Musings about current technology, and why each platform is great.

Musings about current technology:

Background – heavy computer user since Windows 98 (have used 98, XP, Vista, and 7 extensively). I upgraded to 8 about a month ago. I have used OS X just about enough to know that it frustrates me, but I don't hate it simply because I'm not used to it (In other words, I'm not going to hate on something just because its different). It just feels weird and less free to me. I have also used multiple distros of Ubuntu, Fedora, and Solaris.

I currently own a touchpad-only laptop with Windows 8 (purchased in sept 2007 - 2.0 ghz dual core, 17 inch 1900x1200 screen, geforce go 7900gs, 2gb ram, blues brothers sticker on the lid), an iPhone 4, and a Nexus 7.


Windows: I have liked every version of windows I've used, and I've had no trouble upgrading from one to the next. In fact, I'm still waiting on the actual list of things people hated about Vista, because I had no problems with it. I can see how the transition to 8 would be difficult for some, but after an hour or two searching the internet for "Top 10 Windows 8 tips and tricks,' "best things to change on windows 8" or "windows 8 how to" you can find all the information you need. And the button to start internet explorer is right in front of you when you install 8. Easy. Windows 8 is fast too.

WP: I had a Samsung Focus (WP7) for a year, then a Focus Flash (Mango/7.5) for another year. I liked both of them. The Flash brought smoothness to the WP OS. Everything worked well, maps were nice, liked the live tiles (some of them), settings were simple to change. Threaded messaging between SMS and facebook chat was also nice. I would love the chance to use WP8 on the 920 for a month or two, it looks like a huge improvement from WP7 even.

Wish List: 8 & WP – Pages or Stopping Points for apps in Metro UI. Android and Apple both scroll one left or right with one swipe. I like that WP is vertical, but it would be nice to differentiate between a swipe action and a drag action on the WP. For instance, if I swipe up, snap to the top of the apps below the ones currently on screen. If I drag, just go where I put you (like you do now). The ability to "snap-swipe" would be great while walking/driving/or otherwise alternatively engaged in life.


iPhone: I've had the iPhone 4 (iOS 6) for a couple months now. I broke my Focus Flash, and the 4 was free with my contract renewal. It is my first iDevice. Its mostly awesome. I hate that the weather app always says 73, thats just dumb, and that you can't remove some of the apps. Also, if the camera shutter and the sent text noises turn off when I put the phone on vibrate, why can't I just turn them off all the time? Finally, the settings menu is confusing. You shouldn't have to go to multiple places (i.e. Notifications and Messaging) to change options for one thing (Messaging). I like iMessage. Its cool that I can text my friend in Wales (who is using an old ipod touch) from my US iphone – good job apple. The screen feels "harder" than the screens on my other touch devices, and its easier to use with moderately sweaty/wet hands. I like it, and for the most part its a good phone. Solid performance for a phone that was already 'old' when I got it.

iTunes: Thank you for putting my stuff in automatically renamed folders whenever I edit song info.

Wishlist: iPhone – make me feel less trapped (without having to jailbreak). Minor – make bottom row of apps symmetrical if I don't have 4 – either to the center, the outside, or justified. It would just look better in my opinion. Also, if you could come up with an actual battery that would be great. iPad – do anything to make the tiny icons on the big screen look less ridiculous. Maybe have quandrants that act similar to iPhone's pages? You could place the apps in whichever quadrant you want, but they would space themselves in each quadrant the way they do on the phone. Or rows, or colums, something.


Nexus 7: I like everything about it, including the price. The screen is great, the customizability is stellar (this is my first venture into the android world), it runs smoothly, and I like picking it up every day. The battery in my laptop stopped working a few months ago, so I bought this instead of a new battery. It has filled its role perfectly. Hulu, YouTube, Facebook, news, email, pandora, google music, google now, light text editing, some games,... it does it all well. I honestly don't understand the "Not enough apps" issue people are having. If someone could provide a list as well as why they couldn't find a simple alternative in the store, that would be great. Downsides – Everything feels open source (cause it is) and beta. It just doesn't look finished, but thats half the fun I guess.

Wishlist: Nothing yet, but I haven't been using the device long enough to make a good list really.

Final thoughts – For the most part, all 3 platforms are great at what they do. I think 95% of 'problems' boil down to people either buying cheap hardware or failing to do simple research.

There will probably be updates, as I've left out plenty of things I just can't remember at the moment.

Any and all comments are welcome, and I hope this leads to some good discussion.