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Comment: Re:Where are the buggy whip dealers? (Score 1) 544

Oh OK. Well actually I considered that, but the problem is how to weigh the opinions of people who have only ever used virtual keyboards because they've never known anything else, possibly because the store didn't even offer anything else as an option. I think it would be absurd to count those all as votes for "virtual keyboards". Maybe some of them are just sure that they don't want a slide-out keyboard, but based on the evidence from the stores, it looks as if far more of them just didn't have that option, or didn't know that they did. In the end I decided just to count the opinions of people who had tried them both.

Comment: Re:Where are the buggy whip dealers? (Score 0) 544

What I wrote was: "Obviously that's too small of a sample to be very precise about the percentage of users that prefer slide-out keyboards (apart from the fact that Mechanical Turk users are unrepresentative of the general population in several ways), but it does mean that the near-extinction of slideout-keyboard phones in retail stores is probably not in proportion to what people actually want."

i.e., it was just a quick and dirty survey to show that the proportion of people who want slideout keyboard phones is not zero, like the stores are pretending that it is.

Comment: Re:original title (Score 1) 291

What about the Stratosphere, which I wrote about previously? That didn't have a slide-out keyboard and so presumably wasn't serving a niche market. That was the one where the calendar app highlighted the wrong date as "today", because it (apparently) computed "today" based on GMT rather than the phone's current time zone.

Comment: Re:original title (Score 1) 291

If you're taking it as a given that the article statements were correct, my final statement was that we could improve existing phones by methodically testing them for idiotic problems (the Stupid Shit Index), so that consumers know how to find phones that have the least stupid shit wrong with them, the makers of those phones are rewarded, and the next iteration of phones has incrementally less stupid shit as a result. Since this is a big reward for relatively little effort, isn't it worth doing?

Comment: Re:no you are wrong (Score 0) 291

Take the auto-correct for example. The auto-correct application on the high-end phone presumably doesn't change "you're" to "you"re". So in what plausible scenario would they end up stripping down that high-end version to a low-end version that does?

If the high-end autocorrect occupies too much memory (too large a database of words, for example) for it to work correctly on the low-end phone, wouldn't it be easier to strip down the dictionary, rather than starting from scratch with a new dictionary that contains incorrect entries?

Comment: Re:no you are wrong (Score 1) 291

The UI bugs that I was talking about are in the kinds of features that you'd think they could just develop once, and re-use for both their low-end and high-end phones. e.g. they could have developed an auto-correct for the high-end phone that doesn't change you're to you"re, and then just re-used it on the low-end phone. Wouldn't it actually be more work to develop a separate buggier auto-correct for the cheap phone?

Comment: Re:no you are wrong (Score 1, Insightful) 291

I think that's part of the explanation, but it doesn't account for why the phone doesn't suck in other ways -- if manufacturers are lazy and cheap, why has the camera resolution, for example, evolved to the point where it's really pretty good? And I think the answer is that camera resolution is quantifiable in a standard way, so it puts more pressure on the manufacturers to compete, whereas usability and bugginess are not.

After all is said and done, a hell of a lot more is said than done.