The Palm Foleo is killed before launch.. a tough decision but one that needs to be made before the device is launched and soaks up time and attention without much return. The O'Reilly blog breaks the news here. One could argue it is a product before its time, but like many ventures it suffers from being only part of the story, and a story that has not been fully scoped out let alone written. One characteristic request from senior executives is to ask for "a product that is the iPod of our market sector!" which can be done but might fail if one hasn't done the upfront homework to put in place iTunes, fast connection to computer, iTunes Music Store, not to mention agreements with key players in the music industry, etc. It seems to me that Foleo was not very user inspired as the point of an instant on pc is that it behaves like the pc... if fast networks were universal then a virtual hard-disk that emulated the disk in a pc would be a reasonable idea, but a hobbled pc with instant on access to not a lot if the network isn't there is daft.
The original Palm pda was successful because Jeff Hawkins and his team realised that the product they were creating was a rival to a diary not a pc; the Palm had characteristics necessary to compete with a pocket diary not a pc, unlike the Newton. The design of the Palm V connected at an emotional level with its users satisfying a desire for relatedness and personal growth, moving it up Maslow's hierarchy to create a very desirable product .
[Question on page 27] These landscapes between cinema and architecture, arts and life, seem to claim a precious bond with the past. How would you insert the new communication technologies in this discourse? The current idea of connecting, for example, favours without exception the speed we need to virtually reach the other: don’t we run the risk of inhibiting, in the long run, the form of tactile knowledge which plays such a pivotal role in your emotional geography?
[Answer] Absolutely not. Cinema has laid the foundation upon which the current communication technologies have developed and strengthened: the possibility of reaching places and people with-out really moving. The term “con-tact” stands for the need of human beings to stay in touch, and it does, indeed, emphasize “tact”-the tactility favoured by the desire for closeness. The new terminology of communication indicates better than anything else how something which at first appears to be aseptic and abstract is, now more than ever, tactile. Think for example of the chat room where the idea of the room frees the imaginary, providing a feeling of closeness both physical and tangible. In the e-mail address, somebody’s address is in fact more intimate than the real one, because there you are certain to find that particular person, and no-body else. In terms of communication, we are gradually getting to the most emblematic ex-ample of all: the palm pilot, which is one with the hand itself, with its palm. At first, there is al-ways a moment in which you fear that the medium itself can get the “upper-hand” and over-whelm the human spirit. But it is not so. Time has shown, again and again, that desire does not die. Once you master the medium, what you tangibly do is continue to look for other ways to keep contacts.
Taken with this extract from Harvard Magazine
While Harvard waited, visual culture exploded. When the Lumière brothers projected the first motion picture show in Paris in 1895, “the stillness of representation was forever broken,” says Bruno. Today, such images have “infiltrated every single square inch of our lives,” Lorelei Pepi says — computers, televisions, cell phones, handhelds, planes, trains, minivans. They’ve become the “way in which we see our world,” says Bruno: “There are screens on the façades of buildings. If you walk into any art gallery, it’s no longer only painting, it’s also moving images. When you go to a doctor, you get a screen of your body — they literally penetrate inside of you.” Visual art has become “the currency of our world,” she adds, “the way in which ideas circulate — and films are very important as that kind of language.”
.....Bruno works with many students in the Graduate School of Design who can “no longer think of buildings in a static way,” she says. “Look at Frank Gehry’s buildings — these buildings move.
Picture uploaded by Heinz Theuerkauf. Used with thanks under CC.
So the history of cinema represents for [design students] a way to create a space in motion, a space that tells stories.” As Marjorie Garber notes, there’s “tremendous interest in using film information” across the University. “To be literate is to be film and visually literate as well as to be book literate: that is the culture that we’re living in right now,” adds Garber, a Shakespearean scholar who’s been using film adaptations of Shakespeare’s plays in her classes for years.
If we put this together with Louis I. Kahn
"Architecture is the making of a room; an assembly of rooms. The light is the light of that room. Thoughts exchanged between one and another are not the same in one room as another.
Picture uploaded by Allan Ferguson. Used with thanks under CC.
A street is a room; a community room by agreement. Its character from intersection to intersection changes and may be regarded as a number of rooms."