Linked by Kostis Kapelonis on Mon 29th Nov 2004 18:55 UTC
Editorial The IT sector today is a complete mess. The end-users rarely understand this, but most insiders reach a point when they realize that things should be different. The problems are numerous but they all reduce to a basic principle. IT and consumer electronics companies are interested more about money than helping people solve their problems. Of course companies need to make a profit and nobody denies that. They should however make money by helping people and not by creating more problems for them.
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Intelligent Interface Design
by macadelic on Tue 30th Nov 2004 02:13 UTC

The actual point in this discussion (in my opninion) is that there still is much to be improved upon in modern day operating systems. True, the role of the operating system has been changed somewhat, but it still does not augment human intellect or maximise our information processing potentional. Computers still do not know much about our environment and context, whilst we struggle updating our conceptual models about how our computers are functioning.

I think computers and OSes need more practical 'intelligence', and I am not talking about AI or Wizards or hiding functionality from users, just the opposite, I want computers to be more supportive to the task at hand so I can achieve my goals easily.
For example when I want to upload a graphic image to a website (forum etc.), and I select a 40 MB BMP file, the OS / browser could offer me an option to convert the file to a websavvy format (say a downscaled jpeg image). In that way, nothing of the old functionality is lost, but users who do not know all details can achieve the same tasks as the pros. The OS should be more sensitive to the context of my task. Of course this is not a perfect example, but it does illustrate the problem; developers focussing on the technical and task based side of their applications instead of the user's goals.