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Johnathan Zittrain: The Personal Computer is Dead.
Quote: oth software developers and users should demand more. Developers should look for ways to reach their users unimpeded, through still-open platforms, or through pressure on the terms imposed by the closed ones. And users should be ready to try "off-roading" with the platforms that still allow it-hewing to the original spirit of the PC, perhaps amplified by systems that let apps have a trial run on a device without being given the keys to the kingdom. If we allow ourselves to be lulled into satisfaction with walled gardens, we'll miss out on innovations to which the gardeners object, and we'll set ourselves up for censorship of code and content that was previously impossible. We need some angry nerds.
We need the left, fool.
another factor that is contributing to this is the progression of technology. As technologies become more complex, the harder it is for people without specialized knowledge to control and change it.
Just like years ago with little knowledge of how to fix a car you could buy the parts and do most jobs yourself. now for a newer model, you need thousands of dollars in diagnostic equipment and computers to do the same things making it impossible for an average person to fix most things on a car.
Back in the early days of computers, the average person had some knowledge of how the OS worked and how to write simple codes to get it to do things, and that was just part of using a computer. Now for most people even the simplest problems require someone with tech skills to solve it, since the computer requires no tech skill to begin with, and that leads itself to the companies that make these things controlling them in a way that is objectionable to most of us.
then again, that's partly our own fault for using something and putting so much of our lives in the hands of some machine we don't understand. If everyone had some of the knowledge that say experienced hackers have we could do whatever the hell we want with these devices as opposed to using them only in the way the producer intended, much like how people modify all sorts of technologies, devices, machines, tools to suit their particular needs.
I've only written a few things for Windows since school. Mostly offroading it ever since. Telecom switch makers, for example, would never have used any Windows OS for real time apps. Windows OSs are too much overhead and not very reliable for real time systems that must not crash, or at least not crash as easily as Windows OS. In telecom, they use real time platforms, like Wind River VX Works or pSOS. Sometimes we end up scabbing over someone else's OS creation. Fffffun! In fact, I've not written very much at the application layer scheme of things. Mostly lower layer stuff for this worker-drone. It's not as glamorous.
I can't imagine office workers switching to iPhones or droid phones runnning office s/w. I've tried using my finger tips and ends of pencils to tap keys, and I end up with tired thumbs after a while. And the lcd screens are lilliputian. Eye strain city, no thnx. If I was an office worker faced with that kind of work environment, there would be heck to pay. I'd be signing everyone up for an office revolt.