The problem is not so much with the camcorder as it is with the market & industry mentality to continually cost-reduce. You can bet the first working model units, engineering had working flawlessly; but market pressure to drive down cost results in an age-old, known adage ,,,,"You get what you pay for."
Its not hard to understand, but its really sad. The point of sale is the happiest moment a customer will ever see in the life of cost-reduced electronic device. How many really awesome product technologies can you remember in the last 15 years that have become nearly obsolete, not for the lack of capability of the technology, but for the mismanagement of the technology; either by bad management decisions, or indirectly, by a market of cost-driven consumers. Here are a few off the top of my head: PDAs, Flip-Phones, Folding Keyboards, Projection Displays ,,,, Can you add to the list-?
I remember those days, too, Ann. That's when the TV and the stereo were considered pieces of furnature. Then came the age when you carried your TV or stereo to the repair shop. Now we're in the age when we throw them away when they quit working.
Thanks, Nancy, this story gave me a good laugh. I can't count the times smacking an appliance has made it work better. I remember this approach as the first step in tech support back in the day when you hesitated to call the TV repair guy because it cost so much.
Naperlou, I can't tell you how many times smacking something did make a technical difference. I has a TV who picture would go out of whack color-wise until you smacked the TV on its right side. Then it would straighten out until the next time it was turned on. Everyone in the family learned how, where, and how hard to smack it. That went on for a couple years.
I agree, naperlou. I remember telling one of my fellow engineers that I was about to get out my "troubleshooting hammer." While that particular tool didn't actually exist - it felt good to think about using it when a problem was particularly troublesome and it made it sound "technical!"
Nancy, I think you hit the nail on the head! When you write that smacking it made you feel good, I thought, yes, that is why we do it. Sometimes we just want to get back at "it". Of course, most of the time I find myself rationalizing the smacking as something that makes sense in a technical way.
What should be the perception of a product’s real-world performance with regard to the published spec sheet? While it is easy to assume that the product will operate according to spec, what variables should be considered, and is that a designer obligation or a customer responsibility? Or both?
Biomimicry has already found its way into the development of robots and new materials, with researchers studying animals and nature to come up with new innovations. Now thanks to researchers in Boston, biomimicry could even inform the future of electrical networks for next-generation displays.
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