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Thread: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Apple do make nice UI's there's no denying that, but hey don't always have the best. The iPod was innovative for all of 5mins but people still want to go out and get one based purely on the name and brand, despite the expense and the fact that there are better players out there.

    Ob I have not played with an iPhone so can not comment on the UI on it. I always take what I read (esp by the company making the product) with a pinch of salt.

    No doubt Nokia, Motorola, Sony etc all have rival phones on the way which will be cheaper and better than the iPhone.

    I still fail to see what all the hype is about. Most phones have the same functions as the iPhone and are out already. The only thing I have read about it that I haven't seen in any other phone (yet) is the motion sensor.

    Interested in hearing what feature on the iPhone makes people want it.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Interested in hearing what feature on the iPhone makes people want it.
    It runs OSX .

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by killingtime View Post
    It runs OSX .
    Great

    I need a phone that runs Amiga Workbench.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Apple done nothing new with the ipod other than stick a horrible DRM on any song you got through itunes and some clever advertising.
    The iPod came before the iTunes music store. It innovated by being the first to use a 1.8" hard disk inside a MP3 player. It was smaller and lighter than the equivalent competition.

    At the same time, they vastly improved the usability of music players. This is something that many IT professionals seem to miss. "If I can use my MP3 players with its dozen strangely labelled buttons, why can't everyone?"

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Yes it had a little touch screen dial, but then it wasn't even the first to have that!!!
    Which music player had a scroll wheel like the iPod?

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Same with the iphone. All hail the brand new phone that will change the way phones work. Has an inbuilt MP3 player, Wi-Fi, OS, and camera. All of this has been done before. I have an Orange SPV that I got in October does all of that. Oh but the iPhone has a touch screen. So does my SPV.
    Does your SPV touchscreen work well when you touch it with your fingers? (Not your nails your fingers?) Does it allow you to touch it with two fingers and "pinch" them together or slide them apart to manipulate web pages and photos? Does it allow you to scroll around pictures and lists by flicking your finger around on the screen?

    Does it have "visual voicemail" that gives you a list of your voicemail messages on the screen? (This has been done before, but not on a mobile network.)

    When you turn your phone on its side, does it rearrange the display on the screen from a portrait view to a landscape view automatically?

    When you type on its keyboard, does it automatically correct your spelling mistakes?

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Anyone remember the argument over windows nicking Apples GUI for their OS? Yes? Anyone remember the argument over Apple nicking their GUI OS from Atari? No?
    The Atari ST came out in 1985, while the Macintosh came out in 1984, and the Lisa in 1983. How did Apple steal their GUI OS from Atari???

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Yes the iPhone is going to do for phones what the iPod did for MP3's. Fool people into wanting one.
    Apple created the mass market for MP3 players. I don't think they are going to create a mass market for mobile phones, as it already exists. Are people fools for wanting either?
    Let your mind go and your body will follow. Steve Martin, LA Story

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Interested in hearing what feature on the iPhone makes people want it.
    The main thing is that it has a great UI. Apple make products (OSX / iPods / the iPhone etc) that are a joy to use. I've had too many phones (well - three) that were a complete pain to use, which is why I currently have an ages-old Nokia (probably antique by mobile phone standards) - it's far nicer to use than any of the modern offerings I've seen.

    Apple's gear may be very designery, and it's certainly not perfect - but there's a huge emphasis on them being intuitive, easy and efficient to use - and Apple are very very good at delivering on those counts.

    I think the iPhone looks like a dream to use.
    I also think it's too expensive, and there's some restrictions (like the fact that it only works in the US on one very expensive network, or the fact that they've closed development off from 3rd party developers, so only Apple can develop software for it) that I don't like.

    I'm sure the price will come down though, and the network issue will be sorted - and I'm sure people will figure out a way of writing software for it. They always do

    Overall though - the tech. demo showed just how much thought has gone into making an incredible interface for it - and one that will be much-copied-from in the years to come. This is a very well thought out device.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    The iPod came before the iTunes music store. It innovated by being the first to use a 1.8" hard disk inside a MP3 player. It was smaller and lighter than the equivalent competition.
    I had a creative mp3 with a 2gig HD a few months before the iPod came out

    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    At the same time, they vastly improved the usability of music players. This is something that many IT professionals seem to miss. "If I can use my MP3 players with its dozen strangely labelled buttons, why can't everyone?"
    Most of the bean type ones have play, pause, next and stop. Can't get any easier than that.
    [/quote]

    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    Which music player had a scroll wheel like the iPod?
    OK not the dial but my fore-mentioned creative one had touch buttons

    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    Does your SPV touchscreen work well when you touch it with your fingers? (Not your nails your fingers?) Does it allow you to touch it with two fingers and "pinch" them together or slide them apart to manipulate web pages and photos? Does it allow you to scroll around pictures and lists by flicking your finger around on the screen?
    Works fine with my sausage fingers. ok can't pinch them together or slide them apart but thats a software thing. I'm sure it exists as an add on somewhere and if not, it soon will.


    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    Does it have "visual voicemail" that gives you a list of your voicemail messages on the screen? (This has been done before, but not on a mobile network.)
    Yes. It's a seperate program you can get from www.downloads.com


    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    When you turn your phone on its side, does it rearrange the display on the screen from a portrait view to a landscape view automatically?
    Yes it does.

    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    When you type on its keyboard, does it automatically correct your spelling mistakes?
    ? Predictive text you mean? Most phones do. Alot of the new ones will correct mistakes also. My SPV does.

    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    The Atari ST came out in 1985, while the Macintosh came out in 1984, and the Lisa in 1983. How did Apple steal their GUI OS from Atari???
    OK. Got my order wrong. It was the Xerox os they nicked but my point remains

    Quote Originally Posted by ducasi View Post
    Apple created the mass market for MP3 players. I don't think they are going to create a mass market for mobile phones, as it already exists. Are people fools for wanting either?
    Yes. A wise person will buy something for it's quality/usefulness and not based on advertising and a logo.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    I had a creative mp3 with a 2gig HD a few months before the iPod came out
    Yeah but it was a 2.5" drive (standard laptop drive) which is bulkier than the 1.8". My main criteria for MP3 players is it fits nicely in my pocket.

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    OK not the dial but my fore-mentioned creative one had touch buttons
    The wheel makes it easier to get through large track lists quickly.

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Works fine with my sausage fingers. ok can't pinch them together or slide them apart but thats a software thing. I'm sure it exists as an add on somewhere and if not, it soon will.
    Nope, it's a hardware thing. Most touch screens can only register one touch at a time. If you touch a screen with one finger, keep it there, then put another one on it the second will replace the first as a position sent to the software.

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    OK. Got my order wrong. It was the Xerox os they nicked but my point remains
    Well they created a GUI. I'm not sure they nicked it. Though they did claim the same against MS (which they lost due to prior art... ie the Xerox PARC system that was developed for their Star machine).

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by killingtime View Post
    Yeah but it was a 2.5" drive (standard laptop drive) which is bulkier than the 1.8". My main criteria for MP3 players is it fits nicely in my pocket.
    Fitted nicely in my pocket. Was a better shape and design than the iPod too. ("That an iPod in your pocket or are you just pleased to see me")



    Quote Originally Posted by killingtime View Post

    Nope, it's a hardware thing. Most touch screens can only register one touch at a time. If you touch a screen with one finger, keep it there, then put another one on it the second will replace the first as a position sent to the software.
    Nope, its a software thing. I wrote a program recently for a touch screen Epos till running MS RMS. One of the criterias of the software was the ability to hold down three buttons on the screen at the same time. Unfortunatly, most touch screen input is routed through as a mouse movement and, as im sure your aware, a mouse can only be in one place at one time, so any new corodanets registered are seen as a mouse movement by the OS.

    If I can write a piece of code to get around it, im sure apple and their developers on 50k a year can manage.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    OK not the dial but my fore-mentioned creative one had touch buttons
    Which has nothing to do with a scroll wheel. The scrollwheel was the solution to a simple problem: How do you make it as quick, simple and intuitive as possible to access every single piece of music on a device that holds such vast numbers of songs. This is an example of Apple coming up with great interfaces.

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    ok can't pinch them together or slide them apart but thats a software thing. I'm sure it exists as an add on somewhere and if not, it soon will.
    Actually - that's a hardware thing, not just a software thing. Most touch systems do not pick up on more than one point being touched at one time.


    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    ? Predictive text you mean? Most phones do. Alot of the new ones will correct mistakes also. My SPV does.
    Not predictive text. Try watching the tech demo.


    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    OK. Got my order wrong. It was the Xerox os they nicked but my point remains
    A little point of history here:
    The Xerox Star project was, to my knowledge, the most heavily researched user interface development ever conducted. The end product was, for its time, an extraordinary and superb system, aimed (unfortunately) at filling a gap that very few people, including alas the Xerox marketing teams, knew existed. Xerox had a killer product that they failed to sell, and which had more or less died a death.

    Steve Jobs didn't just swipe the designs - he swiped most of the design team. Created the Lisa, and made similar mistakes to Xerox - and that one flopped also. Next came the Mac. So yes - the original Mac built significantly on another company's work - although said company had had and already messed up the chance to steal a serious march on everyone.

    I'll never claim that Apple are anything like perfect, or that they don't take ideas from others (the OSX Dashboard, for example, which MS copied to put into Vista) is basically a clone of a 3rd party application called Konfabulator - underhanded of Apple to say the least)... but the fact remains that they're far more innovative and creative than most of their competitors, and there's no denying that what they've done has been copied to the nth degree by their competition.


    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Yes. A wise person will buy something for it's quality/usefulness and not based on advertising and a logo.

    You've just summed up exactly why I buy Apple products.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Nope, its a software thing. I wrote a program recently for a touch screen Epos till running MS RMS.
    Really?

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Yep. No doubt there are a handful of touch screens out there that cant handle multi cordnates but 99% of them (esp the newer ones) can.

    They work in the same way as a keyboard does. Loads of horizontal and vertical lines crossing forming a matrix. When two lines on the matrix connect a signal is sent with the cords to they system. The system then interps them as a mouse movement.

    Hold down the H&S keys within a text field (notepad or a reply on the forum) you will only get one letter coming out (i.e hsssssssssss). The software doesn't know what to do so gets the last cords of the keyboard and acts on the results.



    Now hold Alt & S and the software knows what do do when these two keys are pressed and acts accordingly (saving your page prob).

    This is all easily done with a keyboard when programming but it is a right royal pain in the ***** when trying do do it with mouse cords (The way i got round it was to con the machine in to thinking I had five functioning mice installed!!!)

    (note a lot of laptop touch pads are different and are often done by heat)
    Last edited by Lee Bartholomew; 16th-January-2007 at 01:47 PM. Reason: laptop bit

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Yep. No doubt there are a handful of touch screens out there that cant handle multi cordnates but 99% of them (esp the newer ones) can.
    So, it depends on the hardware whether or not it can be done, right? Sounds like a hardware thing to me...

    In software terms, dealing with multiple contacts is trivial if the hardware supports it. You only had difficulties because there was already a piece of software "in the way".

    In general I think matrix based hardware can only manage limited support for multiple touches. Two key rollover is fine, but the 3rd key can be indeterminate. (In terms of keyboard matrices, it's interesting holding down various 2 key combinations and seeing which 3rd keys are recognized).

    Interesting question as to whether Apple were involved in the research project Straycat pointed to. I'd seen the research clip before I saw the iPhone, and when they did the "pinch" stuff, it immediately came to mind as the source of the metaphor.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by David Franklin View Post
    So, it depends on the hardware whether or not it can be done, right? Sounds like a hardware thing to me...
    Nope. Read my posts it's a software thing.


    Quote Originally Posted by David Franklin View Post
    In software terms, dealing with multiple contacts is trivial if the hardware supports it. You only had difficulties because there was already a piece of software "in the way".
    Thats correct If I had written the OS with it in mind, it wouldn't have been a problem. A lot of decent touch screens come with drivers that allow multiple input. (the ones I was given to work with didn't )


    Quote Originally Posted by David Franklin View Post
    In general I think matrix based hardware can only manage limited support for multiple touches. Two key rollover is fine, but the 3rd key can be indeterminate. (In terms of keyboard matrices, it's interesting holding down various 2 key combinations and seeing which 3rd keys are recognized).
    I doubt the touch screen on the iPhone is anything other than a matrix itself and the hardware side is not new technology.

    Everything you are seeing on the iPhone is software driven.

    Basically it's a touch screen pc running Apples own software. A bit like Touchscreen PC's that run Windows software. A bit like my SPV then.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by David Franklin View Post
    So, it depends on the hardware whether or not it can be done, right? Sounds like a hardware thing to me...

    In software terms, dealing with multiple contacts is trivial if the hardware supports it. You only had difficulties because there was already a piece of software "in the way".
    And the 99% figure is very dubious, especially in the light of what Jeff Han was saying in the clip I linked to.


    Quote Originally Posted by David Franklin View Post
    Interesting question as to whether Apple were involved in the research project Straycat pointed to. I'd seen the research clip before I saw the iPhone, and when they did the "pinch" stuff, it immediately came to mind as the source of the metaphor.
    I was wondering that - and a bit of time on Google suggests that Apple offered Jeff Han a job, which he hasn't taken them up on. Nice quote from him as well:

    The iPhone is absolutely gorgeous, and I've always said, if there ever were a company to bring this kind of technology to the consumer market, it's Apple. I just wish it were a bit bigger so I could really use both of my hands.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by straycat264 View Post
    And the 99% figure is very dubious, especially in the light of what Jeff Han was saying in the clip I linked to.
    Particularly as you can kludge some limited "multi-key" info from a more limited sensor, but not enough to make generalised "gesture" actions work. For exampe, if the sensor reports the c-of-m of the touched area, then you can deduce a second "key down" position from the new c-of-m and the assumption that the first "key down" never ended. But from there it would be problematic to work out which of the two fingers was moving (dragging). I make no pretense at knowing how modern touch screens work, but all I can say from experience using them is that getting single touch to work properly seems to be pushing things a lot of the time...

    I have a (very) little experience in the area: a long, long while ago, I did some driver work for someone who'd made some large capacitive sensor pads. The idea was to emulate keys on the keyboard, (BBC Micro, so you can tell we're talking ancient history) so you could play games. (And it worked really well - the pads were big enough to stand on, so you had to jump about - forerunner to DDR games and all that). The biggest problem was that the pads would have occasional transient false readings, which had to be debounced. And then it had to fit into a single page of memory (which was quite straightforward really), and intercept the low-level OS routine that provided key information.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Hold down the H&S keys within a text field (notepad or a reply on the forum) you will only get one letter coming out (i.e hsssssssssss). The software doesn't know what to do so gets the last cords of the keyboard and acts on the results.
    Nope... that's really hardware. Basically you have a current that is interrupted by pressing a key. Depending on the voltage differential and the channel it is on it is then assigned the "correct" key. Certain keys are designed for working together (so you can multi press keys, the "dead keys" are pretty designed to always be pressed in sequence). Others aren't.

    Err... some not great reference is here.

    You can make keyboards (I expect) that are problem free in this regard but they don't because making them with these limitations is cheaper and not many people need a keyboard that can have every key pressed simultaneously (plus a basic PS/2 bus probably didn't have the bandwidth). I expect other hardware, say a flight control system, probably insures that many, many keys can all be pressed (or switched on) at the same time.
    Last edited by killingtime; 16th-January-2007 at 02:57 PM. Reason: Added a bit about making keyboards that don't have problems.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    I didn't look into doing the whole drag thing which I think would be hard for reasons posted by DF. Would still IMO come down to software though.

    I cant think of any otherway a touch screen would work other than a series of matrixes. Without watching that clip again, I think he says that the main diffrence with theres is the resoloution?

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by killingtime View Post
    Nope... that's really hardware. Basically you have a current that is interrupted by pressing a key. Depending on the voltage differential and the channel it is on it is then assigned the "correct" key. Certain keys are designed for working together (so you can multi press keys, the "dead keys" are pretty designed to always be pressed in sequence). Others aren't.

    Err... some not great reference is here.
    Lol. Nope really is software. Have done apps that will utilise two letter keys being pressed at the same time.

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Quote Originally Posted by woodface View Post
    Lol. Nope really is software. Have done apps that will utilise two letter keys being pressed at the same time.
    Ah, two keys you are fine. Take an FPS for example. I can strafe (w + d), run (shift) and jump (space). However there are combination of keys that don't register, mostly dependent of how the keyboard is made. You were correct in your example though (it's the software). I knew that, doh .

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    Re: Apple Announces the iPhone (and it does look fabulous)!

    Here's an article about the touch screen, with some speculation on what the technology is behind it.

    They talk about a new touch screen system which offers "unique capabilities such as two finger input, proximity sensing, text entry and high resolution finger input that can dramatically improve and enhance the user experience with a touch screen", but won't be available until the end of the year.

    As Apple has almost all of this technology in their product which will ship in June, then either Apple has an exclusive deal, or it's really Apple that has the uniqueness.

    Either way, Apple has a unique hardware and software combination for their touch screen.
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