Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 29th Jun 2012 22:55 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes "Whenever there is a conversation about the future of computing, is discussion inevitably turns to the notion of a 'File'. After all, most tablets and phones don't show the user anything that resembles a file, only Apps that contain their own content, tucked away inside their own opaque storage structure. This is wrong. Files are abstraction layers around content that are necessary for interoperability. Without the notion of a File or other similar shared content abstraction, the ability to use different applications with the same information grinds to a halt, which hampers innovation and user experience." Aside from the fact that a file manager for Android is just a click away, and aside from the fact that Android's share menu addresses many of these concerns, his point still stands: files are not an outdated, archaic concept. One of my biggest gripes with iOS is just how user-hostile the operating system it when it comes to getting stuff - whatever stuff - to and from the device.
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Comment by some1
by some1 on Sat 30th Jun 2012 00:37 UTC
some1
Member since:
2010-10-05

The problem with files is that they are too low-level. Quite often they are not the "user shareable thing", but guts of the application exposed to a daylight. Users don't care about files. They want photos, songs, videos, letters, whatever. They don't care if a video with subtitles is two files or one. And most people are not capable of organizing their files into sensible hierarchies. So while I'm a file format geek myself, I'm all for hiding files behind a higher-level abstraction, that's uniformly taggable, searchable (by metadata, not just "file name"), annotateable and viewable without a deep knowledge about the program that produced each one. Sure, standard file formats must exist and all programs should be given access to files (subject to user controllable access policies), so that it's possible to share stuff between apps; but just exposing files to the user doesn't solve the interoperability problem anyway.

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