One is either talking about Political Correctness or Personal Computers – and while the former is a whole topic unto itself, I’ll be talking about the latter. You see, I gaze in amusement often enough about a “Post-PC world” – an exercise in buzzword bingo if ever I saw one; usually in reference to tablet computers… though I find it entertaining as undoubtedly by its very nature a tablet, carried around so closely to oneself, is the most personal of personal computers?
That though, would be an acute nitpick from oneself and rather profuse to the whole topic at hand. Its often seen that desktop computers, being the real focus of these companies’ attention and derision, are on the way out, promptly out the door to never be let back in. The notion seems a little silly, perhaps excusable from the company trying to promote their product trying their very best to be seen as the in-thing; but less so from people who should be thinking more deeply about what they hideously regurgitate.
This particular grievance of mine comes more from the journalists, you see, who seem to assume people do no more than touch up photos, read news and email, and tweet their friends using their various bits and bobs of hardware. So then, its done, lets give those detestable desktops the boot and go on our merry way with our portable devices!
I will of course concede that people are different, one person’s needs will differ from another’s; yet the short-sightedness can be tiresome. Tablets and smart-phones, they will and do have their place, for entertainment, for catching up on news and reading articles, for keeping in touch – and of course their portability and weight lends them well to those tasks.
Laptops were supposed to replace desktops, consoles too where set to overrule the desktop; one providing a portable work environment, the other providing comfortable gaming amongst company agape at the television; and both may work together to banish the desktop for good. Yet besides all that, the desktop computer still lingers and in some cases has become more popular.
Oft forgotten is that when you go deeper, you need a longer rope or a bigger oxygen tank – or perhaps a more suitable and durable vehicle to achieve your goal should the task be large enough.
Thinking of the Box
Here arrives the desktop, doer of all tasks, conquistador of heavy duty work and proponent of immovability, extensibility and maintainability. A laptop produces heat, and cools it with a fan, yet requires a farce to clean whereas a desktop box just requires a pop of the case and a blast of air. A tablet lacks this problem, but sacrifices extensibility and heavy duty; so too does the smart-phone in kind.
My aim is not to dismiss the use of laptops, tablets and phones; but just as the e-reader may never truly replace the book, nor will the portable device ever really replace the desktop; perhaps one day imitate it, and perhaps one day match its performance – but then, as that day arrives, technology will perhaps have reached a perfect point.