Basic features that are missing in browsers

With advent of web2.0, the software world has rapidly changed. Native apps have become obsolete and everything works using a web interface. In fact, some computers (like Chrome OS based) are being designed purely for web browsing. The same is true for mobile and tablet platforms, the browser being a significant player with reports suggesting uses spend an average of 25% of their time on browsers.

There are a few features that are still missing browsers:

Switching: Normal apps can be easily switched using Ctrl-Tab

Auto association of file types

Key board loggers – why not? Conceptually they can be made secure.

Every now and then, comes a time when you want to tear your hair off because you typed (and clicked) on a bunch of info into a form and now you don’t have access to it. You want a time machine. Just to go back a few mins or hours and get back all that data.

Why don’t we have technology to make that happen?

A keyboard + click logger would do the job. These programs exist, yes, very much, but are touted as insecure. Many computer worms, virii have key stroke loggers built in them and in those cases their intent is obviously malicious.

But why can’t we have an ethical, secure keyboard logger? log the keystokes but then encrypt them and keep. Make the data accessible only after two factor authentication. The security issue can surely be solved, can’t it?

If scope of capture is a problem, then let’s focus and apply solutions to that problem instead of just branding the whole thing as unsafe. We could easily have loggers that ONLY capture browser based interactions.



Idea: Mini display for smartphones

Finally! Someone has taken my idea to task. wohoo.

The big design drawback in the smart phone design is display power use. Sometimes that we need to step back to get a better view. This case is no different. Phone manufacturers, step back and ask yourself- what feature in a smart phone would a user care if they are almost out of battery- the phone! So in other words, the phone is the single most important usecase for a smart phone.

Here’s how to design the smart smartphone:

– Create a small LCD screen (remember phones with just one 10 digit LCD late ninetees?)

– Add a physical call button outside (not a touch button)

– Allow and encourage storage of favorite numbers on the SIM card

Lo and behold! you switch the phone into powersave ‘phone only’ mode when you are running low on battery!

Phone circuitry is a highly integrated system on chip design, so one argument against this can be that there no way to power just the telecom (codec) chip and not rest of it. To solve for this, and considering that the core phone telecommunications chip (CDMA or GSM) is only a miniscule portion of the entire chip, replicate it. Add two codec chips if required, but please please make smartphones, smart!

With 2000mAh+ batteries that Smartphones of 2012 carry, the ‘phone only’ mode can run for months without charging

It is very interesting to note that serious hikers, trekkers, back country adventure seekers dump their smart phones and carry special phones (with similar concept) for their journeys. Imagine being injured, getting one bar of signal and finding your smartphone dying in your hands.

Why is there hope? check out Yota phone. They seem to have the concept right, but the use case reverse.

Idea: Play guitar with the computer keyboard

Facts
– My fingers are nimble on the computer keyboard.
– I can type close to 50 words per minute.
– Average word size is 4.
– I can thus type 200 keys per minute
– A typical song played on acoustic guitar requires chords

– Chords change maybe 2-3 times per minute max
– The difference between a string guitar and keyboard is that in guitar we press many strings together, for a computer keyboard we press keys in a sequence

Questions/Research:

– Can the keyboard accepts multiple keys at once?