Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Phone Platform Wars - Wasting Time on Trivialities

I have been reading with amusement as several people I follow and usually respect on G+ are bashing smart phone platforms that they did not choose for themselves.  I now have an iPhone, so apparently I have just become (overnight) an elitist snob after eight years of being neither hip nor trendy by using a Blackberry. Some don't like the closed platform of the iPhone.  Others think that Android is too buggy.  A lot of people think Blackberry must be going out of business (actually, that one could be close to the truth if they don't fix what's wrong with their technology and business model).

The underlying theme held by each person that commented was that the other platform -- the one they did not choose -- was not good enough or had some so-called critical flaw in it that should dissuade any normal person (read, like them) from even thinking about using it.

For me, I have used just about every computing platform out there at one point or another.  I have never been wedded to a single technology, though I do currently use a Mac and now all of a sudden have an iPhone.  Yet, I still use Windows too (2 machines in my house)...  and Linux, AIX, VM, zOS, etc.  I started with a Commodore 64, CP/M, and DOS.  I used VAX/VMS in college and had a Palm m515 that I used for a time near the turn of this century.  During the 1990s, I used OS/2 as my PC platform of choice.  Each one of these platforms had advantages and disadvantages and, yes, there are some platforms I like working in more than others.  But, my preferences are not everyone's preferences.

What I believe is key is that we have a choice, but can still communicate regardless of the choice we make.  This is one of the great things in IT that I have seen happen over my lifetime:  disparate computing environments that can communicate with each other pretty effortlessly.

So, for those that I follow and have fallen into this trap, please step back and think about what you are writing.  Are all those Android users you are bashing _really_ cheapskates (as I saw in one separate article)?  Are all those iPhone users so completed bought into the Apple hype that they can no longer think for themselves?  Have all those Blackberry users really made an inferior decision just to stay with a dying company with out of date technology?  You know the answers.

As I look to conclude, I realize that my title is tinged with irony, given the length of this article.  Humph.  Perhaps it is that new elitist snob attitude I just picked up ...