New imacs to become "Chin-less"??? Say it ain't so! :-)

2

Comments

  • Reply 21 of 44
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by regan View Post


    I never knew what all the negative reaction to the so called "chin" on the imac was all about.



    I hear you. I was never even consciously aware of "the chin" until several months after I got my iMac, and that was only because I kept seeing references to it here at the AppleInsider message board (and at first I didn't even know what physical portion of the iMac "the chin" referred to -- yep, that clueless).
  • Reply 22 of 44
    iposteriposter Posts: 1,560member




    The current iMac's #1 fan! It's Chintastic!



    I understand the functional necessity of the current chin design, and it does give the iMac some character, not necessarily a good one depending on your opinion. But I also agree that making the iMac look like a monitor, will make it look like any other monitor, and loose the uniqueness that instantly identifies it as an iMac.
  • Reply 23 of 44
    vineavinea Posts: 5,585member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Duddits View Post




    I know I may just be a cat, but in the iPhone's defense, I must say that it meets the definition of computer in every standard lexicon you can lay your paws on. Not only that, it is more obviously a computer than many others that are much more secretive about their computer-ness. There are computers everywhere that you would hardly recognize as such. But the iPhone, with its CPU, storage, UI, full version of Apple's OS, and variety (and potentially infinite number) of applications not limited to any single function, is no computer closet case.



    Its a PDA with a nice mobile OS closely related to Mac OSX. That doesn't make it a general purpose computer (like the Mac) than a PDA running Linux makes it a general purpose computer. It is a computer...but so are many embedded devices and not quite the usual meaning of the word.



    Quote:

    The iPhone challenge was to design a computer with an acceptable phone function rather than a phone with an acceptable computer function (i.e. the competition). The primary hurdle was overcoming the lack of physical optimization in a dedicated device - the phone application had to be strong enough that users would tolerate the loss of a mechanical input for the benefits of open-endedness. Apple was so successful that they have convinced the likes of you, someone who has worked as an Apple repairman, that the iPhone is actually a phone and not a computer. That is a tremendous accomplishment. It reminds me of early computer users who, after using their new computers for word processing, were convinced they were typewriters. Few view their computers as typewriters today, and as the limited number of initial applications on the iPhone expands, few will fail to recognize them as the computers they are down the road.



    Oh come off it. The iPhone is a very nice convergence product (PDA + Phone + iPod) of which there are many other, less well designed, versions on the market. The iPhone is no where near the functionality of a UMPC and given the ARM processor it wont for the foreseeable future simply because the goal posts move along with Moore's law. Sure, mobile devices today can do things it took a general purpose computer (hereafter, just computer) to do 20 years ago but todays computers do far more than they did before. Storage requirements are still expanding rapidly. Memory and processor requirements as well. Things that simply dont fit/run in mobile devices even though they are more powerful than a 20 year old computer.



    An iPhone sized device can replace the computer when we have widespread, high speed wireless (no Edge isnt there yet...nor is WLAN/3G/4G/WiMAX really...we're looking a few generations down the road as you would want sustained 100MBps as a minimum) and most of the computational and storage load is offloaded to remote servers. Even then you have the reduced UI constraint that would make an ultraportable laptop sized device better (ie with keyboard) until you have near flawless voice recognition and decent natual language processing.



    Vinea
  • Reply 24 of 44
    cubitcubit Posts: 846member
    Bring back the Sunflower iMac form factor~! Well, not exactly, but who can argue with the beauty and ease of use of the 17", or forgive me G4^3, the 20" floating iMac screen?. I know the suspension arm cost an arm and a leg, but it is still the easiest mac in the world to use. What kept me away from the 'chinned iMac' has been the immobility of the . I did get one of those Rain rotating stands and that worked great on my aluminum cinema 23" now in use. I might well have sprung for the 24" iMac, but I just kept thinking about much less functional its form is than the iMac I have.



    On color, I still think "snow" in the first (or I guess it was 2nd) generation iMacs. I might have kept ours had I not run out of closet space!
  • Reply 25 of 44
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    I'm all for loosing the chin. I'd like to see some of the 'guts' of the computer moved back to the stand part, so that the display can be as big and thin as possible.
  • Reply 26 of 44
    murphywebmurphyweb Posts: 295member
    Why oh Why oh Why oh Why would anyone want a thinner imac? So it looks cool? To impress your friends? There is only one real reason to have a thinner imac and that would be if your desk is only 2 inches across and the current imac does not balance too well on it.



    People we are talking about a desktop computer, not an art installation! I am in need of a new computer and am waiting for the new imac, i bloody hope it is twice as fat as the current one, you see i may be a bit weird compared to most of you but when i spend so much money on a new computer i want it to be as powerful as possible. I want it to be fat, stuffed with storage space, memory and processing power.



    What most people on these forums seem to want is a notebook on a stand. Does anyone not realise that there is a compromise for portability? Power, specifications and functionality are exchanged in return for size. If you need a laptop then of course size is important so the lesser specs and power are a good compromise, But why when you are buying a desktop do you want the same?



    I just don't get it? Does no-one else want more 3.5" drives ( what about potential swap out??),

    Faster processor, more memory, more interfaces and ports, better graphics card, sound card etc..



    Am i missing something?
  • Reply 27 of 44
    jasenj1jasenj1 Posts: 916member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Cubit View Post


    Bring back the Sunflower iMac form factor~!



    I'm with Cubit here. One thing that bugs me about the iMac is the fixed height of the display. The Sunflower design was great because of the ease of moving the screen around. It was great for sharing the machine with others, whether co-workers, family members, or in a lab.



    Now, with the iMac becoming only 20" and 24", that makes repositioning a little trickier. That's a big screen to be waving around. I hope Apple at LEAST offers height adjustment.



    - Jasen.
  • Reply 28 of 44
    cubitcubit Posts: 846member
    Well said murphyweb. I'm less into "thin" than into functional. Speed, power, beauty are all possible, but there is a limit to the base size as you point out. The problem with the current iMac/ProMac pairing is that the second has everything, but also room for more than I can ever use and takes a huge amount of space. I like the 2 DVD drives so that I can set one for US and one for Europe, but that is really not critical! With the iSight camera built into the newest iMacs, their chin configuration really is not a key feature in their function, but the inability to adjust them is. Hence the stand I mentioned.



    The beauty of the sunflower mac was that it was all there in one. What I loved was the floating screen and the 20" is just as good as the 15" one my wife still swears by. (Except of course for the Power Brick, it was all there in the Cube, too).
  • Reply 29 of 44
    ensign pulverensign pulver Posts: 1,193member
    I hate the chin. Good riddance.
  • Reply 30 of 44
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by murphyweb View Post


    Why oh Why oh Why oh Why would anyone want a thinner imac? So it looks cool? To impress your friends? There is only one real reason to have a thinner imac and that would be if your desk is only 2 inches across and the current imac does not balance too well on it.



    People we are talking about a desktop computer, not an art installation! I am in need of a new computer and am waiting for the new imac, i bloody hope it is twice as fat as the current one, you see i may be a bit weird compared to most of you but when i spend so much money on a new computer i want it to be as powerful as possible. I want it to be fat, stuffed with storage space, memory and processing power.



    What most people on these forums seem to want is a notebook on a stand. Does anyone not realise that there is a compromise for portability? Power, specifications and functionality are exchanged in return for size. If you need a laptop then of course size is important so the lesser specs and power are a good compromise, But why when you are buying a desktop do you want the same?



    I just don't get it? Does no-one else want more 3.5" drives ( what about potential swap out??),

    Faster processor, more memory, more interfaces and ports, better graphics card, sound card etc..



    Am i missing something?



    Potentially by moving the guts to the stand and base you could get desktop parts. IE cheaper faster cpus, gpus and HDDs. As well you could ditch the chin and have a nice chinless display.
  • Reply 31 of 44
    dudditsduddits Posts: 260member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Karelia View Post


    I understand that circuitry will continue to get smaller, but unless some amazing new technology comes out in the next month or so (or anytime before the next iMac), then the circuits will remain as they are for now. I'm by no means saying the iMac will always have the chin, but the next one will have to.



    I guess we'll just have to wait and see...

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Karelia View Post


    By those definitions, anything with a microchip is a computer, and there must be a line.



    By those definitions (what constitutes a computer), not anything with a microchip is a computer. But you're right - there must be a line. The line that Apple is drawing (or rather, building) is between the iPhone and iPod, not between the iPhone and the Macbook. Obviously, an iPhone doesn't replace a laptop, but it does for some things and will grow in versatility. Interestingly, some of the arguments you're making against the iPhone as a computer were made when laptops first came out and were similarly dismissed by some as less than a "real computer."

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Karelia View Post


    I can browse the internet on my RAZR (assuming I bought the service), but that doesn't make it a full-fledged computer. Nor is the iPhone.



    You know, it's funny - if you step back from this silly squabble for a second, consider the word "computer." How archaic: a leftover from when computers did little more than crunch numbers. We now consider the word to mean far more than what it literally connotes and only initially described. The word is almost an embarrassment to the way in which computers have evolved and their meaning has expanded. How much time do you actually spend "computing" on your computer?



    Apple's ambition with the iPhone is to expand the meaning of the word yet again. The meetings that birthed the RAZR were very different from the meetings that birthed the iPhone. As you compare them feature for feature at this point, it may not seem so, but that misses the point. The iPhone is the first viable, versatile, grow-able handheld computer platform running a non-watered down OS and non-hobbled UI. By obsessing on the initial set of applications you miss the bigger picture, just as those who obsessed on the limitations of MacPaint and MacWord missed the larger implications of Apple's GUI-based Macintosh on its introduction.
  • Reply 32 of 44
    dudditsduddits Posts: 260member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    Its a PDA with a nice mobile OS closely related to Mac OSX. That doesn't make it a general purpose computer (like the Mac) than a PDA running Linux makes it a general purpose computer.



    My response is pretty much my response to Karelia above.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    The iPhone is no where near the functionality of a UMPC and given the ARM processor it wont for the foreseeable future simply because the goal posts move along with Moore's law.



    Given Moore's law and the miniaturization that is its driving force, the only practical limit of the iPhone is the size of its screen.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    An iPhone sized device can replace the computer when we have widespread, high speed wireless (no Edge isnt there yet...nor is WLAN/3G/4G/WiMAX really...we're looking a few generations down the road as you would want sustained 100MBps as a minimum) and most of the computational and storage load is offloaded to remote servers. Even then you have the reduced UI constraint that would make an ultraportable laptop sized device better (ie with keyboard) until you have near flawless voice recognition and decent natual language processing.



    Given that computers are evolving faster than humans, I agree that the UI constraint will be the lasting factor in distinguishing it from a laptop. I also agree that high speed wireless will give them a tremendous boost, but not solely for the reason you say. Local, physically small storage capacities will increase exponentially as technologies percolating in academia trickle up to the marketplace. As for voice recognition that you would consider tolerable, my guess is that's coming relatively soon; natural language processing... not so much (25 years)!
  • Reply 33 of 44
    dfilerdfiler Posts: 3,420member
    I am of the opinion that the chin will eventually disappear. However I don't really consider to be a glaring design shortcoming.



    Consider this. Picture frames serve the same purpose as the frame around a monitor or an AIO computer. With modern materials it is certainly possible to construct purely utilitarian picture frames for paintings and photos. All that is really needed is a half inch wide piece of stamped aluminum, steel, or plastic.



    However, not everyone chooses to frame their photos and artwork in such a frame. Instead, they choose space-wasting models with a chin on all four sides. Which gets me wondering... after the novelty of miniaturization wears off, what size of monitor frame will people prefer? My thought is that a thin frame isn't desirable unless space is an overriding concern. Instead, it is preferable to have visual separation between screen content and real world surroundings.



    Another interesting analogy to ponder is that of window sashes. For hundreds of years it has been possible to make light-weight sashes with frames just an inch in width. However, windows don't look right when the sash frame is an equal width on all four sides. Instead, the bottom of the bottom sash is almost always bigger. This isn't for structural reasons. Upper sashes, of the exact same size, could be identically framed, but instead are thin on all four sides. Windows simply seem better proportioned when the bottom edge of the bottom sash is larger. Could the same be true for monitors?
  • Reply 34 of 44
    vineavinea Posts: 5,585member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Duddits View Post


    My response is pretty much my response to Karelia above.



    The iPhone uses a 620Mhz ARM...about middle of the pack and not much different than what exists in a lot of PDAs. What makes the iPhone a "computer" and a PocketPC running Windows Mobile not?



    Quote:

    Given Moore's law and the miniaturization that is its driving force, the only practical limit of the iPhone is the size of its screen.



    Moore's law powers laptops and desktops as well. Again, even though today's PDAs have more computing power than desktops from 20 years ago we aren't using using desktops from 20 years ago for general computing purposes.



    The practical limits are that the form factor will always make a PDA less capable than a larger machine until you can offload a good chunk of work onto more capable machines.



    Quote:

    Given that computers are evolving faster than humans, I agree that the UI constraint will be the lasting factor in distinguishing it from a laptop. I also agree that high speed wireless will give them a tremendous boost, but not solely for the reason you say. Local, physically small storage capacities will increase exponentially as technologies percolating in academia trickle up to the marketplace. As for voice recognition that you would consider tolerable, my guess is that's coming relatively soon; natural language processing... not so much (25 years)!



    Local physically small storage capabilities will always trail the size needed for general computing tasks. I have a 1GB USB key. It used to be that 1GB was larger than the hard drive of desktops. Today...it fills up pretty quick. Kinda like an old style floppy.



    Until you can park everything on Amazon S3 (or equivalent) and expect reliable mobile access then small mobile devices will always trail desktops and notebooks because of their larger form factor. Likewise computing tasks.



    As far as voice recognition...its been "ready in 5 years" for the last 25.



    Vinea
  • Reply 35 of 44
    marzetta7marzetta7 Posts: 1,321member
    I'm all for getting rid of the chin...and give it to me in a glossy black!
  • Reply 36 of 44
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by marzetta7 View Post


    I'm all for getting rid of the chin...and give it to me in a glossy black!



    With an HD DVD drive?



  • Reply 37 of 44
    I personally like the chin. While I credit Apple with much more aesthetic sense when it comes to the design of their computers, Sony's attempts to make compact PC's without the chin have been hideous, thick, and ugly (not to mention with cheap grey plastic housings). That said, having used some of these iMacs at school, I have found it uncomfortable to crane my neck to look at the screen all the time. I keep my displays low on my desk and often use a laptop... I find the orientation of looking slightly down at my screen more comfortable and more natural. Just my 2¢
  • Reply 38 of 44
    dudditsduddits Posts: 260member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    The iPhone uses a 620Mhz ARM...about middle of the pack and not much different than what exists in a lot of PDAs. What makes the iPhone a "computer" and a PocketPC running Windows Mobile not?



    I guess they're both computers. However, the fact that iPhone runs a full OS rather than a watered-down mobile version of one, and the fact that the iPhone interface is endlessly versatile and not tethered to physical limitations optimized for (and limited to) specific functions, elevates the iPhone's potential to do more of the things we associate with larger computers.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    Moore's law powers laptops and desktops as well. Again, even though today's PDAs have more computing power than desktops from 20 years ago we aren't using using desktops from 20 years ago for general computing purposes.



    The practical limits are that the form factor will always make a PDA less capable than a larger machine until you can offload a good chunk of work onto more capable machines.



    Again, I half agree. the practical limits of the form factor are... the practical limits of the form factor. But other limits - storage and horsepower - do not have the sole solution of offloading work to more capable machines. Advances in storage and horsepower will at some point make handheld computers sufficiently powerful in for general computing. Yes, bigger computers will always have the potential to be more powerful than smaller ones. However, as components continue to decrease in size, the limits you are describing will evaporate.



    From a physics point of view, you are making distinctions between objects whose size differences are negligeable. As the physics of computing drills down into ever smaller particles, the size difference between an iPhone and a desktop machine won't matter for general computing, and one need not access the other strictly for the power benefits of scale.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    Local physically small storage capabilities will always trail the size needed for general computing tasks.



    As a cat, I am often not taken seriously. But I assure you this is simply not true. However, if you are not aware of the various storage technologies in development, then I can understand why you would believe this.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    I have a 1GB USB key. It used to be that 1GB was larger than the hard drive of desktops. Today...it fills up pretty quick. Kinda like an old style floppy.



    Until you can park everything on Amazon S3 (or equivalent) and expect reliable mobile access then small mobile devices will always trail desktops and notebooks because of their larger form factor. Likewise computing tasks.



    The issue is at what point a device the size of iPhone becomes sufficiently powerful and robust that its size alone - and not its power or storage - becomes the limiting factor. You seem to be saying never. I am saying at some point. What that point is could be estimated by combining a bunch of trajectories and seeing where they connect.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    As far as voice recognition...its been "ready in 5 years" for the last 25.



    For a computer to interact in a natural way through language is the most difficult task in artificial intelligence. Nonetheless, the field has made solid progress and continues to improve. If you compare your experience with phone voice recognition systems of today (as annoying as they still are) with those from five years ago, you know what I mean.
  • Reply 39 of 44
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,273member
    those who have not used voice recognition software recently will always tend to down play it's importance to the future computing.



    At some time in the past it is likely that they tried a consumer level program and did not find good results, that's okay with voice recognition software the cutting edge costs money.



    I find that voice recognition is perhaps the most natural of input modalities, it never misspells, and most of us by the time we finish the second grade we are well-versed in how our native language works.



    Voice recognition wasn't ready 5 years ago, computing horsepower was too low. Now we have multicore computers and huge hard drives the software is going to catch up to the hardware and in 10 years speaking to your computer for your cellular phone will not seem odd at all. I guarantee it.



    This message was dictated by Dragon NaturallySpeaking 9.5
  • Reply 40 of 44
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by backtomac View Post


    Potentially by moving the guts to the stand and base you could get desktop parts. IE cheaper faster cpus, gpus and HDDs. As well you could ditch the chin and have a nice chinless display.



    Apple uses only laptop-class CPUs and GPUs in the Intel iMac--only the Mac Pro contains true desktop-class processors. Apple will probably continue with this approach. iMacs already use desktop (3.5") hard drives.



    If Apple comes out with a chinless iMac, I won't be able to describe them to clients any more as "big iPods cut in half". Oh well.
Sign In or Register to comment.