Would You Do It? Starve the Children to “Change Portable Computing Profoundly”?

Can I just say that I resent the implication that I’m not normal or somehow less intelligent than everyone else for not falling in love with the iPad?

I mean, computers are awesome, and awesome computers are even better.

But there’s no way in hell I can justify dropping $550-900 on a thing that looks like a computer but doesn’t work like one, no matter how golden everyone says Steve Jobs’ genitalia is.

Look – it isn’t useful for anything except paying money for stuff at the iTunes store. If you want a portable DVD player, go get one for a fifth to a tenth of the price (and then you get to watch media you actually can own and won’t get taken away should the DRM server terms of service change). If you want a portable music player, you can buy them for $3 + shipping on eBay. If you want to play games on the go, get a ($200-$300) netbook and hit up Kongregate. Free!

I’m sorry if I recoil a little bit when I see predictions from supposedly respectable pundits that thing this will change the “paradigm for computing” somehow. Seriously? Give me a break.

It’s a portable TV screen. We’ve had these since the mid-80s, only this one’s more expensive with arguably better bells and whistles.

$550-900, people.

That’s the cost of a single cow, if you bought it piece by piece from a McDonald’s value menu.

Let’s say, generously, that Steve-o moves 500,000 of these things. How many starving children could you get to morbidly obese status with that many McDoubles? Think about it! End world hunger!

That’s also the cost of 6 Acer Netbooks (with a bigger screen, no less!).

Q: What could you do with a Beowulf cluster of Acer Netbooks?

A: More than you could with a single iPad! *bad-um ching!*

Update (April 1, 2010, 3:08 AM): I retract everything I said above. I was absurdly responding to the absurdity of the Walt Mossberg review of the iPad, as well as the overly glowing reviews from the USA Today, PC Week, and the New York Times.  If all those folks could go off the reservation and drool profusely and with no shame over this device, then I could go as manically as possible the other direction.

As many of you have pointed out privately, this is April 1 (otherwise known as April Fool’s Day) in the United States, and all those reviews were probably just jokes.  So, I guess, take this post as a joke, too.

2 Comments

  1. But I heard it is also a teleportation device, so I'm getting one.

    Reply
  2. Starving children, Michael. Seriously. Think of the CHILDREN!

    Reply

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