The Jobs formula, say colleagues, relies heavily on tenacity, patience, belief and instinct. He gets deeply involved in hardware and software design choices, which await his personal nod or veto.
There’s a great column at Strominator that explains exactly what it is:
The iPhone is not a phone, its the first generation of a new type of computing device. One that will change how we view computing. One that will make our lives simpler. We won’t have to learn how to use applications, we’ll just use them. We won’t worry about launching applications, saving files, quitting — just using. Every other smartphone is still based on an archaic, cumbersome, paradigm taken straight from desktop computers. Drop-down/pop-up menus, programs, files — ugh. Look how bad Windows Mobile is, and most of us are used to the real Windows on our desktops. Why should a phone take minutes to just turn on? The alternatives are not much better. Mobile OSX, what runs inside the iPhone however, is a whole new beast. Intuitive, responsive, and an extension of the beautiful hardware that it runs on.
Which is not to say there aren’t issues … as the article also talks discusses.
MediaTemple (my host) just released an interface to control your entire hosting account via iPhone.Pretty cool.A little trendy, but I can imagine this being extremely useful when on the road. To be honest, I bet it’s easier to use than their current control panel, which I’ve never been able to fully understand.Now we just need WordPress for iPhone.
Not enough, Scoble – you run more posts than that that in a single day sometimes. Having to click to a new page just to see what else was posted today is not optimal.. . .. . .I just went recently went down to 10 posts/page from 20, and it really sped up load times. But I don’t think I’ve ever done 10 posts in one day.
1. Blow both balloons up first (to stretch the balloons)
2. Let the air out of both
3. Blow up the balloon that’s supposed to be bigger (on the outside)
4. While holding the outside balloon put the other balloon inside it
5. Blow up the inside balloon6. Blow up the outside balloon just a bit more
7. Tie them both
Buzzword beats current Ajax-based offerings like Google Docs and Zoho Writer in both usability and aesthetic impact. And in a few months, when a desktop version is released, Buzzword will pose a serious challenge to Microsoft Word, the current king of document editing on the desktop.
But Wired is right: this is an amazing product. I managed to snag an early invite to check out the beta, and it already feels polished and more than usable. It uses Adobe’s Flex to achieve near-desktop feel on the web, and eventually is intended to use AIR to run on the desktop as well.Uploading and placing an image, working with tables, saving and undoing with key commands instead of having to use the menus all the time, plus all the word processing basics … it all seems to be there.Very cool.I’ll play with it a little more and post something a bit more detailed …
Sometimes I can’t believe the lengths people will go to in order to save money. Michael Shannon has about 2500 words and perhaps 25 illustrations on 5 pages teaching you how to create your own Moleskine-like notebook.I think I can do it simpler and cheaper.Here’s his steps:
- Materials Needed
- Tools Needed
- Step 1. Cut paper
- Step 2. Fold paper
- Step 3. Collate folios
- Step 4. Mark spine
- Step 5. Punch holes
- Step 6. Sew signatures
- Step 7. Glue signatures
- Step 8. Glue endpapers & cover
Here’s my steps:
My way: $9 plus a couple of bucks shipping. His way: hours of effort, some money for materials, massive PITA factor.I rest my case.
Sometimes it’s hard to convince PC users of the benefits of Apple computers and Mac OS X.
Since their computers are hardly personal, and just tools, and essentially lacking style and personality, they don’t understand, can’t grasp, cannot fit in their brains the concept of an interface that has been obsessively designed to fit, to function, to form an environment that accepts and welcomes people.
Maybe the iPhone will solve this problem. Check out what this Time reviewer says:
The user interface is crammed with smart little touches — every moment of user interaction has been quietly stage-managed and orchestrated, with such overwhelming attention to detail that when the history of digital interface design is written, whoever managed this project at Apple will be hailed as a Michelangelo, and the iPhone his or her Sistine Chapel (Steve Jobs can be Pope in this scenario). If you’re not a reviewer, chances are you won’t even bother to look at the manual. Translucent, jewel-like, artfully phrased dialogue boxes come and go on cue. Window borders bounce and flex just slightly to cue the user where and how you’re supposed to drop and drag and scroll them. When you switch the phone to “airplane mode” (no electronic transmissions, for use on planes) a tasteful little orange airplane slides into the menu bar, then zooms away when you switch out again. (This was so pleasurable that I repeatedly entered airplane mode while using the iPhone, even though I wasn’t actually on an airplane.) As soon as my phone realized it belonged to someone with a nonsense-name like Lev, it started correcting typos like “Leb” and “Lec” to match.
That’s the zen of Apple taken to a whole new level.
Every time I see something like this in the mainstream press I think: clueless.
There’s little question the iPhone pulls a lot of great wireless functions and applications into a very cool package. But most of those features aren’t exactly new. Google Maps for mobile? Practically any smartphone user can download the application to his or her device.
It’s not about: is it possible. It’s about: is it elegant, simple, natural, obvious, easy, beautiful, friendly. Most importantly: is it normal. Does it just feel normal to surf the web on your phone, locate and listen to music on your phone, to make make phone calls even.
(In case you’re wondering why Linux isn’t mainstream, that’s why. The answers are no.)
That’s Apple’s primary genius. Not always to be first – but almost always to make wizardry easy, even commonplace … while still being elegant and sexy.
It’s hard to believe that people at major weblogs and web content companies don’t know this yet, but Microsoft Word and the web don’t really see eye to eye:
(At least for people on non-Microsoft browsers and platforms.)
One of the most interesting parts of the Stevenote a couple of days ago was when the VP of something or other for the iPhone division messed up hand-typing something into his iPhone.
I don’t read a ton into that – I’d be a little nervous too, in front of 5000 people and, most particularly, my incredibly demanding, incredibly perfectionist, incredibly seuccessful boss.
But it did start an interesting chain reaction of thoughts in my brain: what if the iPhone keyboard is pure genius not for it’s ease of data entry … but for it’s difficulty?
Let me give some context:
I think the iPhone will not be nearly as fast at text-entry as most hard-button smartphones. You won’t be able to type by feel – you’ll have to be looking all the time. Your fingers won’t develop nearly as much of a kinesthetic knowledge of the letter positioning. Your speed will be way down.
Whoa. Hold up. Not your speed … Jessica’s speed.
Jessica is 17. Jessica texts every hour of every day. Jessica has thumb calluses from texting. Jessica has 50 friends her age who all text. Jessica runs her social life through her phone’s little keys.
iPhone is not for Jessica.
However, if you’re like me … I’d like to do a little more texting, if the user interface didn’t suck big brass monkey balls. But the effort curve is too steep for the small amount of texting that I would do, to get good at it, to do it regularly. So I don’t text. And when I do, it takes forever. iPhone is going to radically speed up the limited amount of texting I do.
iPhone is for me – and for you. (If you’re like me.)
Do you have one of those cheesy motivational posters on your wall? In your company, somewhere? It’s probably something about teamwork, or hard work, or persistence, or excellence, or …
Boring! Old hat! Cheap! Manipulative!
Welcome Demotivators from Despair, Inc. Now these are fun. Their customer (dis)service page says “We’re not satisfied until you’re not satisfied.”
I like the one on consistency … “it’s only a virtue if you’re not a screw-up.” Or the one on consulting: “If you’re not a part of the solution, there’s good money to be made in prolonging the problem.”
At least they make you laugh. And that might be the best motivator of all.
[tags] funny, motivation, demotivator, despair, joke, john koetsier [/tags]
Text Link Ads just informed me that (yay!) they’ve sold another ad for me. (You can see ’em down near the bottom of the right column under, appropriately, text link ads.)
This is cool, because it pays the hosting bills and because I make more from TLA than I ever did from Google AdWords. It’s even more cool because text link ads are incredibly aesthetically better than AdWords. But it’s uber-cool because the latest one is for VentureThree.
Naturally, when someone wants to market themselves on my blog, I check them out. And VentureThree has the coolest interim site I’ve ever seen.
The title at the top says Branding | Brand Consultants | Strategic Identity Consulting Design, and the page looks like this:
Simple. Direct. Powerful. Intriguing. Bold. Clean. Smart. Beautiful.
I love it. I want to work for a company with that kind of strategic aesthetic vision.
. . .
. . .
In case you’re wondering, I haven’t posted anything about any of the other advertisers on this site … so it’s not like you buy an ad, you get a puff piece. Just so you know!
[tags] venturethree, branding, consulting, brands, john koetsier, adwords, text link ads [/tags]
Check out this screen from Seeking Alpha.
Here’s what I see when I read this:
Sorry, I already don’t care because the way you put your message together is rude. Here’s how to do it:
Simple, friendly, easy, natural, and quick.
[tags] usability, forms, comments, john koetsier, seeking alpha [/tags]