Mossberg on Usability and Security

Walt Mossberg has a nice report spotting three important computing trends, namely usability, security, and mobile phones (all three of which I coincidentally work in :)

On usability:

[M]y main criteria for judging digital consumer products have been simplicity, ease of use and reliability -- a sort of index for the burden on the user. And in 1992 most products failed miserably on that scale. They required far too much attention, knowledge and effort by users when theoretically they were supposed to do just the opposite -- namely, to make their lives easier.


And by then the World Wide Web had changed everything. It had vastly enriched the experience of computing, adding information, entertainment, communication and commerce on a grand scale.

On security:

[O]ver the past five years, the security problem has morphed into a major hassle for people who own and use Windows computers. Viruses and other malicious software programs are still with us, but now they've been joined by new categories of pernicious technologies, especially spyware, adware, and fake e-mail and Web sites designed to steal your privacy, your money and even your identity. Spam has gone from a nuisance to a plague. And the Internet, for all its numerous benefits, has become an engine for this digital onslaught.


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