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Smart Things by Mike Kuniavsky

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Chapter 5 The Whirlpool Centralpark™ Refrigerator

The Design of an Accessory Port

Some ubicomp product ideas keep reappearing despite unprofitability and unpopularity. For example, take the “smart table.” Microsoft’s Surface is only the latest in a long line of smart tables promised to revolutionize digital interactions.1 Yet despite the lasting allure of the idea, none of the proposed tables have generated significant profits or even mass uptake. Another persistent idea, the electronic book, appeared multiple times over ten years2 until its first notable success with Amazon’s Kindle 2. But as of 2010, the Kindle is only moderately successful, and it has required continuing and significant investment from a giant company.

Why did the e-book ...

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