As I think about what my ideal next computer could be like, something dawn on me: it’s Google’s Chrome OS core tenet (your work automatically saved to the cloud) combined with a powerful and versatile device that I can also run software development projects on. That’s what I need, and I don’t want to be bothered about lugging around an USB drive, having to explicitly move files around. So what are the options?
I’ve said this a few times, Chrome OS just won’t cut it for me. The ideal device has got to be more capable than running a web browser, this leads me to the tablets. But the iPad still doesn’t look like it’d be something for me. The videos of HP TouchPab I saw today impressed me, it seems that that thing has some serious guts inside. If I were to buy a tablet though, I’d need an external keyboard most of the time, so why not upgrade and get a laptop then? I could do that, but then I’m back where I am right now.
All of this vaguely reminds me something else, Microsoft’s Longhorn vision. I dumped my last gigabytes of Longhorn material last year, so I can’t fully recall what it said about storage – no use digging that up anyway, that’d be hypothetical.
As I sit there undecided, I suddenly realise that I’ve already seen the beginning of a solution without making the connections. Apple’s just announced iCloud, now I see what they’re trying to do and I see that it’s clever marketing – I watched bits of the keynote and didn’t really think too much of it, until now. iCloud also looks to be limited to files produced with Apple’s software, what about my design and development work created with non-Apple software? Not supported, I suppose. Stuck. Bummer.
There’s another option, use Dropbox as a live storage drive. It’s tempting, though I’d be nervous doing that, it might just fall apart or cost me too much. What then?
Actually, there isn’t much choice. The magical GDrive never materialised. One’s got to go for the next best thing, and that is simple: stay with a laptop, and maybe use Cloud development platforms and Emacs on the client, stay with Dropbox.