While I am thinking about the iPad, here’s another tip. The iPad doesn’t come with a protective carrying case – you have to buy one from Apple or choose from a whole slew of other vendors. However, we forgot to order one and needed an iPad case in a hurry so we scrounged around and discovered that the soft padded case that had come with an ASUS 10.1" Eee PC netbook was a near-perfect fit. It’s not a surprise – the Eee is roughly 10.3" x 7" x 1" inches while the iPad is 9.6" x 7.5" x 0.5". Even if you don’t have an unused 10.1" Eee PC case sitting around, try any other netbook case you might have – you may be as surprised as we were.
This isn’t a coincidence in another way as well. Now that the iPad has arrived I have noticed that family usage of the Eee netbook has dived. PC World has a story titled Survey Says: iPad Is Killing Netbooks which makes the case that the netbook market is getting clobbered by both the iPad and low priced notebooks and that theory makes sense to me. If you want a convenient Internet PC with lots of slick features besides, get an iPad. If you want a cheap portable Windows workhouse, why settle for a netbook when when you can get a full-sized laptop for nearly the same price? Still, it’s not all over for the netbooks yet as they can claim a price advantage over the iPad and a portability advantage over the full size laptops.
A member of the family got caught up in the Apple iPad frenzy and I have been serving as technical consultant. I must admit that the iPad is rather addictive although I find many of its Apple-isms rather strange and despite my general dislike for touch screens. However, there are times when using fingers really will not do with iPad apps – primarily the art apps like Brushes. For these you need the rather more precise drawing capability of stylus if you want to avoid the finger-painting look. Of course, any old stylus will not work because the iPad uses a capacitive touch screen.
I did some looking around for a manufactured iPad stylus because the build-it-yourself instructions I found on the Web seemed rather dubious and it was easy to narrow it down to the Pogo family of styluses probably because the market is still new. Anyway, we ended up with the Pogo Sketch Stylus
which is a bit longer at 5.2 inches than the Pogo Iphone Stylus which also works but is only 3.5 inches long.
Using the Pogo stylus works great and is quite an improvement. In fact, I tend to use the stylus for basic navigation and even typing on the screen keyboard. However, if you want to completely replace the use of fingers you will need two of them to emulate the multi-touch gestures which require two fingers and thereby two styluses.
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