07 August 2006

My computer shines

Another endearing feature of the HP Pavilion is the flashing blue power button.

I have no idea how this design ever got manufactured. The power button is about one inch, square, blue, abnormally bright, and blinks when the computer is in power-save mode. Here's how bright it is: before I covered it with duct tape, we had to close our bedroom door before going to bed, because the button blinking in the next room was bright enough to keep us awake. Even with the duct tape, if it's blinking, I can stand with my back to it, facing the opposite wall, and see the blue glow going on, off, on, off.

The blue button by itself is a jaw-dropping example of stupid design. No control with such a drastic effect needs to be made especially inviting to toddlers. But the blinking... I am just floored. It is a masterstroke, a work of sheer, staggering, insane genius. Did no one at HP realize that these things go in people's bedrooms? Did no one understand that blinking per se is considered so annoying that it's no longer used even to convey important information, much less to indicate the default mode in which any home computer will spend most of its life?

(speechless)

3 comments:

mdj said...

Sounds like they copied apple... badly. When my iBook goes into standby, the power light... pulses. It's not harsh or obnoxious or anything, but it is kind of... eerie, especially when you forget about it and look into a backpack to see a slowly throbbing white light.

Also: sorry it took so long to reply to your comment at Shishuu.

jto said...

Yeah, I don't really like the pulsing iBook light, either, but at least if I point it toward the wall it's ignore-able.

...It suddenly occurs to me that maybe there's a setting to turn that off! I'll check...

jto said...

Also: sorry it took so long to reply to your comment at Shishuu.

I understand. You were busy. ;)