems like a superior option to me.
I can't afford one for myself, but I'll be putting a few in for other people if they are half decent.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 05:51 AM
 
It's purely a question of timing for me. I can muddle along with i7s right now and the GPU in my MacBook Pro, but if I have a 4K project which is longer than a minute or two in the pipeline, that's it. Either Apple ponies-up, or I do like Shaddim has minus the hackintosh part. Adobe Suite is Adobe Suite. I can cope with Windows.
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 08:26 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Can you provide some examples to somebody who hasn't used Android very much? I'm not trying to argue, I'm honestly ignorant to Android features, and while I can look these up I'd be interested in what has been appealing to you personally.
Preamble - I looooved my iPhone until I got my HTC Evo 4G. The only problems I had with my phone by the time I upgraded were with how slow it was, because all I had was a crappy 8GB iPhone 3G. That and the fact that I had to jailbreak it just to customize the background on the home screen and my system sounds.

Android:
  • Customization. I can use whatever launcher I want. I can customize the background of the home screen. I can categorize my icons on the home screen (because not all the icons are there all the time) AND in the app drawer. Those last two came about with a newer version of iOS, but iOS 4 hadn't been released when I got my Evo. There are, of course, many other customizations one can make in Android that are impossible on the iPhone - like changing system fonts and sounds. I originally jailbroke my phone for the sole purpose of being able to change the new mail alert sound.
  • Widgets. On the home screen, you can have widgets for all kinds of stuff - weather, clock, stocks, package tracking...I have one that changes color based on Google Maps' traffic data for my morning commute. I also have one that lets me update Facebook without having to launch an app. On my tablet, I have a calendar as well as a mail widget that lets me see my inbox without launching a mail app. This is more important on the iPad line. When you have a huge 10" display, why in the hell is it being wasted on nothing but a few rows of icons? That's an enormous waste of screen real estate.
  • Sideloading. No root is required to be able to load applications from other publishers. While the majority of people here will moan about how that makes the OS more vulnerable and how great it is that Apple "verifies every application", there have been multiple instances of Apple letting malicious or scammy applications into the App Store. The only apps the company really seriously evaluates are ones that might encroach on their own apps - like Opera and Google Voice. With Android, if a small time developer is working on a new game or app that you want to try out, all you have to do is download the APK, put it on your phone, and launch it.

Those are the three that come to mind offhand. I could do some research to give you more, but hopefully that gives you an idea. I should add that the "customization" part is huge. I didn't start getting more out of my iPhone until I jailbroke it and installed a bunch of apps that added new functionality to the OS.

There are other things that can be in Android that are more ROM-specific, like the notifications toolbar, which is similar to SBSettings (which is an app for iOS that can only be used on jailbroken devices). That one lets me toggle all kinds of stuff - screen brightness, wifi, bluetooth, tethering, etc. - right from the notification bar.

Here's the thing. iOS was a completely new way of looking at smartphones when it was introduced. Android showed promise, but it was rough around the edges and the hardware available was ugly. Apple's always been good at making sexy technology, and the iPhone was no exception. However, in the six years since its initial release, iOS has fallen behind pretty seriously as Android has advanced and offered more and more new features. Android is open whereas iOS is closed - and closing more with every release. That's okay for technophobes who don't give a crap, but a lot of people in the younger generation expect more out of their products. They want to have control over everything if they're going to drop $200 on a new phone. Android has matured to the point that it's as sexy as iOS while still offering substantially more freedom. That, combined with slick marketing and sexy hardware courtesy of Samsung's Galaxy line, is what pushed Android over the edge to being the market leader in mobile operating systems.

Apple's absolutely going to have to up the ante if they want to stay relevant.
( Last edited by shifuimam; Feb 12, 2013 at 08:37 AM. )
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 08:50 AM
 
I've been harping on this for a while now, but I think multimedia and/or home automation will be the Next Big Thing (and something that Apple can be at the forefront of...whether they will or not, I don't know).

Smart TVs are becoming popular but I think it's pretty clear they have their problems - and fundamentally, I think it makes no sense to build the "smart" component into the TV itself because it's not scalable. Whereas, a single dedicated external box should be able to combine a number of different external components into one source - gaming machine, "smart" source for online content, computer/home server, movie/music hub, picture/video/multimedia source, even TV/PVR and modem/router. There's zero reason why all of those products can't be delivered in one simplified box, except to this point they've all been delivered, designed and handled by completely different companies/industries.

To add to that, I think serious home automation will be arriving very soon - with the problem being that existing houses are tough to retrofit, of course. But the options available for people doing new builds are already impressive, and getting more so.
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Feb 12, 2013, 11:36 AM
 
Biggest reason we bought a separate Google TV box was the fact that if something craps out, you aren't losing a TV, too.

Smart Blu-ray players are pretty much the standard now, but they leave a lot to be desired IMO, mostly because of how slow they are.

I'd like to see personal clouds. Rather than trusting someone else with my data, I'd like to run my own cloud at home, backed up elsewhere (like a trusted family member or friend's house).
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 11:51 AM
 
Yes, I guess I should say I've imagined my device to essentially cut the cord on physical media. Assuming data rates can and will continue to rise, I would anticipate that full BR-quality video will be freely available to stream within a few years - right now, it's at an acceptable level for 90+% of most users I would say.

Unless Uncle Skeleton's vision of Prometheus-style immersive TV comes to pass, I don't see us requiring a level of data transfer that would preclude cutting out physical media entirely.
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Feb 12, 2013, 11:58 AM
 
Anyways, I guess what I'm saying is: Apple would really have an advantage with that sort of system because of their closed ecosystem - like Android, competing products are likely to be somewhat of a hot mess for the initial stages of development. Assuming, of course, that only Apple would be able to tie all these functions together in a coherent fashion - your iDevice of choice able to easily control all your multimedia requirements, with a single set-top box that replaces the incredible clutter and mess of wires that currently exists.

It's a no brainer in my eyes - it has to happen. Apple has been converging on that point for quite a few years now, and I'm always waiting for the proverbial shoe to drop and prove to me that I just wasted a lot of money on a mini....
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Feb 12, 2013, 02:16 PM
 
The 1980s were where it was at. When a CPU upgrade would double the performance of your computer. Now that was exciting!
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Feb 12, 2013, 02:50 PM
 
@shifuimam
While i think a refresh of iOS is warranted. I pray they don't go in the direction of Android. Over customization(like with Android) is unnecessary and ugly IMHO.

I've mentioned this before over here, but when i think of a "better" OS UI for mobile devices, I think of WebOS. The cards metaphor is powerful and intuitive. IMHO

What would I like in a revamped iOS UI? (Well... be more like WebOS in a nutshell)
-Better manage(and quit) "open" apps. Currently iOS requires too many steps.
-Better app switching, right now it feels too much like a context-switch. It's too "modal".
-Better notifications. Right now iOS Notification's UI feels tacked on. Notifications on my Pre2 seem "complete" and well thought through.
-This might seem like nitpicking, but have you guys noticed that the toolbars(example in Safari) are at the top? it's kindof an inconvenience to cover the content when reaching for the buttons. Maybe move toolbars to the bottom?Incidentally, I really like the gesture area on my PalmPre2 to go back or forward.

I know Apple hired the guy who was in chrge of notification in WebOS when Palm collapsed, so i'm hopeful.

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Feb 12, 2013, 03:20 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post
@-This might seem like nitpicking, but have you guys noticed that the toolbars(example in Safari) are at the top? it's kindof an inconvenience to cover the content when reaching for the buttons. Maybe move toolbars to the bottom?
Beauty observation that I've found annoying without knowing why. Incidentally, you generally "hold" your phone/iOS device by the bottom or bottom-lower side for that very reason; that's where your hand is anyway. I find it very inconvenient to be holding the iPad by the bottom, and have to reach up to the top of Safari to type in a web page or search - you're right, I'm not only covering up the screen, but I'm also having to move my hand a long way from where I naturally hold the device.

Cool beans.
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Feb 12, 2013, 03:45 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post
-Better manage(and quit) "open" apps. Currently iOS requires too many steps.
I don't disagree with your other points, but this one is just completely irrelevant nearly 100% of the time.

I can count the number of times I've actually needed to quit an app (and it made a difference) on two hands. In five and a half years of iOS, three and a half of those on my own iPhone, and four and a half of them working in Apple sales and tech support.

Those cases have been:
- iPhone camera shows only black screen (Twice, once on my own phone).
- Safari loses iCloud-synced Bookmarks (once on my iPhone, a couple of times on my iPad).

I can't recall any other instance where I actually had to force-quit an active app to fix something.

It's pointless, since an app running in the background only gets five seconds before it's shut down by the system and no longer consumes any resources (there are five use exceptions for background operation: running down-/uploads (these get ten minutes before they're killed), media players, Newsstand magazine downloads, navigation (though graphics are suspended), and VOIP apps). Other apps simply aren't running nor consuming any resources, and removing them from the list of recent apps has no effect upon the system whatsoever.
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 10:33 PM
 
Originally Posted by ShortcutToMoncton View Post
I've been harping on this for a while now, but I think multimedia and/or home automation will be the Next Big Thing (and something that Apple can be at the forefront of...whether they will or not, I don't know).

Smart TVs are becoming popular but I think it's pretty clear they have their problems - and fundamentally, I think it makes no sense to build the "smart" component into the TV itself because it's not scalable. Whereas, a single dedicated external box should be able to combine a number of different external components into one source - gaming machine, "smart" source for online content, computer/home server, movie/music hub, picture/video/multimedia source, even TV/PVR and modem/router. There's zero reason why all of those products can't be delivered in one simplified box, except to this point they've all been delivered, designed and handled by completely different companies/industries.

To add to that, I think serious home automation will be arriving very soon - with the problem being that existing houses are tough to retrofit, of course. But the options available for people doing new builds are already impressive, and getting more so.
As cool as home automation is, I think Apple will want to stay well away from that.

It needs to be plug-and-play, as well as bulletproof. It's neither.

There isn't really a plug-and play solution for controlling your home theatre setup. Doing that with your house is an order of magnitude more complicated.

Bulletproof is obvious. To paraphrase SJ, If you need to reboot your house, you blew it.
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 10:38 PM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
Preamble - I looooved my iPhone until I got my HTC Evo 4G. The only problems I had with my phone by the time I upgraded were with how slow it was, because all I had was a crappy 8GB iPhone 3G. That and the fact that I had to jailbreak it just to customize the background on the home screen and my system sounds.

Android:


Apple's absolutely going to have to up the ante if they want to stay relevant.
Isn't this just different strokes?

None of those things have any real appeal to me.

To be clear, nothing wrong with those things appealing to you, I'm just not sure I buy the idea Apple's best strategy would be to copy Google.
     
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Feb 12, 2013, 11:34 PM
 
We were looking at an Acura RDX this weekend, and man, was I excited over the new tech. Compared to a just 7 year old Volvo, the safety features, iPhone integration and general computer driven features had me really excited. One example, as you go faster, torque decreases. But if you see an obstacle, like a kid running in the street, and you jerk the wheel to avoid, the RDX senses the avoidance maneuver and gives you max torque. Awesome.

That said, there are always plateaus in every field, and maybe computers, not tablets, are on one at present. Re tablets, I was reading about this woman who's son helped her through every desktop system, including an iMac. After years of her suffering because of her not getting how to use computers, the iPad came out. Son got her one. Within days she was not only proficient and using it intensively, but she was totally confident. Over 20 years of bewildered anguish, followed by a immediate ownership of the experience. It was all because of the new interface, touching and seeing, vs pointing and clicking. This is an interface transition/expansion, similar to that from the command line to the GUI. I believe all three are useful where they belong.

Point of the article: even if Apple is focusing less on power users, those of us hankering for a new Pro, it is empowering millions of people who would never want to deal with a keyboard driven machine, to join our digital world. That is exciting! And I want my Pro , maybe.

I apologize for lack of article link, I read it today, but Safari on iPad has been loosing History, not just this time.
     
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Feb 13, 2013, 04:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
Right now, something like the iPad Mini just isn't all that compelling, in large part because of how stale iOS has gotten. By comparison, Android has seen some major overhauls starting with Honeycomb. Granted, ICS didn't come out until late 2011, but Apple has quite a bit of catch-up to do now if they want to stay competitive. Hell, even the BlackBerry OS has changed significantly between OS 5 and 6. I'd definitely be interested in seeing what Apple can do to really revamp/update iOS.
Catch-up? I seriously don't get that claim. There are certain things like contracts (Windows Phone)/intents (Android) which are not quite there yet in iOS (although you can see that Apple is working on that using XPC), but a lot of catch-up? In what areas is iOS that far behind. And to quote BlackBerry OS which is lagging behind the whole competition?

The biggest problem with Android is that preciously few people actually get real Android. My brother has a Nexus 7 and is quite happy with it. And a Motorola Razor i has replaced is Windows Phone 7 phone. He hates the Android on that: it's an older version of Android with a custom interface. So fortunately for Apple, most phone and tablet hardware manufacturers cannot resist the urge to customize the interface. And ultimately, they eff it up. Most of them badly.

I hear a lot of complaints that iOS has gotten »stale«, but usually that comes from people who were disappointed with the iPhone 4S, because it didn't feature a new exterior. I am perfectly happy with the way the UI looks and feels, I find it easy to use and visually appealing. And since the largest part of the Android market is still running Gingerbread, it's actually the Android ecosystem that is behind. But not because Google hasn't implemented the necessary improvements, but because a significant share of the market is running a two-year old operating system.

My biggest complaint about the Android ecosystem is that is has stopped pushing Apple very hard to improve iOS. The upgrade to iOS 6 was rather unexciting. But I have an inkling that the next big thing for iOS will be how to deal with files, I cannot fit my life into an iOS-like hierarchy of files and folders. I don't see a reason for a complete revamp of the UI, though.
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Feb 13, 2013, 05:23 AM
 
Originally Posted by jmiddel View Post
Point of the article: even if Apple is focusing less on power users, those of us hankering for a new Pro, it is empowering millions of people who would never want to deal with a keyboard driven machine, to join our digital world. That is exciting! And I want my Pro , maybe.
The thing is that nobody wants to be a "power user" except IT guys.

A former client of mine is a professional art historian. Highly intelligent, highly educated, an expert in her field. She is forced to deal with computers and file management because she needs to maintain a research archive and publish and present her material. She'd rather not, and she actually called me in regularly for assistance with "simple" things.

There was significant outcry a few years ago when Apple release Logic Pro 8 and had "dumbed down" the interface. The crying came mainly from studios and techs invested heavily into customizing the previous interface, with custom key commands and studio layouts, effectively having become "power users".
The rest of the world became much more efficient and comfortable with the program because it no longer obstructed simple workflows through arcane and arbitrary complexity (though it still does this in some regards).

Most of us want to get on with our JOBs, and dealing with computers should be incidental to that, not central.

We're in music, not IT. Or in art history. Or in whatever.

Originally Posted by jmiddel View Post
I apologize for lack of article link, I read it today, but Safari on iPad has been loosing History, not just this time.
Does it also lose its iCloud bookmarks?
If so, hit the home button to drop out of safari and immediately four-finger-swipe up (or double-press the home button) to see the list of recently-used apps. Touch and hold the safari icon and hit the little red stop sign to quit it. Relaunch Safari, and all should be as normal.
     
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Feb 13, 2013, 06:40 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
As cool as home automation is, I think Apple will want to stay well away from that.

It needs to be plug-and-play, as well as bulletproof. It's neither.

There isn't really a plug-and play solution for controlling your home theatre setup. Doing that with your house is an order of magnitude more complicated.

Bulletproof is obvious. To paraphrase SJ, If you need to reboot your house, you blew it.
Yeah, I agree with you there - I was talking more of an Apple product being an interface for home automation. You can already do a whole lot of things solely through iPhone etc. - lock doors, turn on lights or appliances, etc. etc. - and if it's also controlling your entire multimedia system, then Apple's effectively created a one-stop shop for control of your entire life.

They'll call it iSkynet
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Feb 13, 2013, 09:03 AM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
The thing is that nobody wants to be a "power user" except IT guys.


We're in music, not IT. Or in art history. Or in whatever.
There's "power user" and there's "power".

Simplify the interface as much as you want, unless it's pushing uncompressed, 32-bit 4K with a half dozen filters on it in real-time, I don't have enough power.

What Apple offers now can't even do 16-bit 2K, and it'll run hot enough to warp your table trying.
     
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Feb 13, 2013, 11:11 AM
 
Absolutely.

That has nothing to do with what I wrote, though, nor with jmiddel's post that I was responding to.

Those were about "power users", not about computing horsepower.

"Power user" used to mean "person having invested enough time into learning an interface to very efficiently get through his workflow". This usually implied being fully invested into (often customized) keyboard commands. This also usually coincided with being the local "computer savvy" who had an idea of what was going on. Who knew about regular maintenance, who defragmented, ran Conflict Catcher, etc.

With the simplification of computing, this has got slightly lost. Maintenance is all but unnecessary, interfaces have been simplified to make interaction less daunting, while entire generations have now grown up surrounded by computer technology.
( Last edited by Spheric Harlot; Feb 13, 2013 at 11:22 AM. )
     
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Feb 13, 2013, 11:14 AM
 
Which Apple isn't providing.
     
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Feb 13, 2013, 11:24 AM
 
Computing horsepower?

I dunno. Sixteen virtual cores of Xeon certainly are nothing to sneeze at. YMMV.
     
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Feb 13, 2013, 01:40 PM
 
Isn't it only 12?

What can you pull these days if you're not ****ing around? 32?
     
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Feb 13, 2013, 01:50 PM
 
Twenty-four virtual cores on the dual-hexacore.

A colleague of mine has a dual quad in his studio, and it's F*CKING FAST (the sixteen virtual cores I was referring to above). Which is to say, he hasn't managed to max it out yet, by a long shot.
     
 
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