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June 05, 2010


Apple excels at transitions. 68K to RISC, RISC to Intel, OS 9 to OS X, and now mouse+keyboard to multi-touch + something new . The key to Apple's success in transitions lies in 1. developing a clear plan and committing to it, 2. helping developers program apps to the new technology, and 3. easing users into the new technology.

I think Apple has done a brilliant job designing and committing to multi-touch on iOS over the years. And since the underlying Cocoa frameworks are very similar, if not identical, in both iOS and Mac OS X, it is relatively easy for Mac developers to transition to iOS programming. And finally, by introducing a simplified multi-touch before the full-blown version (which we likely haven't even seen yet), Apple has eased users into the concept.

All of which helped iPad launch to a ready and willing audience. If Apple had simply dumped the iPad as it is now onto the unsuspecting public in January 2007, it might have sold 2 million units in 2 years instead of 2 months. The concept would have been such a drastic leap forward that only techies could grasp it. Instead, Apple introduced a simplified iPhone multi-touch UI, which immediately spawned copycat multi-touch OSes and devices. Which both validated the concept and conditioned the world for further multi-touch innovation in iPad and likely in future products.

Just from a marketing label standpoint, maybe Apple should call their next desktop OS "11" or "XI" instead of the expected "Mac OS X 10.7". If it really does have some all-new technology, or even if it just has some multi-touch technology from iOS, maybe it's time for a new name.

The PC will not disappear. Sorry, but I'm adding workstations, not removing them. When I get an iPad it will be to compliment my work and locale, not to replace it. The same goes for the iPhone 4 when it arrives, I will let Apple bang out some of the bugs and get one when iPhone OS 4.1 arrives. It's a tool not a lifestyle.


Maybe just one post...

What a lot of people understand is that iPhone OS X is a stripped-down Mac OS X that still retains its UNIX underpinnings... You can Install and run an Apache Web server on a [JailBroken] iPhone. Yes, there are a lot of [unnecessary for mobile] things removed from iPhone OS to keep it lean and mean (mouse drivers, windows, etc). Then iPhone OS X has a few things added-- Touch Interface, Location Services, Compass, Cell radio, etc.

What many don't realize is that Mac OS X iPhone OS X is a two-way street. Many of the things that have been implemented (or re-implemented) in iPhone OS X are migrating back into Mac OS X.

At some point in time, the developer may be able to deliver an Universal app that runs on the Mac desktop, the iPhone/Touch/iPad and the AppleTV (and such).

Way to go, Jack!

This article is so loaded that I don't know where to start...

...so I'll just post links to it!

As a person with disabilities, I have long hoped for Gui 2.0. The original Mac empowered me for many years then Apple wandered away from pushing the boundaries. Now, hopefully, Apple can show once again they are the crazy ones. I am waiting for ipad 2.0 to solve some problems before I can do stuff I dreamed about for 25 years to do.

G-Speak reminds me of a theme park ride. While it may well have application in the professional 3D application area and gaming, it appears too close to Microsoft's Surface for comfort. I do agree that we are closing in on a fundamental shift which will debut as a separate OS from X on the desktop. OS X may well adopt multi-touch and other advances until it's end of life. I can see it's retirement coming and wonder what Apple will have as an alternate to it's BSD Unix foundation. That, of course, is separate from UI developments. AI will no doubt shape both.

The idea of the touch expanded keyboard in context with Apple's patent shows that they're toying with this idea. Good catch on associating the ambient light patent with gspeak's bezel admission. Very cool. likewise on the wand. Great Saturday morning read.

@Paul. Huh? I'll always want a real keyboard on my desk, thank you very much, and either creating a simulated iPod touch beside the keyboard or adding a dock (even better) would be sweet. Do away with the keyboard on the desktop, get real Paul. To each his own I suppose.

Why would Apple be impressed with or try to imitate the ASUS Keyboard? It's not portable, and merely replaces the mouse with an iPod. It implements perfectly the derivative "innovational" practices of Asustek. Apple's idea is to get rid of the keyboard and mouse interface, not institutionalize it. The agenda is to improve the virtual keyboard or replace it with spoken or icon-based-gestural inputs.

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