Next Generation Portables

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by DickArmAndHarT, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. DickArmAndHarT macrumors 6502

    Jul 22, 2004
    With all this intel talk and excitment/anxious feelings. I was wondering about some cool new features for the 'books. I had two that i think would be pretty amazing
    1)Easy swappable hard drives. You have a hd for business, family, ect. And being able to change them like you would the battery. Maby even while the machines asleep perhaps.
    2) You know the little port next to the audio jack on an iPod. Where itrip ect plugs to stay put. What about having one of those next to the audio out. So iPod accesories such as the great itrip and soo many others would work.

    Although i know nothing about the workings of computers and these may be inpossible. This thread is for sharing ideas on what may be a possibility, or a dream of the future.

    please add your own ideas

  2. ITASOR macrumors 601


    Mar 20, 2005
    I would like to see computers start shipping with cases.
  3. lopresmb macrumors 6502

    Apr 29, 2005
    good ideas

    Swappable Hard drives would be nice, but I think that they would have to redesign the 'book to do that because of the placement of the drive (I guess that is a given though)

    That accessory slot probably wouldn't be a big deal and would be kinda cool (P.S. I'm sure you know you can wirelessly stream itunes via AEBS to your stereo right? So there's a little bit of that).

    I'd love to see (on down the road a bit) some sort of a foldable / collapsible screen for a powerbook so that the footprint stays small (portability), but allows for a larger working area (productivity).

    Some sort of easy docking station for a 'book would be awesome, to connect a keyboard mouse and video, so you didn't have to plug/unplug all those cords when you want to move

    --that’s all for now, but I could think of 5 million more things (well, maybe not quite that many)...
  4. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    I think a lot of those things are interesting ideas, but they've been tried before, and I don't see what's different now....

    - Laptops have gone back and forth, back and forth with swappable drives. The computers that have them are typically bulkier as a result, and the mechanisms are fragile and they tend not to look as nice after they've been in use for a while as hinges don't close completely anymore, etc. Also given that you can use network drives, or multi-GB USB memory devices, I personally don't want this one to come back.

    - As more and more people use wireless keyboards and mice, the need for a dock also seems minimal to me. The display and the power supply are really all that are left. The printer is on the AE wireless network, and based on the idea of airfoil, so can the audio be if you want. The kb and mouse are on BT. And the display plug-in, with mini-DVI or mini-VGA, isn't that bad.

    The screen ideas are interesting. I'd be really interested to see where OLED takes notebooks. :) I'm still stuck on the idea of a notebook that looks like a Nintendo DS, with a high-durability OLED touchscreen of some sort in place of the keyboard and trackpad. :D

    Some other things I'd like to see:

    - It already exists, but I'd like to see it substantially refined: wireless connections to displays. Infocus makes a device that lets you use a display wirelessly over 802.11 networks, and is Mac compatible. I've never used it, though. It would be très chic if this kind of device became common so that notebooks didn't need to use VGA and DVI plugs anymore....

    - Sony played around with built in cameras, but in the mean time, the mobile phone industry has really done a lot of great work on minitiurizing and cost-reducing this. An iSight or better video device built into the lid, as a BTO option, would be amazing, and would probably really propel video conferencing. :) That's a rehash too, but I think in this case there have been substantial technology changes that change the picture.
  5. DickArmAndHarT thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 22, 2004
    Cool, how about one, very damn complicated port in which you could plug a docking deck, or a hub, with all ports on it, so one plug goes to the portable on the desk, and on that main box all of your accesories, screens ect. are connected.
  6. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    This is essentially what Windows notebooks that have docking stations do....

    Not in the same league, and I've never used one, but since you mentioned docking stations, are you aware of this company:

    They manufacture docking stations, of sorts, for several different computers in the Apple notebook lineup. :)
  7. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    Is there any benefit of hot-swappable drives over regular external drives? I can't think of any other than being able to keep the notebook looking flush. I don't have an external drive and have never used one but I always thought it was a matter of plugging it into the USB/Firewire port on the go just as one would with an iPod.
  8. joecool85 macrumors 65816


    Mar 9, 2005
    I didn't know about do you do it? That'd be awesome! I have an airport on my PB.

    Just realized AEBS means Airport BaseStation...I wondered what the BS was for lol. NM.
  9. iDM macrumors 6502a


    Jul 6, 2005
    The Commonwealth of PA/The First State-DE
    I love all of these ideas but i'm sure I'd get that keyboard dirty!! Imagine the possibilities the extra keys or a larger trackpad in the case of the dual screen/keyboard layout. Wireless displays would be sweet the possibilities for that would be cool as well, put the same image on all tvs in the house. I think the built in camera would be awesome at first, but i think some people would lost interest. The business application however would be utilized i bet.
  10. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    You need two pieces -- an Airport card in the computer (or an 802.11g card in a PC) and an Airport Express. A program called Airfoil will let you extend the Airport Express to stream all audio from the computer, instead of just iTunes. The Airport Extreme BaseStation, sadly, AFAIK, supports no streaming audio.... :(

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