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Poll

What should I buy that is currently available?

ipad
8 (27.6%)
PC tablet
8 (27.6%)
Netbook
7 (24.1%)
Other (please specify)
3 (10.3%)
monitor arms + tweed suit
3 (10.3%)

Total Members Voted: 29

Last post Author Topic: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?  (Read 49449 times)

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #75 on: August 28, 2010, 06:13:06 PM »
OK, I've changed my mind for the 17th time...
I've been working on my business with my business partner the last couple of weeks.  My 2002 laptop is starting to die on me (battery problems leading to other problems, leading to lots of crashing, reinstalling, etc....it's on its last legs).  So, I actually need to get some other portable computing devices relatively soon.

The HP Touchsmart tm2t is the thing I'm looking at right now.  It's a laptop, it's size is what I like (not too small, not too big), it has touchscreen stuff should I care to explore that.  It's pretty neat.  So how's that?  Wraith apparently had it right all along.

[to wraith]  Thanks for the posts on the first page.  If I get this (and don't change my mind), I'm going to format the thing, and install Windows 7 from scratch.  Then I'm going to optimize it the way you did.  I think it will be very snappy, especially reading how you are happy with your older model hp.  That's good stuff.  I'm excited.  I know the swivel-tablets didn't really catch on in pop-culture, but that's where users like us are different from 99% of the people: we don't mind fiddling and tweaking things.  I know I'd miss the keyboard.  This might be the perfect thing to hold me over while I wait for an awesome tablet to come out.  And, of course, I actually have a real NEED this time: my laptop is becoming non-functional, so I need SOMETHING.  If I don't change my mind by Tuesday, I'll order this or buy it by then.  If anyone knows of any deals/coupons, post away!
« Last Edit: August 28, 2010, 08:02:17 PM by superboyac »

tomos

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #76 on: August 29, 2010, 03:33:35 AM »
well I was curious and looked at a review on youtube http://www.youtube.c.../watch?v=OnROHKjvXKA -
there's a related link with a deal where you get an upgraded version for $800 (no idea if that's particularly good or not)
Quote
This deal: $1,004.99 - $150 off - exclusive web-use $50 coupon code = $804.99 plus FREE shipping. This is the best price for loaded TouchSmart tm2 with Core i3.
Tom

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #77 on: August 29, 2010, 08:01:05 AM »
A couple more links for you on the tm2t (if you haven't seen them already)

http://www.laptopmag...touchsmart-tm2t.aspx
http://www.engadget....uchsmart-tm2-review/


superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #78 on: August 30, 2010, 08:44:42 AM »
A couple more links for you on the tm2t (if you haven't seen them already)

http://www.laptopmag...touchsmart-tm2t.aspx
http://www.engadget....uchsmart-tm2-review/
Thanks!  I hadn't read the laptopmag review, that was good.  of course, I already ran into the engadget one.  I like what I'm seeing.  A lot of the complaints have to do with the custom touch software that HP puts on the computer.  but I'm going to do as you described and tweak a basic Windows 7 installation for my own needs.  I don't need HP's software.  I'll find something better, or I may not even need a special touch software.  Just use regular windows 7.

tomos, thanks for that link.  I'll definitely use that, looks like the best deal around the net.

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #79 on: August 30, 2010, 11:04:51 AM »
Well, it's been a day and I haven't changed my mind.  Looks like I'm going to do this!  Yeah baby!  I like this hp.  I'll explain why in case anyone is still reading this:
I'm fairly certain most of my use for this portable computer will be in laptop mode (keyboard stuff).  From what I know about myself, that will be how I use it at least 70% of the time.  Now, for those times when I am just bored and have nothing to do at the moment (which is hardly ever), that's when I will use the tablet mode (no keyboard).  Lightly browse the net, watch movies, listen to music.  Stuff like that.  The only wildcard is the touchscreen stuff.  if it's anywhere close to productive, I may be able to use the computer as a portable notebook that I actually write on with the digital pen.  I would be very excited if that turned out to be productive.

And I'll probably get the updated  model with the extra RAM and more CPU.  All of that for under $1000, which is not bad in my opinion.  My Acer laptop that is on it's last legs is from 2002, so my stuff lasts a long time.  And that still works fine, it's just a little underpowered and keeps having bad stuff happening about twice a year, which requires me to reinstall XP.  I think the battery is failing and it has affected some of the other hardware inside.

[edit]
How cool would a touchscreen tablet + Onenote be?  Anyone?  To me, the thought of it is scrumptious.
I'm excited.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2010, 11:33:09 AM by superboyac »

Darwin

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #80 on: August 30, 2010, 03:18:11 PM »
That Laptop review is A-W-F-U-L! Reading the comments, which universally state what I had intended to write myself (the tm2 is not an iPad competitor and targets a different demographic, etc.), I note that one person who owns the tablet states that Win7's built in support for touch screen technology renders the HP touchsmart software irrelevant, anyway.

Let us know how you get on, Superboyac. I'm already jonesing for one of these!
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #81 on: August 30, 2010, 04:10:10 PM »
Nice, Darwin.  You are only encouraging me more, which i'm glad to hear.  Yes, I realize it's not really an ipad competitor.  But we all understand that to most people, any device with a touchscreen is going to be perceived as an ipad competitor.  For more knowledgeable people, we understand that there is a difference to having an oversized iphone and having a portable tablet+keyboard with a full Windows OS are very different animals.  Unfortunately for us, we are in the minority of people who would prefer the latter.  Most people truly do prefer the ipad over a full-blown portable pc, and for their needs, they are correct.  That's why ipad is so successful, and why apple is brilliant in making it that way.  That's also why we powerusers so often bash it.  But we have to realize that it wasn't meant for us.  And that doesn't make it bad, just different.  Again, WE are in the minority, not the other way around.

But, yeah, I'm excited about it.  I love the fact that I actually NEED it now that my laptop is breaking.  It's going to force me to buy it.  I was thinking of getting a small netbook, but I've realized that i just don't like the devices with small screens.  I like big screens, even if it reduces portability.  I don't do any portable computing, so any small screen device will quickly become useless to me after the honeymoon phase wears off.

Darwin

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #82 on: August 30, 2010, 09:58:42 PM »
Heh, heh, my two year old notebook is on the fritz (removed and cleaned the heat sink. The OEM thermal pads were so decayed I removed them and threw them out - on a garbage collection day. Unfortunately, the gap between the chip on my GPU and the heatsink is greater than I can fill with thermal compound and it now refuses to boot. Generic replacement thermal pads are on order, but there's no guarantee that this will work)... Do I *DARE* use this as an excuse to try one of these for myself? For the moment, no... but if you pick one up and start raving about it, I may be ordering one myself.
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #83 on: September 01, 2010, 10:12:02 PM »
Ok, ok...bear with me here...

I have now begun my "seriously shopping" phase.  I've been reading about tablet pc's for the last 3 hours now.  And, surprise, a new contestant has emerged: the HP 2740p.  The reason why I'm now considering this one is because it's more professionally built than the cheaper tm2t.  But it's not so simple.  The tm2t does SOME things better than the 2740p such as the wacom pen input, which sounds like a slightly more advanced technology than whatever is on the 2740p.  However, it doesn't sound like it's a big deal.

Now comes the price issue.  The 2740p is going to run me probably $2000 or a little more.  So it's more than twice the cost of the tm2t.  But I'm a professional, I'm not a student or a gamer.  I can afford it, but do I want to afford it.  I'm really a desktop user: I'm not much of a portable computing person.  I like big towers, lots of big monitors, big chairs, big speakers, etc.  When I'm out and about, you won't even recognize me as the geek that you all know and love here.  But the tablet thing is very intriguing to me.  You will often see me walking around with a notepad and a pencil.  i write a bunch down then go to my computer and put it in Infoqube or Evernote, etc.  I would love to transfer that to the tablet pc.  I'd like to get familiar with that whole process.  I know the technology isn't perfect right now, but maybe I'll experiment for a year or two, and then get a really nice, mature one.  back to the price, I think it may be worth it.  I'm at an age and salary level where I'll easily pay twice as much to not have stupid little annoyances like the battery bump and poor screen quality of the cheaper tablet.

On to the issues with the 2740p.  Firstly, the touch interface will never be as good as the ipad, I have to accept that.  Apple has the whole multi-touch thing practically perfected.  I'm so jealous of that.  Still, the touch interface appears to be good enough and that's fine.  There is one thing that not many people talk about around the net: third-party software!  The BEST thing about being a pc user!  There are plenty (I'm assuming) third party tools out there to make the touch experience on Windows 7 much much better.  One of them is RitePen, which I'll be excited to try out.  But let me explain what is happening.  A lot of the complaints people have about these tablets are really complaints about the touch features that are BUILT-IN Windows 7.  But nobody said you had to stick with that!  So not many people are talking about the 3rd-party tools, which I find a little surprising.  They bitch about Windows 7 touch features, the popup keyboard, etc...but all that can probably be drastically improved by some great third party utility.  I'm all about that.

So, I may actually splurge and get this thing.  But first I'm going to look at a couple of the other higher end tablet convertibles like Lenovo, Fujitsu, heck, even Panasonic (doubt it).

Here are the good links I've come across:
http://www.youtube.c.../watch?v=YSutEkZFrU0
http://www.youtube.c.../watch?v=dCjovy6aDhM
http://forum.tabletp...w.com/hp-elitebooks/

Finally, a short little quote from a helpful user that demonstrates why I keep changing my mind:
Quote
Finally, if you don't truly need a tablet (I have no professional or even hobby need, just kind of "fell in love" with the tablet/touch/pen format and its benefits when I first took the plunge in long-bagged TM2-land. Unless you already know you must have a tablet, ask yourself: how much am I using the tablet functions/how important are they to me? The reason: there are now more than half a dozen truly superb ultraportables available with the 2740 features and more, for everywhere from much less $ to similar money but far more features and performance - except tablet - eg, Toshiba Portege M700 (various configs and features), HP 2540 (as good or better than 2740 in all respects, hundreds cheaper, more options), Lenovo X201 non-tablet (same comments as HP 2540, with usual Lenovo pros/cons) - just to name a few. The Sony Z series is, for many, the "gold standard" in ultraportables, and it doesn't cost any more than a well equipped 2740p.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2010, 10:15:57 PM by superboyac »

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #84 on: September 01, 2010, 10:36:23 PM »
You know what?  I just don't need it.  That's all there is to it.  There's nothing like a notepad and a pencil for me.  I do everything in my notepad and at the end of the day/week enter the important stuff on my REAL computer, which is more than a desktop--it's a console station.  So, no new gadget for me.  I'm done.

Maybe...

PPLandry

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #85 on: September 02, 2010, 12:39:45 AM »
I had one of the first generation tablet PC. In fact, it was a convertible. Compaq Concerto back in 1990, running Win3.1 and a pen. Beautiful machine:
http://mvardon.com/2...apples-tablet-specs/

At the time, I was working for a large engineering company. The best thing (at the time anyway) of having a tablet PC was not to be able to enter stuff on the go (while standing up, chatting with co-workers), but accessing your information.

n.b. If (one day) voice recognition (multi-lingual, in my case) gets to be good enough, perhaps, one could consider entering significant info on a tablet
n.b. #2: Of course, now, you can achieve the access part, really easily and cheaply, using DropBox and an Ipod Touch
Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present -- Albert Camus -- www.InfoQube.biz
« Last Edit: September 02, 2010, 12:51:46 AM by PPLandry »

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #86 on: September 02, 2010, 09:01:19 AM »
I had one of the first generation tablet PC. In fact, it was a convertible. Compaq Concerto back in 1990, running Win3.1 and a pen. Beautiful machine:
http://mvardon.com/2...apples-tablet-specs/

At the time, I was working for a large engineering company. The best thing (at the time anyway) of having a tablet PC was not to be able to enter stuff on the go (while standing up, chatting with co-workers), but accessing your information.

n.b. If (one day) voice recognition (multi-lingual, in my case) gets to be good enough, perhaps, one could consider entering significant info on a tablet
n.b. #2: Of course, now, you can achieve the access part, really easily and cheaply, using DropBox and an Ipod Touch
That's fascinating.  How cool that you had one way back then.  You've been on the notetaking frontier for a long time, Pierre! 

PPLandry

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #87 on: September 02, 2010, 09:09:44 AM »
Hey! I wrote my master's thesis on a TRS-80 Model 100 :

http://en.wikipedia....iki/TRS-80_Model_100

It would fit in the 32k memory of course, so I wrote software to transfer stuff to a PC through the RS-232 cable

I still have the Model 100, but wish I had kept the Concerto through, it was a beautiful machine...
Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present -- Albert Camus -- www.InfoQube.biz

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #88 on: September 02, 2010, 01:49:51 PM »
You know what's confusing about trying to keep up with all these gadgets?  The categories.  I feel we've gotten a little out of control with all these.  In my mind, it's helpful to think about it as two broad categories: desktop computing, and portable computing.  Everyone talks about the pros/cons of these devices, and they they start getting into little debates about how a netbook does this but a laptop does that, I think that can be confusing if you don't quite understand the technical differences.

Anyway, here's my master list of the categories I've seen mentioned:
laptop
netbook
desktop replacement (annoying term)
ultra-mobile-pc (UMPC)
tablet
tablet pc (different!)
tablet netvertible
tablet convertible notebook (bigger version of netvertible?)
notebook (?)

And each of those can probably have a regular consumer version and an "enterprise" version.  The difference?  Not much.  Maybe a few bits of hardware that are more powerful.  Superficially, the enterprise stuff will have better cases and just be built more solid generally.  Why that has to be such a big deal, I don't know.  I don't mind that, but I do get frustrated when some things on the consumer model are better than the enterprise model (see my previous comments).  That's totally a Sony type of thing.

Of course it doesn't help when people start talking about intel's different chips: low voltage, ultra low voltage, regular, i5, i7, core, etc.  Sheesh.  Once again, apple doesn't really get caught up in this.  They keep it simple.  Fortunately, I'm starting to see manufacturer websites being slightly more helpful in helping you figure out the differences, but many are still very confusing.  It's really a culture that's been developed.  it's not any one company's fault, but they do encourage it because it helps them financially.  See, the reason why apple can keep it simple and get away with it is because they know their product is very good and there really is no competition.  So they can just come out and say: we're selling a ipad, it's $49, and that's it.  But other companies have to deal with so much competition and so many models of different laptops, chips, etc., that they have to emphasize all the little technical differences.  The problem is that it makes it hard for a user (supergeek or not) to really figure out why i need this device and not that one, and so forth.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2010, 01:52:26 PM by superboyac »

nosh

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #89 on: September 03, 2010, 03:22:14 AM »
I feel the Dark Side reeling me in.

My requirement is simple: an ebook reader with a large screen that can handle pdf in color.
I have developed a nasty habit of doing most of my reading lying in bed. :-[ A tablet has the most convenient form factor for this and I can't find anything as large and zippy as the iPad.

The only thing stopping me from getting one immediately is the fact that the iPad hasn't officially launched in India (I can go out and buy one at a premium and without a warranty, and I would too, if it wasn't for annoying things like sanity getting in the way.)

I suspect I'll queue up with a bunch of fanboys on the launch date. Can someone recommend a decent alternative and spare me the humiliation?  

nosh

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #90 on: September 03, 2010, 03:31:27 AM »
$0.02 for superboyac:

I would just go ahead and get an iPad... at the very least it'll stop you over-thinking the issue.  :)
There's always something round the corner worth waiting for, as we all know. The iPad should get you by the next year or two when you'll have something much better available (iPad v.2?  :P)

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #91 on: September 03, 2010, 07:23:46 AM »
One thing about the ipad... you'll have to spend more money to get good handling of PDFs.  Then more money to get good handling of office documents.  And truthfully, there isn't much difference when it comes to speed... most of it is an illusion, using the always on/great battery life to cover for the fact that it's not exceptionally fast.  Try to open a large pdf on it, and you'll see what I mean.  Applications launch fast- yes.  But loading large documents... no.  So keep that in mind- especially if PDFs are your main bit, and doubly if you're using large PDFs.

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #92 on: September 03, 2010, 12:45:07 PM »
I love this phrase below:
Quote
Don't get me wrong: Microsoft needs a tablet. Apple sold 3 million iPads in two months, and that was amid howls that it was overpriced and underfunctioning. The market for a thin but large, touch-screened thing-that-isn't-a-phone is clear, as an e-book reader, as a movie player, as a game pad, as a casual e-mail-and-Web device. Why rest a hot PC on your lap when you can balance a slender slab on your thigh? So what if that slab only does 85 percent of what the PC can do?
It's from here:
http://www.msnbc.msn...nce-tech_and_gadgets

I like the description.  Keep in mind my post from above about all the terms being used.

daddydave

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #93 on: September 03, 2010, 01:33:48 PM »
I have no opinion, I just want to add a little fuel to the fire:

Introducing the Samsung Galaxy Tab

Why they chose a name that brings to mind old Fords and old diet soft drinks is anyone's guess.

EDIT: (Yeah, I did change the link from cnet to engadget)



If bad things happen to other people, it's karma. If bad things happen to me, it's kismat!
« Last Edit: September 03, 2010, 01:36:25 PM by daddydave »

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #94 on: September 03, 2010, 03:14:34 PM »
I've been following that Samsung one on engadget for a while.  Looks interesting.  I'm really waiting for the whole tablet market to mature a little more.  I think it's going to be very interesting.

I've been thinking about what kind of tablet I really want.  Knowing myself, and this is probably true for many here, I want a fully functioning Windows 7 tablet.  I don't want an android thing.  I don't do "apps".  I use real man software, not kiddie stuff.  I want to use FARR, LBC, DOpus, stuff like that.  I've gone to great lengths to find the software that does things just the way I like.

I feel it's right around the corner.  Actually, the business models are already there.  If you're willing to spend $2000+ you can get a real nice tablet pc that runs Windows 7, with fast hardware, long battery life, and all that.  If I was just slightly more wealthy, I'd get one right now.

By next year, i want to have a whole nice portable setup.  I want a fully functioning computer that I can write on with a stylus, has all the necessary connections and speedy hardware.  I want all the cables and accesories necessary to connect to most TV's or monitors easily, including audio cables.  I want an extra battery and charger.  Maybe some blank dvd's, a couple of spare usb sticks.  Also, if projectors come down in size enough, I'll stick one of those in there.  Nice microphone and pro audio card also to make sure I can use it to play my piano and/or record a concert.  And all of this in a nice case that's as compact as possible.  That would be a great thing to take around with me.

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #95 on: September 03, 2010, 07:29:45 PM »
I think with a true tablet pc, some of the software that you mentioned becomes obsolete.  That's the reason that I'm trying to develop something that will let me launch items in a pen environment.  There are some, but they go further, using gestures and such.  I want to be able to navigate and click with a pen, visually, rather than mnemonically.  FARR, LBC, and DOpus just don't really work for me in a pen environment- they're built around a different paradigm IME.  I've also tried circle dock, radius, object dock...  the closest I've come so far is Beryoko and/or Fences.

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #96 on: September 05, 2010, 02:37:49 PM »
I think with a true tablet pc, some of the software that you mentioned becomes obsolete.  That's the reason that I'm trying to develop something that will let me launch items in a pen environment.  There are some, but they go further, using gestures and such.  I want to be able to navigate and click with a pen, visually, rather than mnemonically.  FARR, LBC, and DOpus just don't really work for me in a pen environment- they're built around a different paradigm IME.  I've also tried circle dock, radius, object dock...  the closest I've come so far is Beryoko and/or Fences.
Yes, yes.  You have a very good point.  I imagine it comes down to the question: "what do we do with what we normally accomplish with keyboards"?  The mouse/stylus switch is very logical.  But how do we replace our keyboard functionality with a stylus?  The simple answer is the onscreen virtual keyboard.  But there must be something more elegant.  Like you say, gestures is one thing, but not exactly perfect.  I think handwriting recognition, if done smoothly, can be the way.  Like using the Ritepen program.

I'm so curious....maybe I'll just go and get the cheaper HP tablet to play around. Ay yay yay...how many times can one person change his mind?

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #97 on: September 05, 2010, 03:54:32 PM »
Many times apparently...  this is going to seem rather strange considering I've been touting the advantages of the tc1100...

... I am now the owner of an iPad. 

Don't get me wrong, I still love my tc1100, and will not use it any less, but when doing reading and such, the battery life bit has been a problem.  I love having access to everything i normally do, but the battery life is really making it so that I can't just pick up the device and go when I am at home and just want to grab something.  I was going to get a nook, and had it in my hands at Best Buy, but then we passed by the Apple department in Best Buy and my wife told me I should go ahead and get it.  Then proceeded to take the nook to put it back on the shelf.  So here I am.  :-[ 

Comparing the two side by side, the iPad is a more casual device.  Media consumption is awesome... and not being locked to an ebook platform or even just ebooks is even more awesome.  But when I need to get something done, or want to do serious writing, I still go to the tc1100.

And having both will be really good for DM'ing, as I can have the reference books on my iPad, and run the actual game off of the tc1100.  At least that's my plan...

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #98 on: September 05, 2010, 06:23:19 PM »
we passed by the Apple department in Best Buy and my wife told me I should go ahead and get it.  Then proceeded to take the nook to put it back on the shelf.

... so that's the secret of Apple

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #99 on: September 08, 2010, 02:23:17 AM »
superboyac, I came back to this thread to tell you to get an iPad.

I originally told you that if it was me I'd get an Android tablet. But I've since thought about it and realized it isn't me. That is, you didn't ask me what I would get. You asked what you should get. And it seems to me you want an iPad so you should get what you want. :Thmbsup: