This is a follow-up to my previous post and came about due to a discussion I had on that post with a friend.

One of the basic issues I identified with the cut-and-paste situation was that the touch interface is having to deal with an “old school” model of text editing that came, in fact, from the days before the mouse. However, I came to realise there are things that a touch interface should be really good at but are still hamstrung with old ideas.

I’ll keep this post much shorter. Watch this video, and pay particular attention to the section on photos starting at the 02:34 mark. Scrub forward to that section if you wish. If you’ve seen it before I urge you to watch that section again.

OK, now open up the Photos app on your iPad – the one which has seen continuous improvements for the last 10 years. Which experience is it closer to – the original iPhoto app for Mac, or the demo in the video above?

It is clearly an iteration of the basic iPhoto design which debuted in 2002 and couldn’t even claim to be original back then. You get a grid of photos, some sorting options, some searching, and you can tap any photo to have it enlarge to full screen. The iOS app isn’t even as capable as the basic feature of Photos for Mac today. Try adding a keyword to a photo. You can’t.

Why don’t we have something much closer to the demo by now? In case you didn’t know or notice, the demo took place in 2006. The year before the iPhone launched. Four years before the iPad launched. Modern iPads can play fantastically complex and detailed real-time video games – why can’t I organise and edit my photos in a natural fashion?

Categories: Tech


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