MacBook Air

15 Jan 2008 - 1:45pm
6 years ago
71 replies
1477 reads
Murli Nagasundaram
2007

There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
got a glimpse of MBA today:

http://www.apple.com/macbookair/

Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be appreciated.

Another issue -- there are some similarities here to the design
parameters for the Tata Nano -- strip the dang thing down to its
essence. MBA, of course, has a more elitist market than the Nano.
There's unlikely to be any issues raised regarding the possible
downsides of proliferating the Air. Incidentally, Apple claims that
they've gone the extra mile in making the Air eco-friendly (in
disposal).

Thanks.

Murli

Comments

15 Jan 2008 - 2:02pm
Todd Warfel
2003

I just blogged a short summary of the wicked feat of engineering after
following the MacWorld Keynote http://toddwarfel.com/archives/macbook-air/
.

It's really quite brilliant—no ethernet, no CD/DVD-R drive. It's meant
as a totally wireless machine. And if you're concerned about the lack
of an optical drive, Apple's handled that w/a new software feature
that allows you to mount an optical drive from another machine, Mac/
PC, for installing software.

On Jan 15, 2008, at 1:45 PM, Murli Nagasundaram wrote:

> There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
> got a glimpse of MBA today:
>
> http://www.apple.com/macbookair/
>
> Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be
> appreciated.

Cheers!

Todd Zaki Warfel
President, Design Researcher
Messagefirst | Designing Information. Beautifully.
----------------------------------
Contact Info
Voice: (215) 825-7423
Email: todd at messagefirst.com
AIM: twarfel at mac.com
Blog: http://toddwarfel.com
----------------------------------
In theory, theory and practice are the same.
In practice, they are not.

15 Jan 2008 - 2:45pm
Mark Schraad
2006

I spent the majority of the last 5 years as a nomad. Living in more than one city (at the same time), with multiple offices and spending time on a couple of campuses. I need the full capabilities of a laptop and design station with all files and applications where ever I went - sometimes even in my car. Mac Books are wonderful for that. This new computer looks to be able to handle everything I now need in a situation away from home or the office. My only reservations is a back up plan for wireless problems. Maybe a USB network adapter would work... or I will just have to learn to let go.

Mark

On Tuesday, January 15, 2008, at 02:02PM, "Todd Zaki Warfel" <lists at toddwarfel.com> wrote:
>I just blogged a short summary of the wicked feat of engineering after
>following the MacWorld Keynote http://toddwarfel.com/archives/macbook-air/
>.
>
>It's really quite brilliant?no ethernet, no CD/DVD-R drive. It's meant
>as a totally wireless machine. And if you're concerned about the lack
>of an optical drive, Apple's handled that w/a new software feature
>that allows you to mount an optical drive from another machine, Mac/
>PC, for installing software.
>
>On Jan 15, 2008, at 1:45 PM, Murli Nagasundaram wrote:
>
>> There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
>> got a glimpse of MBA today:
>>
>> http://www.apple.com/macbookair/
>>
>> Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be
>> appreciated.

15 Jan 2008 - 3:46pm
Dave Malouf
2005

I'd want a 3G/EVDO card.
-- dave

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=24564

15 Jan 2008 - 4:06pm
Ari
2006

they tend to be faster in theory than in practice. i have a VZW EVDO rev A
card and you roll the dice with regards to throughput. sometimes
14.4kbsmodems are faster!

On Tue, 15 Jan 2008 12:46:37, dave malouf <dave at ixda.org> wrote:
>
> I'd want a 3G/EVDO card.
> -- dave
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the new ixda.org
> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=24564
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
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>
> ________________________________________________________________
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--------------------------------------------------
www.flyingyogi.com
--------------------------------------------------

15 Jan 2008 - 4:17pm
Dave Malouf
2005

Oh! I wasn't saying that I want it instead of WiFi. I was saying that I
would it instead of a LAN line. WLAN + WAN is good enough for me in 90% of
my situations.

I see the AIR as a great Design Manager machine, or a supplemental laptop
for production designer. It could be good for office and educational
professionals as well.

-- dave

On Jan 15, 2008 4:06 PM, Ari Feldman <ari1970 at gmail.com> wrote:

> they tend to be faster in theory than in practice. i have a VZW EVDO rev A
> card and you roll the dice with regards to throughput. sometimes 14.4kbsmodems are faster!
>
> On Tue, 15 Jan 2008 12:46:37, dave malouf <dave at ixda.org> wrote:
> >
> > I'd want a 3G/EVDO card.
> > -- dave
> >
> >
> > . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> > Posted from the new ixda.org
> > http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=24564
> >
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> > February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> > Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> > To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> > Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> > List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
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> >
>
>
>
> --
> --------------------------------------------------
> www.flyingyogi.com
> --------------------------------------------------
>

--
David Malouf
http://synapticburn.com/
http://ixda.org/
http://motorola.com/

15 Jan 2008 - 4:25pm
Nasir Barday
2006

There's also the option of tethering to the mobile phone in your
pocket, even via Bluetooth. Our company policy is prefers this on
company phones over buying WiFi when we travel. Works ok for
lightweight tasks, at least with T-Mobile.

I'm going to wait for the v2.0; not sure what kind of durability kinks
are there yet. Also, I wonder if a 80GB hard drive is enough for a
design machine. Tho at 1200 x 800 pixels, probably not a good idea to
run Adobe CS3 anyway ...

- Nasir

15 Jan 2008 - 4:30pm
Matt Nish-Lapidus
2007

I run CS3 on my current MacBook .. same screen, and it's fine for the
kind of design you'd be doing away from your desk.

80gb should be lots for a laptop too... you could always have a USB2
drive on your desk for archiving. My current MacBook only have a 60gb
drive, and it's been fine.

I'm seriously considering the Air... I was going to get the 15" Pro,
but was worried that I wouldn't like the increased size. The Air is
better overall than my MacBook, and tiny.

On Jan 15, 2008 4:25 PM, Nasir Barday <nasir at userlicious.com> wrote:
> There's also the option of tethering to the mobile phone in your
> pocket, even via Bluetooth. Our company policy is prefers this on
> company phones over buying WiFi when we travel. Works ok for
> lightweight tasks, at least with T-Mobile.
>
> I'm going to wait for the v2.0; not sure what kind of durability kinks
> are there yet. Also, I wonder if a 80GB hard drive is enough for a
> design machine. Tho at 1200 x 800 pixels, probably not a good idea to
> run Adobe CS3 anyway ...
>
> - Nasir
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
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>

--
Matt Nish-Lapidus
work: matt at bibliocommons.com / www.bibliocommons.com
--
personal: mattnl at gmail.com / www.nishlapidus.com

15 Jan 2008 - 4:30pm
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

I'm just waiting for the announcement that Adobe is suing Apple or
vice versa over the "Air" brand name.

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

15 Jan 2008 - 4:41pm
Christian Crumlish
2006

On Jan 15, 2008 1:30 PM, Andrei Herasimchuk
<andrei at involutionstudios.com> wrote:
> I'm just waiting for the announcement that Adobe is suing Apple or
> vice versa over the "Air" brand name.

My thoughts exactly. It could be worse, though. If it were Microsoft
Air we'd all have to get a license to breathe.

--xian

p.s.: then there's Nike too, right?
--
Some people say not to worry 'bout the air
Some people never had experience with... air
--David Byrne

15 Jan 2008 - 4:48pm
Robert Hoekman, Jr.
2005

And for your gestural interface geeks, check out this blurb from the landing
page<http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/wa/RSLID?nnmm=browse&mco=7B723660&node=home/shop_mac/family/macbook_air>
:

=====================
The genius of multi-touch

The MacBook Air trackpad adopts many of the innovative multi-touch gestures
from the Apple iPhone, so you can pinch, swipe or rotate by simply moving
your fingers.
=====================
Nice.

-r-

15 Jan 2008 - 4:41pm
Angel Marquez
2008

I personally like where they are going with this new product and
thought the same off the cuff about the "AIR" tag. I'm reading Defying
Gravity at the moment and it is a good read on the Newton dev back in
the 90's. Being Silicon Valley native I have a warm spot in my heart
for Apple products. I'm a current owner of the MacBookPro and have no
complaints.

BUT
Here's what a current SV friend of mine had to say about the Air:

gimmicky. and acting like drive-sharing is new.. pssh. just say we
went with aesthetics over functionality, and that's why you get jipped
out of a dvd-rw dl

15 Jan 2008 - 4:52pm
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

On Jan 15, 2008, at 1:48 PM, Robert Hoekman, Jr. wrote:

> And for your gestural interface geeks, check out this blurb from
> the landing
> page<http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/
> AppleStore.woa/wa/RSLID?nnmm=browse&mco=7B723660&node=home/shop_mac/
> family/macbook_air>
> :
> =====================
> The genius of multi-touch
>
> The MacBook Air trackpad adopts many of the innovative multi-touch
> gestures
> from the Apple iPhone, so you can pinch, swipe or rotate by simply
> moving
> your fingers.
> =====================
> Nice.
>
> -r-

It's nice until you want to use them for your own products because
Apple is claiming patents on gestures.

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

15 Jan 2008 - 4:56pm
Dane Storrusten...
2008

Being a multi-touch advocate and student, I find it to be a haphazard value to use iPhone multi-touch gestures on a trackpad. That seems like a step backwards to me. They started out with direct touch on the phone surface with iPhone, and now the experience is disconnected because users are interacting with a trackpad instead of directly on-screen.

This is a perfect example of why natural and direct is the value, not multi-touch technology. My 2 cents.

I am interested to use it. Apple is always good at surprising me :)
________________________________________________________________
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15 Jan 2008 - 5:26pm
.pauric
2006

Dane: "They started out with direct touch on the phone surface with
iPhone, and now the experience is disconnected because users are
interacting with a trackpad instead of directly on-screen."

Thats interesting Dane, do you think that making the screen touch
sensitive would have been a better interaction on a laptop?

Obviously I cant speak from experience but it would seem more natural
to keep multi point hand input to the horizontal plane, I would guess
it gets tiring if forced to bend the wrist up to the vertical screen
to input

your thoughts?

fyi: http://www.hackszine.com/blog/archive/2007/12/howto_add_a_touch_screen_to_th.html

thanks - pauric

also, not to sound like a broken record, but integrated battery??
That alone is a huge show stopper for any remote work. One of the
killer features of my g4 powerbook is the hotswap battery option. And
am I to assume the unit must be returned after the battery stop
charging after ~1000 cycles? They did this with the iPhone, I guess
they dont anticipate much user pain.

15 Jan 2008 - 6:34pm
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

On Jan 15, 2008, at 2:26 PM, pauric wrote:

> also, not to sound like a broken record, but integrated battery??
> That alone is a huge show stopper for any remote work. One of the
> killer features of my g4 powerbook is the hotswap battery option. And
> am I to assume the unit must be returned after the battery stop
> charging after ~1000 cycles? They did this with the iPhone, I guess
> they dont anticipate much user pain.

A little while back, David Malouf mentioned that building products
based on technology, not on user requirements, yields good results.
(And I quipped that for that very reason I find "user centered
design" to be an inherently flawed term and approach to product
design.) Apple is classic at doing this and have done so since they
started making computers way back in the day. They build a lot of
products based on an idea or strong concept, user needs or
requirements be damned. And it's largely how they get innovation.

If you watch the promo video on Apple.com, you'll hear the guy in the
presentation talk about Wireless computing. That was the idea this
time it seems. How do you make a laptop that is truly small, thin and
all that which makes it perfect for traveling and moving around,
assuming it is optimized for wireless use. Why do that? Because
wireless is where the world is going and Apple is pressing forward
regardless if everything is in place yet or not.

The MacBook Air is about wireless computing with a razor thin
footprint, and in that regard, anything that added to the system that
bogged that goal down was tossed aside, to be figured out later.
Apple has done this so many times in the past, and sometimes it works
and sometime it doesn't. But what it does get them is all sorts of
unique innovations and design that keeps them ahead of everyone else.

I won't be getting a MacBook Air because I need a laptop that is also
my workhorse design machine that I take with me everywhere. But the
MacBook Air is pretty damn cool and should get a lot of use as a
laptop for folks who only need consumer level applications (like
iLife and iTunes), email and internet connectivity, integrated
battery be damned.

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

15 Jan 2008 - 7:12pm
Mark Schraad
2006

I don't agree with how you have framed the product or the
relationship between tech driven product and UCD. The negative side
of tech driven product, and in fact the counter position to UCD,
would be that either technology was placed in the product 'because
they could', or that the tech spec drove the interface. In the case
of the later, the VCR display is the classic example, with both a
display and interfaces driven by maximum functionality and not by
usability. I see no such examples in the case of the AIR. If you back
track the features, they are perfectly reasonable, user driven
feature that take advantage of the most recent affordable technology
(affordable comes into question when considering the solid state drive).

I have no insight into whether apple has any notion of UCD process at
work. But designing with the latest technology for both performance
as well as competitive reasons, is certainly not in conflict with
UCD. User needs (wireless computing) are clearly driving the design.

Mark

On Jan 15, 2008, at 6:34 PM, Andrei Herasimchuk wrote:

> On Jan 15, 2008, at 2:26 PM, pauric wrote:
>
>> also, not to sound like a broken record, but integrated battery??
>> That alone is a huge show stopper for any remote work. One of the
>> killer features of my g4 powerbook is the hotswap battery option.
>> And
>> am I to assume the unit must be returned after the battery stop
>> charging after ~1000 cycles? They did this with the iPhone, I guess
>> they dont anticipate much user pain.
>
> A little while back, David Malouf mentioned that building products
> based on technology, not on user requirements, yields good results.
> (And I quipped that for that very reason I find "user centered
> design" to be an inherently flawed term and approach to product
> design.) Apple is classic at doing this and have done so since they
> started making computers way back in the day. They build a lot of
> products based on an idea or strong concept, user needs or
> requirements be damned. And it's largely how they get innovation.
>
> If you watch the promo video on Apple.com, you'll hear the guy in the
> presentation talk about Wireless computing. That was the idea this
> time it seems. How do you make a laptop that is truly small, thin and
> all that which makes it perfect for traveling and moving around,
> assuming it is optimized for wireless use. Why do that? Because
> wireless is where the world is going and Apple is pressing forward
> regardless if everything is in place yet or not.
>
> The MacBook Air is about wireless computing with a razor thin
> footprint, and in that regard, anything that added to the system that
> bogged that goal down was tossed aside, to be figured out later.
> Apple has done this so many times in the past, and sometimes it works
> and sometime it doesn't. But what it does get them is all sorts of
> unique innovations and design that keeps them ahead of everyone else.
>
> I won't be getting a MacBook Air because I need a laptop that is also
> my workhorse design machine that I take with me everywhere. But the
> MacBook Air is pretty damn cool and should get a lot of use as a
> laptop for folks who only need consumer level applications (like
> iLife and iTunes), email and internet connectivity, integrated
> battery be damned.
>
> --
> Andrei Herasimchuk
>
> Principal, Involution Studios
> innovating the digital world
>
> e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
> c. +1 408 306 6422
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
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15 Jan 2008 - 8:30pm
.pauric
2006

Andrei: "A little while back, David Malouf mentioned that building
products based on technology, not on user requirements, yields good
results. Apple is classic at doing this..."

I'm not so sure, nor that they are even innovating technology.
Stunningly thinner is not innovation, its natural progress. The
multitouch pad is innovative, but thats not why people are going to
buy this product imho.

To me, at a general level; UCD is about understanding needs, technical
innovation is about creating new markets, mostly... but the Air is
another great example of Apple designing a product that plays to our
innate irrational desires

I recently happened across a BBC documentary called century of the self
http://www.archive.org/search.php?query=century%20of%20the%20self
"The Century of the Self asks deeper questions about the roots and
methods of modern consumerism. It also questions the modern way we see
ourselves, the attitude to fashion and superficiality."

I HIGHLY recommend the series, the hands down best documentary I've
seen in recent years.

15 Jan 2008 - 6:36pm
Dane Storrusten...
2008

Hey Pauric -

"...but it would seem more natural
to keep multi point hand input to the horizontal plane, I would guess
it gets tiring if forced to bend the wrist up to the vertical screen
to input"

I think this is a good point in context to their specific solution. First off, I am not their target user nor the best person to speak for the masses :) But, my main point I guess is that it is an inconsistent model and it seems they are doing everything they can to shoehorn multi-touch in anywhere they can... and that this is a mediocre step to me.

Also, I don't think the horizontal plane is necessarily better for touch input (even though I should be biased with Surface:). Horizontal, diagonal, and vertical planes can all be useful for touch input I believe.

However, your response actually changes my mind to ask, is a laptop the best device to shoehorn multi-touch into? Probably not as long as we have OS's optimized for keyboard + mouse. It seems inconsistent with the iPhone is my biggest itch I suppose.

They didn't take just a regular mobile phone and just make the screen touch sensitive, they removed almost all physical UI (keypad, keyboard, lock, etc.) and turned into a direct "touch-screen" experience... a great leap in 'natural' user experience for the masses!

Then, they take a normal laptop with a very legacy interaction model (i.e. keyboard, trackpad, and fold-over display etc.) and simply add multi-touch to the trackpad? An indirect experience and shortcut. An better equivalent solution could be to take a tablet PC with a pivoting display and allow it to become a keyboard-less flat display you could set at any angle, then add a direct multi-touch screen. However, this isn't necessarily a winner either because the OS/software isn't optimized for it. (i.e. Lenovo Thinkpad x61 Multi-touch notebook)

My 2 cents... Thoughts?

________________________________________________________________
*Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/

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15 Jan 2008 - 5:29pm
Steve Ballard
2008

Hmm. I don't know, I really like the current gestures for two finger
scrolling on the current MacBook. I can imagine swiping your index
finger around your thumb for rotating and the "iPhone pinch" for
zoom. As for the disconnect from direct manipulation, that is
something we've been dealing with forever and It seems we've found
that users prefer simulated direct manipulation (gesture based via
mouse or trackpad). Right now we click-drag a handle to rotate
because it is the best mapping we've had. I think this is a step
forward for the laptop trackpad, and yes a step back from the iPhone.

I don't know if we're ready to throw away the keyboard and trackpad
and opt for the multi-touch laptop screen. Though maybe someday :-)

On Jan 15, 2008, at 2:56 PM, Dane Storrusten wrote:

> Being a multi-touch advocate and student, I find it to be a
> haphazard value to use iPhone multi-touch gestures on a trackpad.
> That seems like a step backwards to me. They started out with
> direct touch on the phone surface with iPhone, and now the
> experience is disconnected because users are interacting with a
> trackpad instead of directly on-screen.
>
> This is a perfect example of why natural and direct is the value,
> not multi-touch technology. My 2 cents.
>
> I am interested to use it. Apple is always good at surprising me :)
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
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15 Jan 2008 - 9:06pm
Nasir Barday
2006

Mark said:
>> I have no insight into whether apple has any notion of
>> UCD process at work.

Apple doesn't use UCD; Lots of genius design. It shows in the
products, too; their solutions, while quite elegant, sometimes
surprisingly get things wrong (fodder for a separate thread).

But the Air wasn't designed around the faux goal of "wireless
computing." Air caters to the insight that the average consumer
doesn't need a lot to a) browse the web, b) manage photos, and c)
otherwise have fun. During ideation, Apple must have stripped
everything away and added back only what was essential to the
on-the-go person who wants their computer not to get in their way.
Hence the use of untethered wireless that allows people to be
on-the-go-able at moment's notice.

How often does someone on the go need an optical drive when away from
home? (hardly ever)
What kinds of peripherals do on-the-go people connect to their
laptops? (projectors, Flash Drives, maybe the odd printer)

It would be so great to see a design story from a current or former
Apple-head on a blog or through a talk. Just throwing that out there
if any of you are on this list ...

- Nasir

15 Jan 2008 - 9:18pm
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

On Jan 15, 2008, at 6:06 PM, Nasir Barday wrote:

> But the Air wasn't designed around the faux goal of "wireless
> computing." Air caters to the insight that the average consumer
> doesn't need a lot to a) browse the web, b) manage photos, and c)
> otherwise have fun. During ideation, Apple must have stripped
> everything away and added back only what was essential to the
> on-the-go person who wants their computer not to get in their way.
> Hence the use of untethered wireless that allows people to be
> on-the-go-able at moment's notice.

Agreed. I was using the shortcut "wireless" term which is used in the
promo video to mean the things you are saying more explicitly. Apple
used the term for marketing purpose, and I was using it to mean "on
the go." Being on the go pretty much requires being wireless, even
down to not using a mouse attached to your laptop.

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

15 Jan 2008 - 9:19pm
Nasir Barday
2006

I don't think multi-touch was "shoehorned" into the Air.

Thinking practically, requiring users to physically touch the display
on an already light devicee would probably cause it to tilt backward
without counterweight in the base, which would contradict catering to
the requirement of the on-the-go person for light weight.

The best way to integrate those novel interactions was to use the
already existing touchpad. I feel like once people use it, it'll make
sense. Do you really need to put your fingers on a photo or an app
window to feel sufficiently connected to the interaction? You're
already using a desktop OS ...

- N

15 Jan 2008 - 9:24pm
Nasir Barday
2006

I should also add that I'm a Windows user in the process of adding OS
X to my toolkit, but haven't found the right machine(s) yet. Phones
and laptops burn through batteries in a year. I don't get what having
sealed, non-user replaceable batteries caters to other than
prematurely planned obsolescence. Strikes me as arrogant.

Any ideas?

- Nasir

15 Jan 2008 - 9:29pm
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

On Jan 15, 2008, at 5:30 PM, pauric wrote:

> I'm not so sure, nor that they are even innovating technology.
> Stunningly thinner is not innovation, its natural progress. The
> multitouch pad is innovative, but thats not why people are going to
> buy this product imho.

Stunningly thinner is innovation. If it weren't everyone else would
be doing it as well all of the time.

On the other hand, the multi-touch trackpad is not quite that
innovative as implemented in Air. It's the same trackpad on the
current laptop from what I can tell but with new gestures added to
map to more existing keyboard shortcuts in an attempt to create
cohesion with the innovation of the multi-touch display interface on
the iPhone. And it's a damn smart move and creates a product family
feel to the Apple product line.

Notice how when "resizing fonts" in Safari in the Air demo using the
trackpad pinch gesture, it's the equivalent of hitting Cmd + or Cmd -
and it's not dynamically scaling the display like it does on the
iPhone. The gesture also is not track in quite the same way as the
iPhone either. They are just mapping more gesture interactions as
defined with the iPhone with existing keyboard shortcuts for existing
software, and that's a good idea because the MacBook Air is supposed
to be best used without a bunch of stuff attached to it. The wireless
on the go type of stuff.

Sure, the gestures are disconnected from the display on the Air,
unlike the iPhone, but the gestures are incredibly helpful in making
the laptop require less mouse interaction for all purpose actions.
That's a good thing and furthers the goal of making the Air a
wireless laptop that doesn't need a lot of stuff attached to it for
on the go type of computing.

> To me, at a general level; UCD is about understanding needs, technical
> innovation is about creating new markets, mostly...

If UCD is about things other than the user, why on earth is the term
called "user centered?"

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

15 Jan 2008 - 9:30pm
dszuc
2005

Like the idea of getting an Apple laptop experience without having to
lug/shlep around a brick.

The thing I marvel at most times Apple make an announcement is the
consumer feel of the products. Not just a piece of hard technology
with specifications that people dont understand, but something that
makes you say and start with "hey, I want one and it looks nice" (its
like Xmas morning for grown ups)

Its been said, but I will say it again - They are also doing a lovely
job of bringing together their whole product eco system, advertising
and user experience (across products, services and retail). How many
other companies are doing this well today?

rgds,
Dan

Daniel Szuc
Principal Usability Consultant
www.apogeehk.com
T: +852 2581 2166
F: +852 2833 2961
"Usability in Asia"

The Usability Kit - www.theusabilitykit.com

On 16/01/2008, at 10:06 AM, Nasir Barday wrote:

> Mark said:
>>> I have no insight into whether apple has any notion of
>>> UCD process at work.
>
> Apple doesn't use UCD; Lots of genius design. It shows in the
> products, too; their solutions, while quite elegant, sometimes
> surprisingly get things wrong (fodder for a separate thread).
>
> But the Air wasn't designed around the faux goal of "wireless
> computing." Air caters to the insight that the average consumer
> doesn't need a lot to a) browse the web, b) manage photos, and c)
> otherwise have fun. During ideation, Apple must have stripped
> everything away and added back only what was essential to the
> on-the-go person who wants their computer not to get in their way.
> Hence the use of untethered wireless that allows people to be
> on-the-go-able at moment's notice.
>
> How often does someone on the go need an optical drive when away from
> home? (hardly ever)
> What kinds of peripherals do on-the-go people connect to their
> laptops? (projectors, Flash Drives, maybe the odd printer)
>
> It would be so great to see a design story from a current or former
> Apple-head on a blog or through a talk. Just throwing that out there
> if any of you are on this list ...
>
> - Nasir
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help

15 Jan 2008 - 9:31pm
Todd Warfel
2003

I've been a notebook as my primary machine person for about six years
now. In all that time, I've never once replaced a battery. Previously,
I replaced my notebook every three years or so. Now, I replace them
about every 18 months, buying them with our developer's license and
then selling them 18 months later or so for a little less than I paid
for it to keep current.

On Jan 15, 2008, at 9:24 PM, Nasir Barday wrote:

> I should also add that I'm a Windows user in the process of adding OS
> X to my toolkit, but haven't found the right machine(s) yet. Phones
> and laptops burn through batteries in a year. I don't get what having
> sealed, non-user replaceable batteries caters to other than
> prematurely planned obsolescence. Strikes me as arrogant.
>
> Any ideas?

Cheers!

Todd Zaki Warfel
President, Design Researcher
Messagefirst | Designing Information. Beautifully.
----------------------------------
Contact Info
Voice: (215) 825-7423
Email: todd at messagefirst.com
AIM: twarfel at mac.com
Blog: http://toddwarfel.com
----------------------------------
In theory, theory and practice are the same.
In practice, they are not.

15 Jan 2008 - 9:32pm
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

On Jan 15, 2008, at 6:24 PM, Nasir Barday wrote:

> I should also add that I'm a Windows user in the process of adding OS
> X to my toolkit, but haven't found the right machine(s) yet. Phones
> and laptops burn through batteries in a year. I don't get what having
> sealed, non-user replaceable batteries caters to other than
> prematurely planned obsolescence. Strikes me as arrogant.

I have to believe it's a technical limitation in the hardware design.
To get the thin footprint that is. If they could have gotten a
detachable battery with the same footprint, they would have.

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

15 Jan 2008 - 10:00pm
Nasir Barday
2006

To paraphrase an old school hip-hop track: "It's all about the haptic
feedback, baby"

People are able to deal with the lack of tactile feedback on the
iPhone keyboard because they compare the soft keyboard, clever
workarounds and all, simply to other smartphone keyboards: they
usually have their eyes on their phone while typing anyway.

I'd hypothesize that for intensive typing on a QWERTY keyboard, your
fingers need to know where they are, and that they've successfully
typed each letter. So it is a challenge to replace the hardware QWERTY
keyboard for this type of application.

Then again, I was all about haptic feedback for the iPhone keyboard
when it came out, too ...

- N

15 Jan 2008 - 10:20pm
Oleh Kovalchuke
2006

Here is another good explanation of cultish following of Apple's products:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbeOUOd8kvM - marketing to desire to belong
(Maslow's "Love" and "Self-Esteem") with an implication of creativity
(Maslow's "Self-Actualization"). iPod is mentioned in this clip.

>From another good documentary "The Persuaders" (not as good as this and
others series by Curtis).

Oleh

On Jan 15, 2008 6:30 PM, pauric <pauric at pauric.net> wrote:

> Andrei: "A little while back, David Malouf mentioned that building
> products based on technology, not on user requirements, yields good
> results. Apple is classic at doing this..."
>
> I'm not so sure, nor that they are even innovating technology.
> Stunningly thinner is not innovation, its natural progress. The
> multitouch pad is innovative, but thats not why people are going to
> buy this product imho.
>
> To me, at a general level; UCD is about understanding needs, technical
> innovation is about creating new markets, mostly... but the Air is
> another great example of Apple designing a product that plays to our
> innate irrational desires
>
> I recently happened across a BBC documentary called century of the self
> http://www.archive.org/search.php?query=century%20of%20the%20self
> "The Century of the Self asks deeper questions about the roots and
> methods of modern consumerism. It also questions the modern way we see
> ourselves, the attitude to fashion and superficiality."
>
> I HIGHLY recommend the series, the hands down best documentary I've
> seen in recent years.
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
Oleh Kovalchuke
Interaction Design is the Design of Time
http://www.tangospring.com/IxDtopicWhatIsInteractionDesign.htm

15 Jan 2008 - 11:58pm
Oleh Kovalchuke
2006

So according to the focus groups Apple owns those who "get it" -
playfulness, Linux - libertarian "community". Microsoft works hard to
maintain the cult following among engineers with the recent efforts
to "proselytize" among those, who should "get it". The question remains:
"why should they get it, if the corporation remains about the 'developers,
developers, developers, developers' (
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KMU0tzLwhbE - if you have never seen Steve
Ballmer chanting "developers", you should)?".

On Jan 15, 2008 8:20 PM, Oleh Kovalchuke <tangospring at gmail.com> wrote:

> Here is another good explanation of cultish following of Apple's products:
> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbeOUOd8kvM - marketing to desire to belong
> (Maslow's "Love" and "Self-Esteem") with an implication of creativity
> (Maslow's "Self-Actualization"). iPod is mentioned in this clip.
>
> From another good documentary "The Persuaders" (not as good as this and
> others series by Curtis).
>
> Oleh
>
> On Jan 15, 2008 6:30 PM, pauric <pauric at pauric.net> wrote:
>
> > Andrei: "A little while back, David Malouf mentioned that building
> > products based on technology, not on user requirements, yields good
> > results. Apple is classic at doing this..."
> >
> > I'm not so sure, nor that they are even innovating technology.
> > Stunningly thinner is not innovation, its natural progress. The
> > multitouch pad is innovative, but thats not why people are going to
> > buy this product imho.
> >
> > To me, at a general level; UCD is about understanding needs, technical
> > innovation is about creating new markets, mostly... but the Air is
> > another great example of Apple designing a product that plays to our
> > innate irrational desires
> >
> > I recently happened across a BBC documentary called century of the self
> > http://www.archive.org/search.php?query=century%20of%20the%20self
> > "The Century of the Self asks deeper questions about the roots and
> > methods of modern consumerism. It also questions the modern way we see
> > ourselves, the attitude to fashion and superficiality."
> >
> > I HIGHLY recommend the series, the hands down best documentary I've
> > seen in recent years.
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> > February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> > Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> > To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> > Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> > List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> > List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
> >
>
>
>
> --
>
> Oleh Kovalchuke
> Interaction Design is the Design of Time
> http://www.tangospring.com/IxDtopicWhatIsInteractionDesign.htm
>

--
Oleh Kovalchuke
Interaction Design is the Design of Time
http://www.tangospring.com/IxDtopicWhatIsInteractionDesign.htm

16 Jan 2008 - 12:35am
White, Jeff
2007

On Jan 15, 2008 9:06 PM, Nasir Barday <nasir at userlicious.com> wrote:
During ideation, Apple must have stripped
> everything away and added back only what was essential to the
> on-the-go person who wants their computer not to get in their way.

How is this not user centered?

Jeff

16 Jan 2008 - 12:47am
White, Jeff
2007

On Jan 15, 2008 9:29 PM, Andrei Herasimchuk
<andrei at involutionstudios.com> wrote:

>
> If UCD is about things other than the user, why on earth is the term
> called "user centered?"
>

Who cares?! Because it was better than "developer centered, marketing
centered, designer centered, product management centered, etc"? UCD
makes better products in the vast amount of projects in which it's
used. That's a good thing.

Are products technology centered or technology limited? Using
technology for the sake of using technology is seldom a good idea - it
has to provide some sort of value to the person using the thing. To
figure out what's of value, you can either sit in a black hole and
speculate, or you can go out and do some research and base it on that.
Speculation doesn't always fail, but it does fail much more than
basing design on the empirical evidence of how humans interact with
things. My two cents.

Jeff

16 Jan 2008 - 2:37am
Andrei Herasimchuk
2004

On Jan 15, 2008, at 9:47 PM, Jeff White wrote:

> Who cares?! Because it was better than "developer centered, marketing
> centered, designer centered, product management centered, etc"? UCD
> makes better products in the vast amount of projects in which it's
> used. That's a good thing.

People take the term "user centered" and use it to mean that the only
thing that matters in product design are users. I can't tell you how
many times I see people attempt to design products with little to no
regard to how technology actually works or what the business needs to
function for profit because they claim technology doesn't matter...
only what the users want does. Or that the users needs and wants and
desires trump the others.

Why d they do this and how do they get away with it? Because the
silly term for the process says so! It's User Centered Design after all.

To me it's as maddening as when politicians call a bill "No Child
Left Behind" or the "Clear Skies Act" when the bill itself is nothing
of the sort. So it drives me nuts when people in the design field
mislabel things. If "user centered" design is indeed not about
centering (and focusing) on users, then by all means STOP calling it
that and call it what it is already.

And FWIW.... User centered is NOT better than engineering centered or
marketing centered and doesn't make better products. It's just as
fundamentally flawed as an extreme approach to anything.

> To figure out what's of value, you can either sit in a black hole and
> speculate, or you can go out and do some research and base it on that.
> Speculation doesn't always fail, but it does fail much more than
> basing design on the empirical evidence of how humans interact with
> things. My two cents.

Obviously. But if in that research you focus everything required to
make a good product -- that being people, technology and business
needs -- you end up with better products as long as you also have the
right set of people designing and building them.

I simply call it product design. User centered is an incredibly poor
term foisted on the design world as a reaction to things that lacked
any research at all. But like all extremes, especially in labeling,
it tends to overeach.

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

16 Jan 2008 - 6:57am
Todd Warfel
2003

On Jan 15, 2008, at 10:00 PM, Nasir Barday wrote:

> I'd hypothesize that for intensive typing on a QWERTY keyboard, your
> fingers need to know where they are, and that they've successfully
> typed each letter. So it is a challenge to replace the hardware
> QWERTY keyboard for this type of application.

Back when I was in school at Cornell, we did some research on the soft
keyboards, which at the time were projected. The key reason they
failed? In their homes, most people use their laptops on their laps
either in bed or on a couch. So, projecting a keyboard on a non-flat
surface doesn't work that well.

For soft keyboards for notebooks, we'd still probably have a similar
problem at home. In the office, you're typically at a desk or table of
some sort. The angle your hands are at keep them above the keyboard.
At home, however, when sitting that little notebook on your lap
(laptop), your hands are nearly flat on the keyboard, fingers raised,
which makes a soft keyboard a bit awkward.

But keep in mind, we humans do adapt over time. After all, how many us
still write our papers and books on typewriters today?

Cheers!

Todd Zaki Warfel
President, Design Researcher
Messagefirst | Designing Information. Beautifully.
----------------------------------
Contact Info
Voice: (215) 825-7423
Email: todd at messagefirst.com
AIM: twarfel at mac.com
Blog: http://toddwarfel.com
----------------------------------
In theory, theory and practice are the same.
In practice, they are not.

16 Jan 2008 - 7:01am
Todd Warfel
2003

On Jan 16, 2008, at 2:37 AM, Andrei Herasimchuk wrote:

> I can't tell you how many times I see people attempt to design
> products with little to no regard to how technology actually works
> or what the business needs to function for profit because they claim
> technology doesn't matter... only what the users want does. Or that
> the users needs and wants and desires trump the others.

And those are people who are doing it wrong. Great design is about
balance—balance business, technology, and customer goals, which is
why, at Messagefirst, we refer to our design methodology as Goal
Oriented Data Driven design.

Cheers!

Todd Zaki Warfel
President, Design Researcher
Messagefirst | Designing Information. Beautifully.
----------------------------------
Contact Info
Voice: (215) 825-7423
Email: todd at messagefirst.com
AIM: twarfel at mac.com
Blog: http://toddwarfel.com
----------------------------------
In theory, theory and practice are the same.
In practice, they are not.

16 Jan 2008 - 7:02am
White, Jeff
2007

On Jan 16, 2008 2:37 AM, Andrei Herasimchuk
<andrei at involutionstudios.com> wrote:

>
> People take the term "user centered" and use it to mean that the only
> thing that matters in product design are users. I can't tell you how
> many times I see people attempt to design products with little to no
> regard to how technology actually works or what the business needs to
> function for profit because they claim technology doesn't matter...
> only what the users want does. Or that the users needs and wants and
> desires trump the others.
>
> Why d they do this and how do they get away with it? Because the
> silly term for the process says so! It's User Centered Design after all.

That's unfortunate. I would say those folks lack a basic understanding
of what UCD is in the first place then. It is *not* about simply
giving the user what they want. It's about finding the right balance
between all those things. That misunderstanding is usually a quick
correction if there's someone around with some good UCD chops, which
gets back to your point about the right people. Obviously, that's
always going to be the case.

>
> And FWIW.... User centered is NOT better than engineering centered or
> marketing centered and doesn't make better products. It's just as
> fundamentally flawed as an extreme approach to anything.
>

That simply has not been my experience, and this sounds more like
opinion than fact. There's been lots of research over the years
showing the value and ROI (business value! profit!) of UCD. In my
personal experience, a UCD project has always delivered better results
across the board than when engineering or marketing isolated
themselves from users and just made something based on their own
speculation or agenda.

Jeff

16 Jan 2008 - 7:49am
.pauric
2006

Dane:" But, my main point I guess is that it is an inconsistent model
and it seems they are doing everything they can to shoehorn
multi-touch in anywhere they can... and that this is a mediocre step
to me."

I agree, however, I suspect this 'step' is part of a larger roadmap
and classic new-apple roll out of piece meal innovation. One could
call it 'milking the cult'. Might end up somewhere like here:
http://www.axiotron.com/

Dane: "Also, I don't think the horizontal plane is necessarily better
for touch input (even though I should be biased with Surface: ) .
Horizontal, diagonal, and vertical planes can all be useful for touch
input I believe."

Again, I agree, but specifically I see difficulties with -multitouch-
especially pinch & stretch two of the core gestures. The thumb just
doesnt move well in that plane, not long enough.

See you at interaction08 - would like to talk more about this - p

16 Jan 2008 - 8:06am
White, Jeff
2007

On Jan 15, 2008 10:00 PM, Nasir Barday <nasir at userlicious.com> wrote:
> To paraphrase an old school hip-hop track: "It's all about the haptic
> feedback, baby"
>

That was friggin' hilarious. Thanks!

Jeff

15 Jan 2008 - 10:02pm
Andrew Milmoe
2007

It has been announced that the battery can be replaced... same $129 as a MacBook Pro, you just have to let them do it for you. (Installation is free.)

And it's a 5 hour battery! I replaced my current battery after 3 years, after I only got 45 minutes of usable time out of it... but have not touched it before or since, so it may have well been soldered in. And on a similar subject I almost never use the ethernet, I've used the PCI once, and the optical drive only for installation and the occaisonal CD burn.

I REALLY like the idea of a simple sealed case that is not going to have it's ports fill with lint, the fewer clips, ports, and moving parts the better. (Something I like about the iPhone as well.) With all the crap we have to stuff in our heads on a daily basis, simplicity has become a luxury.
-Andrew

----------------------------------------

From: Andrei Herasimchuk <andrei at involutionstudios.com>
Sent: Tuesday, January 15, 2008 6:32 PM
To: IXDA list <discuss at ixda.org>
Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] MacBook Air

On Jan 15, 2008, at 6:24 PM, Nasir Barday wrote:

> I should also add that I'm a Windows user in the process of adding OS
> X to my toolkit, but haven't found the right machine(s) yet. Phones
> and laptops burn through batteries in a year. I don't get what having
> sealed, non-user replaceable batteries caters to other than
> prematurely planned obsolescence. Strikes me as arrogant.

I have to believe it's a technical limitation in the hardware design.
To get the thin footprint that is. If they could have gotten a
detachable battery with the same footprint, they would have.

--
Andrei Herasimchuk

Principal, Involution Studios
innovating the digital world

e. andrei at involutionstudios.com
c. +1 408 306 6422

________________________________________________________________
*Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/

________________________________________________________________
Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help

15 Jan 2008 - 9:25pm
Eric Diamond
2008

I can't help but think they've missed the boat on this one. Yes, it is
beautiful and technolust-inspiring but the flaws are many. to wit:

No user-removable battery. This is a guaranteed trip to Apple in a
year or two, and when traveling, one will have to carry a dongle-
enabled external battery if one needs extra power away from a wall
outlet, 5 hours of battery life not withstanding.

External DVD drive. I remember when I had my Powerbook Duo. When
commuting I never worried about the external drive, but when traveling
I always carried it. Why? It seemed like there was always software to
install, or offload to a client or video to watch. So in the bag it
goes, along with the cable. Didn't really save much space. And then
there is the external connector--a possible failure point...unless it
is magsafe too.

A single USB port, and no firewire. This limits the disks and
peripherals you can connect to, and will inspire a plethora of USB
hubs meant for the MBA. Which will go into the bag. Again, space saving?

The RAM disk version is $3k. I'm not sure you're gonna save a lot of
weight because of the extra stuff you'll have to carry around (Is the
AC adapter as sleek?) and purchase. The Duo failed because it while it
was beautiful and cool as hell, it underperformed as laptop and was
limited as a desktop.

I can't see anyone who is in a creative field purchasing this unless
it is a luxury. I can't see this being a primary machine and at
$2k-3k, it is a very expensive peripheral. I see this as targeted
toward executives who want a sexy meeting accessory, or someone who
just uses her MBA to blog a little, and surf a lot, or a writer.

It is a beautiful machine but it smells like the Cube. It too was a
beautiful, limited machine, a feat of engineering. But with the lack
of expandability and it's cost, people could not justify it. It died,
as did the 10th anniversary mac, the other "executive" mac. It's
really funny but Apple from time to time comes out with these products
that are meant to show off their engineering prowess, but don't really
address that sweet spot intersection between cost, utility and
aesthetics. Each time they do, the product usually fails, but serves
to inform other products. For example:

Failure: Apple Lisa
Value: Precursor to the Mac, proved the concept of GUI interfaces and
the mouse
Evolution: Mac Plus

Failure: Macintosh Portable
Value: Introduced the trackball
Evolution: Powerbook

Failure: Mac 10th anniversary edition
Value: First example of a vertical computer built around a screen
Evolution: iMac G5 and later

Failure: Cube
Value: Compact design, fanless ducting, limited technology, desktop
eye candy
Evolution: Mac Mini

Failure: Newton
Value: PDA, synchronization, touch screen
Evolution: iPhone

In each case the failed product was sexy and groundbreaking, but
failed to meet a need. I can't help thinking that is what happened
with the Air.

From a strategic perspective they targeted the wrong target. Instead
of out Vaio-ing the Vaio, they should have targeted and out eee'd the
eeePC. Small, light, Linux capable and cheap. ($400) An excellent
machine that bridges the gap between smartphone and laptop. Imagine
the eeePC running OS X with a svelte polycarbonate shell with aluminum
trim. I'd jump on it in a second, just to have something with me at
all times. For $400 it is a no brainer, but for $2k? I'd have a hard
time justifying it and I think others will too. I'll have to let the
Air breeze by.

Now of course, I'll be proved completely wrong, and it will be a
raging success and I'll feel really dumb about this email. But that's
Karma, and she's a tough old broad. :-)

---
Eric Diamond
F I R S T W A T E R
strategic design + planning

847 674 6568 office
847 414 6467 mobile
847 380 1887 SkypeIn
ericdiamondmm AIM, Skype

On Jan 15, 2008, at 12:45 PM, Murli Nagasundaram wrote:

> There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
> got a glimpse of MBA today:
>
> http://www.apple.com/macbookair/
>
> Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be
> appreciated.
>
> Another issue -- there are some similarities here to the design
> parameters for the Tata Nano -- strip the dang thing down to its
> essence. MBA, of course, has a more elitist market than the Nano.
> There's unlikely to be any issues raised regarding the possible
> downsides of proliferating the Air. Incidentally, Apple claims that
> they've gone the extra mile in making the Air eco-friendly (in
> disposal).
>
> Thanks.
>
> Murli
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help

16 Jan 2008 - 12:02pm
Ari
2006

i concur. this has cube written all over it.
the new macbooks are a much better value. space and weight are important but
for $1799, you can damn near buy a refurb core duo 2 macbook pro with 2GB of
RAM and 40% better performance plus much more expandability.

the macbook air is a design achievement but seems more of a toy for the
affluent than those who work for their money or just want the latest toy.

On 1/15/08, Diamond Eric <eric.diamond at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I can't help but think they've missed the boat on this one. Yes, it is
> beautiful and technolust-inspiring but the flaws are many. to wit:
>
> No user-removable battery. This is a guaranteed trip to Apple in a
> year or two, and when traveling, one will have to carry a dongle-
> enabled external battery if one needs extra power away from a wall
> outlet, 5 hours of battery life not withstanding.
>
> External DVD drive. I remember when I had my Powerbook Duo. When
> commuting I never worried about the external drive, but when traveling
> I always carried it. Why? It seemed like there was always software to
> install, or offload to a client or video to watch. So in the bag it
> goes, along with the cable. Didn't really save much space. And then
> there is the external connector--a possible failure point...unless it
> is magsafe too.
>
> A single USB port, and no firewire. This limits the disks and
> peripherals you can connect to, and will inspire a plethora of USB
> hubs meant for the MBA. Which will go into the bag. Again, space saving?
>
> The RAM disk version is $3k. I'm not sure you're gonna save a lot of
> weight because of the extra stuff you'll have to carry around (Is the
> AC adapter as sleek?) and purchase. The Duo failed because it while it
> was beautiful and cool as hell, it underperformed as laptop and was
> limited as a desktop.
>
> I can't see anyone who is in a creative field purchasing this unless
> it is a luxury. I can't see this being a primary machine and at
> $2k-3k, it is a very expensive peripheral. I see this as targeted
> toward executives who want a sexy meeting accessory, or someone who
> just uses her MBA to blog a little, and surf a lot, or a writer.
>
> It is a beautiful machine but it smells like the Cube. It too was a
> beautiful, limited machine, a feat of engineering. But with the lack
> of expandability and it's cost, people could not justify it. It died,
> as did the 10th anniversary mac, the other "executive" mac. It's
> really funny but Apple from time to time comes out with these products
> that are meant to show off their engineering prowess, but don't really
> address that sweet spot intersection between cost, utility and
> aesthetics. Each time they do, the product usually fails, but serves
> to inform other products. For example:
>
> Failure: Apple Lisa
> Value: Precursor to the Mac, proved the concept of GUI interfaces and
> the mouse
> Evolution: Mac Plus
>
> Failure: Macintosh Portable
> Value: Introduced the trackball
> Evolution: Powerbook
>
> Failure: Mac 10th anniversary edition
> Value: First example of a vertical computer built around a screen
> Evolution: iMac G5 and later
>
> Failure: Cube
> Value: Compact design, fanless ducting, limited technology, desktop
> eye candy
> Evolution: Mac Mini
>
> Failure: Newton
> Value: PDA, synchronization, touch screen
> Evolution: iPhone
>
> In each case the failed product was sexy and groundbreaking, but
> failed to meet a need. I can't help thinking that is what happened
> with the Air.
>
> From a strategic perspective they targeted the wrong target. Instead
> of out Vaio-ing the Vaio, they should have targeted and out eee'd the
> eeePC. Small, light, Linux capable and cheap. ($400) An excellent
> machine that bridges the gap between smartphone and laptop. Imagine
> the eeePC running OS X with a svelte polycarbonate shell with aluminum
> trim. I'd jump on it in a second, just to have something with me at
> all times. For $400 it is a no brainer, but for $2k? I'd have a hard
> time justifying it and I think others will too. I'll have to let the
> Air breeze by.
>
> Now of course, I'll be proved completely wrong, and it will be a
> raging success and I'll feel really dumb about this email. But that's
> Karma, and she's a tough old broad. :-)
>
> ---
> Eric Diamond
> F I R S T W A T E R
> strategic design + planning
>
> 847 674 6568 office
> 847 414 6467 mobile
> 847 380 1887 SkypeIn
> ericdiamondmm AIM, Skype
>
>
>
> On Jan 15, 2008, at 12:45 PM, Murli Nagasundaram wrote:
>
> > There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
> > got a glimpse of MBA today:
> >
> > http://www.apple.com/macbookair/
> >
> > Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be
> > appreciated.
> >
> > Another issue -- there are some similarities here to the design
> > parameters for the Tata Nano -- strip the dang thing down to its
> > essence. MBA, of course, has a more elitist market than the Nano.
> > There's unlikely to be any issues raised regarding the possible
> > downsides of proliferating the Air. Incidentally, Apple claims that
> > they've gone the extra mile in making the Air eco-friendly (in
> > disposal).
> >
> > Thanks.
> >
> > Murli
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> > February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> > Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> > To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> > Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> > List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> > List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
--------------------------------------------------
www.flyingyogi.com
--------------------------------------------------

16 Jan 2008 - 12:03pm
White, Jeff
2007

I think you have some really good points.

A tangent for all you IxD'ers to ponder upon, (especially in light of
http://www.ixda.org/discuss.php?post=24609): think about how this
product relates to sustainable design.

Jeff

On Jan 15, 2008 9:25 PM, Diamond Eric <eric.diamond at gmail.com> wrote:
> I can't help but think they've missed the boat on this one. Yes, it is
> beautiful and technolust-inspiring but the flaws are many. to wit:
>
> No user-removable battery. This is a guaranteed trip to Apple in a
> year or two, and when traveling, one will have to carry a dongle-
> enabled external battery if one needs extra power away from a wall
> outlet, 5 hours of battery life not withstanding.
>
> External DVD drive. I remember when I had my Powerbook Duo. When
> commuting I never worried about the external drive, but when traveling
> I always carried it. Why? It seemed like there was always software to
> install, or offload to a client or video to watch. So in the bag it
> goes, along with the cable. Didn't really save much space. And then
> there is the external connector--a possible failure point...unless it
> is magsafe too.
>
> A single USB port, and no firewire. This limits the disks and
> peripherals you can connect to, and will inspire a plethora of USB
> hubs meant for the MBA. Which will go into the bag. Again, space saving?
>
> The RAM disk version is $3k. I'm not sure you're gonna save a lot of
> weight because of the extra stuff you'll have to carry around (Is the
> AC adapter as sleek?) and purchase. The Duo failed because it while it
> was beautiful and cool as hell, it underperformed as laptop and was
> limited as a desktop.
>
> I can't see anyone who is in a creative field purchasing this unless
> it is a luxury. I can't see this being a primary machine and at
> $2k-3k, it is a very expensive peripheral. I see this as targeted
> toward executives who want a sexy meeting accessory, or someone who
> just uses her MBA to blog a little, and surf a lot, or a writer.
>
> It is a beautiful machine but it smells like the Cube. It too was a
> beautiful, limited machine, a feat of engineering. But with the lack
> of expandability and it's cost, people could not justify it. It died,
> as did the 10th anniversary mac, the other "executive" mac. It's
> really funny but Apple from time to time comes out with these products
> that are meant to show off their engineering prowess, but don't really
> address that sweet spot intersection between cost, utility and
> aesthetics. Each time they do, the product usually fails, but serves
> to inform other products. For example:
>
> Failure: Apple Lisa
> Value: Precursor to the Mac, proved the concept of GUI interfaces and
> the mouse
> Evolution: Mac Plus
>
> Failure: Macintosh Portable
> Value: Introduced the trackball
> Evolution: Powerbook
>
> Failure: Mac 10th anniversary edition
> Value: First example of a vertical computer built around a screen
> Evolution: iMac G5 and later
>
> Failure: Cube
> Value: Compact design, fanless ducting, limited technology, desktop
> eye candy
> Evolution: Mac Mini
>
> Failure: Newton
> Value: PDA, synchronization, touch screen
> Evolution: iPhone
>
> In each case the failed product was sexy and groundbreaking, but
> failed to meet a need. I can't help thinking that is what happened
> with the Air.
>
> From a strategic perspective they targeted the wrong target. Instead
> of out Vaio-ing the Vaio, they should have targeted and out eee'd the
> eeePC. Small, light, Linux capable and cheap. ($400) An excellent
> machine that bridges the gap between smartphone and laptop. Imagine
> the eeePC running OS X with a svelte polycarbonate shell with aluminum
> trim. I'd jump on it in a second, just to have something with me at
> all times. For $400 it is a no brainer, but for $2k? I'd have a hard
> time justifying it and I think others will too. I'll have to let the
> Air breeze by.
>
> Now of course, I'll be proved completely wrong, and it will be a
> raging success and I'll feel really dumb about this email. But that's
> Karma, and she's a tough old broad. :-)
>
> ---
> Eric Diamond
> F I R S T W A T E R
> strategic design + planning
>
> 847 674 6568 office
> 847 414 6467 mobile
> 847 380 1887 SkypeIn
> ericdiamondmm AIM, Skype
>
>
>
>
> On Jan 15, 2008, at 12:45 PM, Murli Nagasundaram wrote:
>
> > There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
> > got a glimpse of MBA today:
> >
> > http://www.apple.com/macbookair/
> >
> > Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be
> > appreciated.
> >
> > Another issue -- there are some similarities here to the design
> > parameters for the Tata Nano -- strip the dang thing down to its
> > essence. MBA, of course, has a more elitist market than the Nano.
> > There's unlikely to be any issues raised regarding the possible
> > downsides of proliferating the Air. Incidentally, Apple claims that
> > they've gone the extra mile in making the Air eco-friendly (in
> > disposal).
> >
> > Thanks.
> >
> > Murli
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> > February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> > Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> > To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> > Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> > List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> > List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> *Come to IxDA Interaction08 | Savannah*
> February 8-10, 2008 in Savannah, GA, USA
> Register today: http://interaction08.ixda.org/
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

16 Jan 2008 - 12:09pm
Mark Schraad
2006

But if the horsepower is beyond what you currently use... and you carry a laptop everywhere, it may in fact be worth the bucks (to save your shoulder). This is not a machine targeting power users or designers. But, I know a ton of designers in small shops and even at the corporate level who are doing say... print design and production with slower machines and less than 2Gig. Frankly, were I in the market for a new laptop right now, this would likely be my purchase.

Mark

On Wednesday, January 16, 2008, at 12:02PM, "Ari Feldman" <ari1970 at gmail.com> wrote:
>i concur. this has cube written all over it.
>the new macbooks are a much better value. space and weight are important but
>for $1799, you can damn near buy a refurb core duo 2 macbook pro with 2GB of
>RAM and 40% better performance plus much more expandability.
>
>the macbook air is a design achievement but seems more of a toy for the
>affluent than those who work for their money or just want the latest toy.
>
>On 1/15/08, Diamond Eric <eric.diamond at gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> I can't help but think they've missed the boat on this one. Yes, it is
>> beautiful and technolust-inspiring but the flaws are many. to wit:
>>
>> No user-removable battery. This is a guaranteed trip to Apple in a
>> year or two, and when traveling, one will have to carry a dongle-
>> enabled external battery if one needs extra power away from a wall
>> outlet, 5 hours of battery life not withstanding.
>>
>> External DVD drive. I remember when I had my Powerbook Duo. When
>> commuting I never worried about the external drive, but when traveling
>> I always carried it. Why? It seemed like there was always software to
>> install, or offload to a client or video to watch. So in the bag it
>> goes, along with the cable. Didn't really save much space. And then
>> there is the external connector--a possible failure point...unless it
>> is magsafe too.
>>
>> A single USB port, and no firewire. This limits the disks and
>> peripherals you can connect to, and will inspire a plethora of USB
>> hubs meant for the MBA. Which will go into the bag. Again, space saving?
>>
>> The RAM disk version is $3k. I'm not sure you're gonna save a lot of
>> weight because of the extra stuff you'll have to carry around (Is the
>> AC adapter as sleek?) and purchase. The Duo failed because it while it
>> was beautiful and cool as hell, it underperformed as laptop and was
>> limited as a desktop.
>>
>> I can't see anyone who is in a creative field purchasing this unless
>> it is a luxury. I can't see this being a primary machine and at
>> $2k-3k, it is a very expensive peripheral. I see this as targeted
>> toward executives who want a sexy meeting accessory, or someone who
>> just uses her MBA to blog a little, and surf a lot, or a writer.
>>
>> It is a beautiful machine but it smells like the Cube. It too was a
>> beautiful, limited machine, a feat of engineering. But with the lack
>> of expandability and it's cost, people could not justify it. It died,
>> as did the 10th anniversary mac, the other "executive" mac. It's
>> really funny but Apple from time to time comes out with these products
>> that are meant to show off their engineering prowess, but don't really
>> address that sweet spot intersection between cost, utility and
>> aesthetics. Each time they do, the product usually fails, but serves
>> to inform other products. For example:
>>
>> Failure: Apple Lisa
>> Value: Precursor to the Mac, proved the concept of GUI interfaces and
>> the mouse
>> Evolution: Mac Plus
>>
>> Failure: Macintosh Portable
>> Value: Introduced the trackball
>> Evolution: Powerbook
>>
>> Failure: Mac 10th anniversary edition
>> Value: First example of a vertical computer built around a screen
>> Evolution: iMac G5 and later
>>
>> Failure: Cube
>> Value: Compact design, fanless ducting, limited technology, desktop
>> eye candy
>> Evolution: Mac Mini
>>
>> Failure: Newton
>> Value: PDA, synchronization, touch screen
>> Evolution: iPhone
>>
>> In each case the failed product was sexy and groundbreaking, but
>> failed to meet a need. I can't help thinking that is what happened
>> with the Air.
>>
>> From a strategic perspective they targeted the wrong target. Instead
>> of out Vaio-ing the Vaio, they should have targeted and out eee'd the
>> eeePC. Small, light, Linux capable and cheap. ($400) An excellent
>> machine that bridges the gap between smartphone and laptop. Imagine
>> the eeePC running OS X with a svelte polycarbonate shell with aluminum
>> trim. I'd jump on it in a second, just to have something with me at
>> all times. For $400 it is a no brainer, but for $2k? I'd have a hard
>> time justifying it and I think others will too. I'll have to let the
>> Air breeze by.
>>
>> Now of course, I'll be proved completely wrong, and it will be a
>> raging success and I'll feel really dumb about this email. But that's
>> Karma, and she's a tough old broad. :-)
>>
>> ---
>> Eric Diamond
>> F I R S T W A T E R
>> strategic design + planning
>>
>> 847 674 6568 office
>> 847 414 6467 mobile
>> 847 380 1887 SkypeIn
>> ericdiamondmm AIM, Skype
>>
>>
>>
>> On Jan 15, 2008, at 12:45 PM, Murli Nagasundaram wrote:
>>
>> > There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
>> > got a glimpse of MBA today:
>> >
>> > http://www.apple.com/macbookair/
>> >
>> > Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be
>> > appreciated.
>> >
>> > Another issue -- there are some similarities here to the design
>> > parameters for the Tata Nano -- strip the dang thing down to its
>> > essence. MBA, of course, has a more elitist market than the Nano.
>> > There's unlikely to be any issues raised regarding the possible
>> > downsides of proliferating the Air. Incidentally, Apple claims that
>> > they've gone the extra mile in making the Air eco-friendly (in
>> > disposal).
>> >
>> > Thanks.
>> >
>> > Murli

16 Jan 2008 - 12:14pm
Ari
2006

i have a macbook pro and with accessories it weighs a ton. however, it cost
not much more (refurb) than this machine and my shoulder is hardly aching.
i'm sure there are people who can justify the expense but i can't given the
lack of features - no ethernet port? one USB port? c'mon!

On 1/16/08, Mark Schraad <mschraad at mac.com> wrote:
>
> But if the horsepower is beyond what you currently use... and you carry a
> laptop everywhere, it may in fact be worth the bucks (to save your
> shoulder). This is not a machine targeting power users or designers. But, I
> know a ton of designers in small shops and even at the corporate level who
> are doing say... print design and production with slower machines and less
> than 2Gig. Frankly, were I in the market for a new laptop right now, this
> would likely be my purchase.
>
> Mark
>
>
>
>
> On Wednesday, January 16, 2008, at 12:02PM, "Ari Feldman" <
> ari1970 at gmail.com> wrote:
> >i concur. this has cube written all over it.
> >the new macbooks are a much better value. space and weight are important
> but
> >for $1799, you can damn near buy a refurb core duo 2 macbook pro with 2GB
> of
> >RAM and 40% better performance plus much more expandability.
> >
> >the macbook air is a design achievement but seems more of a toy for the
> >affluent than those who work for their money or just want the latest toy.
> >
> >On 1/15/08, Diamond Eric <eric.diamond at gmail.com> wrote:
> >>
> >> I can't help but think they've missed the boat on this one. Yes, it is
> >> beautiful and technolust-inspiring but the flaws are many. to wit:
> >>
> >> No user-removable battery. This is a guaranteed trip to Apple in a
> >> year or two, and when traveling, one will have to carry a dongle-
> >> enabled external battery if one needs extra power away from a wall
> >> outlet, 5 hours of battery life not withstanding.
> >>
> >> External DVD drive. I remember when I had my Powerbook Duo. When
> >> commuting I never worried about the external drive, but when traveling
> >> I always carried it. Why? It seemed like there was always software to
> >> install, or offload to a client or video to watch. So in the bag it
> >> goes, along with the cable. Didn't really save much space. And then
> >> there is the external connector--a possible failure point...unless it
> >> is magsafe too.
> >>
> >> A single USB port, and no firewire. This limits the disks and
> >> peripherals you can connect to, and will inspire a plethora of USB
> >> hubs meant for the MBA. Which will go into the bag. Again, space
> saving?
> >>
> >> The RAM disk version is $3k. I'm not sure you're gonna save a lot of
> >> weight because of the extra stuff you'll have to carry around (Is the
> >> AC adapter as sleek?) and purchase. The Duo failed because it while it
> >> was beautiful and cool as hell, it underperformed as laptop and was
> >> limited as a desktop.
> >>
> >> I can't see anyone who is in a creative field purchasing this unless
> >> it is a luxury. I can't see this being a primary machine and at
> >> $2k-3k, it is a very expensive peripheral. I see this as targeted
> >> toward executives who want a sexy meeting accessory, or someone who
> >> just uses her MBA to blog a little, and surf a lot, or a writer.
> >>
> >> It is a beautiful machine but it smells like the Cube. It too was a
> >> beautiful, limited machine, a feat of engineering. But with the lack
> >> of expandability and it's cost, people could not justify it. It died,
> >> as did the 10th anniversary mac, the other "executive" mac. It's
> >> really funny but Apple from time to time comes out with these products
> >> that are meant to show off their engineering prowess, but don't really
> >> address that sweet spot intersection between cost, utility and
> >> aesthetics. Each time they do, the product usually fails, but serves
> >> to inform other products. For example:
> >>
> >> Failure: Apple Lisa
> >> Value: Precursor to the Mac, proved the concept of GUI interfaces and
> >> the mouse
> >> Evolution: Mac Plus
> >>
> >> Failure: Macintosh Portable
> >> Value: Introduced the trackball
> >> Evolution: Powerbook
> >>
> >> Failure: Mac 10th anniversary edition
> >> Value: First example of a vertical computer built around a screen
> >> Evolution: iMac G5 and later
> >>
> >> Failure: Cube
> >> Value: Compact design, fanless ducting, limited technology, desktop
> >> eye candy
> >> Evolution: Mac Mini
> >>
> >> Failure: Newton
> >> Value: PDA, synchronization, touch screen
> >> Evolution: iPhone
> >>
> >> In each case the failed product was sexy and groundbreaking, but
> >> failed to meet a need. I can't help thinking that is what happened
> >> with the Air.
> >>
> >> From a strategic perspective they targeted the wrong target. Instead
> >> of out Vaio-ing the Vaio, they should have targeted and out eee'd the
> >> eeePC. Small, light, Linux capable and cheap. ($400) An excellent
> >> machine that bridges the gap between smartphone and laptop. Imagine
> >> the eeePC running OS X with a svelte polycarbonate shell with aluminum
> >> trim. I'd jump on it in a second, just to have something with me at
> >> all times. For $400 it is a no brainer, but for $2k? I'd have a hard
> >> time justifying it and I think others will too. I'll have to let the
> >> Air breeze by.
> >>
> >> Now of course, I'll be proved completely wrong, and it will be a
> >> raging success and I'll feel really dumb about this email. But that's
> >> Karma, and she's a tough old broad. :-)
> >>
> >> ---
> >> Eric Diamond
> >> F I R S T W A T E R
> >> strategic design + planning
> >>
> >> 847 674 6568 office
> >> 847 414 6467 mobile
> >> 847 380 1887 SkypeIn
> >> ericdiamondmm AIM, Skype
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >> On Jan 15, 2008, at 12:45 PM, Murli Nagasundaram wrote:
> >>
> >> > There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
> >> > got a glimpse of MBA today:
> >> >
> >> > http://www.apple.com/macbookair/
> >> >
> >> > Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be
> >> > appreciated.
> >> >
> >> > Another issue -- there are some similarities here to the design
> >> > parameters for the Tata Nano -- strip the dang thing down to its
> >> > essence. MBA, of course, has a more elitist market than the Nano.
> >> > There's unlikely to be any issues raised regarding the possible
> >> > downsides of proliferating the Air. Incidentally, Apple claims that
> >> > they've gone the extra mile in making the Air eco-friendly (in
> >> > disposal).
> >> >
> >> > Thanks.
> >> >
> >> > Murli
>
>

--
--------------------------------------------------
www.flyingyogi.com
--------------------------------------------------

16 Jan 2008 - 12:28pm
Mark Schraad
2006

I understand that perspective Ari. But look at another scenario. I have a macbookpro that cost about the same (maybe a bit more), and I no longer work in design aps or any other resource intense aps at Starbucks, or on an airplane. I would gladly trade that extra computing muscle for the light weight. But, and this is a big but, it is my second machine. I have a very fast workstation at my desk where I do most of the heavy lifting.

All I am saying is that there is a market for this product and it is not the designer.

Mark

On Wednesday, January 16, 2008, at 12:14PM, "Ari Feldman" <ari1970 at gmail.com> wrote:
>i have a macbook pro and with accessories it weighs a ton. however, it cost
>not much more (refurb) than this machine and my shoulder is hardly aching.
>i'm sure there are people who can justify the expense but i can't given the
>lack of features - no ethernet port? one USB port? c'mon!
>
>On 1/16/08, Mark Schraad <mschraad at mac.com> wrote:
>>
>> But if the horsepower is beyond what you currently use... and you carry a
>> laptop everywhere, it may in fact be worth the bucks (to save your
>> shoulder). This is not a machine targeting power users or designers. But, I
>> know a ton of designers in small shops and even at the corporate level who
>> are doing say... print design and production with slower machines and less
>> than 2Gig. Frankly, were I in the market for a new laptop right now, this
>> would likely be my purchase.
>>
>> Mark
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> On Wednesday, January 16, 2008, at 12:02PM, "Ari Feldman" <
>> ari1970 at gmail.com> wrote:
>> >i concur. this has cube written all over it.
>> >the new macbooks are a much better value. space and weight are important
>> but
>> >for $1799, you can damn near buy a refurb core duo 2 macbook pro with 2GB
>> of
>> >RAM and 40% better performance plus much more expandability.
>> >
>> >the macbook air is a design achievement but seems more of a toy for the
>> >affluent than those who work for their money or just want the latest toy.
>> >
>> >On 1/15/08, Diamond Eric <eric.diamond at gmail.com> wrote:
>> >>
>> >> I can't help but think they've missed the boat on this one. Yes, it is
>> >> beautiful and technolust-inspiring but the flaws are many. to wit:
>> >>
>> >> No user-removable battery. This is a guaranteed trip to Apple in a
>> >> year or two, and when traveling, one will have to carry a dongle-
>> >> enabled external battery if one needs extra power away from a wall
>> >> outlet, 5 hours of battery life not withstanding.
>> >>
>> >> External DVD drive. I remember when I had my Powerbook Duo. When
>> >> commuting I never worried about the external drive, but when traveling
>> >> I always carried it. Why? It seemed like there was always software to
>> >> install, or offload to a client or video to watch. So in the bag it
>> >> goes, along with the cable. Didn't really save much space. And then
>> >> there is the external connector--a possible failure point...unless it
>> >> is magsafe too.
>> >>
>> >> A single USB port, and no firewire. This limits the disks and
>> >> peripherals you can connect to, and will inspire a plethora of USB
>> >> hubs meant for the MBA. Which will go into the bag. Again, space
>> saving?
>> >>
>> >> The RAM disk version is $3k. I'm not sure you're gonna save a lot of
>> >> weight because of the extra stuff you'll have to carry around (Is the
>> >> AC adapter as sleek?) and purchase. The Duo failed because it while it
>> >> was beautiful and cool as hell, it underperformed as laptop and was
>> >> limited as a desktop.
>> >>
>> >> I can't see anyone who is in a creative field purchasing this unless
>> >> it is a luxury. I can't see this being a primary machine and at
>> >> $2k-3k, it is a very expensive peripheral. I see this as targeted
>> >> toward executives who want a sexy meeting accessory, or someone who
>> >> just uses her MBA to blog a little, and surf a lot, or a writer.
>> >>
>> >> It is a beautiful machine but it smells like the Cube. It too was a
>> >> beautiful, limited machine, a feat of engineering. But with the lack
>> >> of expandability and it's cost, people could not justify it. It died,
>> >> as did the 10th anniversary mac, the other "executive" mac. It's
>> >> really funny but Apple from time to time comes out with these products
>> >> that are meant to show off their engineering prowess, but don't really
>> >> address that sweet spot intersection between cost, utility and
>> >> aesthetics. Each time they do, the product usually fails, but serves
>> >> to inform other products. For example:
>> >>
>> >> Failure: Apple Lisa
>> >> Value: Precursor to the Mac, proved the concept of GUI interfaces and
>> >> the mouse
>> >> Evolution: Mac Plus
>> >>
>> >> Failure: Macintosh Portable
>> >> Value: Introduced the trackball
>> >> Evolution: Powerbook
>> >>
>> >> Failure: Mac 10th anniversary edition
>> >> Value: First example of a vertical computer built around a screen
>> >> Evolution: iMac G5 and later
>> >>
>> >> Failure: Cube
>> >> Value: Compact design, fanless ducting, limited technology, desktop
>> >> eye candy
>> >> Evolution: Mac Mini
>> >>
>> >> Failure: Newton
>> >> Value: PDA, synchronization, touch screen
>> >> Evolution: iPhone
>> >>
>> >> In each case the failed product was sexy and groundbreaking, but
>> >> failed to meet a need. I can't help thinking that is what happened
>> >> with the Air.
>> >>
>> >> From a strategic perspective they targeted the wrong target. Instead
>> >> of out Vaio-ing the Vaio, they should have targeted and out eee'd the
>> >> eeePC. Small, light, Linux capable and cheap. ($400) An excellent
>> >> machine that bridges the gap between smartphone and laptop. Imagine
>> >> the eeePC running OS X with a svelte polycarbonate shell with aluminum
>> >> trim. I'd jump on it in a second, just to have something with me at
>> >> all times. For $400 it is a no brainer, but for $2k? I'd have a hard
>> >> time justifying it and I think others will too. I'll have to let the
>> >> Air breeze by.
>> >>
>> >> Now of course, I'll be proved completely wrong, and it will be a
>> >> raging success and I'll feel really dumb about this email. But that's
>> >> Karma, and she's a tough old broad. :-)
>> >>
>> >> ---
>> >> Eric Diamond
>> >> F I R S T W A T E R
>> >> strategic design + planning
>> >>
>> >> 847 674 6568 office
>> >> 847 414 6467 mobile
>> >> 847 380 1887 SkypeIn
>> >> ericdiamondmm AIM, Skype
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
>> >> On Jan 15, 2008, at 12:45 PM, Murli Nagasundaram wrote:
>> >>
>> >> > There's probably going to be at least one person on this list who's
>> >> > got a glimpse of MBA today:
>> >> >
>> >> > http://www.apple.com/macbookair/
>> >> >
>> >> > Any reports on this, particularly the multitouch interface would be
>> >> > appreciated.
>> >> >
>> >> > Another issue -- there are some similarities here to the design
>> >> > parameters for the Tata Nano -- strip the dang thing down to its
>> >> > essence. MBA, of course, has a more elitist market than the Nano.
>> >> > There's unlikely to be any issues raised regarding the possible
>> >> > downsides of proliferating the Air. Incidentally, Apple claims that
>> >> > they've gone the extra mile in making the Air eco-friendly (in
>> >> > disposal).
>> >> >
>> >> > Thanks.
>> >> >
>> >> > Murli
>>
>>
>
>
>--
>--------------------------------------------------
>www.flyingyogi.com
>--------------------------------------------------
>

16 Jan 2008 - 2:04pm
Todd Warfel
2003

Or it is a designer, but one that has a primary machine that's a
desktop.

And as for ethernet... what is that anyway?

On Jan 16, 2008, at 12:28 PM, Mark Schraad wrote:

> All I am saying is that there is a market for this product and it is
> not the designer.

Cheers!

Todd Zaki Warfel
President, Design Researcher
Messagefirst | Designing Information. Beautifully.
----------------------------------
Contact Info
Voice: (215) 825-7423
Email: todd at messagefirst.com
AIM: twarfel at mac.com
Blog: http://toddwarfel.com
----------------------------------
In theory, theory and practice are the same.
In practice, they are not.

16 Jan 2008 - 2:20pm
Nasir Barday
2006

I think there's some confusion about the definition of UCD, which is a
formally defined process. It's not the only process out there that
considers users all along the way (a characteristic of any "good"
design process). The significant difference of UCD from the others is
that it mandates a usability test for validation after every single
iteration, which Apple does not appear to do. It also considers what a
user "wants," which usually differs from the goals they need to
achieve.

i.e. if Apple truly listened to what people "want," the Air would
probably still have a whole bunch of ports, maybe even *gasp* a
parallel printer port. I also have not heard of usability testing
there. It's almost prohibitive to perform them there, considering how
closely they guard their products-in-development.

- N

16 Jan 2008 - 2:28pm
Charlie Kreitzberg
2008

Nasir:

I would disagree with your statement that UCD is a formally designed
process which mandates usability testing. I think of it in more
generic terms.

User centered design, to me, suggests that when design decisions are
made, the user will have greater weight than competing dimensions. I
would contrast UCD with technology centered or profit centered design
for example.

Within UCD there may be different approaches and different
methodologies.

Charlie

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=24564

16 Jan 2008 - 2:45pm
White, Jeff
2007

Nasir - where did you read, or who told you any specific practice,
like usability testing or anything else, was 'mandated' in UCD? The
only thing I would say is mandated is conducting sound, unbiased
research.

Also, again, UCD is not giving users what they **want**. If someone
sits down in an interview, or a product review with a potential user
and asks them what they want to begin with, they're not conducting
UCD, period.

If a designer or whoever simply gives users what they want, they're
not designing anything, the user is. This is user driven design and it
sucks, frankly. If that's the case, the designer is a glorified note
taker and production artist, and is adding a minimal amount of value.

Jeff

On Jan 16, 2008 2:20 PM, Nasir Barday <nasir at userlicious.com> wrote:
> I think there's some confusion about the definition of UCD, which is a
> formally defined process. It's not the only process out there that
> considers users all along the way (a characteristic of any "good"
> design process). The significant difference of UCD from the others is
> that it mandates a usability test for validation after every single
> iteration, which Apple does not appear to do. It also considers what a
> user "wants," which usually differs from the goals they need to
> achieve.
>
> i.e. if Apple truly listened to what people "want," the Air would
> probably still have a whole bunch of ports, maybe even *gasp* a
> parallel printer port. I also have not heard of usability testing
> there. It's almost prohibitive to perform them there, considering how
> closely they guard their products-in-development.
>
> - N
>

16 Jan 2008 - 3:08pm
Nasir Barday
2006

Well, there's the UCD process, and a user-centered approach. Semantics.

Dan Saffer's *Designing for Interaction *considers formal UCD as well as a
few other methodologies, including "genius design." The main differentiator
is that UCD depends on validation at each and every iteration, which, you
both seem to agree, isn't the only way to go.

A design informed by research, with all the proper interpretations (i.e.
knowing what/who/how to ask), is not exclusively in the realm of the UCD
process. But whatever process you go with, the result can still be
"user-centered"

Formal definition:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_centered_design

Don't have the book at my desk to quote from, but you can get a little bit
of what I'm saying from the reviews here:
http://www.amazon.com/Designing-Interaction-Creating-Applications-Devices/dp/0321432061/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1200512893&sr=1-2

- Nasir

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