My Agnostic Future
I’ve been hearing the same, sad tune coming over the airwaves as of late. Though this is not a dirge, it is the unfortunate beat of a war march. The battleground this time is the battlefield of devices. We all know them. We all use them. We even champion a few. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all just get along?The future is device heavy. A networking of machines creating a harmony and an ease in your life. It sounds like the rise of the machines, and it is to an extent. Already you may use a smart phone to check your home security, watch a television show or even control your computer. Appliances have been toyed with as grid ready devices since the early 2000s. Yes you could send an advance message to your house and have the furnace kick on, ambient lights activated and your coffee brewing. All before you even get on your block.
Daily there are new applications being conceived and launched into the public sphere where they are snapped up and given a seal of approval or dropped in lieu of a better solution. The wars are endless as everyone wants to build the better mousetrap, which is great. Advancements along these lines should come and we welcome them. They all aim to make our lives somehow easier, more productive or more fun. Where is the harm? For that, we need to look at what lies beneath.
The biggest flaw, as I see it, with the device market is not the apps. It is not even a specific product. It’s that there are too many fish in the pond all trying to speak their own language. If we could simply have a unified platform for the developers, imagine what could be done. An application not available for all to use because of being tied to proprietary systems become a thing of the past. Developers would not need to design for multiple platforms. Wouldn’t it be grand if companies dropped their egos, put their swinging members away and just worked on developing a single, outstanding platform? I sure think so.
We’ve seen it time and time again, and not really having to go too far back in time. Beta or VHS. Browser wars. HD versus Blue Ray. Millions of dollars spent by the consumer, only to purchase the losing horse. Even more money laid out by the developing companies to get their product ready to market, marketed and then tossed aside. What if, instead, they had worked together? What if they opted to simply pool their forces in hopes of making the best possible solution? All the R&D teams working to get the best ideas working, and working well, within the single format.
Now returning to the world of devices. A single platform would allow developers to finely hone the system and offer every application to every user. Incorporating great support of Outlook and the elegance of iPod Touch interface? Why not! The end product would be far superior to anything currently out there, because it would be the sum of all available parts. The app market would even benefit from only having to code for a single framework. I am not suggesting we only have a device to buy. All the manufactures could produce their own versions. Different colors, options whatever. It is simply the underlying technology which would be homogenous. There is no reason to kill off the entire free market.
We need is a single OS to build on. Something which can be used by everyone with a group of standards to adhere to. A system which does not care if it lives on a Droid, BlackBerry, iPhone or whatever comes along next. The core OS in lock down, making it possible for you to pick your favorite device poison, but all applications are now available to you. Which means that future appliances, automobiles or whatever can be created to sync with the device much more easily with the groundwork set and parameters known. All those machines would have no reason to rise up, because they all get along.