[FoRK] PDAs (was: Sony Reader for sale, and thoughts on e-books)

Ian Andrew Bell <hello at ianbell.com> on Fri Aug 31 10:45:39 PDT 2007

All of this (below) is well and good.. but for the punters, value  
propositions must be broken into practicalities.  Practical  
technologies merge complementary actions, tasks, and values.  What  
most of us who spend our lives within the insular and self-serving  
confines of Silicon Valley (physically or metaphysically) usually  
fail to realize is that there are still regular people out there who  
do NOT enjoy the thought of having an array of components attached to  
their personage like Batman's utility belt.  It's one of the key  
reasons why the MODO.NET device, a purpose-built "lifestyle event"  
pager-based notification device, failed miserably.  I keep one handy  
as a reminder to visionaries what the value of an island is.

TREOs and even more certainly all of the early-generation of Palm  
devices are examples of technology that has failed to exit the  
confines of technology industry culture.  PALM's value (as a company)  
in particular has always been largely theoretical as it it absorbed  
and expunged in various forms by various big companies like USR,  
3COM, etc etc.  They have been successful, for sure, but only because  
of high penetration along the long tail of digital cognoscenti.  Not  
in the mass market.

My mother has no idea what a "lifedrive" is or how that benefits her,  
and doubtfully ever will.  If members of this and other groups  
continue in general to use themselves as benchmarks for what the  
market really wants, then they can only  really hope to be massively  
successful in marketing products and services to people like themselves.

Think Wal-Mart.  Think 97%.


On 31-Aug-07, at 9:08 AM, Tom Higgins wrote:

> On 8/30/07, Russell Turpin <deafbox at hotmail.com> wrote:
>> Ian Andrew Bell <hello at ianbell.com>:
>>> PDAs were pointless devices until they could make phone calls.
>> Hardly.
> I have to chime in here and  add my PDA Rocketh  vote.
> Cell phone stuff I am not that much in need for, You make a call  
> you get a
> call...yea so there it is. A PDA though..oh let me count the  
> ways....My Palm
> Lifedrive is an email reader, web browser, irc client, online GO  
> client and
> game reviewer, book reader, mp3/ogg player, divx/avi/mp4 player, voip
> calling [1]  and otherly apps running beast that fits in my go bag  
> or big
> pockets.
> If I had a plam that made cell calls I would be stuck with one of  
> three or
> four shitty cell contracts that I do not want to shell out for now. My
> Virgin dealio is still working out nice though i suspect the  
> balance of
> worth will shift once I am back in the job force. Still an est 10  
> bucks a
> month vs a minimum 60 bucks a month is still the equation to factor.
> A recent addition to the gizmo gaggle has the potential to do some  
> of what
> the Lifedrive does as well, though i have to wait for he delivery  
> of my
> "homebrew" slot 1 card to test this idea out for myself. Yes for  
> our 7th
> wedding anniversary I got Dawn and I matching special Brian Age  
> edition
> black and red Nintendo DS lites. (
> http://www.brainage.com/launch/index.jsp) We both love puzzle games,
> we both play Brain Academy on the wii at least
> 3 nights a week and I have been jonesing for one of these just to  
> muck wih
> the wifi aspect...so Happy Anniversary to us...its nice having a  
> wife with a
> fair amount of geekness...i have heard from others that such a gift  
> would
> have prevented there being a number 8.
> The other device that has caught my eye is the N800. Skype makes it  
> a big
> deal for me as one of the reasons my cell costs are so low is the  
> big S.
> Heck even when I am home I use Skype about as much as I do the land  
> line,
> which is Vonage's 15$ a month plan. If Palm or the DS got Skype I  
> would be
> very very happy.
> So there it be, PDAs far from being pointless are far more of what  
> you need
> in your pocketsees than nasty stinkin single use cell phone, Of  
> course when
> the Dopler effect takes hold we will all have the ability to make  
> voip and
> cell calls by clicking our jaw muscle a certian way and sub  
> vocalizing.
> [1] I found an app called Articulation (
> http://www.hamptonsoftware.co.uk/articulation/index.php )  that  
> cane deal
> with real voip.  I have it rigged up to hit my FWD account and it  
> works
> great, except to make calls to the POTS universe I need to remember a
> lengthy calling card 800 number sequence...oi.
> -tomhiggins
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