Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 26th Aug 2012 10:28 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless In light of the jury verdict in Apple vs. Samsung, the one-liners and jokes flew back and forth. One in particular, by Dan Frakes, has been copied and pasted all over the web, and it goes like this: "When the iPhone debuted, it was widely criticized for having no buttons/keys. Now people think the iPhone's design is 'obvious'." This is a very common trend in this entire debate that saddens me to no end: the iPhone is being compared to simple feature phones, while in fact, it should be compared to its true predecessor: the PDA. PDAs have always done with few buttons.
Thread beginning with comment 532611
To view parent comment, click here.
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
RE[5]: Revisionist History
by TM99 on Mon 27th Aug 2012 16:08 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Revisionist History"
TM99
Member since:
2012-08-26

The Wikipedia article on Jeff Hawkins clearly states that Palm was founded in 1992 and released the Zoomer. The Newton came out around the same time in late 1993.

I think you are missing the point that Hawkins invented Graffiti which was used by both devices. Hawkins was instrumental in developing pen computing and tablet computing with GRiD several years before the development of the Newton. At best they were contemporaries sharing newly designed technologies. Nowadays, Apple 'fans' tend to downplay other innovators and inventors and rewrite history so that it is always Apple that did it first when that it is simply not true.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[6]: Revisionist History
by socheltree on Mon 27th Aug 2012 16:33 in reply to "RE[5]: Revisionist History"
socheltree Member since:
2012-08-27

Yes, The Wikipedia article on Jeff Hawkins clearly states that Palm was founded in 1992 and released the Zoomer... after the Newton in '93.
Here's another citation quoting Hawkins as saying the Newton came first:
http://www.pencomputing.com/palm/Pen33/hawkins2.html

Graffiti was on neither the Zoomer or the original Newton MessagePad. The Zoomer used an earlier recognition system called PalmPrint which was horrible.

Graffiti was based on Xerox PARC's Unistrokes. Palm got a demonstration of Unistrokes from PARC before they created their Graffiti system. Xerox successfully sued them for violating their patent.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[6]: Revisionist History
by jared_wilkes on Mon 27th Aug 2012 16:34 in reply to "RE[5]: Revisionist History"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

Here's actual coverage of CES '93 saying the Zoomer wasn't out yet:

http://www.caruso.com/work/dm-index/digital-media-june-1993/more-vi...

Here's a book on the history of Palm by Andrea Butler and David Pogue saying that it was slated to launch in '92 but they didn't get prototypes until the spring of '93 and that it was shown for the first time at CES in 1993:

http://books.google.com/books?id=lsFHU305YL0C&pg=PA47&lpg=PA47&dq=t...

Edited 2012-08-27 16:36 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[7]: Revisionist History
by galvanash on Mon 27th Aug 2012 17:05 in reply to "RE[6]: Revisionist History"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

Here's actual coverage of CES '93 saying the Zoomer wasn't out yet:

http://www.caruso.com/work/dm-index/digital-media-june-1993/more-vi...

Here's a book on the history of Palm by Andrea Butler and David Pogue saying that it was slated to launch in '92 but they didn't get prototypes until the spring of '93 and that it was shown for the first time at CES in 1993:

http://books.google.com/books?id=lsFHU305YL0C&pg=PA47&lpg=P...


Read carefully... There is more than one CES within a given year. The June CES was the summer CES. The Tandy Zoomer was demonstrated again at that CES. But it was _also demonstrated at the Winter CES (1st week of January 1993) and also at a few international trade events in Dec of 1992.

http://www.caruso.com/work/dm-index/digital-media-january-1993/news...

They actually shipped (as in available to customers) within months of each other. I distinctly remember seeing a Zoomer at Radio Shack when it was released - and at the time I was waiting for the MessagePad to become available.

I don't have proof. I have never been able to find an actual release date for the Zoomer, just generalities.

Regardless, it was demonstrated successfully first to the public as a complete product. Not by much - it doesn't really matter. They are close enough together that I don't think it is really fair to say that either one of "beat" the other to market. I simply refer to the Zoomer as being first as a jab at Apple because everyone else says the Newton MessagePad was - its meaningless in both instances.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[6]: Revisionist History
by jared_wilkes on Mon 27th Aug 2012 16:37 in reply to "RE[5]: Revisionist History"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

And I have a host of fandroids releasing the craptastic Tandy Zoomer a year earlier than it was to alter history too!

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[6]: Revisionist History
by jared_wilkes on Mon 27th Aug 2012 16:52 in reply to "RE[5]: Revisionist History"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

No, I'm perfectly fine with the fact that people were working on these areas.

What I'm not fine with is claiming that Apple does not and has never invented or innovated anything, however, a device that required a licensed OS, hardware manufacturing from Tandy and Casio, and marketing and distribution from those two hardware manufacturers, and Donna Dubinsky from Apple doing financing and recruiting (mostly from Apple) to keep the company afloat to produce a product AFTER the Newton that was an even bigger flop is somehow designated groundbreaking and revolutionary.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[7]: Revisionist History
by socheltree on Mon 27th Aug 2012 17:03 in reply to "RE[6]: Revisionist History"
socheltree Member since:
2012-08-27

EXACTLY.
Does anyone here remember GEOS? Woof! It was a kind of mockup of the early Mac GUI running on 8-bit processors. You could "run" it on a C-64, I put run in quotes because it was more of a slow crawl.
Anybody here remember the build quality of Tandy or Casio devices? Woof again. Tandy's DOS based computers were so bad they were practically a fork in the OS. Software which ran on them would list them as a separate compatible device, even though it was technically running the same OS.
The Zoomer was not prior art.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[7]: Revisionist History
by TM99 on Tue 28th Aug 2012 04:16 in reply to "RE[6]: Revisionist History"
TM99 Member since:
2012-08-26

No, I'm perfectly fine with the fact that people were working on these areas.

What I'm not fine with is claiming that Apple does not and has never invented or innovated anything, however, a device that required a licensed OS, hardware manufacturing from Tandy and Casio, and marketing and distribution from those two hardware manufacturers, and Donna Dubinsky from Apple doing financing and recruiting (mostly from Apple) to keep the company afloat to produce a product AFTER the Newton that was an even bigger flop is somehow designated groundbreaking and revolutionary.


No actually you aren't fine with what is being said otherwise you wouldn't bring up tired straw man arguments constantly.

Apple and its current fans have a mistaken mindset currently that says because our products are a commercial success, we did this first, best, or alone. We are the great innovators and Jobs, who was a narcisstic ass-hole was somehow a creative genius instead of the prick he really was. Therefore we deserve to receive legal protection and can control the market as we see fit. We can destroy Android simply because Jobs lost to Microsoft and by gods, he wasn't going to lose again even after he was dead.

When others push back against that and say things like, well, there is prior art. Apple may have innovated that but they built it on the foundations done by this company or that company, you call us 'fandroids' or 'haters'. You pull out straw men and tell us that we don't see anything that Apple has done well.

Bullshit! I don't know how old you are but I am willing to bet that I was using Apple products before you were even born. Some of us remember history. We know about Xerox PARC. We know and used Zoomers and Amigas. We know about GRiDPads. We had Newtons and used superior Palms. We remember SoundJam MP before Apple bought it and rebranded it as iTunes.

We remember the Apple Quicktake, which was called the first consumer digital camera, but we know that it was simply a rebranded Fuji or Samsung. Yeah, we remember that and know that iPhones and iPads contain more prior art from other companies like this so we do pause. We remember when Apple almost went out of business and now they are the highest grossing corporation ever. And we know that what goes up, will eventually come down.

So please give this line of reasoning a rest. It is quite tiresome and wholly unconvincing to those of us who were there from the beginning and those who may be young but at least take the time to educate themselves on what really has happened in the history of modern computing.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[7]: Revisionist History
by zima on Sun 2nd Sep 2012 23:47 in reply to "RE[6]: Revisionist History"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

What I'm not fine with is claiming that Apple does not and has never invented or innovated anything, however, a device that required a licensed OS, hardware manufacturing from Tandy and Casio, and marketing and distribution from those two hardware manufacturers, and Donna Dubinsky from Apple doing financing and recruiting (mostly from Apple) to keep the company afloat to produce a product AFTER the Newton that was an even bigger flop is somehow designated groundbreaking and revolutionary.

So I imagine that it will be really shocking to you learning now that OS X (also a basis for iOS) is likewise an acquired OS - as is Pixo OS, the one used in iPods (and BTW, let's not forget the string of failures in developing a replacement for the last "really Apple" OS, the Mac OS Classic).
NVM how Apple doesn't actually manufacture anything for quite some time...

Also, contemporary product. And you must be really one heck of an Applebot, if you think that marketing or distribution changes anything WRT the significance of a product as a demonstration of tech trends and landscape...

BTW movements of talent and technology: Apple would be utterly lost, unable to compete, without largely taking what the industry at large comes up with - in the words of the messiah (NVM "we have always been shameless about stealing great ideas"): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3LEXae1j6EY&feature=player_detailpag...
Apple had its head in the sand for the last many years [...] missed out [...] attitude of arrogance [...] the rest of the world passed us by [...] we need to bring the Mac up into the modern world [...] because we weren't first, because we didn't set the standards [...] this whole notion of being so proprietary in every facet what we do has really hurt us [...] reinvent the wheel our own way; and yeah it might be 10% better but usually it ended up being about 50% worse

(ohh, but I forgot, Apple is "special" and requires different ways of looking at what they do...)

Reply Parent Score: 2