The secret of Apple's design success: the humane interface
Posted 24 January 2013 - 08:13 AM
second, the ipod wasn't successful because of the interface and everyone knows that. the original ipod had a horrific interface.
it was successful because apple did THE most important thing a business should do when building a new product... identify the problem and crush it like a bug on a windshield.
the problem? turns out it was a PITA to get the music onto the device! the solution wasn't the ipod, it was itunes!! in fact, itunes wasn't originally designed for the ipod (because it didn't exist), which is further proof that apple completely understood the problem they were after.
this article is just a round about way of bashing linux and others. know your histrory, kid.
Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:17 AM
Wow, I don't even know what to say to that. Yes, Apple has been much more successful in the 2000s than the 90s. But Apple has always been a major player in the personal computer market. Especially in the consumer space, Macs (and Apple IIs) have always been used by a lot more than just hipsters and old people.
Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:50 AM
Well, the 1990s were an interesting decade. Back then, Macworld was a print publication focused on the professional Mac user, and it had serious articles written by qualified journalists like Steven Levy and all-around geniuses like the late Dr. Cary Lu.
Obviously, a foolish endeavor, since there were no professional Mac users. On this we have the word of one Dave Wiskus, who obviously knows a lot about "real work" because he "is the cohost of the Unprofessional podcast [and] also a musician and designer with an adorable puppy."
Posted 25 January 2013 - 02:44 AM
Revisionist history? Maybe you should go back and reread the article. Mr. Wiskus is clearly referring to the 2005 version of the iPod (First sentence from the ‘Music to our eyes’ para). The iTunes store was launched two years prior in April of 2003. Even still, considering that the original iPod launched just 9 months after the release of iTunes 1.0, it is a fairly small leap to surmise that Apple intended for the two to work in harmony from the very beginning of the design process.
That being said Mr. Wiskus does make an ill-suited comparison between Apple and (oranges… Doh!) the open source community, i.e. Linux and android. Neither Linux nor android develop their own hardware-at least not as far as I know. I’m not sure how he came to the conclusion that Linux is focused on pushing forth core technologies. Since there is no Linux specific hardware-again, that I’m aware of-Linux can only react to technologies originally developed for other platforms. This is hardly an ideal situation for creating innovations in core technologies. The OS can interact with and manipulate the ‘nuts and bolts’ as well as any other but it does not factor into the design of said ‘nuts and bolts’.
Posted 28 January 2013 - 04:13 AM
I'm pleased to see that you say "..did was.." not "..do is.." because the past tense is very appropriate.
Take the early versions of the Mac OS - System 7 for example. Open the Finder and look at your documents and there were none of those ugly three letter extensions, unlike Windows and MS-DOS.
Now, open your latest, shiny MacBook Pro running OSX 10.8.2 and... Yes, about 80% of your files show the good old three letter extensions that MS-DOS files had in the 1980s. Nice one, Apple.
Sit down at an old Mac and the intuitive starting point in System 7 was the finder. There you find different folders according to the different aspects of your life. Within those folders you find your Documents. Double click the document and the necessary application opens - though you can easily override this and use a different application.
Now, open your latest, shiny MacBook Pro running OSX 10.8.2 and... Yes, the Launcher presents you with a list of applications, not documents. Launch an application and you’re shown the documents you have produced with that application.
System 7 was like the real world; you chose the document you wanted, then carried on writing using whatever pen (or pencil) came to hand. In OSX you have to remember which pen (or pencil) you were using before being shown the documents you created with that pen. A bit like MS-DOS, in fact.
Oh, and different folders for different aspects of your life? Forget that with iCloud, you just get a huge, unstructured list of identical icons. Just like keeping ALL your documents in one big pile at the side of your desk.
And my biggest gripe? Emails on the iPhone. Once there was a button (helpfully marked with a Refresh icon) that you pressed to refresh your emails - kind of intuitive, eh? Now? You drag the screen down to refresh. Boy oh boy, would I have liked to be a fly on the wall in the room where “intelligent” designers thought that that was more "how people worked".
There is a myth that the world copies Apple. In reality, Apple has its eyes set lovingly on MS-DOS and is steadily moving in that direction. But with beautiful graphics and imaginative gimmicks, of course.
Posted 28 January 2013 - 09:49 AM
Sorry, but I disagree. Linux is just fine for what it is. But it was never easy and even now developers are trying to make it look more like windows and mac.
Just a thought.
Posted 28 January 2013 - 09:53 AM
Yep.. and you can decide which way you want to go in settings. You decide.
Yes, I just loved doing everything with a command line. It was so human and natural. /s
Microsoft used to tell people... if you want to use a computer, you should learn to program one.... its the best way."
Just a thought.
Posted 28 January 2013 - 10:18 AM
Recommendations for Apple: 1) Establish focus-groups to determine how actual customers use Apple computers. 2) Pay attention to developments taking place with software manufacturers that increasingly require more capable hardware (multi-CPU-cores, GPU, and RAM etc).
Posted 28 January 2013 - 10:41 AM
Where do I find the "settings" in OSX 10.8.2, please? There is an option to not-show extensions in Finder Preferences but it simply doesn't work. Never has done.
Tongue in cheek to make a point, my friend. Tongue in cheek.
Posted 28 January 2013 - 11:25 AM
The long-time goal has been to make the computer more useful to the human, by recognizing the strengths and weaknesses of humans and computers.
Posted 28 January 2013 - 12:02 PM
This at a time when non-Mac computers usually had only MS-DOS. Windows hadn't even been invented yet and was until the late 90's only a poor imitation of the Mac OS. Also, the MAC had large third party B&W screens, bigger than any on the IBM PC side, although only one 13" MAC colour screen.
At the time I was an art director at a Toronto area hi-tech Manufacturer.
The engineers in the research department drooled over it with comments like "How come the art department gets this and the R&D department has to make do with our crummy computers? The necessary engineering software for the Mac didn't exist (by the way, do they have it now?)
On the office side, although one marketing department had even earlier on an Apple Plus, every one else needed to use MS-DOS computers for the sake of compatibility with the rest of the business world and the mainframe computer. Apple realized the problem early on and worked on it. Adobe, whose software had originally been developed for the Mac, came up with the definitive answer in the 90's: Adobe Acrobat. After that, the doors really opened for Macs in the office environment. Still, for a long time the Mac was regarded as a "toy" by those who didn't understand that powerful computing applications could be used without a degree in computer sciences. Apropos the Mac was for "old people": Unless you were one of the early retired (MS-DOS) programmers, computers of any kind were perceived as "to complicated to learn at our age". That changed only with the advent of iMacs, usually first used by school age children who then taught their parents and/or grandparents.
Re reliability: MACs extremely seldom need maintenance/repairs.
Non-Macs spawned an entire Mom-and-Pop industry of computer service shops for Windows machines with one in every shopping plaza until after the year 2000 (remember Y2K?) Macs had no such problems. That opened up many people's eyes to the inferior computers they had been buying and made them have a serious look at Apple.
A final word re design: Apple was early on at the leading edge of design. Some of its products are in the Museum of Modern Art in N.Y.C.
Other manufacturers had to catch up when MAC products became very popular with consumers in the 21st century.
Posted 28 January 2013 - 05:43 PM