Well, I can't help but disagree-I found the tendency of modern sci-fi to turn EVERYTHING into an IPOD non-creative and boring. And I highly doubt it won't look exactly as dated in few years as raygun gothic is now.
I think the reason that science fiction has a lot of all-in-one “multi-devices,” with simplified interfaces is because that is where technology seems to be heading.
Likewise, when a consumer technology becomes universally used, the interface becomes simpler.
Take a look at this radio shack ad from 1991. Every single thing in it can now be done by a smart phone.
As miniaturization increases, devices have room for a thousand different things. Fewer specialized devices exist, like GPS or calculators. Watches seem to be the exception, but that’s because they’re a fashion statement and not just practical.
You’re talking about visualizing the future entirely in terms of creativity, and while creativity is certainly the most essential tool to doing this, it must be placed in service of extrapolation and futurism. This is why Trek still using flip communicators bothers me: they’re antiques.
As Rod Serling once said:
Or as Ray Bradbury said, “scifi balances you on the cliff. Fantasy throws you off.”