I always enjoy reading posts that seem to indicate a level of cynicism on par with my own. I especially liked Always connected or always available? from The Vermont Slate because it hit on two things that have been on my mind on and off hte past few years: the notion that we’re heading toward thin-client as the model and the notion that internet connectivity is everywhere:
… my cantankerous musings today stem from thinking about the issues of thin-client computer, desktop virtualization, software as a service, the “death of the desktop” and a number of other buzzwords that are zipping around the tech media today like flies on road kill in mid-July.
I think the main thing that bothers me about these technologies, what makes me leery of them even when I can see real benefits to them, is that they all presume a constantly connected system. … And no connectivity means no data when that data is anywhere but on your computer. It will also mean no applications when those are provided by Google and hosted on Google’s servers.
Now maybe that is just because I live and work in the rural northeast, but I doubt it. I think the reality even in major cities is that connectivity really isn’t ubiquitous, it is just ubiquitous in most of the places where people actually sit down to compute. And I don’t think that (always sitting down to compute) is the future. The future rightly belongs to those who will compute wherever and in whatever position they want.
For all the talk of WWAN and 3G mobile, the notion of always-available broadband (if some of the slower technologies can rightly be called that) still seems to be limited to business road warriors who have an absolute need for that kind of connectivity by the high cost of service. I have not seen wireless broadband for anything even close to what I pay for DSL (or, for that matter, even close to double what I pay for DSL). If the prices were to come down to where DSL prices have ended up, I could easily see dropping a few hundred dollars on a WWAN card and having internet everywhere, but until the service costs come down, it just isn’t going to happen.
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