The Touch Interface Computer

We’ve been developing for the iPhone for about a year and a half now and it’s only now, after the iPad, that I begin to ask the question, what is touch computing and where will it take us? I wonder what we all would have thought if it was the iPad that came out first and then the iPhone and iPod Touch. Would we so easily pass by this remarkable device with the same carelessness that seems so prevalent? Have we gotten so used to the iPhone and the iPod Touch that we can look at it and say, “Man, it’s just a big iPod Touch.” Or can we take ourselves back to the innocence of 3 years ago and say, “Wow, what is this thing?”

It’s hard to tell. I feels like the temptation for many developers and onlookers is to build a bridge between what computers had been and what this touch interface computer is now. The computer of the past had such and such, and the iPad doesn’t so that’s what we need to build. The computer of the past had a data management system, or the computer of the past had tabbed browsing, or the computer of the past had background processing. And I’m not going to lie, I’d like all of those things on my iPad too. But I think the more important question to be asking is, what does touch interface computing and a truly mobile computer mean for the future?

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