Naming smartdevices

A decade ago, we had two types of “smart” devices in common use – desktops and laptops. They were distinguished by their portability, and named based on the least you practically needed to keep the devices on. Practically because you can keep a huge desktop CPU box on your lap, and balance the display, keyboard, and mose over it. Most people used both of them on desks, anyway. Laptops were only just growing in popularity, while most people still preferred traditional desktops. Mobile phones weren’t that smart back then.

Fast-forward to 2014. No matter how much we talk of the breakdown of Moore’s law, it’s remarkable how suddenly the smartness is all around us. Minus the looming Internet of Things (after which will probably come the Internet of Brains), we already have a hoard of useful smart devices, each with their own perks and disadvantages.

  • Desktops, as usual.
  • Laptops, as usual.
  • Smartphones, you can do a hoard of activities with these little gadgets, but let’s say it’s most common purpose is calling, OK? What, WebRTC? Yes, I know. So what?
  • Tabs, Tablets, Phablets, or huge smartphones, they’re optimised for reading. I’d prefer to call them smartbooks.
  • Smartwatches, let’s say they’re optimised for telling the time and fitness recording.
  • Smartboards, they’re optimised for teaching and educational activities.
  • Smart glasses, uh, they aren’t really… ok let’s say they’re optimised for calling, taking photoes, and other stuff a phone could do too, but more portably, leaving your hands free.
  • Smartpens, they’re optimised for writing (and digitising it obviously) and recording video/audio tapes.

So, the naming has gotten a lot more confusing now. Some are smart, some are tops, some are neither, although they should be smart too.

How would these devices sound like if we named them in the “most basic yet practical thing to keep them on way? In the same order:

  • Desktops
  • Laptops
  • Fingertops
  • Palmtops
  • Wristtops
  • Walltops
  • Nosetops (I wasn’t sure to call these nosetops, eartops, eyetops, or facetops)
  • Papertops

Much better naming system, isn’t it? You can even call brains a Spinetop this way.

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