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[#] Mon May 30 2016 16:06:43 EDT from wizard of aahz

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I might like to mention that I've started looking for things that don't run in a web browser for productivity for me. It takes too dang long to find the right browser window.

[#] Mon May 30 2016 21:16:18 EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold

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A lot has to do with your workload.... I *could* spend most of my day using nothing but a tablet. I actually did that while traveling this weekend. But I wouldn't want to do it on a regular basis.... Chromebooks have that same vibe.

[#] Mon May 30 2016 23:20:16 EDT from wizard of aahz

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Workload?? Nah. I don't do any of that.

[#] Tue May 31 2016 09:59:35 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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Laptops will never succeed either. The screens and keyboards are too small.

[#] Tue May 31 2016 13:24:06 EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold

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Over time, things may change. But the user experience on a Chromebook generally sucks.

And back to my original point, thinking that a Chromebook is Linux is just a way to try and boost the Linux desktop paradigm. It's no more Linux (other than a kernel) than my Commodore PET.

[#] Tue May 31 2016 13:30:55 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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I don't like the user experience on a Mac. But the fact that you don't like a user experience doesn't make it any less of a real computer. And I'm sure someone has Linux running on a PET somewhere...

[#] Tue May 31 2016 14:18:11 EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold

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Hard to say. To me a Chromebook is more like a calculator. It's got a pre-defined usefulness. While you can throw some apps on to make it more useful, it's still more tablet than anything else.

And I like simple systems. But there are times you need to dig under the hood, and the Chromebook has removed that.

Maybe you're just hostile towards users. ;)

[#] Tue May 31 2016 15:13:04 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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Apple doesn't make all of its operating system source code available to everyone, so their computers also have a limited, pre-defined usefulness.

Oh and here's a Commodore PET running Linux:

[#] Tue May 31 2016 16:08:15 EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold

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And how many people really dig around their OS source to fix anything? It's barely measureable.

[#] Tue May 31 2016 16:35:39 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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So what you're basically saying here is, "There is no objective definition; it's a 'real computer' when *I* say it is."

[#] Tue May 31 2016 16:55:39 EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold

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You're being intentionally obtuse in order to "win". Stop it. A Chromebook is at best a computer that's been hobbled by its creator.

It's the modern dumb terminal.

[#] Tue May 31 2016 17:11:16 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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I'm being intentionally obtuse to point out the fatal flaw of your argument.
You don't think a Chromebook is a real computer, full stop.

[#] Tue May 31 2016 17:29:02 EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold

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I'll say this, most tablets are more useful than the Chromebook. It's "always connected" necessity is annoying.

Actually come to think of it, do you think of a tablet as a "computer"?

[#] Tue May 31 2016 17:45:35 EDT from zooer

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Tue May 31 2016 04:55:39 PM EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold @ Uncensored
It's the modern dumb terminal.

I actually like that description.  Years ago, one of the people that owned the company I worked for said that in the not to distant future everything would be software as a service.  Google Docs, that sort of thing.  I am beginning to think he is correct.  It might be a modern dumb terminal but it is getting to that point.

[#] Wed Jun 01 2016 07:15:59 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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I'll say this, most tablets are more useful than the Chromebook.

Not surprising to hear this, since Apple makes a tablet.

A tablet, a phone, a chromebook, all are real computers. All have complete operating systems and can run arbitrary software.

[#] Wed Jun 01 2016 07:34:22 EDT from the_mgt

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I'd draw the line between "real" and "toy" computer somewhere near full access to a file explorer and unhindered multitasking. This probably involves a window manager. Maybe adding toolchain access in the mix.

Phones and tablets basically operate like a browser. You have multiple, independent tabs and only one of them really is in the foreground. Maybe splitscreen for two apps, if your device is posh and the OS permits it. But they do not have a "full OS", neither android nor ios. And the arbitrariness of the software depends, you basically get your apps from a store on mobile devices, sideloading is a thing of past Symbian times and for people that rooted their android. Still, it is basically fart apps, a dumbed down office and some pixelpushing stuff.

Maybe this is just and old paradigma, but people are used to spending lots of time with an explorer, "opening a file" (so that the program is triggered by mime type) instead of "opening an app" and then choosing what file to modify, if it is permitted at all. Sure, you can "share" a file via some ways on a tablet, but the whole workflow is different.

[#] Wed Jun 01 2016 09:18:09 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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This is all nitpicking. What should be clear is that everyone has a different idea about what constitutes a "real computer." (Although most of what I'm reading here is just "It's a real computer if my favorite vendor makes one.")
What *ought* to be clear is that computing has a consistent history of "that's not a real computer" taking over the market.

[#] Wed Jun 01 2016 09:45:44 EDT from the_mgt

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No, this is not nitpicking and it is not about favorite vendors, we can move this discussion to techie talk, if that makes you feel less bias. It is about the limits of interaction, which are harsher on a phone or tablet (or in a browser, for that matter). But these limits are there, even if you put android on a full scale x64 desktop or your favorite supercomputer that is supported by the kernel.

Again, my criteria, as a list, so it is more obvious for others that you keep ignoring them. ;)

  1. Unhindered Multitasking (as many tasks as the user likes, no freezing if an app is moved to the background)
  2. Open files via an explorer vs open an app and let the app limit you wether you save a real file somewhere or export it to some cloud
  3. multiple windows (aka open apps), organized as you like vs one fullscreen app at a time, maybe two with splitscreen

People are used to this stuff since Windows3.1 became hot shit (or from the various other systems, Amiga Workbench, etc.). This is possible in gnu/linux, windows and osx. It is not possible in ios, android and windows mobile (at least not without additional modification). It has nothing to do with the hardware, most of the limits are imposed by the software.

[#] Wed Jun 01 2016 10:14:12 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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Again, that's your definition, it's totally arbitrary.

[#] Wed Jun 01 2016 13:16:17 EDT from Ragnar Danneskjold

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I'm in agreement with the_mgt. Tablets and Chromebooks are interface devices, much like a dumb terminal. (Maybe more akin to an X Terminal of old....)

And my comment about tablets had nothing to do with Apple. A Chromebook NEEDS to be connected to the network to be functional. That will change soon, but for now a Chromebook is a doorstop without internet access. And there's still plenty of places where a connection is difficult or impossible.

At least with either Android of iOS devices, they're more limited without the network, but they're still useful.

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