Back in 1984 when the first Mac was introduced I remember a unix geek dissing potential users by saying,"Are executives are too stupid to remember what commands to type in?" Of course they were not too stupid - it was simply irrelevant to their world. They did not need computer applications enough to learn those things.
The introduction of the Macintosh made computers more approachable. Mac and Windows along with well defined applications like spreadsheets and word processing reduced the learning curve and allowed many more people to get value from direct use of a computer. The Internet and the evolution of the computer as a communications device has made computers even more useful. What we have not noticed is that complexity has crept back into computing. Partially that is due to the many ways there are to do things like email, viewing video, and partly from protecting yourself from viruses, root kits, and phishing attacks. Net books have not helped - they're just small PC's with all the hastles that entails. Some are even worse. My wife's HP netbook comes with two operating systems!
I like to surf the web on my iPhone except for the screen being too small. I'll keep my larger computers for programming and video editing, my iPhone for calls and simple tasks but I look forward to a right sized web viewer and entertainment device in the iPad.
The time is right again to reset expectations to a simpler and easier experience.