Very, very hard. In part because that definition is fluid in our world.How hard is it to make an interface that's easy to navigate and do the things we want?!
Both Apple and Android created the standards with version 1.0; meaning users became accustomed to the UI - making it a standard. In software development the UI is key to adaptation. Sexy sells software.
In earlier threads the observation was made that which front end is best is an argument akin to the Ford versus Chevy argument. This is 100% true. Every front end does the same thing, and, for the most part, in the same way. Maybe that is the problem?
The problem we are facing is our own creation. We are fragmented and in competition with each other. Meanwhile radio manufacturers and (soon) GPS manufacturers are bringing their own solutions to market. They will succeed because they are organized and funded.
Consider Ubuntu: You have a world of developers, testers and product managers marching to the same beat. Now Ubuntu is the world's favorite Linux distro - and people are making money from the effort.
We are also fragmented in what we develop; creating features that are less then valuable when features that are essential to adaptation are ignored. If I don't have a proper navigation system, why would I give a crap about who can play what in the back seat?
I applaud Fluxmedia. They took on a new industry and contributed to the birth of a new technology. I won't be using Centrafuse in the future; not because is it bad software (which it isn't), but because it isn't open. I won't be using RR because it is severely dated technology. I wanted to use OpenMobile, but I need to see a proper command structure and a more-favorable licensing model before I commit.
In the business I am struggling to create, infotainment is a secondary concern. I am working toward making the car PC in integral component and a life-saving device. What we have today is an important contribution to the evolution of the mobile computing ecosystem, but it is mostly fluff.
What we need is to organize. Create a command structure, and develop towards a common goal. There is more than enough talent on this site (and others) that, if we wanted to, we could be a force to be reckoned with. By organizing, we could develop the standard that would change everything.
How many of you could see yourselves making money from this hobby? Opening business' around car PC installations perhaps, or consulting and developing.
My opinion is that every major manufacturer will adopt the car PC in their new models - so this hobby will have a diminishing potential in the future. But there are many existing vehicles that will not be serviced by Detroit, Tokyo and Saul.
Cohesive Technology - seamless is everything
Anyways...Galaxy Tab 7.7 comes out soon, that's apparently my only ticket to a 'smooth' responsive experience in my car. And it's got the Super AMOLED Plus display which is fairly good in direct sunlight. So now I'll have a tablet AND a "CarPC" for less than the cost of the separate computer and touchscreen to make a CarPC. All I have to do is create a custom mount/docking station out of fiberglass that I can put in my double-din for power/audio. I'm already trying to think of a design.
Some people say "it sounds good enough". Me? I'd say if you are going through the PITA to 'glass in a mount, fabricate, etc AND have to add external amplifiers you should be willing to go that one next step. If you aren't I see no reason not to simply spend $600-$800 on one of the many aftermarket screen/nav/dvd/radio units and be done with it. This whole blog post is truly aimed at the following:
People who can not fabricate
People who can not handle 12v electronics/wiring
Frustration with current 7" touchscreens
People who think Windows is a foreign concept (try Linux sometimes and then come back telling me about "frustrating").
People who think their stock audio system sounds awesome/killer.
For the rest of us who actually have the aforementioned skills and alternate tastes I can't for the life of me see anyone choosing the tablet route.
What it SHOULD be is just a screen in your car, where I can plug my smartphone into (Because everyone has a smartphone these days). That way I can get into my car or my wife's car and I will always have the same interface to my apps/music/navigation/whatever. And my phone can be controlled by my dash touchscreen, whatever size that may be. And my phone is now charging at the same time too.
Smartphones already have the best interface for a car anyways, and they weren't even trying
Last edited by TweakEn; 10-22-2011 at 02:00 PM.
This is what doesn't make any sense to me.
There's nothing else in a deck that makes it more expensive either, it's just the head! They all have the same 50w/channel amp, same RCA's on the back, same Aux input, maybe a USB input for flash drive. I figured, I'll build a CarPC which is still actually a better interface than the most expensive deck, but it could be better.
If they do do this (bridge the gap between your smartphone and your car) I'll still complain about something else. I always demand BETTER FASTER MORE!
Also, these smartphones are fast enough where they could support running Windows or whatever operating system they want. (The FIRST iPhone was originally planned to run OS X!!!!!)
P.S. Hehe, I said doo doo hehehehehehehe *Peter Griffin laugh*
Last edited by TweakEn; 10-22-2011 at 02:21 PM.
tweakeden-- in ref to post #35, check the mp3car store, they have a kit what would allow a iphone to do as you describe.
stock audio systems are really improving in many cars-- last year, i demoed a mitsu lancer evo with the factory rockford fosgate system in it-- using music from my own collection, and except for the rf-trademark of really bright highs(all rf tweeters are like that, so i don't fault the car), i couldn't find any large flaws that would make it worth ripping out right away. honestly, i am starting to see where car makers are paying attention to the size of the aftermarket audio industry, and these days a 'premium audio system' really does mean more then just the addition of a whizzer cone on all the speakers...
i run a ipod when my carpc doesn't work, and the audio really about as good as the carpc, minus a couple x-over tweaks-- i would expect the ipad to do just as good. and i run a full active setup with separately purchased component drivers, not some best buy store special...
over the last couple months, i have been having issues when i go over random bumps(drive off a cliff and it's fine, run over a worm, and the problem happens), the pc reboots/locks up/freezes. i think i finally nailed it down to being mo.bo. flex around the memory slot causing the memory to become unseated.
yesterday i was going nuts after it happened yet again less then 4 min into a drive. and at that moment, i was ready to yank the entire pc and refab my dash for a tablet/bitone combo.
you see, i fit all your requirements-- i can fabricate, have extensive experience with 12v systems, have a best-of-the-best screen, a 7" transflective capacitive touch 669, and upgraded my entire audio system less then a month after buying the car--even teaching the local car audio shop some things about my model in the process. yet, the all-in-one nature of the new tablets are what is so appealing because it removed all the parts that i was having trouble with.
i believe i have the solution worked out, so the carpc stays now for the advantages i listed before...
for years, there has been a decent amount of people here that didn't like laptop setups because of their bulkiness, but wanted a unobtrusive carpc. some wanted it because it was a leased car, some did it because they had plans of selling the car soon, or some did it because they just didn't want to tear into the dash, or had concerns of theft. in many of these situations, i have seen at least half of the people showing off, or talking about older project vehicles that had plenty of modifications done to them...
i think the people that can't fabricate are only a small portion of the people that really want a tablet in-car. most that have the urge to put a tablet in-car seem to already have fab skills, or the willingness to learn those skills. i don't see many people asking for fab work for tablets...
i think tablets fill a different need in the carpc world. as i hinted at before, i don't believe they are the end-all-be-all, but they have their place.
My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
"The Project That Never Ended, until it did"
next project? subaru brz
"stop with the REINSTALLS, what do you think we got some lame-o installer!!!" - mitchjs
Too bad I don't have an iPhone. Actually I'm completely against all Apple portable devices because they just rip people off now, but that's another topic.