The iPad - Unveiled by Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs unveils the iPad - but is it for everyone?

Let me say right away that I love everything about Macs – the iPhone, the laptops, the operating system. But as for the just-announced iPad, I’m not going to be rushing out to buy one.
It is fabulous to look at, probably great fun to use and can slip into a small shoulder bag to replace a much heavier laptop. And who needs a giant laptop screen these days? Not even professional photographers who like to look at their pictures on a large scale – if they want to check out sharpness they need only to enlarge the picture.
As a writer, do I require a large screen? Even when I need to have two working windows open, one for source material and one for creating? No – I’ve always managed to squeeze in two windows on my 12in Powerbook G4 screen.
So why doesn’t the iPad appeal? At 9.6in the screen would still be fine with me, if I could split it, but my impression is that it can’t be done in any conventional way. There is a way around it, but I won’t go into that here. The problem for me is with the virtual keyboard. As a touch-typist I will have to look at the keys as I write because I can be guaranteed that without a tactile keyboard and with my eye away from the screen my fingers will drift and I’ll be typing gobble-gook (no rude comments, please). And if I have to keep my eye on the keys, what’s the point of being a touch typist? My work flow will slow down and surely the point of advanced technology is to speed it up.
On the photographic point of view, as my very fine photographer friend Cameron Laird points out, he is unlikely to be taking an iPad – and no other computer – with him on a professional assignment because he won’t be able to use the post-processing programmes Photoshop and Lightroom. While many people won’t necessarily need these programmes, professionals do, for resizing, tweaking colour casts and so on.
The iPad was larger than I expected. My personal feeling is that if you are going to fit one of those into your shoulder bag, you might as well be carrying around a slightly larger laptop. And, by the way, it’s possible to install a Mac operating system onto a Windows netbook and it will run very efficiently.
If I do upgrade by downsizing, if you follow my drift, I’m more likely to go for the netbook with Mac OS than I am to drop an iPad into my bag. But that’s my opinion.
Nice piece of equipment though.

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