Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 9th Jan 2012 20:10 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems The news I've seen coming out of the Consumer Electronics Show this year isn't particularly breathtaking or awe-inspiring. Phones, tablets, faster, thinner, yes, yes, we've all been here before. There is one piece of news, however, that stands out from the crowd. The best-selling TV maker in the US, Vizio, is entering the PC market. Stunning designs for both laptop and all-in-one - and buried deep within the press release lies the creamy nougaty centre that makes me want to buy one even more: a Windows 7 install optimised by Microsoft, free of crapware.
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RE: No, thanks
by MacTO on Tue 10th Jan 2012 05:49 UTC in reply to "No, thanks"
Member since:

I prefer the baroque shape of a violin over the boring shape of a triangle.

The thing is, minimalism sells. I'm guessing that it sells because it is the least likely to offend the taste of consumers, even if it is also the least likely to be aestheically pleasing to most consumers. Think of it this way: there are people who thought that Barbie computers were cute and there are people who craft wooden cases for their computers. While both demographics would probably buy something with a minimalist design, the Barbie girl is unlikely to want the craftsman's delight (and vica versa).

I want connectors, even on laptops, I want to choose my keyboard, I want to move displays and set their height, I want to be able to change the hard disk.

If you want it, then buy a machine that fits those criteria. This computer is definitely meant for someone else. It is likely meant for someone who wants something that they can buy without fretting over details, and will plug their camera or iPod into the computer every few weeks. It isn't meant for people like you or me. They probably don't want what we want either. As long as the market can address the needs of different people, there is nothing wrong with that.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: No, thanks
by gtada on Tue 10th Jan 2012 08:05 in reply to "RE: No, thanks"
gtada Member since:

The thing is, minimalism sells.

True, but you can do minimal and still have your own style. I'm disappointed that so many companies choose to copy Apple's products instead of having a little soul (looking at you Samsung).

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: No, thanks
by Neolander on Tue 10th Jan 2012 08:20 in reply to "RE[2]: No, thanks"
Neolander Member since:

As said above, try to take a look at what Asus are doing. In my view of aesthetics, they make some of the prettiest computers out there, yet do not blindly follow Apple's designs. They try a lot of new things, which one may like or not, and they attempt to satisfy a much larger user base than Apple.

Ironically, I believe they also used to manufacture Apple's laptops at some point.

Edited 2012-01-10 08:37 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: No, thanks
by lucas_maximus on Tue 10th Jan 2012 13:45 in reply to "RE: No, thanks"
lucas_maximus Member since:

It constantly surprises me how many people don't really know what minimalism is. If some people on here would like read some design blogs or books ...

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: No, thanks
by Treza on Tue 10th Jan 2012 20:51 in reply to "RE[2]: No, thanks"
Treza Member since:

You could have copied the citation directly, I was expecting a link to a website about design:
Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.
Antoine de Saint-Exupery
French writer (1900 - 1944)

For me, that's unrelated.

I don't care about pointless complexity and "tuning" gadgets.

I made a musical analogy because musical instruments are really optimised for their purpose.
- A triangle has a good shape for a single note, reproducible, pure.
- There is almost nothing useless in a violin, the weird shape serves difficult requirements : Interesting sound covering evenly several octaves, harmonics for rich chords...

When I see a Macbook Air or that stuff, I'm not impressed by the "perfection" obtained by removing itches.
I see that they had a problem integrating connectors, replacable batteries, ... and, instead of finding clever solutions, they preferred to avoid the problem by removing features, for the sake of a silly quest for ultimate slimness. They crippled their product to respect absurd constraints.
Instead of finding a way to cover many octaves, they gave a shiny triangle.

As always, everyone has his/her tastes, ...

Antoine de Saint exupery also wrote, at the beginning of "The Little Prince", about the way adults never understood his drawings, seeing a hat instead of a boa eating an elephant.

I want to be able to see elephants playing violin.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: No, thanks
by MacTO on Wed 11th Jan 2012 05:06 in reply to "RE[2]: No, thanks"
MacTO Member since:

I think that people understand minimalist design fairly well, it is just that they are doing so in an aesthetic context rather than a functional context. Apple's "buttonless" mouse was aethetically minimalist, in part, because it did away with the visual representation of the button. These computers can be considered visually minimalist because they reduce the number of hard edges (i.e. there are fewer sharp corners to poke your eyes out).

Functional minimalism is something different, but that would be reducing a computer to an appliance. A lot of people don't want that.

Reply Parent Score: 2