Well, Can a Desktop OS be “touch-ready”?
If you read what I’ve written before, you know my answer to this question: a touch-ready system must be built for touch, not keyboard and mouse, from the beginning, but that doesn’t mean that the two can be closely synchronized.
While I would prefer one touch-based system to run on all of my devices (which may or may not ever really happen) because that makes things easier to use, I understand that that is rather hard to develop. There is a reason why the iPad is so limited and it really boils down to the battery and processing power.
You may say that it is limited because it is a touch-based OS, I disagree. There is no reason why any software, program, or system that runs now on a desktop OS cannot run on a touch-based OS. True, I wouldn’t want to see the current iteration of some pieces of software on a touch-based tablet, but after it is redesigned for touch input any piece of software on a touch-based system can do the same things that a piece of software can do on a mouse and keyboard system.
In the mean time, there seems to be something on the horizon coming from Apple. Now most people are saying that this will automatically change from one OS to another and (as in the article cited) I agree that this could be implemented poorly, but there could be a way to make it work well. Imagine editing a document in Pages (for thous of you who aren’t fortunate enough to enjoy Pages, it’s a word processor that in my book is a pleasure to use, but that’s my opinion) on Mac OS X and then thinking to yourself about how tired you are of moving your mouse around all the time. You think to yourself, wouldn’t it be easier if I could just touch the place in the paragraph where I need to edit. With this new system you would just pull the screen towards you, it automatically changes to iOS with Pages running, and you start tapping away at the screen and editing as you were before. You could seam to OSs together without a seam. Now, I hope that this patent means that Apple is working on a desktop-touch-based OS, but if nothing else I think that this idea could work.