Reading an interesting article about the departure of the fella who’s pretty much responsible for the OSX operating system (and also could be argued, the tamer of Linux/BSD into something more consumer friendly) and the postulation as to why makes some interesting speculations about the future of computing.
The number one speculation is that further updates to OSX will now take its GUI cues from iOS rather than the other way around, making iOS the defacto OS king in Apple world. There is a lot of talk about the combining of operating systems in tablets and other mobile items and desktops. The big question is how and which should lead? I have really no idea how Microsoft is going about it (and perhaps they don’t either). Android really is its own world with no OS buddy – just like Blackberry and WebOS.
From the article though, it seems that iOS will lead and OSX will be subordinate. This means that the tablet/phone/device market is the path for Apple for the forseeable future. I suppose that anything that runs OSX will become essentially legacy devices. Samsung believes Tablets are the future, as well, but they don’t really have any skin in the conventional desktop/laptop market.
It should be a strange world for Apple, a company previously considered the premium content creation system manufacturer, moving towards things which are more of content consumers. It will be interesting to see if Apple will try to push their mobile products as content creators or keep on the tack of savvy consumption devices, as they are now. Thinking further, will all mobile devices then have this same focus? To be honest, I haven’t seen much for content creation on other OSs, either. Maybe it is not the OS that holds it back. Perhaps it is devices?
Could there then be an upcoming device that is perfectly designed for creation? What would that device look like? I suppose it would have to have finer control than what a touch screen would give and certainly a manner of input faster than a touch-screen keyboard would give. Perhaps an intermediate solution is the Motorola Atrix sort of thing?
There are other options as well. The honing of actually working on touch screens may get us there. Microsoft’s never-ending love of the stylus may help bring us there. It would put more precise control at our finger tips and make for a far easier time with content creation. A stylus combined with some souped up handwriting recognition would go a long way. The question is if handwriting is faster than touchscreen typing? Imagine handwriting making a comeback?
Another aspect to think about is computing horsepower. Graphics applications take a lot processing power. Sure, a lot could be pushed into the cloud but there’ll aways need to be a bit more juice in the device for such things. We have a few audio processing applications on tablets to seemingly good effect but jumping to video editing and image-intensive work is something else. What gives a bit of hope are the incumbent dual-core processors making their way into devices.
Tablets are here to stay. They will out pace desktops and laptops. I think there are a lot of areas that have yet to be nailed down with our impending transition to tablet world. The real question for creatives is how will we create on these things.? It will certainly be interesting how we go about solving them.