This article was first posted in 2010 and is kept here for historical purposes.
Retro will have to raise its head in computer design at some point, so let’s have a look at the iMacs and netbooks of the future.
Computer manufacturers are always finding new ways to make things smaller, sleeker and more minimal. However, take a look at history in automobile design, fashion and, er, lots of other areas and you’ll see that retro always overtakes the efforts of designers to produce fresh ideas.
So stop looking at all those fancy ultra-thin laptops for sale now in order to predict the future of computer design. Let’s have a look at what our grandkids’ computers will really look like. The retro backlash starts here…
Look at this for old Apple design! That mouse is cuter than Mickey and Jerry put together and those mushy, grubby keys just look so inviting.
Forget the swanky desktops of today, this ADM 3A, first seen in 1975, is just lovely. I don’t think Pininfarina was involved in the design process but he’d have been pleased with those curves.
Dial Me In
Buttons that look like sweets, flip switches and twitching needle dials will all feature highly in the future.
A Lot of Brass
OK maybe we’ve gone too far back here but you still want it in your house, right?
Laptops should be too embarrassing to take down to Starbucks for a coffee. This one screams, “leave me at home! Go talk to real people!”
Rise of the Machines
It’s healthy for a computer to look like it hates you and wants to chase you, firing laser guns and billowing noxious smoke from huge vents.
Yes, a computer should also look part furniture, part gymnastic bench. All future designs will be in teak condition!
Still serviceable, but this is where things started to go wrong: Slim, portable and getting a little too trendy.