From Personal Computers to Personal Information Environments: Apple's "MobileMe"?

9 Jun 2008 - 5:23pm
5 years ago
7 replies
595 reads
Itamar Medeiros
2006

Just watched the WWDC 2008 (I know, I know, iPhone3D... half the
price.... but that's not the point I want to bring to the table) and I
personally think one of the most interesting services introduced in
the keynote was the new .mac, now called "MobileMe"
(http://www.apple.com/mobileme/)

"You might have a Mac at home, a PC at work, and an iPhone or iPod
touch. The challenge is keeping multiple devices always in sync.
Enterprises can use a server like Exchange. For everyone else, now
there's MobileMe." (http://www.apple.com/mobileme/features/)

I realize that other companies went down that path before, and
enterprises now are all about keeping information mobile; what I think
it'll be interesting to see is what the "Apple" way will do to the
average non-corporate user.

That been said, I'd like you to take a look at Jeff Pierce's (IBM
Almaden research) talk at Stanford's Human-Computer Interaction
Seminars (http://hci.stanford.edu/cs547/abstracts/06-07/061110-pierce.html,
or check Stanford iTunes U), contrast the features of MobileMe:

"While today's users work with and encounter a growing number and
variety of computational devices (desktop PCs, laptops, tablets, PDAs,
cellphones, etc.), continued adherence to the model of working with a
single, personal computer has resulted in little support for
coordinating activities across those devices. In fact, most devices
are still completely unaware that a user might own other devices. As
users shift from working with a personal computer to working within a
personal information environment, we need to make it easier for them
to coordinate their activities across their personal devices as well
as effectively leverage devices in the local environment".

Question is: did Apple hit the nail on the head? What features are
missing to accomplish Pierce's vision?

--
{ Itamar Medeiros } Information Designer
designing clear, understandable communication by
caring to structure, context, and presentation
of data and information

mobile ::: +86 13671503252
website ::: http://designative.info/
aim ::: itamarlmedeiros
skype ::: designative

Comments

9 Jun 2008 - 5:39pm
Robert Hoekman, Jr.
2005

>
> (I know, I know, iPhone3D...

Actually, it's iPhone 3G. But wow, what an idea — iPhone 3D!

Now that would be interesting. :)

Would make for a heck of a design contest.

-r-

9 Jun 2008 - 5:50pm
David Drucker
2008

I'm here in the lobby at WWDC (about to go into the next session) and
it does indeed sound like they are trying to do exactly what Jeff
Pierce is talking about. I'm hoping that by the end of the week I'll
get to see a bit more about MobileMe. If there are other finer points
related to his talk I'll post them here.

--
David Drucker
david at drucker.ca
Vancouver, BC

On 9-Jun-08, at 3:23 PM, Itamar Medeiros wrote:

> Just watched the WWDC 2008 (I know, I know, iPhone3D... half the
> price.... but that's not the point I want to bring to the table) and I
> personally think one of the most interesting services introduced in
> the keynote was the new .mac, now called "MobileMe"
> (http://www.apple.com/mobileme/)
>
> "You might have a Mac at home, a PC at work, and an iPhone or iPod
> touch. The challenge is keeping multiple devices always in sync.
> Enterprises can use a server like Exchange. For everyone else, now
> there's MobileMe." (http://www.apple.com/mobileme/features/)
>
> I realize that other companies went down that path before, and
> enterprises now are all about keeping information mobile; what I think
> it'll be interesting to see is what the "Apple" way will do to the
> average non-corporate user.
>
> That been said, I'd like you to take a look at Jeff Pierce's (IBM
> Almaden research) talk at Stanford's Human-Computer Interaction
> Seminars (http://hci.stanford.edu/cs547/abstracts/06-07/061110-pierce.html
> ,
> or check Stanford iTunes U), contrast the features of MobileMe:
>
> "While today's users work with and encounter a growing number and
> variety of computational devices (desktop PCs, laptops, tablets, PDAs,
> cellphones, etc.), continued adherence to the model of working with a
> single, personal computer has resulted in little support for
> coordinating activities across those devices. In fact, most devices
> are still completely unaware that a user might own other devices. As
> users shift from working with a personal computer to working within a
> personal information environment, we need to make it easier for them
> to coordinate their activities across their personal devices as well
> as effectively leverage devices in the local environment".
>
> Question is: did Apple hit the nail on the head? What features are
> missing to accomplish Pierce's vision?
>
> --
> { Itamar Medeiros } Information Designer
> designing clear, understandable communication by
> caring to structure, context, and presentation
> of data and information
>
> mobile ::: +86 13671503252
> website ::: http://designative.info/
> aim ::: itamarlmedeiros
> skype ::: designative
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help

9 Jun 2008 - 6:05pm
Robert Hoekman, Jr.
2005

>
> I personally think one of the most interesting services introduced in
> the keynote was the new .mac, now called "MobileMe"
> (http://www.apple.com/mobileme/)

If MobileMe had been offered as a free service, it would have been the most
important announcement of the day. It not only offers a beautiful
alternative to Google Apps and MS Office, it does for all of your day-to-day
applications what IMAP does for email. Personally, I would switch to it in a
heartbeat — if it had been free. With a subscription fee attached, I'm not
so sure.

Regardless, the 3G buzz will wear off, but MobileMe (a free version anyway)
has the potential of being remarkable for a long time to come.

-r-

10 Jun 2008 - 4:10am
Danny Hope
2008

On Mon, Jun 9, 2008 at 11:23 PM, Itamar Medeiros
<medeiros.itamar at gmail.com> wrote:

> Question is: did Apple hit the nail on the head? What features are
> missing to accomplish Pierce's vision?

For me, it completely misses the point, there are two things I want to
sync between my various machines:
1) preferences
2) documents
MobileMe doesn't do either.

3) I also want to access Gmail's address book via my desktop (but
that's not something Apple can fix - Gmail needs LDAP support).

--

Regards,
Danny Hope
http://hobointernet.com
+44 (0)845 230 3760

10 Jun 2008 - 5:16am
Tim Ostler
2007

It's interesting to compare the MobileMe idea (and groupware as a whole)
with the Customer Experience Management idea where (in theory) you can
interact with a company via any channel, online or offline, and you can be
confident that your profile and account details will be equally editable and
synchronised.

I know the cloud is a long-standing metaphor for the network but I still
find it beautiful and liberating that we can decouple the sum total of our
digital relationships with the rest of society and manage them anywhere we
like using any available device.

On Tue, Jun 10, 2008 at 12:05 AM, Robert Hoekman Jr <robert at rhjr.net> wrote:

> >
> > I personally think one of the most interesting services introduced in
> > the keynote was the new .mac, now called "MobileMe"
> > (http://www.apple.com/mobileme/)
>
>
> If MobileMe had been offered as a free service, it would have been the most
> important announcement of the day. It not only offers a beautiful
> alternative to Google Apps and MS Office, it does for all of your
> day-to-day
> applications what IMAP does for email. Personally, I would switch to it in
> a
> heartbeat — if it had been free. With a subscription fee attached, I'm not
> so sure.
>
> Regardless, the 3G buzz will wear off, but MobileMe (a free version anyway)
> has the potential of being remarkable for a long time to come.
>
> -r-
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
Tim Ostler

E timo at cogarch.com
W www.cogarch.com
W www.satnaverrors.com

10 Jun 2008 - 3:48pm
dszuc
2005

If a service like MobileMe can allow me to Sync data from my devices
(like a mobile phone or camera) wirelessly without me having to put
it into a cradle or tell it to do it when I arrive home - I am all
for it! :)

So from phone to backup to cloud or phone to cloud.

rgds,
Dan

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=30047

10 Jun 2008 - 4:16pm
SemanticWill
2007

No doubt I am excited about this - as well as the remote backup of 20G
(although I love my timecapsule) - being able to access my stuff when I am
not at my laptop is key, wirelessly syncing all my contact/calendar is key.
I agree with Robert that if it was a free service to all of us that have
dropped 3 or 4K on macbooks + iPhones would agree that it should be free --
but I will pay if there is no advertising. Actually, they should have
followed the same business strategy as Flickr -- make it free - the wireless
syncing, but have a tiered form of "Fremium" as discussed in Amy Shuen's
book on Web 2.0 Business Strategy. Give my 1-5GB for free, entice me to pay
the $10/month for the additional space and additional services - more
storage, photogallery, customizable blog that accepts posts from my iPhone
that is literally turn key -- they could have thought the business model
through a little better - especially given the fact that they will be
collecting vast, very explicit data on my iPhone application usage through
their messaging service - as opposed to using background services.

--
~ will

"Where you innovate, how you innovate,
and what you innovate are design problems"

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Will Evans | User Experience Architect
tel +1.617.281.1281 | will at semanticfoundry.com
twitter: https://twitter.com/semanticwill
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

On Tue, Jun 10, 2008 at 4:48 PM, Daniel Szuc <dszuc at apogeehk.com> wrote:

> If a service like MobileMe can allow me to Sync data from my devices
> (like a mobile phone or camera) wirelessly without me having to put
> it into a cradle or tell it to do it when I arrive home - I am all
> for it! :)
>
> So from phone to backup to cloud or phone to cloud.
>
> rgds,
> Dan
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the new ixda.org
> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=30047
>
>

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