Capn Design

January 2010

This month I posted 14 entries, listened to 162 songs, crafted 69 tweets, watched 15 videos, bookmarked 7 sites, took 16 photos and favorited 27 things.

Fine, My Brief Thoughts on the iPad

Posted January 29, 2010

Here's how Apple wants us to buy computers.

Typical consumer family:
1 iMac for everyone, 1 MacBook for travel, 1 iPad for the couch and 2 iPhones

Professional user family:
1 Mac Pro for home/office, 1 Macbook Pro for the road, 1 iPad for the couch and/or clients and 2 iPhones

And when they're better, an AppleTV in every room.

My friend Adam, and others I'm sure, are concerned about this being a peripheral. While you clearly need a computer to sync the devlice, but I don't think there's reason for concern. If it's not true already, most homes will have one computer that acts as home base. You'll keep your music, movies, contacts, etc. stored there and everything else will sync with it. If you already have a laptop and a desktop, the laptop is as much a peripheral as an iPad would be.

Sure, the iPad is more geared towards consumption, but so what? As I've read a few times lately, the vast majority of time that most users spend on a computer is consumption, so it only makes sense to optimize towards that. If you don't want a consumption device, there are plenty of other options at your disposal.

Sidenote: I tried to keep this short, since I've already complained about the amount of interesting content being produced. My apologies if I added to your pile.

Digging a Tunnel Below NYC

Posted January 29, 2010


The MTA has been building a tunnel to bring the LIRR into Grand Central. They're expecting it to be complete by 2016. The photo above is from a slideshow on showing some of the images of the dig. Ron Cohen, who is pictured, has been a foreman on this project for a year. If sees it to fruition, he will have worked underground for 9 years. That's insane.

Also worth noting, the workers have a choice of Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks coffee. According to the caption (Image #4), the workers prefer Dunkin Donuts.


Slideshow via Sean and you can read more about this on Gothamist


Watch the trailer for this new book from Andrew Zuckerman. Yes, a trailer for a book. It comes with a 60 minute video of all of the interviews in the book. Buy it. (Warning: Autoplay) [via Monscope]

Don't let Twitter, Facebook, Google be the only game in town

In an op-ed, Anil argues that we shouldn't depend on any one service for communication. Aside from being a tinkerer, that's one of the main reasons I host my own blog. No matter how the publishing system may change, my site stays consistent. It's also why I communicate I communicate in a variety of places.

The Myths of Profile Pictures and its Affect on Dating

OK Cupid, the online dating service, has been posting to their blog about data trends on their site. Looking at this latest post, I'm convinced this information is going to homogenize their user base. People will all begin having the same photos, the same profiles and they'll all be optimized for quick hookups. It might be what they want, but I wonder if it's intentional.

Slang from the NYC sanitation department

mongo n: salvageable garbage ("Don't chuck that table, it's mongo—I can use it in my living room.")

Kolelinia: A Bike Path in the Sky

Detailed photos of a plan to allow for cyclists to ride above a busy city center. I could poke some holes in this, but I'd much rather RIDE MY BIKE IN THE SKY. [via @bobulate, who's killing it lately]

Stock and Flow

These are known business terms, but Robin Sloan puts them in the context of social media. "Flow is the feed...Stock is the durable stuff." Hell yes. [via @bobulate]

More Tablet Conjecture

Posted January 12, 2010

After outlining my thoughts on the tablet, a few folks have noted that Apple has never made a modular device because they're clunky and harder to produce, but I don't think that means they never would. While I'm not positive it will be a laptop, I am quite confident the tablet will act differently in different environments (see Pogue's explanation of Droid docks).

After writing the last post, I found some examples, new and old, that showed similar ideas.

20100112tablet.jpgTwo years ago, Popular Mechanics envisioned a truly modular tablet. I think this is further than Apple would go, but is most similar to what I discussed above.

20100112tablet2.jpgI couldn't find the source of this image, but I see something like this as a distinct possibility. Tim Van Damme posted a thoughtful piece yesterday that struck a similar cord. "Combine this 'shell' with our tablet, and you get a fully functional desktop computer".

Finally, here's a real product. Lenovo is coming out with a hybrid laptop/tablet that is pretty ugly, but is theoretically identical to what I proposed.

I think I'm done prognosticating (for now), but I'm growing more and more excited about this device. I've also started thinking more about how content will be displayed. More to come on that later.

Roger Ebert on Blogging and Dining

Posted January 7, 2010

After several surgeries following a bout with cancer, Roger Ebert cannot talk or eat. He posted about the experience on his blog. The end is the best.

So that's what's sad about not eating. The loss of dining, not the loss of food. It may be personal, but for me, unless I'm alone, it doesn't involve dinner if it doesn't involve talking...Maybe that's why I enjoy this blog. You don't realize it, but we're at dinner right now.

For whatever reason, I had never put two and two together. I couldn't believe how long his blog posts were, but now it makes a lot of sense. These stories make me happy to work for a blogging company.

Lady Gaga Barbie Dolls

The artist Veik has produced a number of custom Lady Gaga Barbie dolls and they are awesome. [via MTV Buzzworthy]

The Apple Tablet Will Be a Laptop

Posted January 4, 2010

Sippey believes the iTabletSlateTab will be a laptop with a touchscreen where the screen can fully wrap around. I almost agree, which means it's time for me to stake my claim in the tablet sweepstakes.

The Apple Tablet will actually be the second generation of the MacBook Air. The screen will be 10" (as predicted by many), touchscreen, have very high contrast and will be detachable. That is right friends, the screen will be attached by a magsafe-like connector that keeps the screen attached to the keyboard.

The last time I blogged about the tablet, I thought there'd be some docking station so you can use it as a computer at home. Instead, it will just be half of the computer. I could imagine some kind of stand for watching on the plane or just for around the house, as well.

As for price-point, I think it will indeed be $800-1000. I think they'll add editorial content to the iTunes store using web technology similar to the iTunes LP format (as John Siracusa has predicted). I think it will be based on OS X and not another new operating system, but it will likely require a new 10.6.x version to operate properly. I also think it will be awesome.

Further Reading

Gruber's take on the Tablet
Nick Bilton's take
Marco's take
David's take, which is similar to mine (I think)

Explaining Metropolitan Diary

"The woman, you see, is wondering where the diamond district is. Why does she wonder this? Because she enjoys diamonds, as all members of her sex do, and would most likely prefer to own some and/or more of them."

The Ballad of That Guy From Titus Andronicus (As Told To Matthew Perpetua)

Well done, Matthew. In an alternate universe, this story would be published as a Shouts & Rumors piece.

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