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Re: GNU/Linux Tablets Coming

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____/ Homer on Tuesday 30 Aug 2011 16:07 : \____

> Verily I say unto thee that bbgruff spake thusly:
>> I'm merely observing that the interface required for a portable device
>> (content consumption) using chubby fingers on large icons etc., is
>> rather different from the one required for desktop
> Yes, which is why they should remain different, and not be "unified".
>> Further, once one accepts that a "dockable" portable device is the way
>> things are going, the requirement is that whatever OS you use, it will
>> need to accommodate both, and need to be able to swap "on the fly".
> GNU/Linux already has this. Pick one of several dozen window managers,
> then restart X.
> No "unification" required.
> In fact window managers aren't even "unified" across the desktop
> environments on my own /desktop/ PCs, so I don't see why I would need
> them to be "unified" between my desktops and other devices.
> I want a "10-foot" UI on my media player, not on my desktop, because I
> typically don't sit 10 feet away from my desktop, and I'd find it rather
> difficult to reach the keyboard, which must sit on my desk, because that
> is where I can type most comfortably. I want a Spartan UI on my desktop,
> not on my smartphone, because I prefer working from the command line,
> and thus don't really need a "desktop" per se, other than what's needed
> to support multiple terminal emulators. I want icons and widgets on my
> smartphone, not on my server, since there's little point having any
> visual components on a machine that doesn't even have a monitor.
> I choose the best tool for the job it's intended to perform, I don't
> choose my tools based on vacuous considerations like colour coordination
> and the pseudo-religious principles of feng shui.
> A hammer that looks like a screwdriver is in fact a screwdriver, not a
> hammer. "Unify" both into a pocket gizmo and what you have is an
> amateur's toy, not a workman's tool. Suck resources away from the
> production of real tools, for the sake of aesthetic gimmicks meant to
> appeal to the brainwashed sheeple, and you end up with nobody working on
> the production of real tools. Then everyone is relegated to the position
> of amateur, nobody has real tools, and computing becomes as useless as
> haute couture fashion.
> Computing is not a fashion statement, it's a science, and it's purpose
> is to provide function, not be hung on a gallery wall. And if it were a
> purely aesthetic art, it'd be a rather dull one, if every example of
> that art was merely a "unified" clone of the rest.
> And that's before one considers the insidious political ramifications of
> "unification". The very nature of individuality is such that there can
> never be any "unification" without oppression. Ever.

The hammer vs. screwdriver metaphor is an excellent one. But I guess that,
for some purposes, it is useful to have an environment that can easily
be adjusted to phones, overhead screens, and 22-inch monitors. It's 
achievable, but it makes life hard for developers. See what iOS
developers say about their iPhone apps that scale *very* badly 
(coarse resolution) on the iPad.

To unify UIs you need to also unify form factors, which is a non-starter.

- -- 
		~~ Best of wishes

Dr. Roy S. Schestowitz (Ph.D. Medical Biophysics), Imaging Researcher
http://Schestowitz.com  | GNU/Linux administration | PGP-Key: 0x74572E8E
Editor @ http://techrights.org & Broadcaster @ http://bytesmedia.co.uk/
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