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Real World Desk|
Some people visiting my GUI gallery may wonder where the desktop concept
came from. Well before Windows, before the Macintosh, or even before the
Xerox Alto, there was the Realworld(TM) Desk.
What is this curious "real world" of which I speak? It is a world outside
of computers and television. In this world physical objects are used instead
of electronic ones. Yes, such a world exists although it seems it is becoming
less and less common.
These screen shots show a typical desk as they once commonly appeared.
This is a desktop.
There is no fancy boot screen (unless you count the box it came in)
as it does not need to be turned on or off, although sometimes turning
on a light helps.
The Realworld Desktop comes empty by default. I have placed several
common items on the desktop as examples. The Realworld Desktop is totally
customizable with probably hundreds of thousands of popular accessories
This screen shot shows the following accessories:
Phone - This is an audio device used for communicating with other people
around the world.
Clock - A simple device used to keep time.
Paper pad - A flat surface used for writing and drawing.
Pen - One of a number of writing utensils typically used on paper.
Stapler - A device that enables you to to attach loose sheets of paper
Inbox - This is where other people can put messages or documents that
need your attention.
Outbox - This is where you can put documents that need to be sent to
other people. (People used to work in groups and physically interact)
Although this desk does not support it, some desks have a glass cover
that you can place background images under.
This screen shot shows some additional accessories:
Colored markers - Additional writing utensils that enable you to write
or draw in different colors or line widths.
Sticky notes - Smaller adhesive pieces of paper designed for small
quick notes such as reminders.
Note cards - When researching a subject it can be useful to break up
information in to individual pieces of information that can be easily rearranged
later. Note cards are designed for this and can do much more as well.
Graph paper - Marked paper that enables easier and more precise drawing
of graphs and diagrams than regular paper.
Forms - Paper that has been pre produced with a template for entry
of specific data. This is a very simple and cost effective method of organized
data entry and storage.
As this example shows, the paper pads allow any variety of graphics
and fonts you can come up with.
Items can be cut from various sources and taped, glued, or pasted, on
to other documents.
In this example I am using a cutting tray to hold multiple image and
picture documents that I am working with. This cutting tray is small, but
could easily be larger.
Note that the graph is in the outbox now and ready to go.
You can use the Realworld Desk to read a wide variety of books and
magazine that are still available. There are even Realworld road maps.
Note that I moved the cutting tray without the need to move each individual
There is something in the Inbox. Probably junk mail.
Reading the news with Firefox!
In Realworld no NYT subscription is required - just pick one up for
a buck at a store or newsstand.
The letter that was in my Inbox turned out not to be junk after all,
but rather a letter from my dear old mother.
The Realworld Desk can be used to play games too! This screen shot shows
everyone's favorite - Solitaire!
And as you can see, Firefox is IN and protects your Inbox!
You could try playing Doom in Realworld, but I would not recommend
With extra add-ons you can make photo copies of documents.
Realworld Desk can have some bugs - that is what the handy dandy bug
swatter is for!
One final accessory, the Rolodex circular note card file is very useful
for keeping your favorite phone numbers and addresses.
When you are done with documents you can store them in a file cabinet
Or if you don't like what you created you can put it in the trash.
Note that after being set aside, the cutting tray is back. Again, I
only had to move the tray back on the desk without moving each individual
image on it.
Sadly, while Realworld desks are still around this is all you see on