End of the rounded corner design?
British Essex boy made good Sir Jony Ive will step down from his role as Apple's chief designer. Widely considered the most important figure at Apple not to be called Steve, magical Ive has been credited with sculpting the iconic, er, rounded corners and other motifs of the iMac, iPod, iPhone, and just about everything else …
Run the "Windows 10 Update Assistant" on an activated copy of Windows 7 and it'll download, install, and activate Windows 10 with a digital licence. You can do a clean install afterwards if you like. All legitimate. The free Windows 10 offer never went away. It's just not in your face any more that's all.
"Never mind that! $999 (or £999) for a monitor stand.
^ Indeed. Now that the God of the Cult of Thinness, Sir Jony de Ive, has just left Apple, I hope there is now perhaps the opportunity to turn Macs back into the productive and professional computers that they once were with things like useful ports, MagSafe and so on.
I don't have a problem with Apple producing a novel, leading edge model but the rest of the MacBook range ought to be the more like a robust ThinkPad.
Rounded corners have been around in tech for quite a while, almost 40 years at least and maybe longer,
Steve Jobs was convincing Bill Atkinson about them back in 1981!
The link is from Andy Herzfeld's wonderful archive.org:
Yeah, this really is a so long, and thanks for all the fish announcement. Here's a wad of cash, some guaranteed work for a couple of years and a glowing testamonial to trade off.
Apple's industrial design, despite a couple of notable failures, remains pretty solid but it has been chasing the crowd for several years now.
A blank keyboard already exists, although it's always been marketed at geeks who can touchtype so well they don't need key-caps, rather than design-conscious Apple users.
I have the version with lettering on, it's a really nice keyboard.
(Not to be confused with the keyboard belonging to an old flatmate of mine, who's [originally beige] keyboard was so filthy, it was only possible to read the lettering on some of the less used keys. Everything else was just encrusted with black dirt.
I don't live with him any more.)
At that price, I'd want something more than just a really nice keyboard! My current keyboard (Lenovo "Preferred Pro" or something) was a whole £8.95 on Amazon and it's at least an order of magnitude or two better than any Apple keyboard I've used over the past 23 years...
I REALLY hope you're right about that. That man has done more harm to making Apple products WORK than anything else I know of.
Maybe if Apple started making things that, first, actually work right and let "design" be secondary, Android manufacturers would follow suit and stop leaving off the headphone jack and adding notches and other faff to emulate Apple.
Of course, I'm not really expecting it.
iPod, very usable.
iPhone, usuable, most phones today resemble it.
Cheesegrater Mac Pro. Very usuable, very serviceable.
Now, do you realky think the decision to charge a large margin on fitting extra RAM to a computer was Jony Ive's? No, nor me. So following that reasoning, what other decisions may have been made by others? Exactly. So why are you blaming one man?
Design, engineering and tooling costs are spread across every unit sold. So if you're making an accessory for a very expensive monitor that very people will buy (and of them, many will use a VESA solution of some kind), there aren't many units to spread the costs across. Now, a sane person would have thought that because so few people have need of such a monitor stand that any outrage about the price tag would be limited, but no, this is the internet.
Forgive me if I don't feel outraged on behalf of a video production house whose equipment is insured for hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Now, a sane person would have thought that because so few people have need of such a monitor stand that any outrage about the price tag would be limited, but no, this is the internet.
Outraged? Nope, not here. Amused, yes. Astounded at the chutzpah Apple has in releasing such a thing, yes. Glad that I'm not such an Apple FanBoi that I'd feel the need to eve consider such a purchase, very much so.
Apple will just continue to commission Ive's company, he will continue to design Apple products under a different name.
The only difference is he can charge what he likes and has them over a barrel. They will continue to use him, because who else is there? Complete freedom and Apple will feel themselves more or less constrained to take it or leave it.
He is now also available to design for others and can thus sell his services elsewhere.
Apple's internal strategists are too smart to make Jony Ive or any other individual a scapegoat for the company missing quarterly targets, especially when rivals such as Samsung are enduring similar woes.
Ive has been at Apple for 25 years, and has been well payed. He doesn't need the money, and is on record as saying he's tired. It's not hard to imagine why he'd want to leave management behind and get back to his passion of design on a wider range of briefs than Apple require of him (see his side projects with Marc Newson for RED, Leica and others)
The smartphone is a mature product category, with no nascent technology likely to change that anytime soon.
"leave management behind and get back to his passion of design on a wider range of briefs than Apple require of him"
Ok, I'm not a high end designer so don't know how it all works. But considering the limited Apple product range, is there really enough work to keep a designer employed full time, let alone a full design team?
> Ok, I'm not a high end designer so don't know how it all works. But considering the limited Apple product range, is there really enough work to keep a designer employed full time, let alone a full design team?
There's a lot of work in the design v engineering tradeoff e.g. designer wants it paper thin but stiff as a board; engineer says "Hah. One or the other". Then there are the three-way arguments with the production engineers who tell you you can't have X because the machine in the factory can't do it that way. Or it could but it would slow the whole production line by 50% and the cost goes up accordingly. Etc.
There's also a surprising amount of design that goes into the packaging. Apple treat the packaging as very nearly a product in its own right, and so they want to get it to you pristine and undamaged so as not to spoil the unboxing experience. So colour test patches (usually four small circles: yellow, cyan, magenta and black which are used so the press operator can easily see if the printer has run out of ink or suffered a blockage) are something you never see on Apple packaging or manuals. They either test that the printing press didn't run out of ink another way or remove them before the cardboard is folded into a box. Whichever, someone on the design team has to check and approve all the trials and protoypes of the packaging.
Talented designers are rare
I'm not sure that's true. I've known a few good ones, and it's not a role I come into contact with frequently.
I think the real problem is that star designers like Ive, or widely-lauded products like the Aeron Chair, acquire fame not because of particularly good design1 but because they're associated with (or in the case of products are) Veblen goods. So many supposed paragons of design are simply bolstered by social capital.
On the other side of the coin, you have a great many products where no designer was involved at all (common in software) or the "designer" was not someone trained for that role. That creates the appearance of a dearth of good designers, when really it's a matter of not trying to employ one.
Plenty of designers may lack Ive's flair for Making Everything Worse, but understand a wide array of design principles in both utility and aesthetics, and are capable of evaluating the compromises involved in applying them. Their designs may not excite the sort of professional and amateur journalists who fawn over products from the likes of Apple, but they're perfectly good.
1However that might be measured, a question which falls foul of various problems in epistemology, aesthetics, and engineering.
Long overdue. Apple, please go back to FUNCTIONAL design. I'm typing this - more like trying to type this - on a MacBook Pro with a barely usable keyboard because Jony cared more about thin than usable. And that's just one example of his broken obsession. I hope his last design on the way out the door is the consulting deal with Apple - all appearance, zero functionality.
On many systems you have to peer extra hard because widgets are so washed out and stripped down.
There is a place I know, the Desktops are locked down, and they impose on everyone a background image culled from whatever marketing campaign that they are running. Result - it is difficult to find the icons of the applications that you need to launch from the Desktop, especially if you have a visual impairment.
Are you for real?
The OP's typed this on an MBP. Me as well. Apple, for now, scratches a specific itch for me: polished, consumer-grade POSIX workstation, where I can run redis or postgres type stuff. Where I don't need to uninstall Windows, mess around with trackpad drivers or replace GNOME. If a pre-installed Linux laptop offered all this to my satisfaction, I'd consider it (fond of Preview for quick annotations, pbcopy and Affinity Designer, so might still stick around).
What I object to in recent MBP models are lack of serviceability, upgradability and price. Oh, and the #@&^ 500$CAD touchbar. But, apparently, I am way off base having any concerns.
Imagine, if you will, 2
fans * discerning owners, of 65-67 vintage Mustangs, sitting at a bar, toasting the departure of whatever designer was responsible for transforming that car into its current sorry state. With a proper beer, say a porter.
A drooling hipster joins them, with a near-empty pitcher of KoolAid. Nose so far up the company's nethers that it's not even brown anymore, as it's come out on the other side.
"Fake issues. Sad! Go buy a Camaro, haters".
Embarrassing, really. Kinda like coming from a country where the backwoods yokels are known for consorting with their sheep. Reflects poorly on the rest of us. Whether we're gearheads or just normal people who prefer to avoid Windows.
* people like you have made that word toxic in any Apple context. I'd much rather talk with people who have reasoned opinions why they don't like Apple than admit any kinship with your ilk.
The primary reason against getting an iPhone many years ago was the inability to turn off UI animation. The duration may be small, but, due to my epilepsy related photosensitivity, the effect is not smooth and is very distracting to the point of annoyance. No idea if UI animation can be turned off on current Apple devices, but, they are no longer affordable
Beat me to it! Surprised I had to scroll so far before I read it. Apple's designs went downhill after Jobs' influence and tight control waned. Say what you like about Jobs (and there are plenty of unflattering things to say) but he did at least keep in check the worst excesses of "form over function" designers such as Ive.
What I hate about Apple is the lack of product diversity and incompatibility. The two design options of "what shape" and "how many thousands of dollars" doesn't really cut it. This mentality spilled over into Android cellphones and killed their sales too. Apple also likes to take industry standard systems, change them so they're not compatible, then drop support. Apple needs a new designer before their remaining customers grow tired of Apple.
(Too late for me. I tossed the Macs when my upgrade options were Trash Can Mac Pro or Linux.)
This mentality spilled over into Android cellphones and killed their sales too
The likes of Haweui and the rest of the Chinese makers would very much like to disagree with you.
Phones are now approaching the same level of acceptance as say all your 'white goods' are. Everyone has them who wants them in most of the world.
The increases in sales of phones that we have seen in the past had to come to an end simply because of the very large number of people who wanted one and could afford it already had one.
Don't blame Ive for the notch. It is an engineering solution to a problem where the market wanted bezelless phones but the technology was not ready to allow it without some compromises.
As a non-dedicated follower of fashion, I'll carry on using my secondhand iPhone 7 thanks.
the market wanted bezelless phones
Male bovine excrement !
At least some of us absolutely hate the idea. I have a phone (from another well know manufacturer) where the active screen goes more or less to the sides of the device - and it's a right PITA. I've added a case/protector only partly to give it a bit more resilience when I drop it - but as much as anything to add a mm or two to the outline to make the flippin thing usable. I was getting "really annoyed" that it was almost impossible to hold normally without my big fat fingers wrapping round the sides enough to trigger the touch sensor - causing random stuff associated with such touches, and generally being a real PITA.
So no, I don't want a phone where the display and touch sensor goes right to the edge of the device - I want a few mm border so I can actually hold the damn thing without having phantom touches screw things up.
>Apple also likes to take industry standard systems, change them so they're not compatible, then drop support.
Apple also help create and / or popularise industry standards - see FireWire, Thunderbolt and USB C, so meh.
> This mentality spilled over into Android cellphones and killed their sales too.
Phones being a mature product and being well built - thus lasting longer - has played a role in falling sales too. Shit, the lack of new technology arriving to make a new phone a must-have is industry wide, so it's bizarre that you blame Jony Ive for a fall in Android sales.
Also, are you sure that it was Ive that killed the original Cheesegrater Mac Pro, or was the decision driven by others at Apple? There are a lot of people, from operations, supply, strategy, who play a role in deciding which product lines to continue.
Not mine, I refuse to buy Samsung devices as there is just too much crapware rammed on them from the factory which cannot be removed without a lot of arsing about. Mind you, at the price-point I typically work to with phones - £100 to £150 - there are many alternative options, and for me the Huawei handsets are such damn good value for money its a no-brainer.
You ask for updates to Apple's 'dated' design, but I'm sure you can acknowledge that others here will ask for a return to the iPhone 5 design and the Cheesegrater.
So, faced with the task of appeasing both parties I'd likely just retire and do what I want, especially if it saves me a commute.
This sort of nonsense pisses off.
What 'made' Apple the company it is was taking Next software, ditching that godawful half-arsed Pascal scheduler, then hardware becoming fast and cheap enough to run Next over BSD over MAC.
The round edges had nothing to do with it.
Ive a few mac minis. They sit on a hidden shelf.
The 'quick, give Apple some money or we'll be a monopoly! really back fired on MS'
I look at Apples rebirth with a mixture of awe and regret (I didnt buy any shares FFS!)
I say Apples rebirth but the Apple of the mid 90s was pretty shit and washed out - crap non MMU scheduler from the mid 80s.
Now Apple v2 (NeXT) is/was fucking fantastic.
Ive about 4 mac minis. They are fantastic boxes, from both the hardware design (not he round corners) and the software.
He's not a big computer user in general, preferring to work with materials hands-on. There may well have been a time a decade or so back when members of his team were using Windows workstations for CAD.
HP does have that interesting desktop with a 3D scanner and projector built in, but I haven't heard much of it in professional workflows ( likely because more expensive and capable systems already existed)
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