Author Topic: Future death of the personal computer?  (Read 1029 times)

David Kiley

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Future death of the personal computer?
« on: February 15, 2020, 12:18:36 pm »
I live in a fairly poor city and the majority of people don't have computers and just use their phones now.
I personally can't imagine life without a PC - as much as I like my android phone.
And then it got me thinking, that if the PC becomes more and more a niche item, manufacturers will stop making things like hard drives and part replacement could become an issue.. Same with open source software - the only thing that makes it sustainable is a lot of people using computers and a lot of people who care to code for it.
I just hope the parts last long enough for me to keep using them.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2020, 12:21:03 pm by David Kiley »

Neil Waldhauer

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2020, 03:50:10 pm »
I used to build computers for people from cases, motherboards, plug-in cards, power supplies, etc.

These things, while still available, cost far, far more than a manufactured computer. Availability is much less, too.

I already live in a hybrid world of iPhone/iPad + OS/2. It's certainly not the iPhone/iPad that are replacing OS/2. It's iCloud and the other on-line services. The new OS/2 browser cannot come soon enough.
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Mathias

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2020, 10:49:01 pm »
Well.. the majority of people is most likely unable to use the potential of a PC. It`s far to complicated, expensive, huge and nerdy.
Most people I know, use PCs for organising via Outlook, writing letters in Word, organising address data in Excel (yes, not in Access.. :>), and some more for writing e-mail.
Keep in mind, that each topic goes for one person.

The whole rest is playing games on PC hardware. Sure these definitely keep PC hardware cheap, as these DO invest money in hardware components. - So.. even though the PC was always about gaming too..  ;), gamers are not the majority of PC users world wide.  - And also they have no relevance for the OS/2 platform.. since the newest games do not run on OS/2.

Only a few people I know personally, are using more than one aspect of a PC.
So.. most likely Android and iOS appear to be what people need to do their thing.
They appear not to need what a PC can offer.

It`s been as it always was: PCs are only for those who know how to utilise such a machine for their needs.
Microsoft (mainly Microsoft) constantly tried to sell the PC platform and it`s (new) ease of use to the vast majority of potential buyers. Getting easier with each new Windows version... they say.. sure.. the whole opposite is the case.

But over the years, these people learned that ease of use is the same as reducing bureaucracy... just a trick to make people believe... but in the end it never works out. Things ALWAYS turn out more complicated in the end.

With mobile technology becoming more and more useful and reduced to what people REALLY only ever needed, in my eyes it`s more like things going back to normal again. PCs belong to professionals, and are wayyy to uber for the masses. They simply do not need the potential that a PC can offer.

And (still not finished), new developments even bring games to the cloud. The benefit is, that you do no longer need the ultra latest cutting edge hardware to play up2date games anymore; You can play them in a browser or special software that is linked to a special gaming cloud.
With this even weak hardware can open up new horizons for those interested to simply play computer games. No need for knowledge about hardware anymore, no need for specialised gaming hardware.. and of course the PERFECT copy protection, as the game is no longer client-side.

If this works out as intended, things WILL change drastically.

Edit: fixed typo
« Last Edit: February 15, 2020, 10:54:37 pm by Mathias »

Martin Iturbide

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2020, 03:11:41 am »
Hi

My point of view on this subject (PCs vs Phones) it is kind of different. To me both are personal computers and the difference of those is the input method for the device and the how they are used.

Smart phones had been a revolution for people that believed that PCs were too complicated and smartphones allowed a lot of people of the world to communicate and have access to the Internet. But the smartphones are focused on consuming content, like reading books, webpages, videos and basic communication. But smartphones are a very limited tool to create content.

To create content the traditional PCs is still required, and more specifically the keyboard and mouse input devices are still required to create things. It is still too hard to create some kind of content with a phone using the screen keyboard and the touch screen. 

I don't personally think on the death of personal computer, maybe it is more that the people that only consume content/information no longer needs a full PC for it, they only require a smartphone (with no mouse or keyboard) to do that today. But people that requires to create content like documents, videos, images, etc, still require a better input device like a keyboard and mouse.

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Martin Iturbide
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David Kiley

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #4 on: February 19, 2020, 10:13:44 am »
I already live in a hybrid world of iPhone/iPad + OS/2. It's certainly not the iPhone/iPad that are replacing OS/2. It's iCloud and the other on-line services. The new OS/2 browser cannot come soon enough.
Curious what you mean by the iCloud replacing OS/2? Personally I think cloud services are largely a scam. I use google drive for storage but I feel a lot of "cloud" services are just tricking you into paying a monthly fee for something you could have owned, like an office suite.

David Kiley

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2020, 10:19:47 am »
Well.. the majority of people is most likely unable to use the potential of a PC. It`s far to complicated, expensive, huge and nerdy.
Most people I know, use PCs for organising via Outlook, writing letters in Word, organising address data in Excel (yes, not in Access.. :>), and some more for writing e-mail.
Keep in mind, that each topic goes for one person.

Interesting - but I remember as a teenager the first time being exposed to a mac classic computer lab at my school.
There was nothing complicated about it - we played games & wrote documents and painted.
The point is it was a consumer friendly device.
Personally I like OS/2 better but I don't think it's impossible to keep making such devices - the tech companies are more interested in pushing cloud services now for the monthly costs associated with them.

David Kiley

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2020, 10:28:42 am »
I don't personally think on the death of personal computer, maybe it is more that the people that only consume content/information no longer needs a full PC for it, they only require a smartphone (with no mouse or keyboard) to do that today. But people that requires to create content like documents, videos, images, etc, still require a better input device like a keyboard and mouse.

I work retail part time and it keeps amazing me that people still have to buy windows 10, which is about one of the worst operating systems available. It starts out slow out of the gate and a few months down the road and it will grind to a halt because of malware. The only alternative is the crappy Chromebook, which is limited in its functionality.
I do see your point about content consumption though.
Not sure it's a great that we live in a world which people are just being pushed to be consumers instead of creators though.
« Last Edit: February 19, 2020, 10:45:41 am by David Kiley »

Neil Waldhauer

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #7 on: February 19, 2020, 03:45:41 pm »
I already live in a hybrid world of iPhone/iPad + OS/2. It's certainly not the iPhone/iPad that are replacing OS/2. It's iCloud and the other on-line services. The new OS/2 browser cannot come soon enough.
Curious what you mean by the iCloud replacing OS/2? Personally I think cloud services are largely a scam. I use google drive for storage but I feel a lot of "cloud" services are just tricking you into paying a monthly fee for something you could have owned, like an office suite.

I mean the cloud is slowly removing my personal need for OS/2. However, the cloud has already replaced Windows, Linux and Mac on the desktop. All of these companies make far more profit on their cloud service than on their PC hardware and software.

There will always be a few PC, and even a few PC servers. But even looking at chips, Intel and AMD are designing for the cloud.
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Pete

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #8 on: February 19, 2020, 04:42:47 pm »
Hi All

A little point of interest here.

The Wife has over the past year gradually moved more of her "internetting" onto her mobile and rarely boots Her pc these days.

However a Paypal problem has caused her to rethink whether she should dump pc use completely. The problem with Paypal was that she needed to add another Currency to her "accept" list. Which should not have been a problem except that the option needed simply does not appear in her Paypal app.

No problem setting that option from her pc/browser.

An email from Paypal confirms that a pc/browser is required for some Paypal options - but no explanation as to why.

She is currently at her pc using A004 to type a letter to someone - something else that is not as easy to do on a mobile.

I suspect pcs are going to be around for a few more years yet.


Regards

Pete



Doug Bissett

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2020, 08:52:11 pm »
Quote
I suspect pcs are going to be around for a few more years yet.

I am surprised that somebody hasn't built a USB video adapter (perhaps they did, and I don't know about it). Attach one of them (with a full size screen), a mouse, and a keyboard, to USB on your phone, and you can use it as a computer. WiFi, and/or Bluetooth, could also be used.

My phone is Android 7 (not new). If I attach my USB hub, with keyboard and mouse (wireless) attached, they both work with the phone. Obviously, whatever problems your wife has, could easily be fixed, if somebody took an interest.

The bottom line is, that the average phone can already replace the average PC, but a couple of pieces are still missing, and some software tweaking is probably required.

The major "problem" is that you can't leave the phone  to monitor the internet (or do other things), when you go out, because you probably want to have the phone with you. Of course, a second, or third, phone (probably without a SIM card and phone plan), could do the job of a PC. It all depends on what you use each one for.

Hakuchi

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2020, 10:19:23 pm »
Personal computers are not going to die. Sure there are new concepts arriving every now and then. Purism for example has very interesting bundle thingie with their Librem 5 phone. Which seems to be quite nice Open Source gadget. They have monitor, keyboard and mouse bundles. Bit pricey they are, but if you don't like being tracked and being part of data sucking beast it might be a choice. Of course there are others also.

These solutions works for many and are very "convenient". But will not replace good ole personal computers.

The fact that I have had only laptops for past 10 years or so is the fact that I have been living in such places that it has been only way. And for my use hardware I have had has been efficient. Since I don't game or need latest and greatest there has been very good laptops to choose from.

But even though I have had laptops I count them more or less "personal computers" and desktops. External monitor, keyboard and pointer device of the choice makes them more or less personal computers when I haven't been carrying my main one ever. I have my dedicated travel laptop that I take with me when on the road.

What comes to could stuffs there has been moving away from those thingies lately. People like to keep their stuff private. This is not the mainstream by any means. most of the people don't really care about anything of their privacy when it comes to computers and networks. I wonder why those people keep their homes and cars locked but I'll never even want to know.

Oldschool decentralised things like Gopher and BBS' have seen more and more interest lately. And I'm not surprised that there will be somekind of separation between "the web" and "the net" at some point when people who don't like all the tracking and ads we see brought to our face via HTTP protocol. Decentralised services are growing more and more every day.

But we see what happens in the future ... we are living interesting times anyway.
//
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David Kiley

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2020, 03:37:17 am »
I mean the cloud is slowly removing my personal need for OS/2. However, the cloud has already replaced Windows, Linux and Mac on the desktop. All of these companies make far more profit on their cloud service than on their PC hardware and software.
Just wondering what specifically about the cloud replaces your need for os/2? What are you doing with it that you would have previously used your computer for?
Personally I can't imagine life without a PC - It's interesting to me that you can.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2020, 05:23:22 am by David Kiley »

Martin Vieregg

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #12 on: February 20, 2020, 10:42:26 am »
In my opinion, the Personal Computer goes back to the way of usage he had in the late 80s and beginning 90s, before the WWW has been invented. It was a working tool for brain-workers and a toy for nerds. The "consumers" prefer tablet and smartphone. But I wonder that all the people accept the small screens. A big screen and overlapping windows alre an important advantage of Personal Computers.

Hakuchi

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2020, 05:06:36 pm »
In my opinion, the Personal Computer goes back to the way of usage he had in the late 80s and beginning 90s, before the WWW has been invented. It was a working tool for brain-workers and a toy for nerds. The "consumers" prefer tablet and smartphone. But I wonder that all the people accept the small screens. A big screen and overlapping windows alre an important advantage of Personal Computers.

Exactly the separation I was referring to. Shiny-swipey-thingies keep consumers consuming and interwebs keep bombarding them with the stiuff they "defititely need to buy" while those who value the information and content more that bling-and-whatnot will eventually gravitate to decentralised ways to get info/data/whatnot. If you ask me, HTTP protocol is FUBAR already and will never be same again. There is no going back to good old days of RFC 1945 ... but RFC 1436 cannot experience the same faith. Same goes to good old BBS'

Also we will see that only consumers are going to be online all the time and doers will eventually go back to the good old ways of 80's and 90's when we weren't online but just couple hours a day or so.

Or at least this has been the path I have seen many to take in last 10 or so years and more and more within last couple years. And I think it's good path.
//
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Neil Waldhauer

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Re: Future death of the personal computer?
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2020, 05:58:19 pm »
I mean the cloud is slowly removing my personal need for OS/2. However, the cloud has already replaced Windows, Linux and Mac on the desktop. All of these companies make far more profit on their cloud service than on their PC hardware and software.
Just wondering what specifically about the cloud replaces your need for os/2? What are you doing with it that you would have previously used your computer for?
Personally I can't imagine life without a PC - It's interesting to me that you can.

Well, OS/2 provides storage and applications.

Many of our applications are out of date, and better handled by more modern software. All the latest versions are cloud-based and eventually trickle back down to the PC. But I'm used to the OS/2 apps, so I only change when I have to.

Browser - Firefox is increasingly incompatible with websites I use. I often have to go to an alternative, and the phone is conveniently close by.

Storage is nice on OS/2, up to 2 TB, which is OK for now. I can see where backup to cloud may be coming. I'm concerned about privacy, but it's not like OS/2 has any protection against snooping.

I run an OS/2-based business. I need access to my business assets at all times. It's a lot more convenient to have this on the phone. Yes, of course I'm running the OS/2 desktop on my phone via VNC. I still see cloud services taking over as I move to a hybrid OS/2, iOS environment.

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