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Will the petty iMac slaggers shut up? Read this!!!

post #1 of 5
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Flat-screen iMac wows design guru
<a href="http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/sci/tech/newsid_1761000/1761289.stm" target="_blank">http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/sci/tech/newsid_1761000/1761289.stm</a>

Apple's new iMac has won the endorsement of the influential computer design guru Don Norman.

"I searched it thoroughly and studied it carefully looking for problems or flaws," he said. "I couldn't find anything. It is brilliant design," he told the BBC World Service programme Go Digital.

The new iMac, unveiled last week after two years in development, combines innovative design with powerful multimedia features.

The new model has been likened to an Anglepoise lamp, with the flat panel attached to the dome-shaped base via a pivoting arm.

'It's very impressive'

"When I first saw the machine, I thought it was going to be hard to connect to it, hard to expand," said Dr Norman. "When you first look at the machine, it doesn't even look like it has a CD drive. But if you look in detail, it's very impressive, it's all there." Apple is hoping the new iMac will appeal broadly to consumers and prompt existing iMac owners to buy a new one. Public reaction has been mixed, with some viewing the new iMac as rather odd.

But Dr Norman argues this is not something that should worry Apple. "Some people may dislike it. But that's a sign of good design," he said. "If you don't provoke strong opinions, you haven't done your job."

Three all-white models will be available, at $1,299, $1,499 and $1,799. Apple expects to ship the top-of-the-line iMac by the end of the month. The midrange model is expected to be available in February and the entry-level iMac in March. Apple has 5% of the PC market in the US and 3% worldwide. But historically its designs have influenced developments in the PC market.

Dr Norman sees the new iMac as an example of technology designed to be simple and easy to use.

He is annoyed by the unnecessary complexity of many of today's products. His ultimate aim is to have technology like computers disappear from sight and be replaced by a family of information appliances communicating wirelessly with each other.

"What you really want in the home is a modular system scattered throughout the house, all powered by a central computer, just like you have a furnace or a hot water heater in a closet," he explains.

"Apple is the best company in the world to make this because Apple understands consumers, understands design and understands computers. Dr Norman is professor of computer science at Northwestern University in the US and is a former vice president of the Advanced Technology Group at Apple Computer.

He is the author or co-author of 13 books, with translations into twelve languages, including The Design of Everyday Things and The Invisible Computer.
post #2 of 5
So a "computer design guru" is required to approve the new iMac?

Please explain to me how anyone can be more of an authority in Computer design than the Ives/Jobs team.
post #3 of 5
It doesn't hurt, anyway tonton.
post #4 of 5
he's not a "computer design guru". he's a expert on designing for usability. his book--the design of everyday things--is very good. it discusses things like why the design of most doors is so bad we need to print instructions ("push", "pull") on them and still people get a 50/50 choice wrong surprisingly often.
The windows/linux view of this would be that it is the user's fault for not taking the time to learn the proper usage of the particular door they are opening. Norman's view is the same as Apple's: good tool design lets people get on with their task (entering a building/downloading photos from a digital camera) without undue thought.

extra: the book is called the psychology of everyday things in some editions & his later book on human-computer interfaces is generally considered to be quite poor

[ 01-15-2002: Message edited by: bawjaws ]</p>
post #5 of 5
[quote]Originally posted by tonton:
<strong>So a "computer design guru" is required to approve the new iMac?

Please explain to me how anyone can be more of an authority in Computer design than the Ives/Jobs team.</strong><hr></blockquote>

He's not "required to approve" the new iMac, but it's a nice testimonial considering the guy isn't a Mac fanatic looking at it from a Mac perspective, and is judging the machine purely from an industrial design perspective.
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