15 October 2008

Intuitive Computer Design

If any of you folks at Dell or HP or Compac or whoever else is leading in the PC laptop race these days wants some input on computer design, step right up and dig in. Of course, I know that no computer designers read my blog, but maybe if you tell two friends and they tell two friends and they tell two friends.....

Well, at least I'm putting it out there. Maybe one of them will stumble across it.

  1. Either the power cord needs to go on the back of the computer or it needs to be put on the side opposite the handedness of the user. My power cord plugs in on the right-hand side of my computer. This means that it interferes with my ability to use a mouse with my laptop.
  2. Dudes. You need a fan that works. This is ridiculous. The temperature on this "laptop" computer on my lap falls roughly between molten lava and boiling oil. Is there some reason that the fan can't actually cool faster than the fan action heats up the computer. And why is air input for the fan on the bottom of the computer? The fan is trying to draw air from beneath the computer? Ummm, the computer is nearly always sitting on a flat surface with no airflow beneath it. This ain't brain surgery, folks.
  3. The touchpad. Don't even get me started on the touchpad. First, why is it located exactly where I rest my right thumb when not in use? I can't tell you the number of times I've been unable to type a sentence because my hands brush against the touchpad, moving the cursor God knows where on the page. As for actually using it.....OK, here's a quick and easy overview of how I use the touchpad. I use it to move the cursor or arrow to the top of the page or to scroll up and down through a page. And finally, I use point and click to place the cursor where I want it. Point 1. The iPod mouse "wheel is a much more effective and intuitive means of scrolling than the touchpad. I would prefer a keystroke that auto moved my cursor to the bottom of the page (as in Word). In fact, I could use a series of keystrokes to achieve a lot in the way of page navigation if I was only given the opportunity. Anyone who uses Launchy gets the hang of that sort of thing pretty quick. But please, do something about that damn touchpad.
  4. USB ports. Need more than two. At least 4. I shouldn't have to unplug my wireless mouse in order to download my pictures. Also need to be placed on the back. Or on the side of the monitor.

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