Saturday, January 8, 2011

Android 3.0

Here's a sneak peak at the next Android system. I admit it seems to be a very large step up in flexibility and features from the Android system running on Dell Streak and Samsung Galaxy Tab.

One did not have to be Nostradamus to predict that this year will be the Big Tablet Year (the year is big, not the tablets, although we can hope). Here's to hoping for some serious competition for the iPad, make the game interesting.

Here is a cool video with glimpses of new tablets.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Keyfolio iPad case/keyboard (and Macbook Air)

OK, testing yet another portable keyboard. I think I may  soon have as many of them as I have cameras. Granted, that's an absurd number, so that's a very funny joke, hahahahahahah.  (Ssshh, you know nobody gets your humor.)

This is the Kensington Keyfolio case/keyboard. It is one of several new combo cases/keyboards for iPad.  It's lightweight and fully protected by a  rubber membrane. And yet it is very sensitive. In fact, almost too sensitive, I seem to hit keys inadvertently quite often so far.

I have very large hands, but still, amazingly, I seem to be able to work with smaller keyboards, even touch-typing, I'm not sure how. I've used a ThinkOutside foldable successfully.

The Keyfolio is missing a right-side shift key, which bothers me, as does the placement of the apostrophe key at the bottom instead of right. I'm not sure I could get used to using those without looking down each time.

It is of course quite smaller than a full  sized keyboard, since its designed to fit into the footprint of the iPad which is shorter than a full keyboard. The Keyfolio is even more than an inch shorter than the compact Apple Wireless Keyboard (without numeric pad).

But right off the bat I work faster with it than with the iPad's screen keyboard by a mile, and I can certainly use it when I have reason.

I am doing a comparison to the keyboard on the MacBook Air, 11-inch. It is a very nice one although I tend to prefer a longer key travel (how far you press a key down), and so far at the very least a lot faster than the Keyfolio keyboard/case. That maybe should not surprise me, but it is also nearly two hundred grams *lighter* than the combination of the former with my iPad. And so what is the advantage of the iPad? Certainly none hardware wise, since the macbook's screen and keyboard are both better. (This tells you about the sharpness of the Air screen, since the iPad screen is really good. Next to the Air screen it looks fuzzy.)

They are both very quiet to type on.

So the question becomes: do you need your iPad with related software? Or do you need your MacBook with related software? The MacBook has a huge legacy of Mac OS X software to draw on, many thing which can't be done on an iPad, or at least in quite limited or clumsier ways. Usually.

Of course the MacBook Air is at least $400 more expensive than the iPad with the Folio keyboard, depending on configuration. But the weight advantage of the iPad is doubtful when you need a keyboard too.

I am not sure I can think of any software for the iPad, unless it's a game or such thing, which you can't get similarly for the Macbook.

In fact the 11-inch MacBook Air is just an amazing machine. The quality and feel for it is so superior to anything I know, the keyboard is full sized, it feels speedy for any normal use, and yet it is very thin and only weighs one kilo, less than two pounds.
A few years ago I visited my family and I used my 12-inch PowerBook which they used to make. And my sister said to somebody over the phone: "you should see this beautiful computer Eolake is using!" And while I thought that one was the bee's knee's (I still have it), it's not a patch on the MacBook Air. I dare any geek to hold it and not fall in love.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New iPad browser

New iPad web browser. I haven't tried it yet, but I will. It has windows. On an iPad! I don't know how useful it is, but I just have to see it.  I honestly didn't think it was possible, I think it's the first time I've seen any iPad app which didn't simply fill the whole screen.
I have only just opened the app (Snowblaze HD), but I had to laugh. They have clearly been very, very "inspired" by the look of Mac OS X. They even use virtually the same "desktop background" ("Quantum Foam") the blue/white swirls which was the famous look for the OS for many years, and the menu bar and windows are eerily familiar for us Mac users. Funny.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Tablet market will triple

Global tablet sales may triple by end of 2014, short article.

A research group says the global market for tablet computers such as the iPad will almost triple by the end of 2014.
[...] According to the forecast, the average tablet price tag will be $237 in 2015.

I suspect they are being overly careful and conservative here. I would not be surprised if those two predictions came true at the end of 2011 rather than 2014 and 2015!


I predicted half a year ago that there would come some iPad cases with built-in keyboards (blue-tooth connected). And lo, now there is about half a dozen. One getting good reviews is the Zaggmate.
Now I almost wish I'd waited before ordering the Keyfolio, which is getting mixed reviews. And it has been underway for over a month transatlantic.

"Predatory pricing"

Some say that game makers (iPod Touch) are preying on children who don't realize that it's "real money" they spend.
The buying login keeps working for 15 minutes after last use.
I doubt it's on purpose like this, at least not aimed specifically at children. But I agree that a 99 dollar add-on for a little game is insane, and odd, so.

New app

A friend has released a new free app for his role-playing business.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Quotes Sunday

[Thanks to the QoD service]

-- Amy Carter, (President Jimmy Carter's daughter) when asked by a reporter if she had any message for the children of America

My dog is worried about the economy because Alpo is up to 99 cents a can. That's almost $7.00 in dog money.
-- Joe Weinstein

The tooth fairy teaches children that they can sell body parts for money.
-- David Richerby

A man is not idle because he is absorbed in thought. There is a visible labor and there is an invisible labor.
-- Victor Hugo