iPad Pros and Cons

April 11, 2010

If you ask anyone how they feel about the iPad there are usually two very different responses. The first is similar to a little kids reaction to being brought into a candy shop; overjoyed, excited and ready to make an investment. However, there is also the perspective that this new digital device is just a glorified iPod Touch or iPhone. This has been the feeling for many people in my graduate class and even outside of Elon University’s campus.

So does this device has a

iPad 2

valued purpose or is it worthless due to its repetition of previous creations only in a larger format?

Arguments:

People who are pro iPad have said that there are several positive aspects of the device that make them want to purchase it. They have stated that it is:

-portable

-easy to use/ intuitive

-when compared to other portable Internet available devices like the iPhone, its larger size is a benefit (especially for those with larger fingers), and unlike the Kindle, can handle many different file outputs.

-10 hours of battery life

-it has a digital compass and GPS

-quality, high resolution images (which makes for better video watching)

– and, found within a CNET article, “Productivity versus consumption: “My home computer will suffice for the number crunching, code compiling and media encoding needs. The iPad will be my encyclopedia, mailbox, newspaper, library, music jukebox, video player for the home and on the go.”

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People who question the iPad’s purpose have arguments which state:

– we already have devices that do the same things and are less expensive, the device may offer even more options

-iPads are not really generative electronic pieces

-it’s a novelty product that people are purchasing because of brand loyalty

-can’t handle Flash

-no multitasking; you can only do one thing at a time, meaning you can’t be streaming music while performing another task on the iPad

-no 3G coverage automatically, which forces you to make an additional purchase

-the battery is built in, meaning if it dies so does the entire product

-no camera, no Skype

As you can see, this has many ups and downs, and even I am still on the fence when it comes to the iPad. I don’t think it’s completely pointless though, if anything it has shown us how advanced technology is getting. We’ll find more efficient ways to implement and integrate it into our lives…even if this way isn’t it.

For example, the healthcare industry is finding more benefits in adopting the iPad (or some tablet like it) then most of us. From a recent article within http://www.mobihealthnews.com, they found that the high resolution images displayed from the iPad actually help them do specific tasks at work (and with more tweaking, could provide medical applications that will benefit doctors, nurses and other medical professionals even more).

“SoftwareAdvice surveyed 178 care providers, health IT professionals,  and medical students to gauge their interest in the iPad and tablets in general. Here are the features this group listed as “must haves” for any tablet (not the iPad is lacking many of these)”:

Medical Tablet Feature Must Haves

According to Rob Campbell, the CEO of Voalté, “The form factor is ideal for patient education, medical image viewing and interacting with the EMR (electronic medical records). However, point of care workers need a smaller footprint, that can go into the pocket of their scrubs. Everyone needs more effective communication, so you can expect Voalté on both platforms!”

Maybe, with the improvement of the device (smaller in size and the addition of medical applications), it will better serve the public in the healthcare field.

Living a Transparent Lifestyle

September 28, 2009

There are moments in our lives when we regret not capturing an event or phrase with a camera or on video. The blurred memory will suffice, but it would have been nice to be able to remember it with complete clarity. Ever feel like that? Many people, especially parents, wish they were prepared at that moment instead of being just a few seconds late to record it.

The future of social networks, virtual reality and various technological innovations may be creating a gadget that has the capability of storing every memory you have.   Scary huh?

The SenseCam idea, a type of device whose purpose is to act as a life recorder, is not too far off.  Microsoft has recently developed this digital item that a person would wear around their neck. The invention has several electronic sensors and would act as your personal photographer each and every day. The SenseCam would also record and transcribe every conversation the owner has while wearing the device.  The wearer also has control over the timing of when the photographs are taken. It could be set to take photos every 30 seconds to every couple of minutes.

This product is a working progress. Eventually the company would like to include a GPS system into the device so that you know where and when the picture is taken or the conversation was recorded. It is also a bit clunky and will evolve, at some point, into a smaller and sleeker piece that might even be wearable as a wristwatch.

Although this invention seems wonderful for those that would like to review every single minute of their child’s or their own lives, it does bring about the issue of security or privacy.  Your entire identity is within that small digital box. If you ever lost it or someone else got a hold of it…what would the ramifications be?

Or more importantly, (with the information that is divulged on Facebook and other social networks) are we adopting a more transparent lifestyle?