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So, the MIT Laptop continues to be vaporware.

Apple’s releasing it’s iPhone sometime this summer, which looks like it’s more phone than personal computer.

There’s the Nokia N800, which looks promising, but there’s that whole Linux thing to deal with.

There’s the Sony Vaio and other sub-compact laptops, but then there’s that whole $2,500 – $3,000 plus Windows thing to deal with.

And finally, there’s the constant rumors swarming around apple releasing a sub-compact laptop, and while that’d solve the whole Linux/Windows thing, I’m not holding my breath.

What I want is

  1. A computer; Not a phone with computer like abilities that’s locked down,
  2. has internet access,
  3. and most importantly, fits in my shoulder bag

It’s the last bit that’s most important. As much as laptops changed the dynamics of who used a computer (which therefore changed what they were used for), they’re still a pain in the ass to drag around and are a bit obvious when you’re out and about.

It someone could come up with a small laptop that fit in the pockets/small bags that most normal people cary around it would represent a giant shift in who used these computers, which would (once again) shift what computers were used for.

The whole smart phone thing doesn’t cut it, because they’re severely restricted devices. Most aren’t open to third party development and even if they are you’re limited by the shit state of affairs that is The Network in the US.

It’s not that a small computer is going o fix the world’s problems, it’s that a small computer will change the landscape, extend us (humans) in a different way and change the status quo. When the status quo shifts, that’s when the opportunity for real change happens … or at least, it’s when people are at their most interesting, which is kind of the point of life, eh?

Originally published March 4, 2007

Copyright © Alan Storm 1975 – 2023 All Rights Reserved

Originally Posted: 4th March 2007