thoughts and links

Posts Tagged "iPad"

How to print from the iPad

I’ve always wondered how Apple can have these wonderful gadgets that are better than anything else out there at the time… and yet leave out some basic functionality. 

The iPhone? No copy-and-paste or SMS messaging. Things that every other smartphone, and many not-smart phones, had at the time.

The iPad? No USB connection and no print capability. That is, there was no printing option until an ingenius workaround was found.

H/T to Boing Boing.

Note: consider this my weekly iPad post.

TechCrunch: Using the iPad a religious experience

There have been ridiculous iPad reviews. But none as ridiculous as the first couple paragraphs of this TechCrunch review of the iPad:

In these times we have little opportunity for mystical religious experience. By “religious” I mean the feeling that something exciting is about to happen – whether after death or immediately, through the intercession of a divine being, a miracle in life. The neophilic mind has craved magic, craved the new and spectacular, since prehistory. Man deified thunder, worshiped the cave bear. Over time we have refined the impulse; we have learned to associate it with places and things of our own creation, which provoke the mystical feeling in themselves and in what they represent. Cathedrals were at once a site for worship and a site for awe, and our better natures were expressed in them for centuries.

These days a small minority of us, mostly situated in the developed world, have replaced the awe of religious experience with the awe of technological advancement. To further that line of thinking, the fanboy is, it can be argued, a new form of religious supplicant and the fanboy’s most prominent church is the Church of Apple.

Which brings up a point that the iCultist (John Biggs) probably didn’t mean to bring up; would you have a devoted Catholic “review” the Catholic Church?

In other words, he admits right off the bat that his review is untrustworthy. Now, if an iCultist had HATED it, it would have been something. But the burden for someone so devoted to an idea (in this case the iDea of Apple) of saying they DON’T like something created from the idea (iDea) is almost insurmountable.

That said, he says to wait until the next generation of iPad; which seems good for any piece of tech. Buying the first version of anything that is put out is basically like paying to be in the public beta. 

The price will drop on the iPad 6-10 months, new features will be added and the early adopters will complain. Even the iCultists.

Why I won’t be buying an iPad

Before I start, I want to say that this is why I won’t be buying an iPad. If you want to buy one, good. Go get one. I’m just putting my two cents in because of the new law that says all bloggers must talk about the iPad at least once a week or they will be put in jail. 

I haven’t touched (or, for that matter, even seen in real life) an iPad. I have played with an iPhone for maybe two minutes total in my entire life. I have a netbook that I use when in a pinch, but usually lug around a big laptop.

But after reading this review (from a NHB, or Normal Human Being) of the iPad, I’ve realized a few things about the iPad.*

Apple likes to promote that their things Just Work and that they can do everything (the There’s An App For That advertising campaign). But this isn’t true, and everyone knows it; how long did it take to get simple things like copying and pasting or MMS messaging on the iPhone?

Hell, the iPad, which is all about the screen, doesn’t even have a camera! When something is presented as being the ultimate multimedia toy doesn’t even have a camera, that should set off some red flags to early adopters (who have been burned with severe price drops on Apple products before).

It isn’t a laptop killer. In fact, I’m not even sure if it is a netbook killer, as many are saying (not saying that it WON’T decimate the netbook market, I’m just saying that I don’t think that it SHOULD). 

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"Area man" and the iPad

One of the things that we see constantly in the satirical newspaper The Onion is stories about an “Area man.”

For example, an article from about two years ago “reported” on how Area Man Makes it Through Day. In April of 2005, The Onion reported Area Man Well-Versed in First Thirds of Great Literature. In 2001, we learned that an Area Man Likes to Think of His Own Past as Sordid.

This spawned The Onion’s Area Man t-shirt.

So what does this have to do with the iPad?

Well, there is a man named Greg Packer, who is basically an attention-seeker who tries to be quoted in as many news articles as possible as an example of the “area man” that The Onion mocks. 

The New York Times’ City Room blog did a great post on Packer today, laying out the details of Packer and where he’s been. Most interesting was a link to a 2003 profile that The times did on Packer, which referred to him as an “everyman.” *

From the 2003 article:

In the last two years alone, Mr. Packer of Huntington has provided the common person’s perspective on an array of city happenings, ranging from an ‘N Sync concert to a New York Jets playoff game. He has weighed in on everything from Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s book signing to the release of the latest ”Star Wars” film and has been quoted by The New York Post, The New York Times, Newsday, The Associated Press, National Public Radio and the major television networks — not to mention The Independent of London and The Morning Call of Allentown, Pa.

In his latest quest to be the “area man,” Packer is the first in line for an iPad. **

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First reviews of iPad coming in

The New York Times tech writer David Pogue was among the first to get his hands on an iPad for review. He actually wrote two reviews in one — one for techies and one for non-techies.

This part, from the non-techie review, caught my eye:

And the techies are right about another thing: the iPad is not a laptop. It’s not nearly as good for creating stuff. On the other hand, it’s infinitely more convenient for consuming it — books, music, video, photos, Web, e-mail and so on. For most people, manipulating these digital materials directly by touching them is a completely new experience — and a deeply satisfying one.

Pogue also mentioned another way in which the iPad is not like a laptop; the keyboard is horrible. An external keyboard will be available, but why would you want to carry around two things instead of one?

The big question is if this will be a fundamental change in the portable computer market away from laptops and netbooks like the iPhone was a change in the phone market. 

The Wall Street Journal’s Walter Mossberg, who likes the keyboard,  says it depends on how you use your laptop.

If you’re mainly a Web surfer, note-taker, social-networker and emailer, and a consumer of photos, videos, books, periodicals and music—this could be for you. If you need to create or edit giant spreadsheets or long documents, or you have elaborate systems for organizing email, or need to perform video chats, the iPad isn’t going to cut it as your go-to device.

It will all depend on how people use their internet time. With young people writing less and less blogs and more and more tweets, maybe it will change the laptop industry as much as the iPhone changed the phone industry. 

With all the tablet computers coming out in the next year (and the inevitable Apple upgrade in 6 months to a year that will once again anger the early adopters), it will be something interesting to track.