Interesting reading these days the press on computers... C|Net says laptops are the thing now, core duo is the thing now blah-di-blah.
In fairness, this is the age of the laptop. Also, several factors come into place with this one. Here's my take:
portability. I'm thinking that it's infinitely more convenient the take in various sci-fi movies where one just plugs in a device in a socket, and have your whatever (replace with: presentation, saved game, charts, data etc) "pop up" on the screen. However, the small thing like "the think must look the same on the destination machine as on my source" is a big problem these days. just move your word file between two computers and it goes bye-bye. As far as I can see, only the likes of a PDF will look the same on different machines... Not to count the "XYZ is evil" people who wouldn't use a file just because it's made by some company or other (I've met anti-.doc people, anti-Mac people, and anti-Linux people, who never heared of OpenOffice).
security. Big problem here... What's the first question of a corporate representative when (s)he is asked to place the memory stick in a hole? (and the memory stick contains everything)... noone in their right mind would just cease the control of their data...
look. well, one must admit that it looks good (almost sounds like a Guiness ad) to have a laptop. Like an executive. Funny that now the rank in a company can be seen in the laptop you have: lower levels with laptops have some bricks while higher levels have sleek sub-notebooks (like Sony TR series) or powerbooks, because those are COOL.
privacy. currently this is assimilated with security... not exactly the same fish. I'd like the idea of files having "clearances" enabled by the OS...
size. Yop. One is way more careful of losing a 2000euro/3Kg piece of equipment than a 100euro/30g stick. maybe because people still think of value in terms of "how much it costs" rather than "what it contains"...
My vision is that until "universal terminals" will be available everywere (aka some places like one's desktop) and the memory sticks will actually contain the "home" of an user, with some smart level of security (like some sort of per-file security clearance, where the file explorer would "see" only the cleared files), there is little chance of people to carry sticks and plugging them in.
imagine a device like a PDA with the core processing stuff in it, wirelessly connected to a pair of LCT (or e-ink) lens (like a cyborg), some headphones, a touch-based input method... or even better: johnny mnemonic (without keanu reeves really :))
-- This is a really old post published originally on my blogspot blog