Sorry Golob, but I'm with Paul on this ChromeOS stuff, but not because I personally could get by with a ChromeOS machine.

The trend here isn't that Google thinks you're stupid, or Apple thinks you're stupid, or they think "average users" are stupid, it's that they know that average users don't fucking care. They just don't care, and there's nothing wrong with that.

My big problem with the iPhone's detractors, or ChromeOS' detractors, or any of 'em really, is the idea that there's a "right" way to use a computer or a phone. What Apple and Google and others have learned and are busy getting insanely rich from is that millions of people couldn't possibly care less how a computer works or what it can do, as long as it can do what they want easily and without fuss. Those people were not served by "full-featured" computers. On the contrary, they were frustrated as hell with those machines. Now that most of what most people do can be done in a browser, there's a big market for a simple machine that serves those people and never, ever, ever, ever asks them about file systems, or file extensions, or install locations, or any of that crap.

I'm always going back to the car analogy: There are car enthusiasts—people who will never drive an automatic transmission, change their own oil, tires, wiper blades, whatever—and then there are car users; who drive their cars to get around, and take them to the shop when they break. They don't care how they work, and they don't want to care. They're not stupid, they're just not interested.

One thing doesn't preclude the other. As long as there's a market for powerful machines that can load any application you like, you'll be able to get one. The only difference is that now someone who doesn't want to mess with that shit can have a nice computer too. What's the problem?