We're on the wrong path - - Let's think outside the box! (PowerPod)

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Hmmmmm.....going beyond the rumor sites is pretty ludicrous, considering I've seen G6 multiGHz processsors and all sorts of things that are just too great a leap forward.



So, how else could one go 'beyond' the rumormills?



My answer: by having a new device that isn't even on the radar.



So, most of us around here are fairly bright (with a few notable exceptions), so I challenge you to seriously think outside the box, and get away from a Mac-centric point of view.



Frankly, G4, G5 specs and guesses about HD space, RAM and so forth aren't that interesting.



But what would be interesting is for Apple to go 'beyond' the idea of a computer.



My suggestion is to stop thinking about the Mac, and starting thinking about the Pod.



-What a strange name 'Pod' is for an mp3 player. Pod has so many connotations, but none of them conjure up a music device.

-Why would you want to integrate a new, innovative interface (the wheel) for an mp3 player?

-Why would you want firewire and a 5 GB harddrive to take anywhere?

-Why is the back of the device uncovered?

-Why is the screen so large? It's only showing song titles.....

-Why would Apple use a realatively robust piece of software (the Pixo OS) just to list and organize songs?

-32 MB of memory? That's an awful lot, doncha think?



My answer is that the iPod is getting a bigger brother: the PowerPod.



The PowerPod is everything that iPod is, plus many other things. The screen will be higher-res, in color, and have additional capabilities, like the ability to take pictures, small QT movies, recordings, calender, address book, games and so forth. It would wirelessly sync to OS X, and also be able to run small versions of Appleworks as well. It would enable the user to go from place to place with large amounts of his work on his person, and put the 'Pod' into the 'Bay' through a connector that will be on the back of the PowerPod. After all, don't Pods usually end up in bays?



These 'bays' would be on all of the new Macs.



I humbly submit, that this would be 'going beyond the rumor sites': introduction a new class of product that is more than a PDA; it's a portable computer and productivity device.



Whew, I'm spent.



SdC



----------



I just try to think of what a person much smarter would think of.



[ 01-02-2002: Message edited by: suckfuldotcom ]</p>
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 23
    curmicurmi Posts: 69member
    [quote]Originally posted by suckfuldotcom:

    <strong>The PowerPod is everything that iPod is, plus many other things. The screen will be higher-res, in color, and have additional capabilities, like the ability to take pictures, small QT movies, recordings, calender, address book, games and so forth. It would wirelessly sync to OS X, and also be able to run small versions of Appleworks as well. It would enable the user to go from place to place with large amounts of his work on his person, and put the 'Pod' into the 'Bay' through a connector that will be on the back of the PowerPod. After all, don't Pods usually end up in bays?</strong><hr></blockquote>



    And it would be the size of a brick.



    I don't think so...



    I guess it could be a bigger iPod for the same price, with the 5GB at a slightly lower price.



    Something QT related perhaps. I can't see them producing a camera, but then again, I couldn't see them producing an MP3 player either...



    [ 01-02-2002: Message edited by: curmi ]</p>
  • Reply 2 of 23
    xypexype Posts: 672member
    I started a thread already where I'm claiming it's a Apple-branded HiFi/DVD/multimedia/nesurfin' kind of thing, the shape of a sony mini-hifi - which has about the same dimensions as the Cube plus the speakers. Powered by a Sahara G3 it could well be the entertainment digital hub for the average Joe - runs everything from mp3's to Word and looks stylish. <img src="graemlins/smokin.gif" border="0" alt="[Chilling]" />
  • Reply 3 of 23
    eugeneeugene Posts: 8,254member
    [quote]-Why would you want to integrate a new, innovative interface (the wheel) for an mp3 player?<hr></blockquote>



    Convenience.



    [quote]-Why would you want firewire and a 5 GB harddrive to take anywhere?<hr></blockquote>



    Do you really want to transfer 5 GB of data even once with USB? Why would you cripple the iPod by making a FireWire HDD *not* a FireWire HDD?



    [quote]-Why is the back of the device uncovered?<hr></blockquote>



    Uncovered, you mean the ports? Why are the iBook and iMac ports uncovered?



    [quote]-Why is the screen so large? It's only showing song titles.....<hr></blockquote>



    It's a menu-driven interface. It's showing multiple titles and and categories in a column view.



    [quote]-Why would Apple use a realatively robust piece of software (the Pixo OS) just to list and organize songs?<hr></blockquote>



    It's cheaper than building your own OS from the ground up.



    [quote]-32 MB of memory? That's an awful lot, doncha think?<hr></blockquote>



    The iPod needs a buffer since it is using a miniature HDD. 32 MB worth of songs get loaded into the iPod so the HDD doesn't need to spin up as often. It's a battery saving feature.
  • Reply 4 of 23
    davdav Posts: 92member
    [quote]Originally posted by suckfuldotcom:

    <strong>Why would you want to integrate a new, innovative interface (the wheel) for an mp3 player?</strong><hr></blockquote>



    the iPod really is beautiful industrial design. anyone else notice the interface is in the shape of a woofer? how else to perfectly compliment an audio device, but to design it so it intuitively says audio without turning it on. jonathan ive and the rest of apple's ID team are stellar.
  • Reply 5 of 23
    jrcjrc Posts: 805member
    [quote]Originally posted by dav:

    <strong>



    the iPod really is beautiful industrial design. anyone else notice the interface is in the shape of a woofer? how else to perfectly compliment an audio device, but to design it so it intuitively says audio without turning it on. jonathan ive and the rest of apple's ID team are stellar.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    What shape is a woofer? Is it significantly different than any other non-ribbon speaker? I thought it was manhole cover shaped.
  • Reply 5 of 23
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    eugene, i think he may be onto something. mostly that the ipod may fit INTO something else to add features and such.



    and by the way, even though the ibbok is a mobile device, it is not expected to see the mobility wear-and-tear like an ipod -- that's why it seems odd to have an exposed firewire port ON THE TOP of the device for something that will be taken, say, jogging. 'course, it could just be poor design. (blasphemy!)
  • Reply 7 of 23
    Hmm... I'm new here so maybe this has been posted before (although I haven't seen it)...



    The idea of an updated "PowerPod" doesn't seem to fit for me. First, everyone seems to agree that the iPod is more than adequatly (sp?) equipped as is. Second, it was only recently released. Third, I just got one for xmas and this would really annoy me!



    What's got to be coming around for the iPod is expanded abilities. But...problem - the iPod has the following buttons : Play/Pause, FF, and Rewind - whatever abilities it gains will almost certainly use these functions - it would be far too un-apple-like to say "oh, the rewind button is now the 'take photo' button (or something equally ridiculous)". So what else uses these functions? iMovies... create some Firewire to RCA cable - download your iMovie onto your iPod and voila! instantly take your movies to your grandparents house and show them on their TV.



    How about the highly necessary iPhoto (iPicture, take your pic) iApp that incorporates Image Capture and does well what Adobe PhotoDeluxe does very poorly? Pop those into your iPod and with the same Firewire to RCA you can show your grandparents your photos also!



    I have no idea how difficult this is to do (or even if Firewire to RCA is possible without some intermediary box). But at the very least, writing the software on the iPod seems pretty simple, AND it fits in very smartly with the iPod's current design... AND it also fits in neatly with the digital hub concept - I use my mac to create music playlists, to edit my movies, to crop and color correct my photos....now I offload them onto my iPod and take them with me!



    I know this isn't 'revolutionary' but it would sure be some killer functionality at pretty low cost...



    And now a token 'graemlin' for my first post:



    rr.
  • Reply 8 of 23
    Spot on, people. iPod 2 or Pro or Power whatever, doing the things you mentioned, but most importantly, able to interconnect Firewire devices independently. And wirelessly to a Mac!
  • Reply 9 of 23
    There was some discussion around here about a slot on the new imac that you could plug you ipod into like a removable drive. (I forget who thought up the idea.) What if <a href="http://www.Spymac.com"; target="_blank">www.Spymac.com</a> is actually on the ball this time- Apple is making an iWalk- and the unknown "sixteen pin connector" is a new version of the duo-dock connector?

    Absolutly no basis for this idea, but how cool would it be to have a dock slot for the iWalk/iPod/iwhatever digital hub devices( all of them could use the slot or plug in via firewire- faster tranfer if plugged in via the slot), as well as having the wireless firewire that 1394.org has been discusing- a 10 miles range wireless connection directly to the computer, not through the internet.

    You could have the iwalk as a portable desktop- your computer, and it's files available via wireless firewire over a ten mile range (For me, that includes my work), or use the iwalk as a PDA.

    slide it into the slot for actually transfering files quickly. Otherwise, it would auto update any file you alter via the iwalk- the iwalk would basically be a second monitor for the computer, but with its own proccessor. It could get confusing to people though, who suddenly can't access their computer once then hit 10.1 miles, or it gets stormy out.



    Job's 3 issues with PDAs as they currently stand-dumbed down internet (solved by an ARM- based device like the ipod, that is powerful enough to handle Flash(.swf)/DHTML files), that no one brings it to a meeting (solved if it had a live connection directly to your office computer, so that you could be writing to a file on your computer, not to a file locally on the iWalk), and three- how it is a pain to sync them (this was a peve he had mainly with the newton- the Newton had its own OS, it was its own thing, not a "digital device as part of the digital hub". The above idea for the iWalk would solve these problems, by making the iWalk for walking around with your desktop in your hand- not making you figure out a home network, and which computer has the latest vertion of you files, etc.

    You couldn't do more than text, email, adress book, web, and maybe itunes visualisations, and file managment, but I would buy one of these- I could have access to my computer directly from work- no telneting over to it through the internet. It could be nice for remote- admining servers- a remote gui, maybe it could be set up to virtual desktop with a few different machines, a couple of stylus hits, and you are looking at a different computer's desktop.
  • Reply 10 of 23
    Eugene - spot-on point for point reply, but that's not really thinking outside the box, is it? Furthermore, everyone of theose answers is gotten from the iPod FAQ, basically.



    The challenge here isn't to make pros or cons about the idea of Powerpod, but to come up with ways that Apple's boast of being 'beyond the rumor sites' is true.



    IMO, higher specs and new interesting designs aren't really 'beyond' are they?



    SdC
  • Reply 11 of 23
    [quote] higher specs and new interesting designs aren't really 'beyond' are they <hr></blockquote>



    they also disregard the potential of the current iPod... a lot of signs point to there being more literally 'inside the box' that could be waiting to be used.



    rr.
  • Reply 12 of 23
    The iPod runs on strongarm processors, which is nice, but if a postulated PowerPod sticks with the same infrastructure, I think it would fall short of the multimedia capabilities hypothesized thus far.



    I wouldn't take Steve's words for golden, but he has said that he wouldn't want Apple to make a PDA. He wants a real computing experience, not internet lite (or something to that effect)



    So, PowerPod maybe, but I don't think it would fly. At least I don't think it would if it is based on a similar architecture of the current iPod. If the thing was expanded in size, becoming a tablet style instrument (i.e. with a screen big enough that you don't mind using it for several hours) and maybe an embedded g3 750fx based design, then maybe this kind of a unit would work into the product line up.



    Then again, I could be wrong, maybe an iPaq like iPod would fly...It would just mark a serious venture into a volatile product market, it'd be interesting to be sure.



    [ 01-02-2002: Message edited by: thesilent ]</p>
  • Reply 13 of 23
    tjmtjm Posts: 367member
    Think about the name "iPod" for a moment. It is a rather odd name. In relation to Apple's current product lineup, it is incongruous. Neither its name nor its function matches anything else in Apple's lineup. I think we need to zero in on it - the "breakthrough" that Apple talked about with regard to it perhaps has yet to be realized.



    It seems clear to me that the iPod is indeed intended to be a "pod" which connects to a central device - Steve's much ballyhooed "Digital Hub". My suspicion is that there are a bunch of "pod-like" devices up Steve's sleeve, designed to be usable independently - connected wirelessly - and docked to a central hub for recharging/downloading/whatever. This hub would contain AirPort, HD, power supply (for recharging pod batteries), FireWire, etc. and would serve as an internet gateway. I like the idea of a flat-screen tablet device with handwriting recognition, wirelessly tied into the hub - another "pod" to dock with the "mother ship". Still and video cameras are other possibilities.



    Based on all I've been reading, it looks like this is the direction Apple intends to go. We'll see in 5 more days!
  • Reply 14 of 23
    [quote] It seems clear to me that the iPod is indeed intended to be a "pod" which connects to a central device - Steve's much ballyhooed "Digital Hub". <hr></blockquote>



    Why the need for a separate device? What would the new hub device offer me that my iMac doesn't? Isn't my iMac already a digital hub just waiting for a means to interface with a few more areas of my life, TV, stereo, etc?



    rr.
  • Reply 15 of 23
    kidredkidred Posts: 2,402member
    hmf! If a G5 at 1.4ghz and all the goodies is shown I'll be blown away! Screw all this little device crap. I want the power!!



  • Reply 16 of 23
    tjmtjm Posts: 367member
    [quote]Originally posted by ricRocket:

    <strong>



    Why the need for a separate device? What would the new hub device offer me that my iMac doesn't? Isn't my iMac already a digital hub just waiting for a means to interface with a few more areas of my life, TV, stereo, etc?



    rr.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    Bingo. The new iMac is the digital hub, IMHO. The LCD screen is only one of the many "pods" to be attached to it. I'm thinking of a cube-sized CPU with multiple FireWire and other ports and cradles for holding a variety of digital devices. Each could be detached and used for a while, then returned to the hub for recharging/storage. "iHub (or whatever) compatible" will be a new tag on digital peripherals made by a variety of companies.
  • Reply 17 of 23
    [quote]Originally posted by river-wind:

    <strong>There was some discussion around here about a slot on the new imac that you could plug you ipod into like a removable drive. (I forget who thought up the idea.) What if <a href="http://www.Spymac.com"; target="_blank">www.Spymac.com</a> is actually on the ball this time- Apple is making an iWalk- and the unknown "sixteen pin connector" is a new version of the duo-dock connector?

    Absolutly no basis for this idea, but how cool would it be to have a dock slot for the iWalk/iPod/iwhatever digital hub devices( all of them could use the slot or plug in via firewire- faster tranfer if plugged in via the slot), as well as having the wireless firewire that 1394.org has been discusing- a 10 miles range wireless connection directly to the computer, not through the internet.

    You could have the iwalk as a portable desktop- your computer, and it's files available via wireless firewire over a ten mile range (For me, that includes my work), or use the iwalk as a PDA.

    slide it into the slot for actually transfering files quickly. Otherwise, it would auto update any file you alter via the iwalk- the iwalk would basically be a second monitor for the computer, but with its own proccessor. It could get confusing to people though, who suddenly can't access their computer once then hit 10.1 miles, or it gets stormy out.



    Job's 3 issues with PDAs as they currently stand-dumbed down internet (solved by an ARM- based device like the ipod, that is powerful enough to handle Flash(.swf)/DHTML files), that no one brings it to a meeting (solved if it had a live connection directly to your office computer, so that you could be writing to a file on your computer, not to a file locally on the iWalk), and three- how it is a pain to sync them (this was a peve he had mainly with the newton- the Newton had its own OS, it was its own thing, not a "digital device as part of the digital hub". The above idea for the iWalk would solve these problems, by making the iWalk for walking around with your desktop in your hand- not making you figure out a home network, and which computer has the latest vertion of you files, etc.

    You couldn't do more than text, email, adress book, web, and maybe itunes visualisations, and file managment, but I would buy one of these- I could have access to my computer directly from work- no telneting over to it through the internet. It could be nice for remote- admining servers- a remote gui, maybe it could be set up to virtual desktop with a few different machines, a couple of stylus hits, and you are looking at a different computer's desktop.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    You may be on to something. Not only is that cool, but think about "...way beyond." No matter what happens, it is gonna be cool.



  • Reply 18 of 23
    ricainricain Posts: 23member
    [quote]Originally posted by TJM:

    <strong>Think about the name "iPod" for a moment.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    It comes from a Greek word that means "foot" like in 'pedestrian' or 'podiatrist'.



    It is supposed to make you think of "Walkman". They could have called it iWalk or iFoot but they called it iPod, which means the same thing but sounds futuristic.



    I don't think there is any conspiracy in the meaning of the name.
  • Reply 19 of 23
    erbiumerbium Posts: 354member
    This is one of the best threads I've read in a while!



    I'm concluding, that the iMac as we know it is finished. The iMac, or future consumer machine that Apple ships will be far more functional and integrated, making it THE Digital Hub. I really think this is it!



    The computer that saved Apple's butt, is now changing into the central hub of what Apple is calling the Digital Lifestyle. I like it.




    Oh yeah, and they'll announce the G5 as well.
  • Reply 20 of 23
    tjmtjm Posts: 367member
    [quote]Originally posted by ricain:

    <strong>



    It comes from a Greek word that means "foot" like in 'pedestrian' or 'podiatrist'.



    It is supposed to make you think of "Walkman". They could have called it iWalk or iFoot but they called it iPod, which means the same thing but sounds futuristic.



    I don't think there is any conspiracy in the meaning of the name.</strong><hr></blockquote>





    I can't speak for anyone but me, but "Walkman" was not the image the name "iPod" brought to mind. I thought of a pea-pod, or an "escape pod" or some other sort of detachable module. Later, I did think about the etymology of "pod" as being a foot, but it still didn't really seem to fit the device.



    If their intent was to connect it to the Walkman (as the breakthrough portable CD player),

    a) they're rather late to the party (since many other MP3 players already existed - the iPod is a modest improvement, not a revolution) and

    b) they could have chosen a name more closely related (how many people really have the Latin meanings of words available on quick recall?). Making the connection of pod=foot=walk=walkman is rather obscure, IMO.



    I'm willing to allow that you're right, I may be off on a tangent. The image of a pod as a detachable subunit still sticks most strongly in my mind.
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