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On the Future of Personal Computing

October 15th, 2008 by william

Yesterday, Apple released a bunch of new notebooks in their usual style  of a told-from-on-high sermon of how awesome they are. Their main announcement was a new machining process (which is not really that new and is a solution to a problem they have had for more than half a decade), but right before the big event I had a dream. Well, the dream was the night before, but I think it might portend to the future of personal computing.

In the near future everyone will probably have some kind of touch screen interface, iphone like contraption that they carry everywhere with them. What if they had a laptop that was not too dissimiliar to the one they have now, except that instead of a trackpad in the center of the palm rest there was nothing! Well, that would be pretty stupid. What if instead of nothing, there was a hole of exactly the right size to fit their touch screen interface, iphone like thing that would then serve as the touchpad.

The is pretty boring by itself, but what cool things would that allow us to do? First, the computer could a more stripped down device, mostly just a keyboard, screen, and battery with most of the computation being done on the phone; perhaps you could offload some of the graphics to a chip in the notebook type device. Second, you would always have your computer with you. You could walk up to anyone’s empty shell of a notebook, drop your phone into the plamrest, and start doing whatever it is that you want to do. There would be no booting time because your phone is already on. Third, your notebook would automatically have access to the internet anywhere can use your phone, and you would not have to purchase some extra data service for you computer. Imagine what this would do for video conferencing.

Could this be a direction in which computing could actually make our lives simpler? Opinions?

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2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Liz Oct 19, 2008 at 4:42 pm

    That would be pretty sweet, but the only problem is that we would need to have 100 Gb memories in the phone, as well as a nice processor and ram…. maybe once we get better at miniaturizing things.

  • 2 Einstein Oct 31, 2008 at 12:37 pm

    um i think that is an excellent idea. make one for me plz?