Friday, January 6, 2012

iPad Stuff

Some scattered thoughts and tips re: iPads:

I bought a WedgePad for my iPad. It's like a little beanbag rest that props the thing up, either on your desk or on your lap. I love it; it's really versatile, and makes couch-potato reading much easier, but the beans are styrofoam, and quickly compact (no problem; I just bought this to refill). They seem to have only models with white straps in stock now; you may want to email in and ask if they'll be selling black straps (which are less distracting) again.

Metacritic offers a good list of iPad/iPhone games, though they underrate one of my favorites, Dark Meadow.

One feature I just discovered: if you put web site bookmarks in Safari's "bookmarks bar" folder, they always appear atop browser windows (there's not much room, so make the titles terse). This is super handy. Update: you also have to check "always show bookmarks bar" in Safari preferences (in the Settings app.)

Speaking of bookmarks, I find Pinboard (an online way to store bookmarks) absolutely invaluable. It's not a replacement for browser bookmarks - i.e. URLs you visit often. Rather, it's a repository of pages you mean to visit, may one day refer to, or quickly need to pass off to another device. I pay up for the "archive" service, which archives the actual page - handy in case it ever disappears, plus it lets me search text of all the actual pages I've bookmarked in one pass. So cool! You can send pages to Pinboard via email or via bookmarklets, which install in any browser, including mobile (this, by the way, is one of the best items to put in the aforementioned Safari bookmark bar).

With the whole world accepting that tablet computers (i.e.* Apple's iPad) are going to largely replace PCs for much of the general public, I thought I'd crow about having predicted this within a week of Apple's original iPad announcement (at a time when most people were dismissing as an oversized iPhone).

One thing I was wrong on, though: I bought the smallest capacity iPad 2, figuring that since I would only use it on WIFI, I'd stream my music and videos from my computer, freeing up the need to store those files on the iPad. But then I began downloading my subscriptions (Wired, New Yorker, and The Economist), and soon found my storage full to bursting. When will I learn: always buy the highest available capacity?

* - no, I didn't mean "e.g."


Anonymous said...

I can see why you like that thing for propping the screen up at that angle, it's the perfect angle. I have (literally) 6 tablets (ipads 1 & 2, android 10", 7", kindle fire, nook), and invariably when I want to couch surf, that's exactly the angle I put my screen at! the screen on my asus eee pc netbook. I really prefer a full featured netbook to any of my tablets :)

Jim Leff said...

Anon, I also use the WedgePad in profile mode. It's not terrible stable, but it's a bit more comfortable than if there were no wedgepad.

Also, Vaughn Tan suggests refilling with buckwheat husks

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