Sliquid linked me to an interesting article about the relative evolution of Yahoo and Google home pages over the years [ Source ]. The illustration is almost comical. I find that sort of thing really interesting; the conviction of Google's mission contrasts sharply with the scatterbrained panic in Yahoo's scramble to be everything to everybody. Ironically, of course, Google are becoming the standard in everything they touch - search, news, web mail, online maps and so on - simply by taking the time to think it through and do it right. Yahoo is a mess of loud animated blunderbuss adverts whereas Google serve tiny, concentrated pills of relevant information. Guess which company is still in debt, and which one just floated for millions?
I wonder whether hardware will go the same way. Mark's new cellphone is a better camera (with a larger screen) than my automatic digital, a better, more expandable MP3 player than my USB key model and a much better handheld game unit than my old GameBoy. Frankly I don't see the downside and I can only see it continuing. I have not worn a watch in ten years, principally because I have always had either a pager or a cellphone with me. Back in 1995 I recall daylight savings changes being a big event with cheap little clocks in everything from the video player to the car and even the oven but if you have your phone with you then it's the only place you really need the time displayed. It is easy to see the cellphone as an increasingly complex thing but to me it is actually simplifying everything else. With the integration of other items it reduces the amount of crap I carry about (at airport security I unloaded half a branch of Dixons into the little x-ray tray) and that can only make things simpler elsewhere.
That said, I still can't bring myself to sign a new contract just yet.
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