back to article Asus' angular laptop-of-the-future designs spied

Hidden away from the hordes of Eee PCs on Asus' CES stand - how many variants on the netbook theme can this company come up with? - was a set of concept laptop designs that quite caught our eye. Will their angular styling ever make it to market? Well, as one Asus staffer noted, a couple of years back, the company's bamboo-clad …

COMMENTS

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  1. toby

    makes me think of...

    ...origami somehow

  2. Aaron Gilliland
    Paris Hilton

    Timewarp

    Visions of the Commodore PET.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Not bad

    A laptop where the keyboard raises up at an angle is very nice. I would wonder though if a real version would slide the keyboard up, or if the laptop would fold down in an irregular shape.

  4. Sonya Fox
    Thumb Up

    Finally

    An end to the recent idiotic manufacturing trend to make things so rounded they're in danger of rolling off. I wish they'd do this with radios and camcorders.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ring Binder

    But no-one noticed the ring binder effect and a 2 hinge laptop with elevating keyboard?.... hmm

  6. Another Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Interesting design decision

    One of the things that takes up space on a laptop is the touchpad... to include the touchpad, the keys have to be made thinner on small laptops.

    By layering the keyboard above the touchpad when closed, this allows for a larger keyboard + touchpad on the same "footprint".

    Really clever idea.

  7. Ron Eve
    Flame

    Blimey...

    ... a PC with some style.

    Actually looks quite nice, albeit not dissimilar to another manufacturers earlier foray into white plastic...

    Ah wait... There are no stickers all over it!! Wait until the Beast of Redmond's marketing get hold of it!

  8. Charles Calthrop
    Thumb Up

    lush

    ronseal.

  9. Anonymous Cowherd

    No matter how resilient it really is

    It just looks too fragile. I'd permanently worry about breaking it.

  10. John Scott
    Thumb Up

    I want one!

    Now that is COOL. Looks superb, far more funky than a Dell in some crap colour and it's not a Mac, bonus!

  11. Admiral Grace Hopper
    Thumb Up

    @Aaron Gilliland

    You say that like it's a bad thing.

  12. twelvebore
    Thumb Down

    Makes me think of...

    Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, the late-'70s version. Maybe "retro-futuristic" would be a viable term for these?

    Moreover any guesses how flimsy and plasticky that slide-up keyboard insert would be?

  13. Chris McKenna

    1980s

    Here we see what 1980s laptops would look like if the today's technology existed back then.

  14. Chika
    Happy

    @Aaron Gilliland

    The PET? Looks more like an albino Psion 5.

  15. Charles Manning

    @John Scott

    What you're saying is: "I want a Mac but not a Mac".

    Freeloading off Apple industrial design is not a bad strategy. Apple spends many millions to look cool and it is worth playing "me too" to differentiate from those stodgy blobs that are Windows PCs.

  16. John Sanders
    Thumb Down

    Horrible

    Most of them are simply horrible...

    I think the terminals you find all over the place in Fallout 3 are much better looking than those.

  17. Giles Jones Gold badge

    At least they're trying

    About time someone had some design creativity outside of Cupertino.

  18. Peter Ford
    Thumb Up

    Sex on a stick

    That looks cool - I love the ring-binder effect when it's closed.

    Can I have one in titanium grey instead: it reminds me of the Lamborghini Reventón (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lamborghini_Revent%C3%B3n)

  19. Simon Ward

    Good start ...

    ... and it looks quite nice, especially the ring-binder effect, but can we *please* do away with those godawful faux-chiclet keyboards?

    Apple have got a lot to answer for.

  20. Liam

    @ twelvebore

    "future retro" is the phrase you want - its in 'common' usage already :)

    i think they look sweet compared to most laptops these days. also the raised keyboard is a cool idea! i hate flat keyboards!

  21. James Dore
    Coat

    Delenn would approve

    Lovely C24 Minbari styling. Where's the crystal data storage port?

    Mine's the one with the PPG in the pocket.

  22. Simon Brown
    Thumb Up

    It's a laptop - not a notebook

    I think it was in Morgan computers (of all places) and I idly asked why laptops are now called "notebooks".

    "Well, it's mainly because people are encouraged not to use them on their laps as it blocks the airflow to the vents at the bottom and they overheat. It can even burn your lap."

    Cue Asus and a design that lifts the body of the machine off your lap so you can use it as a laptop. Smart.

  23. Daniel
    Pirate

    Galcops on the Starboard bow, Captain!

    Finally, a laptop for playing Elite on. Looks like this could manage a Fibonacci Sequence quite well...

    Next stop: Tioisla

    Economy: Poor Agricultural

    Government: Anarchy

  24. Alf Faiweather
    Thumb Up

    All well and good...

    But I still just want one of those Speccy +2 looky-like keyboard things they're demoing...

  25. Lol Whibley
    Thumb Up

    black

    as in stealth-bomber black with all those radar profile avoiding angles.

  26. W
    Thumb Up

    Neon Neon

    Re: "1980s" - Chris McKenna

    Indeed. See also, Neon Neon's "Stainless Style" - a loose concept album based on the tumultuous life of De Lorean Motor Company founder John De Lorean - by Super Furry Animals front man Gruff Rhys and electronic artist Boom Bip.

    Spanking good stuff and a recommended listen: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stainless_Style

    Oh, ...the laptops? Yeah. Nice to see someone try something a little different. I do like that "ringbinder" look.

    Another reminder that "computers" are moving ever closer to the point where the tech inside is not the primary motivator behind the purchase. Some might say we're there already with "underpowered" netbooks often being a more popular option than a machine with a more advanced inside, but less desirable outside.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Alert

    kind of cool, but...

    The silvery last picture reminds me of an el-cheapo foldin calendar/clock/calculator combo that a vendor gave me about 10 years ago.

    Need more avatars... I'm bored with these selections.

  28. TeeCee Gold badge

    Re: Neon Neon

    ".....the point where the tech inside is not the primary motivator behind the purchase."

    Some might say that we reached that point when a certain purveyor of nibbled fruit products put all the bits including the screen in a small grey box with a slot on the front........

  29. Sam

    No-ones said it yet

    Anything by Gerry Anderson.

  30. W
    Thumb Up

    Re: Re: Neon Neon

    >"Some might say that we reached that point when a certain purveyor of nibbled fruit products put all the bits including the screen in a small grey box with a slot on the front........"

    Fair point.

    Computer tech has been racing forward over the years. Design has obviously been limited by the physical constraints of the tech. But until recently, of the main brands, only Apple (and too a lesser extent, Sony) have made consistent credible attempts at extinguishing the horrid "standard beige box" and "fake carbon fibre + go faster stripes" schools of design. And as the tech becomes smaller and cheaper, the rest of the industry has started to give more serious thought to design issues. Even unit-shifter Dell has been doing their best (and won me over with the XPS M1330).

    While I'm no Apple fanboy (never owned one of their products - admired their ill fated "cube" tho), i have to admit that they've been consistently ahead of the curve in terms of looking pretty.

    But looking pretty is not enough if the underlying tech merely performs a broadly similar task in a broadly similar way.

    The big thing that seems to be occuring is the shift away from the idea of a computer as either a desktop box (however sleek and white) or a portable laptop (however sleek and white). We're now seeing quite a few *viable* new designs such as netbooks, iPodTouch/iPhone, Dell Studio Hybrid (EEE Box/Mac Mini/Suttle-alike), Asus' keyboard/mini-screen combo machine, Sony's wearable OLED prototypes etc...all of 'em offer a version of "computing" that differs from the 20th century concept of sitting down at a desk, using a mouse and keyboard.

    Exciting times.

    For what it's worth, I'd like a A4 sized iPodTouch-a-like with built in projector and camera. With all the attendant ways of making sure it's light enough, tough enough etc. A little way off, maybe, but not inconcievable. An ugly version could be sellotaped together today so it's just a case of time until the components are minaturised.

    A calculator, alarm clock, radio, notepad, walkman, camera/camcorder, electronic fax machine and a freaky-futuristic-ceefax-machine... all in a dinky mobile phone handset. Who'da thunk it 15-20 years ago? We're already living in the future in so many ways that we take for granted every day.

  31. Scary
    Thumb Up

    SAM Coupe

    Looks a bit like an MGT SAM Coupe (to my eyes).

  32. Dale

    Stealth

    Stealth technology - developed for government departments: nobody will notice the laptop sitting there on the train seat and the official can come back and collect it at his leisure.

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