The computers near you are gateways to the clouds.

Scaling Down the Mac Pro:

Marco Arment:

It’s impossible to significantly change the Mac Pro without
removing most of its need to exist.

But I think it’s clear, especially looking at Thunderbolt’s
development recently, that Apple is in the middle of a transition
away from needing the Mac Pro.

Jon Gruber: “I concur.”

[I want you to look at the bit below and put that together with the one above.]

Mark O’Connor Swapped His MacBook for an iPad and Linode:

Fascinating, really. What enables him to work solely from an iPad is that he does all his work in Vim. So it’s the fact that he’s a code-writing Unix nerd that allows him to use the seemingly least-Unix-nerd-friendly computer ever as his sole work machine.

[And while this won’t work for everything, it will become common for the computer near you (whatever the form factor) to seamlessly reach out to computing resources in the cloud when you wish. Big photo file needs editing? No problem—the original image is already in the cloud. Now run your image editor of choice on a whomping multi core rocket ship of a virtual machine with a a bunch of RAM. The file is saved back to the cloud (versions anyone?) and you release the resources until the next time you need them. Pay as you go? Sure. Why not. Need some resources all day every day? Pick a monthly plan. The computers near you are a gateway to the clouds.

There are fewer cases where we need all those compute cycles and storage local to us. And while there are some, and there will be always be some, for most of us, this will not be necessary any longer. Even the small computers available today like phones, pads, and small notebooks are very powerful machines. The stumbling block is the serious lack of infrastructure that ensures access to the cloud at all times. (It’s getting better, but it ain’t where it needs to be). Screen space is an issue, having just spent the better part of 5 days with real work to do and nothing but a phone to do it (nope, nothing rose to the level of running out and spending money on an iPad or a MiFi or the like, but another few days might have done it.) I was almost at the point where I was going to get a AppleTV to stream the screen of my phone to a large TV screen, and reattach the wireless keyboard, but I wanted to embrace this limitation knowing I’d go back to my normal routine as soon as connectivity was restored. It is amazing how well things worked overall (network speed was the number one issue). Generally it’s not more computing power that I need, but a faster connection and larger screen (in that order).]

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