Friday, March 04, 2005

Intel unveiled Mini PC concept

CNet news article: Intel shows off Mac Mini-like concept PC.

Read the article first. Then, if you are interested and have time, here is Slashdot discussion thread for it: Intel Flaunts Mac mini Knock-off (slashdot.org).

Here is the Mini PC in question, compare with Mac mini:



And here is the comparison when Steve holding one in his hand during the Keynote and when Intel VP Don MacDonald showing off the Mini PC's Sleek Concept.



Judging from the look of the hardware alone, it's a rip-off from Apple's product, obviously. However, Intel's design is still only a dream and an empty plastic box. Nothing is real yet. I also have highly doubt of whether any maker in computer industry can turn this into reality or not. It seems too small, almost the size of the optical drive alone, which leaving almost no room for anything else.

Anyway, let's assume that one day, someone (Sony maybe, they are capable of making nice and sleek computers sometime. Forget about Dull, oops. .. Hell ... oops, I mean Dell)..... then, is it the end of Mac mini phenomena?

No, it's not the hardware ... it's software, stupid!

PC makers will one day match the design of Apple product (one day ... no-one know exactly when .. but let's assume the design space is ergodic, then one day the trajectory will cover the entire space given enough time. Hence, one day it will. Nothing come close to the PowerBook yet, though .. even the current PB-line is old and badly needed major update).... one thing they have to understand and can't, probably, match the Cupertino's offering:

Software

True. Design is one thing. But design isn't bound to the look of hardware. That can of course attract users, but it won't create any user experience. It's the software that does the job. You need to design the software properly so it creates good user experience.

For example: I probably won't be considering a new PowerBook if it runs Windows XP, not Mac OS X. Another example being .. no matter how cool the iPod is, I don't think people will like it much if the software really suck and hard to use; now you just plug it in and it works.

The Mini PC, if it ever be realized, will be running Windows by default (assuming using current market status), ridden by all problems (securities, virus, maintenance, etc) and unsleekness of Windows, which directly defied Intel's Sleek Concept design proporsal. Nothing will just works like the Mac and Mac mini. There will be no substitute for iLife

I like the look of a lot of mobile phone ... but I found many of those cool looking ones to be difficult to use, over featured (in simpler word: bloat) in many areas, and not simplified enough in area that should be simple. So, while I might like their looks, I prefer something that I can actually use.

Get it?