TalkBack Central: Convergence is not all it's cracked up to be

**** ZDNet News reader Alexander Dorn responds to the article -- "End of life for consumer-tech boom?" ****Convergence.

**** ZDNet News reader Alexander Dorn responds to the article -- "End of life for consumer-tech boom?" ****

Convergence. As an Amiga enthusiast, I have heard this word batted around for a number of years now. When Gateway owned the Amiga for a short while, they kept filling us full of buzzwords, 'convergence' being chief among them. The problem is, no one really understood what they were talking about.

Now, as the computer industry learns that faster isn't necessarily better, that 900MHz isn't better than 500MHz when it costs twice as much (or more), they began looking to this new "Digital Lifestyle" thing as a next step, but I wonder if even they understand, exactly, what it is they are talking about.

I, myself, began envisioning a world in which my Palm-type device could access files off of my computer at home, or tell the VCR to record that movie I heard about. I could pull out the old Visor-type thingy and check to make sure that I turned the coffee pot off when I left that morning.

I began to visualize being able to listen to any radio station in the world at any place, at any time, with my cell phone or the like. Perhaps, possibly, even being able to watch any television station, anywhere in the world, on the same cell phone device. This, to some degree, was what I saw.

What we now hear about, though, is different. Now, with what we've heard from Whistler and the like, this new "Digital Lifestyle" means that Microsoft Word goes from being an online application on my local machine to a subscription service -- that many of the wonderful things that we now get for free (minus ISP charges), will become pay-per-use.

In short, we are told that things will cost more. So, is it really any surprise that people are not excited about any of these prospects?

Alexander W. Dorn is an engineer and consultant from Southern California.

Disclaimer: 'Your Turn' is a commentary column written by a ZDNet News reader. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author, not those of ZDNet, ZDNet News nor its editors.

We want to feature "you" as a guest columnist on TalkBack Central -- The page dedicated to you and your views! Got a column for Your Turn? Submit it here. **** ZDNet News reader Alexander Dorn responds to the article -- "End of life for consumer-tech boom?" ****

Convergence. As an Amiga enthusiast, I have heard this word batted around for a number of years now. When Gateway owned the Amiga for a short while, they kept filling us full of buzzwords, 'convergence' being chief among them. The problem is, no one really understood what they were talking about.

Now, as the computer industry learns that faster isn't necessarily better, that 900MHz isn't better than 500MHz when it costs twice as much (or more), they began looking to this new "Digital Lifestyle" thing as a next step, but I wonder if even they understand, exactly, what it is they are talking about.

I, myself, began envisioning a world in which my Palm-type device could access files off of my computer at home, or tell the VCR to record that movie I heard about. I could pull out the old Visor-type thingy and check to make sure that I turned the coffee pot off when I left that morning.

I began to visualize being able to listen to any radio station in the world at any place, at any time, with my cell phone or the like. Perhaps, possibly, even being able to watch any television station, anywhere in the world, on the same cell phone device. This, to some degree, was what I saw.

What we now hear about, though, is different. Now, with what we've heard from Whistler and the like, this new "Digital Lifestyle" means that Microsoft Word goes from being an online application on my local machine to a subscription service -- that many of the wonderful things that we now get for free (minus ISP charges), will become pay-per-use.

In short, we are told that things will cost more. So, is it really any surprise that people are not excited about any of these prospects?

Alexander W. Dorn is an engineer and consultant from Southern California.

Disclaimer: 'Your Turn' is a commentary column written by a ZDNet News reader. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author, not those of ZDNet, ZDNet News nor its editors.

We want to feature "you" as a guest columnist on TalkBack Central -- The page dedicated to you and your views! Got a column for Your Turn? Submit it here.

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