Tuesday, March 19, 2013

7 Things Our Children Might Say Because of Chromebooks One Day

I wonder what our children will say to us when we try to tell them about the software, operating systems, and hardware we never felt like we could live without.

Perhaps it would go something like this:

  1. "You mean you actually had to install software? There wasn't an app store?"
  2. "How did you ever feel secure if you only had your data stored on one computer in your home?"
  3. "We learned about optical drives in history class today. What an epic fail, huh?"
  4. "Wait. They made a laptop without a touchscreen? Seriously?"
  5. "What's a file folder? Why didn't you just 'search' for it?"
  6. "Hey, Chrome OS just updated to version 157. Have you seen the latest flags?"
  7. "Dad, can I get the Chromebook Pixel 10 for college?"

Every significant change has its champions and its villans. That's what makes the world go round. While some decry the move to pure cloud-based technology, others are moving there—if they aren't already there—faster than anyone might imagine.

Yet very few people are ever willing to go back once they have moved forward.

  • Imagine what a horse and buggy felt like after riding in a car.
  • Imagine what road travel was like after flying through the air.
  • Imagine what a typewriter felt like after using a personal computer.
  • Imagine what dial up felt like after cable internet.

Who knows if Chromebooks will be around in five or 10 years? Who cares? The point is that this little device—praised by some and demonized by others—has become a catalyst for a new computing experience that is cloud-based and multi-screen sensitive. It keeps the user front and center because it's all about a seamless, effortless experience.

Imagine what it would feel like if we had to return to a world where traditional software and operating systems were the only option. Like it or not, skeptic or not, critic or not—it would feel odd, strange, and little lackluster.

"For What's Next" just feels like what technology should always being doing—pointing us forward.