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Old 02-11-2010, 02:03 PM   #1
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iPad: Apple Upsets The eBook Apple-cart

http://billhillsblog.blogspot.com/20...pple-cart.html

Bill Hill headed up Microsoft's Typography Group in the 90s, and helped invent ClearType.

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It's a great-looking device. It's sleek and elegant - exactly what you'd expect from Apple. But that isn't why it will dominate the Tablet category. It's because Apple understands that computers have made a transition from "computing devices" to "consumer devices". Apple has built its huge success in recent years by becoming a company which creates great end-to-end consumer experiences.
He has some pretty interesting insights on what it was like working for Microsoft.
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Old 02-11-2010, 02:10 PM   #2
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I find ClearType highly interesting:
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At Microsoft, we invented ClearType specifically to solve the problems of creating highly-readable text at normal reading sizes (between 9 and 13 point). There's a lot more technology going on than simply utilizing the RGB sub-pixels on LCD displays. Apple's clone creates text whose characters look more like the original print fonts at those sizes than ClearType does - but the price they pay is a lack of sharpness and clarity, and text that's slightly blurred at the edges.
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My only misgiving about the iPad is that its screen is 122ppi. If Apple implements its current ClearType clone on it, we might end up with text that's slightly blurry

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Old 02-11-2010, 02:11 PM   #3
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Hill also writes about handwriting recognition here:
http://billhillsblog.blogspot.com/20...ry-bullet.html

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To the geeks at Microsoft, though, handwriting recognition was one of The Last Great Problems of Computing - a really interesting and complex area. Lots of languages, too! They tackled it head-on.

And, you know what? By applying brute force, effort, huge investment, and some really smart people - they solved it! I've never tried Windows HR with any language other than English - where it does work really well. But I'm sure it does a great job on other languages, too - even Chinese and Japanese.

And you know what else? It won't matter! Because when you pack a tablet device with enough power to run Windows and Office, do handwriting recognition, full-screen video, and everything else, you end up with a machine that is too thick, too heavy, uses too much power, and runs too hot. And it doesn't help that the hardware manufacturers who're building them all get off on a 16:9 aspect ratio video trip at the same time.
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Old 02-11-2010, 02:13 PM   #4
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I find ClearType highly interesting:
Hill talks about it here: http://channel9.msdn.com/posts/TheCh...learType-work/
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Old 02-11-2010, 04:03 PM   #5
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And you know what else? It won't matter! Because when you pack a tablet device with enough power to run Windows and Office, do handwriting recognition, full-screen video, and everything else, you end up with a machine that is too thick, too heavy, uses too much power, and runs too hot.
and that's the kicker. they need to ditch windows, which they will never do.

only a company who is willing to write an OS that is tablet/handwriting/drawing based from the ground up is going to make something that is truly innovative and actually works well. the only large company who has something that is even part-way there is apple with the newton os. which jobs killed years ago.

why did it take so long for apple to implement even the limited copy and paste the iphone/touch now has? the newton was doing it a decade ago flawlessly. jobs didn't want to borrow from the old OS. that and he didn't feel people needed it. lol.

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Old 02-11-2010, 04:26 PM   #6
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Google is blazing fast to index MR. Typed in "cleartype ipad" on Google and the 3d hit that came up was this thread.
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Old 02-11-2010, 07:27 PM   #7
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Funny how that guy consistently calls Apple's Quartz font rentering engine a "clone", since the underlying subpixel rendering technology was not invented by Microsoft, but rather by IBM in 1988. Plus, Cleartype in Windows XP was of really poor quality and only became decent in Vista.

I still prefer Quartz since it retains the fonts' original characters rather than forcing them into static pixel structures. It's like a doctor making custom splints to fit your legs versus breaking your legs to make them fit the one-size splints.

However, I guess that's Off Topic (and highly subjective) here. The rest of his blog post is really very interesting, that's why I've bookmarked the page!
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Old 02-11-2010, 07:28 PM   #8
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why did it take so long for apple to implement even the limited copy and paste the iphone/touch now has? the newton was doing it a decade ago flawlessly. jobs didn't want to borrow from the old OS. that and he didn't feel people needed it. lol.
apple from about 1998 and on has a history of not wanting to do something until they know how to do it right. they needed two years to figure out how to make copy paste work right on a phone. now, a year later, there still isn't a mobile copy paste implementation that equals it. just try it on the nexus one. it's painful compared to the iphone's implementation.
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Old 02-11-2010, 07:55 PM   #9
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copy and paste on the iphone is a horrible kludge compared to what you could do on the newton. double-tap a word, or tap, hold and drag a block of text. drag it to the edge of the screen. go to where you want it and drop it off. needed multiple blocks? drag them one at a time they all hung out at the edge. simple and it worked. i never seem to get selection properly on my iphone, dragging those left and right side pins is a total PITA. i'm limited to one block at a time and have no visual way to know what is in the clipboard.

jobs didn't do it right on the iphone, he did it different. because he hated the newton and wouldn't be caught dead borrowing from it.
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Old 02-12-2010, 10:23 AM   #10
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copy and paste on the iphone is a horrible kludge compared to what you could do on the newton. double-tap a word, or tap, hold and drag a block of text. drag it to the edge of the screen. go to where you want it and drop it off. needed multiple blocks? drag them one at a time they all hung out at the edge. simple and it worked. i never seem to get selection properly on my iphone, dragging those left and right side pins is a total PITA. i'm limited to one block at a time and have no visual way to know what is in the clipboard.

jobs didn't do it right on the iphone, he did it different. because he hated the newton and wouldn't be caught dead borrowing from it.
i think copy paste on the iphone is quite elegant. sure, it's not a multiple clipboard system, and the newton's was very cool (i had an mp2000) but it was overkill for 90% of people.

they may implement a system closer to the newton's with the ipad since it has enough screen real estate compared to the iphone, but i would doubt it.
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