Answer: When it is missing the point.
Spoiler: This ends up being about the iPad.
I’m afraid I’m at odds with the Pope. I think relativism in all it’s forms is the greatest contribution to human culture so far.
Our first family car was a Series III Jaguar XJ6. It was the most elegant and beautiful sedan ever made. When our first child was still young, we traded it in for a Ford minivan. Piece of shit. We were mad at the Jag and its notorious failures and for having its air conditioner die in traffic in 100 degree heat. Within a year or two, the entire fucking engine on the Ford would be recalled. But before that, before I realized that we had made a fool’s choice — the same engine in the XJ6 was produced without recall for 40 fucking years — I was trying really hard to be practical. The Ford minivan didn’t have power sliding doors. Why would anyone need that?! The Ford didn’t even have a fucking left-side sliding door at all. But be reasonable! Do you know how many children get killed coming out of the left side of a car! (At least half of them?) Do you have any idea how many kids get pinched in a power door that do not, somehow, get their fingers stuffed into a manual car door?
I hadn’t yet learned to read from The Book of Crap, but the Ford was a lesson.
By now you have observed, or some pundit has observed for you, that the iPad resembles its smaller sibling. That’s correct, but it’s not The Truth.
Overheard today: “The iPad is not a larger iPhone. It is a smaller touchscreen display.” Everything I believe about direct-manipulation interfaces is going to come to pass on the iPad.