I have allot to say about the iPad; I have to admit I was one of those watching intently as it was revealed, keeping track of the rumors for over year now, and once it was shown to the world I was among those disappointed by it as well. I realize one thing, however, that when a product gets as hyped as the iPad was then there is no way that it will ever be able to live up to the expectations of the consumer. Unless of course it will make you a sandwich and allow you to travel through time.
Ultimately this is why I created a little HackBook Mini. A coworker of mine had one and I had been jealous of it for a while, so I did some research and I realized that it is relatively easy to load up Mac OSX Snow Leopard on the Dell Mini 10v. The hardest part was upgrading the RAM, which wasn’t even required. It serves the same purpose of the iPad, it cost me less, and I am able to do more with it. Instead of the creative tool I was wishing the iPad would be, this becomes a networking tool that it wishes it was. I am able to store and share files, email and chat with co-workers, watch movies, listen to music, etc. The best part of is that I am free to install any application I want to and I am not forced to stay within the confines of the app store.
Complaints about the iPad are widespread and when you see them they all seem to be the same, so I will assume you are hip the word on the interwebs and skip those; they aren’t even what truly bothers me. For better or for worse, Apple used to be the company for creative professionals. This however did birth the stereotype of the quintessential stuck-up elitist Apple user. Which, as I type this – sitting in a coffee shop, wearing a black t-shirt, sipping a latte, as I blog – I can’t help but feel a sense of ironic hypocrisy. The problem is I have with the iPad is that I was expecting it to be a tool for me to use; essentially, I wanted it to replace my wacom tablet and run Photoshop.
That’s when I saw Microsoft’s Courier, which appears to have both pressure sensitivity and handwriting recognition (please correct me if I am wrong). I realize that these as well as the sharing features could be added to a Journal app for the iPad, however having them built into the system as core features creates a powerful tool. It also show the potential power of running multiple apps at the same time sided by side with one not affecting the other, but instead working together almost as if they are one application.
I ultimately decided that neither products were something I was interested in; they aren’t made for me. They are both good products, but I am not the market. I want them both, but unfortunately I know my habits too well; I would use them obsessively for a month, and then never pick them up again.