It’s the Desktop, but Not as We Know It!

This is the second in a series of posts about the desktop. In the first post I described a conceptual architecture of the desktop, or end user computing environment. In that first post I used the term desktop, since then I have had a  change of heart, or at least of terminology. I’ve been thinking about the wider computing environment that people use and encounter in their daily working lives and I see that it is both much bigger than what we traditionally call the desktop, and that it is all connected – part of a multi-dimensional spectrum of ways of interacting with devices and software and ways of managing those devices and software. We need to understand the commonalities between the way that people use mobile phones,  traditional desktop PCs, virtual desktops, ruggedised devices, special purpose devices, and their applications. For this reason I’ve decided that I won’t use the term “desktop”, and will instead use the clumsier term “end user computing”. While not so elegant, it does seem to me to better describe what I am trying to talk about, and is at least better than (or less ambiguous than) any other alternative I’ve come across.

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