“Curated computing”, a phrase that raises my hackles even as I recognize the truth in it.

The current computing landscape was shaped by a few wildly opposed forces:

Scientists, engineers, and artists (nerds all) who were trying to build enabling tools of the imagination, Unix, Pixar, Smalltalk, X11, the genome project, and the Internet came from these fertile minds.

PC manufacturers, pushing out powerful cheap stuff that lacked any cohesive interface model.

Microsoft, a perfect model of exploitation, riding the wave without understanding or contributing.

Apple, trying to invent the ‘information appliance’, the first ‘curated computing’ experience. This best served writers and publishers, allowing them to focus on content, not computer.

Next, Inc. folding Unix, Smalltalk, and PostScript into NextStep and ObjectiveC, succeeding at creating an information appliance for the nerd. Suddenly scientists and artists could build complex information tools without dedicating themselves to a lifetime of ‘computer science’ studies. The WWW, http, html, and the www came from this work.

Coming full circle, Jobs and Apple have focused (with laser accuracy) on an information appliance for people who are content consumers first and foremost, content creation is entirely optional on the iPad.

So this is just a new name for Jobs’s old idea, the appliance computer.