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Chips with Everything

( via metropolis mag )

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:: Martin Lorenz/Twopoints.net ::

In 2007 the computer gave up taking over the world. Instead the world took over the computer.
-By Bruce Sterling

Posted April 18, 2007

2007: The word computer disappears from the Apple company, the founders of the personal computing world. Instead Steve Jobs waxes lyrical about his new iPhone: a mobile megamedia merger of phone plus camera, plus Wi-Fi, plus Apple, plus Google, plus AT&T—and minus the “computer.”
Bill Gates has mysteriously forgotten “computers” too. His new hobbyhorse? “An entirely new class of robots,” Gates states in Scientific American, “that are essentially mobile, wireless peripheral devices.” These aren’t your great-great-grandfather’s girl-shaped 1927-style robots from the film Metropolis. Gates’s visionary robots are virtual-actual hybrid machines that wade around the world in pools of wireless connectivity. Their brain is a PC hooked to the Internet.
Steve’s ultracapable iPhone, whose screen can be squinched with your fingertips as if it were Play-Doh, bids fair to become Apple’s “remote control for reality.” With the Web in your purse or pocket, applied to physical reality via Google mapping services, you own the ultimate Reality Distortion Field! For Gates, the computer is transforming itself into Microsoft on wheels, a Zune that walks: with brand-new software supporting Microsoft for Robots, a PC can ramble all over your house photographing, scanning, listening, grabbing, and gripping—maybe even fetching a beer! Where does Microsoft’s Wireless Robot want to go today?

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Filed under: research, social, technology

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