Geeks Who Don’t Understand Not Everyone is Like Them Drive Me Nuts

One thing that causes me to bang my head into my keyboard, repeatedly, is when I get into a “discussion” with a high-tech geek like myself who doesn’t grasp that not everyone thinks like they do. I think it’s the height of hubris to feel that the way you perceive the world is the way that everyone else does (or should) perceive things. This thread over at The Hive is a good example of this form of massively flawed thinking. One of the people I’m talking with there believes that the only differences between a Zune and a Pocket PC is that the Zune has more storage. He doesn’t understand that one (the Zune) is designed to work like a simple appliance – simple user interface, easy to understand, quick navigation, highly focused around specific behaviours. The Pocket PC, on the other hand, is a computer. It has a start menu, dozens of applications multiplied by dozens of menus, giving you hundreds of functions. Given enough time, sure, an average person could find the media player and listen to music on the Pocket PC, but the difference between that scenario and handing someone a Zune and watching them use it (which I’ve done several times) is enormous. I’m so incredibly thankful that people who think user interface doesn’t matter are no longer the ones in charge of projects like the Zune – though I think sometimes they are, if you look at the horrid Archos products.

  • aroma

    Ah… since it’s all about capability, rather than interface, as the poster explains, then that explains why PPCs are dominating BlackBerry and iPods in their respective fields.

  • Yes, yes, CLEARLY what the public wants is a complicated, “do everything” device when all they want to do is listen to music.