Thursday, November 04, 2010

When it comes to technology more seems to be less

It seems Mark Twain once said "I did not have time to write you a short letter, so I wrote you a long one instead". When it comes to technology products, a long letter does not seem to work well.

I am an early adopter of the  Tablet PC from Microsoft.I am also an early adopter of the iPad from Apple. I use the Tablet PC extensively for drawing my storyboards. The pen interface is wonderful for drawing. The tablet PC could also do everything a regular PC could do. So, for most of the time I ended up using the Tablet PC like a regular PC and I was not using it as it was supposed to be. In other words I could use it like a regular laptop and it worked fine. This abundance of usage choice, I suspect, was the reason for its demise.

The iPad on the other hand does very few things compared to the tablet PC. In fact it is very very limited when compared to a traditional laptop and yet, it redefined computing as we know it. I, and all those who use an iPad, use it in ways that we never imagined.The Apple designers, I am sure, worked very hard to eliminate functionality while making the product useful in new and compelling ways for users. In other words, they worked hard to write us a short letter. When it comes to technology products, more seems to be less now-a-days.

If you are interested in reading about the topic of choice more, there is a good book named The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz.

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