I have had my fair share of smartphones, tablets, and “smart” devices, watches with radio and alamr clock radios since the 80’s – hey, back then, those were the “smart” devices, if you had an alarm clock with a radio or a small black&white TV in it, you were “the man”… – and I can only tell you why I didn’t like them, not why I did.
The same goes for this stupid, mindless trend of having every new gadget on the planet in the personal “arsenal” if you will, as George Carlin said once “people buying things they don’t need , with money they don’t have, to impress people they don’t really care about… and then they take the damn thing home and realise they don’t like the damn thing anyway” … and I can only say, this is what is happening all around the world.
The times when you’ve baught a computer or a laptop to get to be more efficient at work, enjoy mobile computing or connectivity while on te move, are long gone, nowadays people buy these things to show other people how “cool”, “smart”, or “engadgeted” they are, as if they were trying to become more intelligent by owning things that needed a great intelligence and knowledge for their creation. Some companies like mobile phone dealers even created ads that run on the local radio stations here in Romania, that say “You own a smartphone, so, you are smarter, right ?”
Though all advertisements are continuously trying to tell customers and potential buyers that they’re going to accomplish great things with these gadgets and “smart” devices, while either paying less, or by having a smaller device, handier, easier [ as in weight], the sad truth is different, however, in my humble opinion, and that is, that SMARTPHONES, TABLETS, and ANY other “smart devices” of today ARE FOCUSED ON CONTENT CONSUMPTION and NOT on creation. They are made for the masses. Not for webdesigners, not for creators, not for programmers, not for people who need to put their ideas in practice.
I have tried to work with several quite speedy tablets, and some interesting smartphones, and with regard to the tablets, I can only say that they not only make work harder, they are completely anti-ergonomic, they can cause serious RSI [ repetitive strain injury ], and they are completely behind in performance even compared to a Pentium III PC or laptop with a Linux Mint or a Windows XP on it. And when it comes to eyestrain… oh boy, are they bad… after 20 minutes of “work” on a tablet my eyes hurt as if I had a 20 hour programming session. They are non-ergonomic, not just inefficient, but antiefficient, they cause RSI after prolonged use, and are exclusively for content consumption.
So there you have it: while everyone is speaking of their greatness, I am doing the exact opposite. I don’t like tablets, smartphones, smart TVs and alike, because I am A CREATOR. I don’t spend much time CONSUMING content, but rather CREATING content. All kinds of content. Media, videos, clips, presentations, websites, programs, applications for desktop and the web… and for these kind of activity, the named devices simply perform very poorly.
So, if you are a content creator, a programmer, a webdesigner, like myself, hang on to your desktop or laptop devices, and don’t throw them out just yet and don’t replace them with “mobile devices” and “smarter gadgets” just to be trendy. The way I see it, those are going to be outdated much faster then desktops and laptops will. And that my friends, makes all the difference.