from the besides-entropy-mr.-smart-guy dept.
TurboTurnip writes "A post on the Crave blog at CNET asks: Why are modern consumer electronics so easily broken? It argues that the 21st Century is 'The Age of the Flimsy' where 'your gadgets will simply break within the year.' Post author Chris Stevens talks about how computers are fast enough for the average user, and the only way to make consumers upgrade is 'increasingly poor build quality ... Engineers have built obsolescence into mass-produced technology since the 1920s. There are two kinds of planned deterioration in a product: one is technical, the other is stylistic.' The writer compares the build quality of a 20 year-old IBM XT to the modern Motorola Razr phone and concludes that modern gadgets are 'delicate, beautiful supermodels that can't go the distance.'"
I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, which, when
you looked at it in the right way, did not become still more complicated.
-- Poul Anderson