The new computing

Don't design for the gearheads. Technology has come a long way in the past decade, and the 21st century has created a massive paradigm shift.

Think about the process of buying a computer in the 90s. We worried about things like megahertz, RAM, and hard drive size.

Now look at the iPhone, which has been wildly successful. But can you tell me how many megahertz or gigahertz it is? Do you know how much memory it has? Apple simply doesn’t market these facts.

The game has changed. Ben Schneiderman coined this era as “the new computing.” Our expectations of technology are not based on what’s under the hood. They’re now based on what the technology can do for us. Instead of trying to replace us with robots, we’re now using technology to help us do our jobs better.

But with this shift, we have a new set of expectations, and I think the iPhone is a great example of this. We want for our technology to be intuitive, easy to use. We want for it to be beautiful. And we want for it to get out of our way.

This is how your website and web services need to act. They need to get out of the way. They need to help people get to the information that they’re looking for so that they can get on with their lives.

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