Computer science is a strange topic.
A lot of progress has been done since the first home computers appeared, in the 80s. Now computers are 1000 times faster, 1000 times more powerful, 1000 times smarter than those at that time. Our hard disks can store hundreds movies, hundred of thousands of pictures, millions of pictures, billions of documents.
And still… we interact with them in the same old, obsolete, slow way. A keyboard and a mouse!!
This paradigm is so invasive that almost all the software in the world (except for some experimental laboratory) suffers of this big handicap. The web, which presents himself as the new frontier of interaction, is obviously in the same situation. The result is that today’s software is made for some people with one digit in one hand, so not for the human race.
Developers (we are included) should really take in mind that: software is not meant for Lineland inhabitants, is meant for three-dimensional people living in a three-dimensional world, and most of that people have two hands and five digits per hand. Moving a cursor into a flat screen, clicking, dragging, dropping, selectioning and so on are NOT verbs describing normal interaction with any kind of real object.
Yes, I know, it is not so simple to develop this new kind of software. Of course we need a new kind of hardware to do the full job. But there are lots of opportunities already available that can help to move the first steps. Multi-touch screens, for instance.
At Calameda labs we are seriously addressing this point: making software really available for the uman race.