My Tablet PC Epiphany
My Tablet PC Epiphany
By Ed Hardy
More years ago than I like to think about I bought my very first laptop. I was in college at the time, and although I worked on campus I didn’t live there. This means that my apartment was a place I went home to very late at night and left very early in the morning.
I needed a computer, but buying a desktop model that would always be at a place where I spent little time seemed ludicrous. So I got a used Mac PowerBook, the single biggest purchase I had ever made up to that point.
It was the best thing I could possibly have done. That laptop got me through years of college and I sometimes wonder where I would be now without it.
Recently I had a similar experience: I got my first Tablet PC. It is one of the Acer convertibles and it is easily the most useful computer I’ve bought in many years.
Better Than Useful
You know, “useful” is such a dull word. Garbage trucks are useful, and so are vacuum cleaners. But they don’t change your life the way this Tablet PC has changed mine.
Previously I did almost all my work on a desktop computer in my home office. Occasionally I used one of my handhelds to work somewhere else, but the range of what I could do was somewhat limited.
I used my handheld to check email, surf the Web, and write my editorials or reviews, but the day-to-day business of my job was done on my desktop in my office.
This new Tablet PC has changed all that. I work for at least two or three hours a day on my deck, surrounded by beautiful trees, enjoying the wonderful weather, and occasionally being visited by squirrels and birds.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m still a huge fan of handhelds. As much as I like this new Tablet PC, it doesn’t go everywhere with me like my PDA does because it won’t fit in my pocket. If a device isn’t pocketable then it stays at home much of the time. I’ve no problem taking a big computer downstairs to the deck, but it doesn’t go with me to restaurants.
Still, this device has had a big effect on my life.
Why a Tablet PC?
At this point, I’m sure some of you are thinking “He could get the same mobility with any laptop. Why a Tablet PC?”
The answer is easy: because a Tablet PC so much more flexible than a regular laptop.
I often do casual Web surfing where I’m just reading news articles or looking at comics. I’m not using the keyboard, so holding my computer in my lap in tablet mode when I’m doing this is really convenient.
Or how about this; I recently wanted to show a bunch of my friends some digital pictures I had taken. By putting my device into tablet mode and holding it in front of me, my friends were able to get closer to the screen and see these images better.
In addition, I often watch videos on the Tablet PC. Can you imagine buying a TV with a huge keyboard in front of it? Tablet mode is so much better.
And it just makes more sense. I think we’ve all become so used to the mouse that we’ve forgotten that it’s a really silly way to interact with a computer. How would you feel if the way you used your frying pan was to go to your sink and move the faucet around? That’s pretty close to what you do when you use a mouse to control a cursor. Being able to pick up a stylus and actually tap directly in the icon you want is so much more logical.
For all these reasons I’ve been converted to the Way of the Tablet PC. Maybe you should consider giving up your old laptop and being converted, too.