I have been reading John Dvorak’s column since I was 10 – and even back then I thought he was spot on… 🙂
The computer has sadly become what pessimists always said it would be—a mere appliance. The fact that it’s come down to this really galls me.
I’ve always been the biggest proponent of powerful desktop computing and always felt like I was paddling against the tide. For the last decade I kept hearing about how the computer is becoming an appliance, and that mobile devices will rule the tech world. It’s true, for surfing the Internet you can use anything from a dumb terminal to a phone. You do not need a quad-core machine with a two-terabyte drive.
I still cannot believe that the computer can ever become an appliance any more so than an automobile can become one. Yes, if they designed a car with a road sensor, and there were metal stripes that the sensor could follow, allowing the car to drive itself, then okay. But nobody is willing to do that.
The same holds true for computers. They don’t drive themselves. Even the rather easy-to-use Mac requires a little user knowledge and intervention unless all you are doing is turning it on and getting on a browser and then the Internet. But you do not need much of a machine to do that.