In Large Type

brilliant ideas in a big font… often gay interest or political topics.

Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

New fangled: iType

Posted by bert5 on 4 April 2010

In a parallel universe, the laptop was never invented.  Instead all we had were tablet computers where we pressed on screens to input what we wanted like we do at kiosks at the airport.  It was mightily slow, but it was all we knew and we were happy.

Then, a company called Apple comes out with a new fangled product called iType with something called a keyboard which allowed you to key in input.  It allows you to input data quickly for media creation.  There are even function keys and keyboard shortcuts to speed up interaction.  It had a large screen for media consumption.  As well, you wouldn’t have to block your screen while you were inputting data with your fat fingers and get fingerprints all over it.  The screen was held up by a hinge which through sufficient friction held the screens position relative to the keyboard plane and your head position.  Apple even licensed something from IBM called a trackpad, which allowed you to accurately point and change the computer focus so you could do more than one thing at a time: i.e. multitask.  You could surf the web, watch movies, listen to music, watch dvds, even read a book on that machine.  Now that would be an mind-blowing machine.  I wish we had those in our universe and a great amazing company called Apple to invent that thing.

Now, okay, you’re right the sarcasm is unwarranted.  Many people never learn to type properly and many get confused doing more than one thing at a time.  They don’t care to surf too much, they just want the simplest possible interface to the web without the hassles that even a modern computer has which we (tech savvy folks) sort of take as normal: the viruses, the crashes, and the idiosyncrasies of web-browsers.  So Apple has come up with a simpler computer appliance which expands the customer base for computers.  Brilliant.  Apple is obviously not run by an engineer.  As an engineer,  I wouldn’t have thought of dumbing down a computer.

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And now there is evidence that tablets cause neck injury:  http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/05/07/really-using-an-ipad-can-strain-your-neck/?partner=rss&emc=rss

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Millennials, damn them and their TV shows to hell

Posted by bert5 on 26 May 2008

There was a kind of informative piece about the group previously known as Generation Y on 60 minutes. They’re the boomers kids. I would actually put GenX, my generation, a little at odds with GenY. Millennials are the coddled children of the boomers who actually value family (yeah right) and are sickeningly friendly with their parents. GenXers are known as the drugged out disaffected, cynical, atheistic results of broken and divorced homes who are lacking in identity because of their small numbers and small visibility. If I go to TV show stereotypes, are Friends, Seinfeld, Simpsons, Will & Grace GenX representations? If so, is GenY represented by reality shows or complex serials: 24, Survivor, American Idol?

I’m not sure why I don’t like the new TV, is it a culture conflict? Perhaps it’s just too inefficient. I mean what crazy person makes watching TV into work? TV addicts, that’s who. I like to be able to understand a story without investing too much. I can’t commit myself to watching something unless I really like it, and I can’t really like something without understanding it. So, basically the new television doesn’t work for me. I guess since my demographic is small, no one will go back to the old simple, mindless, but entertaining TV.

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Google’s Kaizen

Posted by bert5 on 8 May 2008

One of the things that has impressed me about Google is the ability to constantly update its services, but almost always improve them, and sometimes dramatically. Recently, they added a feature to Reader to share items on a feed, and then a few days ago to add a note to items being shared. All of this is done in a minimalistic way, with a simple interface. Contrast this with Microsoft, Yahoo or Facebook. Microsoft updates Windows or Office and invariably makes them worse. Yahoo updates Mail to be more outlook-like, but makes it agonizingly slow and full of banner ads which take up valuable screen real estate. My Yahoo! always reports the wrong number of e-mail messages waiting. I’ve wasted so much time pulling up the website only to find no new e-mail. [I’ve since found out that using one of the links to top level mail box instead of directly going into the inbox folder clears the mail indicator.]  Facebook changes their feed import mechanism and limits the ability to preview the content or removes hyper links in imported blog feeds.

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Another iPod

Posted by bert5 on 28 October 2007

Actually, I don’t like them that much. Obviously the cost is one thing. You can get a plain vanilla MP3/WMA player much more cheaply. The other thing is the iTunes software is crappy. As I’ve written on my other product blog, it’s pretty counter-intuitive. The little check box, what the hell is that? Only after asking other people — read: crazy iPod lovers — did I realize it means to sync or not to sync on an iPod. Idiotic. Perhaps Read the rest of this entry »

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Solar power versus sugar based biofuels

Posted by bert5 on 23 October 2007

I was just watching a PBS program on solar power. And I wondered whether biological processes such as photosynthesis creating sugars will always be more efficient than man-made solar cells. I.e. would it make sense to just plant and care for forests to get rid of carbon dioxide and create energy rather than build solar cells to prevent global warming. I suppose solar cells can collect power in places without much water where no forest or crops could possibly survive.

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Spent 20% of the time on a project you’re passionate about

Posted by bert5 on 20 October 2007

NYT  Everyone knows this by now about Google.  But sounds like a good thing despite the hype.  But not everyone can work at Google…

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Family gathering brings technology demands

Posted by bert5 on 27 August 2007

Link  This is funny!  House guests need to surf, print, and plug-in.

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Cellphone only, no landline

Posted by bert5 on 26 August 2007

Link There are also people who have a landline but no cellphone. But just recently the cellphone only crowd now exceeds the landline only crowd. Of course, most people have both. I switched from one extreme to the other recently.

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