It’s just data

Think Different

Tim Bray For creative people, this device is nothing.  Tim also is quite concerned about losing access to emacs.

In the 70s, text ruled.  In the 90s, GUIs and mice ruled.  In the 10s, touch.

I can get to the Internet from my server, from my desktop, from my laptop, from my netbook, and from my phone.  While my next phone will undoubtedly support touch, my current one does not.  None of my other devices do, and frankly, they should not.

Imagine a 2.66GHz Intel computer with five USB 2.0 ports, one FireWire 800 port, a mini-DVI port, and a DVD burner.  Comes with a wireless keyboard and a 9.7 inch wireless display.  The display is fully touch enabled, and can even support a virtual keyboard.  Yes, this system runs EMACs.  It also can run J2EE, Ruby on Rails, and Django.  The display connects to the base station via 802.11, and supports both canvas and AJAX.  Comes with OS/X, but you can also install Windows 7 and/or Linux alongside it if that is your preference.

Would such a system be worth $1,200?  If so, you can have it in 60 days: $599 + $499 + $69 + $25 + $5.

Even better, the system is modular.  You not only can connect to your base station, but to any node on the network, be it in a humble printer or the glorious cloud.  In fact, if you already have one or more of nodes that you are interested in, you can omit the base station and keyboard, and get started for half the price quoted above.

In short, I’m with Yehuda.  If you wish to be open, you simply need to be creative.  Best of all from my perspective: I’m confident that everything the iPad has to offer, plus video camera, plus VoIP will be available from multiple sources in the $200-$299 price range by late 2012.  See also Charles Nutter’s take.


I have always thought that these iPhone VNC clients didn’t make much sense on a display so small, but once you get them onto a display as big as the iPad’s, they seem like a very powerful tool.

Posted by Scott Johnson at

What good is touch on a regular system?

Posted by Sjoerd Visscher at

Sjoerd: I’m old enough to remember similar questions about mice.  Touch is great for navigation and scaling.

I can tell you how I would use an iPad today, if I had one.  I’m authoring a book.  I do my editing using vi, either locally or in an ssh window (it matters not to me).  I produce PDFs.  Having a screen dedicated to viewing the PDF, and optimized for navigation would be ideal for me.  Typically, that would be second or third screen, but depending on where I am or what else I am doing, it could be my primary one too.  When not in use for that purpose, it could display widgets like weather, or contain my im sessions, etc.

It still is a separate question as to whether I would pay full price to be an early adopter, or simply wait for the second generation and clones.

Posted by Sam Ruby at

It still is a separate question as to whether I would pay full price to be an early adopter, or simply wait for the second generation and clones.

Agreed.  In my mind, the evolution of the various iPhone models gives a good reason to pause and wait for rev 2 of the iPad.

Posted by Scott Johnson at

These devices have pretty much gotten rid of the hardware futzers. Now they can get rid of the OS futzers. I don’t want to operate a system. I want to use it and program it. As soon as I have to get involved in the OS, someone has failed me. Thank you Apple for allowing me to achieve forward velocity by removing the temptation to futz.

Hardcore hardware and OS hackers are not futzers and they can do plenty with these devices.

Posted by Dan Sickles at

Think Different : In the 70s, text ruled.  In the 90s, GUIs and mice ruled.  In the 10s, touch. I can get to the Internet from my server, from my desktop, from my laptop, from my netbook, and from my phone.  While my next phone will undoubtedly...

Excerpt from AZspot at

dingdeng: "If you wish to be open, you simply need to be creative." http://www.intertwingly.net/blog/2010/01/28/Think-Different

dingdeng: “If you wish to be open, you simply need to be creative.” [link]...

Excerpt from Twitter / dingdeng at

[from swheatley] Sam Ruby: Think Different

“If you wish to be open, you simply need to be creative.” - Sam Ruby...

Excerpt from Delicious/network/milo5h at

Think Different : azspot : In the 70s, text ruled.  In the 90s, GUIs and mice ruled.  In the 10s, touch. I can get to the Internet from my server, from my desktop, from my laptop, from my netbook, and from my phone.  While my next phone will...

Excerpt from the inky eagle at

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