Touch, Children, and What We Adults Can’t Grasp

Back in the days of the original Tablet PC (yeah, that seems so long ago) just about everyone who had experienced what Tablet PCs offered could be heard (or read) saying that to see the real future of these devices all you had to do was put one in the hands of a child. When that did happen, Children took to the interface naturally. More so, in fact, than many adults did, simply because their brains weren’t yet wired to deal with interfaces the way adults were accustomed to. I guess you could say, they didn’t have to relearn anything, they were just responding and learning what was in front of them. In fact, I often maintained that one of the many problems that the original Tablet PC had with the media that pretended to cover it was that there were too many old dogs trying to learn new tricks.

The problem with dropping those original Tablet PCs into the lap of a child as that they were big clunky things that cost an arm and a leg. Well that isn’t the case with Tablets anymore. And as this video shows, when you give a child that opportunity to explore at an early age, the ease of a touch UI can be quickly learned. It also shows that it can be hard to let go of.

Comments

    • Michael Anderson says

      I completely agree.

      My kids are 13.5 and 15, and therefore were 1 year old well before there was widespread touch computing (and I certainly wasn’t going to have them messing with my fragile PDAs!).

      Know how they interacted with the world?  Touching, pinching, poking and so on.  Not to minimize the impact of this stuff, but the sense of touch has been the primary introduction to the world for babies for millenia.  When kids see something that looks like a real product … they try to touch it.  Duh.

      • Anonymous says

        Yup. Same way my toddler just interacted with his banana and my clean shirt. Pinch to squish, swipe to smear on Dad.

      • Randall Garrett says

        IF there IS an agenda in my post, it is to spark thought from another point of view. Actually, though, it was merely an observation and an opinion. As is sometimes said “Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.”

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