Thursday, March 09, 2006

Project Origami Finally Unveiled... Guh

A few weeks ago, the website origamiproject.com appeared showing a cryptic flash animation asking such intriguing questions like "Do you know me? Do you know what I can do and where I can go?" It was quickly found out that Project Origami was a new Microsoft Windows-based mobile device.

The project name and the weird animations created much hype, as of course was intended by Microsoft. But alas, it's just a miniature Tablet PC. That's right, folks, Microsoft Ultra-Mobile PC is just a small, portable, keyboard-less personal computer running Microsoft Windows Tablet PC Edition and using a Media-Center-like Program Launcher interface (which I find quite ugly). It's small enough to enable the use of a specially-designed virtual keyboard while standing up (you will still need both hands, though). It's also capable of anything that a normal Tablet PC could do, including Wi-Fi access. Ho-hum.

I think the biggest disappointment is the design of the current UMPC incarnations. As if Microsoft's hardware partners still haven't learned anything from their battle with the Mac and the iPod. In fact, even if I had the bucks to buy it, I'd probably just wait for Apple to release a cooler-looking alternative...

Well, to be fair, Microsoft & company will probably unveil better-looking UMPCs (software and hardware-wise) later (methinks soon after Vista). I just wished it lived up to the hype created by that cute blue dot.