|This is the talk page for discussing improvements to the Smartphone article.|
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potential Popular Mechanics resource
http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/gadgets/news/tracking-software-caught-snooping-on-millions-of-smartphone-users-6606335 "Tracking Software Caught Snooping on Millions of Smartphones", "Security researcher Trevor Eckhart has discovered what appears to be a flagrant new intrusion into smartphone users’ privacy: Monitoring software by a company called Carrier IQ that comes automatically installed on Android, Blackberry, and other smartphones, records every interaction a user has with the device, and then beams that information off the phone." by Glenn Derene December 1, 2011 12:00 PM
Ideas for improving the tone
For editors wondering why the "tone" tag was added, I did it because of issues like these:
- Large sections are nothing more than feature lists in paragraph form.
- Some areas or sections seem promotional or fannish, not objective. (I got the feeling many phones were covered in detail not because of their historic importance, but because the writer owned one.)
For some good examples of what to aim for, check out History of the Internet or History of the Personal Computer -- they describe objectively important tech details & devices without showing attachment or going into lists. (The "smartphone" article is basically an ongoing history piece we're adding to as time goes on; we just have to figure out what will matter 20+ years from now vs. what we personally think is impressive.) —Xyzzy☥the☥Avatar 06:52, 29 September 2013 (UTC)
Improving the introduction
There's a lot of work needed to improve the overall tone of the article. For one, it didn't mention NTT's Docomo phones which had full-featured web browsing and video playback as early as 1999. Instead of re-doing the whole article, though, I focused on the introduction, and considered probably two key encyclopedic questions about smartphones: What are they? and Where did they come from?
The first paragraph is about "and"-phones, (i.e. camera-and-phone). This is a simplified way of thinking about early smartphones, which then paves the way to seeing the significance of smartphones as essentially laptops in your pocket.
The second paragraph, about how smartphones came into existence, doesn't start with the first smartphone, because smartphones are a vague concept and not really an "invention" (which we can go into more detail later) but an evolution. They capture the popular gadget culture, and so I highlighted three peaks in widespread adoption: the early mass adoption in Japan, the BlackBerry phase, and now the Android/iOS phase. —Philosophistry (talk) 04:01, 24 January 2014 (UTC)
I chopped the article down by maybe 70%. It seems to have accumulated a lot of technical details over the years. Tone: I removed a lot of the sensationalist language that creates a technological progress narrative or competitive narrative (i.e., "finally was achieved when" or "but, this competitor finally responded with"). Citations: There's a lot less material now, and a citation on nearly every area. The ones that don't have citations, can be inferred from the citations within the rest of the article or in the wikipedia pages that are referred to. —Philosophistry (talk) 01:01, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
From the article:
- Obtaining the resources required to create smartphones involves the mining of minerals such as coltan, which are toxic to humans and wildlife. Other raw *materials, such as oils, copper, plastics, and solvents, have the potential to contaminate both the soil and groundwater.
Why is this here at all? The same could be said about almost every industry product, and I seriously doubt, that smartphones rank high among the polluters, even with a milliard pieces around. They don't weigh that much after all. All in all, the environmental issues seem rather redundant, since you could say the same about almost everything. 188.8.131.52 (talk) 18:08, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
The same could be said about the Workers' Conditions section. Does every article about a product have to have a caveat about third world conditions? These issues are dealt with in other articles. Does an article about denim have to pontificate about child labour in China? 184.108.40.206 (talk) 18:14, 31 January 2014 (UTC)