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Old January 29th, 2011, 02:59 AM   #16
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[QUOTE=David Heath;1610044
My smartphone is also constantly losing network service in places where the good odd simple Nokia never had a problem.[/QUOTE]

I kept a Mitsubishi cell phone (it was a lot more compact that the big brick jobs) for long a time - it became a conversation piece - because it could always get through in remote locations where the small compact handsets failed to pick up a signal.
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Old January 30th, 2011, 10:01 AM   #17
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The network signal thing is a shaky argument. Competitive neccessity and the decreasing cost of bandwidth will eventaully make it so that you can get a WiFi signal ANYWHERE on land, and a cellular signal everywhere else.
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Old January 30th, 2011, 11:47 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Ervin Farkas View Post
... all the existing TV programming distribution paths: over the air, cable, and satellite. Phone lines as we know them today will also become useless.

All the above will be replaced by the almighty INTERNET. In a first stage we might retain the wires, but eventually those will go too, we'll be free at last, free from all wires.
Great! Then the government can call up the ISPs and say, "Shut everybody off for a while" like they've recently done in Egypt. This is progress?
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Old January 31st, 2011, 01:43 AM   #19
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You're bumping in to a good point there:

With every service migrating to the internet, we're in even greater danger if a government should decide to pull the plug on internet based communications.

Better keep those "old school" communication mechanisms alive, even if it's just CB radio.

Just in case.

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Old January 31st, 2011, 08:13 AM   #20
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I definitely think desktops are being pushed aside. Also I saw on the news how a couple years ago computer manufacturers thought Netbooks were going to be the next big item, since alot of people only need a computer for email & light internet usage. No need for high RAM or hard drive space. THen Iphones & Ipads & tablets replaced that thought quickly. Sales for them plummeted last year.

Sucks though about desktops, I much prefer the user interface & setup to them over laptops. I suppose they'll always be around, just not pushed as heavily. Next time though I think I'm gonna build my own, I've had a ton of problems with my new HP & their customer support is atrocious.
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Old February 1st, 2011, 10:57 AM   #21
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I'd consider netbooks to be transitional technology (Some consider Bluray transitional as well), so i'm not totally surprised they had a breif life on the shevles.

Last edited by Rick Presas; February 1st, 2011 at 11:28 AM.
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Old February 1st, 2011, 03:20 PM   #22
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Netbooks were just one more attempt to sell users on a feature limited device at a slightly lower price... unsurprisingly, the price just wasn't low enough to compensate for the lack of features. While compact size is nice, if you're going to want portability, a cell phone with a decent size screen will provide a good percentage of the desired functionality and fit in your pocket, plus you've already got it, adding net connectivity is no problem.

It simply doesn't make sense to buy a netbook with its limitations for $300 or so, when you can buy a REAL laptop with a decent screen size and a DVD drive for a little more $$. Or get a "smart phone" you'd get anyway for a little less.

The Motorola idea is intrigueing for one aspect, the idea that the phone is the "brain" and you can attach different "bodies" or extensions to it depending on the requirements. Considering that most cell phones have all the horsepower most people would need for most functions, all you need is to add the capability for a larger screen, keyboard, mouse, external drive/storage...etc (printer... those are going wireless... ). Considering that a phone with a Micro SD card should hold enough "data" for the "average" user, I don't see why this concept shouldn't catch on...

I think it needs a "standardized" interface (WiFi?) to make the needed "connections", but other than that, it would make a "smart phone" even more attractive to the consumer if they could purchase accessories to make it more versatile (which if standardized, would last for a few phones potentially?). I'm seeing iPad copies with smaller screens already at the $100 price point, I'm guessing that these devices will begin to merge and become so cheap that everyone has one. Imagine your kids being presented with a tablet, and download all his homework, textbooks, etc, and upload his homework when it's done from anywhere, conference with the teacher when needed, etc.
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Old February 1st, 2011, 08:09 PM   #23
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"Paperless classrooms" actually exist already in many places, even in the US public school system. Looking at (and weighing) my third grader's backpack, I wish they would come sooner in my area too; it's ridiculous how many heavy books small kids need to carry around.

The first one has been organized 11 ears ago, in 2000, you would never guess where: in a small Kentucky farming city. Read the story here: Our Story

I don't think they'll miss a thing going digital, except maybe handwriting...
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Old February 1st, 2011, 08:18 PM   #24
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Mine has a future appointment with the 7000' deep trench off the island of Grand Turk. One day I will see that it keeps it.
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Old February 11th, 2011, 07:45 PM   #25
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I'll go one further and say that the Motorola Atrix represents the possible/probable future of computing for ordinary people. Something like the Atrix, maybe in a larger form factor, and devices like the iPad are going to replace desktop machines for 90% of ordinary computer users. They could even potentially revolutionize the way most offices are configured, and even how they function.

That's not to say that I think desktops as we know them will completely cease to exist. I can see them still being retained for specialized purposes, and in situations where an iPad/Atrix type device lacks sufficient computing power.

The biggest problem I have with the iPad is that it's quite proprietary and locked-down and seems oriented toward depriving consumers of real computing freedom, with the idea of moving towards walled gardens, paywalls and other ways of forcing people to pay, pay, pay for every computing task they carry out. The issues I mention here actually serve to limit the potential of the device, not enhance it.

And don't get me started on the potential privacy ramifications an all-in-one, does-it-all-device like this could have.

In any case, I think we're on the verge of something historically huge here, possibly even earthshaking.
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Old February 12th, 2011, 06:36 AM   #26
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Great thread. With great responses. I think you knew your answer before you asked it, barring an economic geological alien invasion collapse it is the future and the future is now and then some.

To bore you with my own quick story which somewhat relates. Six years ago I made a conscious decision to plug in. That is for the previous decade I had no tv, internet, email, cell phone etc,. My kids were going crazy and forced me into the future. Just in time too. So I feel like I went from a primitive/reflective forest walker to a full on electricfied nethead. How I love my Iphone, Netflix, Amazon, BHphoto, and DVI! Indispensable.

I'll never forget my first day on the web. I had spent years, no decades, perusing used bookstores across the country for rare out of print books--Delacroix's journals, Neruda's Extravagaria--and bam! A few clicks and I can't even find words to describe the sensation.

But now I'm sitting here thinking all I'll really need this next round is a credit card and a cellphone (with aforementioned docking station) or whatever they're going to call it. But I'm even more interested in the future after this future. Computer chips implanted in the brain? Barcode tattoos? Fingerprint credit cards?
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