Re: [NTLK] Phoenix ala Newton? (rumor alert)

From: Eric L. Strobel (
Date: Tue Jun 17 2003 - 12:33:21 PDT

on 06/17/03 3:05 PM, Jon Glass at wrote:

> on 6/17/03 6:49 PM, Eric L. Strobel at wrote:
>> Why? I just don't get it. There's way too much complication around the
>> cell phone as it is without adding more unnecessary capabilities. It's a
>> *phone* for crying out loud, you make calls on it. No other functionality
>> is needed. My 5 year old cell phone works just fine, so I'm certainly not
>> going to waste money on something that plays games and crap.
> I thought so too, until I got my Nokia 6210, that is. Very useful to have
> addresses, calendar, and other goodies in it. In fact, I find myself making
> notes on it simply because I can do it with one hand, in traffic, without
> looking at the screen. Try that with a Newton.

They're passing laws about people like you! :-)

But seriously, while I guess I can see that having addresses might possibly
be of some use, there's nothing else I could conceive of doing with that
small a device. (The NEWT is barely adequate to displaying a calendar!)
Let's face it -- if it's small enough to truly fit in the palm of your hand,
then it's too small to display a really useful amount of information (w/o
eye strain, that is).

> Somebody--Samsung, I think,
> just came out with a phone with the Palm OS. What they have done differently
> is separate the Grafitti section from the screen. Grafitti is on the bottom,
> with the numbers. Simple idea, but very workable. It is little things like
> this that help.

Ack! Isn't that an oxymoron -- Grafitti and workable?

> But to address the "too much complication" issue, look at what Apple has
> done with MP3 players. Or look at the iTunes Music Store. If anybody could
> simplify the complicated device that is the cell phone, then Apple could. I
> would bet that if they were to build it, I, at least, would come. I cannot
> imagine them building a complicated, confusing device, and drool thinking
> about a useful, yet powerful cell phone. (mp3, photos, video?, voice notes,
> etc...) Yep, would be nice--and make it modular to boot? Nifty! :-)

Different strokes maybe, but my point is that I have no need for, nor desire
for, *any* other functionality on a phone. So, by definition, *any* user
interface for additional functions would make it more complicated and
confusing. Heck, I don't use 90% of the menu items found on my 5 year old
cell phone. Just give me the basic keypad and the minimum additional keys
to store a few numbers and scroll through them and I'll be happy. I've
NEVER encountered a situation when I wished for any other capabilities in my
cell phone. The only reason I'll ever get a new one is if this one breaks
or if I find one that gets significantly better reception than my current

(Of course, I generally make the salesmen at Best Buy or Circuit City really
PO-ed... They go off about all these features of a particular item and I
just stare blankly at them and ask "When would I ever use any of that and
why would anyone find all that even remotely useful?" Then they stare
blankly as they're rarely confronted with someone who doesn't want every

- Eric.

Eric Strobel (fyzycyst_at_NOSPAM^
The odds are greatly against you being immensely smarter than everyone
else in the field. If your analysis says your terminal velocity is
twice the speed of light, you may have invented warp drive, but the
chances are a lot better that you've screwed up.
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