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June 21, 2007

The Ultimate Convergence in Computing

I won't deny that I became extremely excited when I saw Microsoft announce the Surface computer.  But my mind couldn't help but wander and see if there was a way to improve upon the concept and the entire idea of how humans should be able to interact with computers.  Is playing around on walls, floors, and tables the best way to interact with computers, or is there an even better way?  I personally don't think it will be the end all, even with an OLED covered house with walls that are as dynamic as those in Disney's Smart House movie.

Why limit yourself to a surface to do computing at all?  Even better, why make the internet a separate space where things are done?  The internet in the end, as my friend Anders says, is merely another way for humans to communicate.  So what could the ultimate convergence become?  In science fiction movies like The Matrix, humans have to plug into a machine to be able to connect to a "virtual reality".  Why should virtual reality be any different from reality?

Device convergence is great and everything, but I believe the ultimate convergence in computing will be when virtual reality and the internet are completely integrated into reality.  When you are walking down the street, you won't pull out your cell phone to find a place to go.  You will see the possibilities appear before you.  You won't even need a cell phone to carry on a conversation.  Instead of having a character in SecondLife as an avatar to interact with others, you will see other people, who are not physically there, walking around and will be able to interact with them.  You might not even be "there".  (Of course, teleportation would make getting there a lot easier. :-) ) 

With virtual reality and the internet completely integrated into reality, the possibilities are truly infinite.


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