Whither tablets: I’m going to

Whither tablets
: I’m going to dare to disagree with Anil Dash twice in a week. I don’t think tablets will take over the world. I used to think so, but not anymore.

I worked with Intel on their once-ambitious, once-top-secret tablet project. You probably don’t know about it because the project was killed; the final straw was 9.11; the product was going to be introduced a block away from the World Trade Center only days after 9.11; after 9.11, no products could be launched and this one was killed.

I believed in the tablet project because it took wires off the Internet. It made the Internet portable. It brought the Internet to the kitchen and the couch. I was filled with soundbites about the wonders of tablets.

After the project was killed, I was lucky enough to get a rare Intel tablet. It was superbly engineered.

But there was one key problem:

No keyboard.

That kills — kills — tablets.

Everyone knows how to type today. My kid took typing lessons before second grade — second grade! My daughter will do likewise. Everyone knows how to type.

Typing is one heckuva lot faster and more accurate than writing script or, God forbid, Palmese.

You need to type to blog. You need to type to use Amazon. You need to type to Google. You need to type. Fact of life.

What was most enticing about the tablet, as it turned out, had nothing to do with its shape; it was its wirelessness.

But my new laptop has no wires.

Wirelessness will matter greatly; it will revolutionize computing in the home, in the office, and in other public places. Tablets won’t mattter, not much.