The “Can Do, Just Works” Principle
We were at my mother-in-law’s recently and needed to look up a map to the hospital I was taking her to for an appointment. We grabbed her Vista laptop (as recommended by my Windows-centric brother-in-law), connected it to the outside world via modem, and tried to dial into Google Maps.
Fifteen frustrating minutes later, after trying to get it to connect and stay online, then its painfully slow progress, we gave up. Instead, we bunged on an ancient G3 iBook we had been given that day, running an equally old operating system. In moments, we had setup a connection to an ISP through a modem we had never used before, whistled into Google Maps, and taken a screen shot for me to use.
Although I am not too familiar with Vista, one Web browser works pretty much like another. That brief experience of Vista was enough to persuade us to stay with Mac OS X or maybe Linux or Solaris, XP or 2000, but to avoid Vista as a dread disease. My mother-in-law is not stupid, nor are we, but we all decided that anyone who willingly uses Vista needs to be reformatted.
Excel All the Way
Apple excels at looking at something that is hard to do or at markets that are under-performing, then coming up with simple solutions that “just work.” They did it with the iMac, making it a computer you’d be happy to have in the living room. Then again with iTunes to establish the best digital music experience. It’s the same with the iPhone to make a smart phone that’s easy to use and live with, and it looks as if Apple will do it with film rentals next.
Alongside this is the world’s first easy-to-use Unix, as well as the little things such as software applications like iMovie and GarageBand. At one point, Apple even had the best Web site creator in Claris Home Page, still a great package for simple HTML-based sites—which are often the fastest and easiest to use.
Also in This Series
- What Trick, What Device, What Starting-Hole… · May 2012
- Do Androids Dream? · April 2012
- Our Macs Are Under Attack · March 2012
- The Best and Worst Christmas Presents · February 2012
- The Best Use for a Kindle · January 2012
- It’s Got No Blinking Light · January 2012
- Box-Shifting Causes Migration · December 2011
- The Best Thing About the iPhone 4S and How to Cope in Clink · December 2011
- Death of a Salesman · November 2011
- Complete Archive