iMac:just a pretty face

Peter Hall (DW 26 February) may be right that we are getting beyond the idea of the “look” in product design, but his example of the iMac shows things aren’t going all our way. The iMac has captured the imagination of consumers, but this is based on its appearance: its circular mouse is difficult to orientate without looking at it; when it crashes it can only be restarted by poking a paper-clip inside a recess. In fact the iMac has the same old MacOS (operating system) from 1984. The soft interface is where design really counts, but discussion of the design of the iMac does not reach these parts of the product.

Nico Macdonald


London EC1

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