Tag Archives | User Interfaces

Microsoft Surface, and Why It Didn’t Change Everything

Jason Hiner of TechRepublic has an interesting theory: He thinks that the release of Apple’s iPhone and Microsoft’s Surface table in 2007 marks the moment that the fates of tech’s eternal archrivals diverged. Both products cleverly commercialized multi-touch input, a technology previously seen only in lab experiments and TED demos. But while the iPad and its offspring became some of the most successful gadgets of all time, (Surface clearly hasn’t lived up to expectations. I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen a Surface table in the wild.)

Surface was announced at the Wall Street Journal’s D conference in May 2007; I wrote about it at the time for Slate. But Microsoft first showed it to journalists months before at the Consumer Electronics Show in January. I was there; we had to sign an agreement stating we wouldn’t write about it until Microsoft was ready to unveil it.

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Is the Touch-Enabled PC a Keeper or a Fad?

Over at my new Challengers blog on Cnet, I wrote about Windows 8’s “touch-first” interface–and whether it’ll lead to touch becoming a standard feature on new PCs. (I think the odds are good…or at least higher than they were for the Tablet PC…but it’s not going to happen instantly the moment Windows 8 ships.)


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Wand-Based Computing

TechCrunch’s MG Siegler is excited over what might be the most Minority Report-like interface to be commercialized to date.


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Please, Google, No 3D Android Interface Just Yet

If you love a company and Google buys it, worry. That’s been my conclusion lately. And the latest evidence is the company’s acquisition of BumpTop, the company behind a cool 3D desktop interface. So far, the news for BumpTop fans is bad: The product is being discontinued and even people who have paid for it have to deal with that nasty concept “end-of-life support.”

I’m curious about Google’s intentions for the technology. It hasn’t said anything so far, but the most logical assumption is that it intends to use what it’s bought in Android and/or Chrome OS.

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My Question With Steve

Yesterday, I posted about the fact that Steve Jobs usually doesn’t take questions at Apple press events–except when he does. I said that if he did, I’d try to ask a question on behalf of the Technologizer community. You are, apparently, a shy group–lots of folks read that post, but only two piped up with questions.

But the good news is:

A) Steve Jobs, Apple COO Tim Cook, and marketing head Phil Schiller did indeed field questions from the audience;

B) I was the very last person who squeezed one in (Steve greeted me like an old friend–oh, not really, he called me “blue shirt”);

C) I asked a question on behalf of a Technologizer community member thinking that I might not get a real answer–but I did, and it’s one I haven’t seen elsewhere.

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