Tuesday, February 22, 2011

tablets, et al

The nookcolor is absolutely the best budget tablet for tinkerers on the market. For $250 you get a 7" tablet with a 1024x600 multitouch IPS screen, wifi, and (eventually) bluetooth.

In the current units (I expect them to change this) it is very hackable and totally unbrickable - it can boot totally off the microSD slot (or even a USB debugging program)

- deeper-blue took that and ran with it... I'm using his honeycomb image and it runs quite well... however, honeycomb is not the iOS killer. The design simply isn't as good/utlitarian.

- As someone who followed the sad decline of Borders (LJ comm: iworkatborders) B&N putting "The Middle Place" top and center on the nook-in-the-box-pic is a (possibly unintentional) Take That. (Basically, the then-CEO made employees push that book on [i]everybody[/i] coming in...)


So where do things go from here?

- The tablet gui model is inherently spatial. I would coin this as SUI but it's already trademarket. Bleh.

- There's an odd anti-intellectualism to tablets so far. There's no great way to get data [i]into[/i] them yet - while the physical keyboard has it's flaws I don't see anything taking it's place.

- That said, there are [i]different[/i] input models. There will definitely be apps that inspire creativity (think Hypercard) and stuff nobody's thought of yet (as usual!)

- I think Apple will do fine for a few years post-Jobs. The fall will be obvious when Apple interfaces become more complex... when it looks like Android does today, it'll be over... aside from intertia.

- Android is flawed at a very basic level (not nearly as much as Symbian, tho!) There are many questionable design decisions (Dalvik/Java being the largest) from when it was intended to be a Blackberry killer. That said, it's the best open solution 'we' have.

- A tablet's killer app is it's own app ecosystem.

- Web design will have to change. While your average tablet is, in fact, 1024px wide, desktop pages need to be zoomed up for a comfortable reading experience