1. minimalmac:

    Nothing crazy about it though, the iPad and iPhone, seem to me to be the perfect writing machines. They are regularly always with you so they allow you to start writing almost anytime and anywhere. When one can let go of the fear and let built in tools like auto-correct help, you might be surprised how fast one can become on the built in keyboard. But, as explained, part of the benefit is that it also can slow one down just enough to be more intentional with the words they choose and careful about the accuracy of the typing. I actually find I make less typos and am more quick to catch those I do when doing so in this way. In short, the iPad and iPhone help me write more often, in more situations, and write better.

    I wish I could communicate this convincingly in my day job. The iPad often requires a reconsideration of one’s approach to a task, not a limitation to whether that task is possible. And as time goes on, more and more tools appear to do incredible things with computing devices that are light, friendly, and infinitely more accessible than their forebears.


  2. Chris Bowler:

    But as a reader, I only use my phone to read when I’m in between places. And that reading is very shallow, a cursory look at items that would be consumed in more depth at some later time. So I had hoped that there would be an iPad version as well.

    I feel the same way. Though I like Unread on iPhone, I think I’d love it on the iPad.


  3. On this week’s Critically Speaking podcast: special guest Ryan Payton of Camouflaj joins us for a discussion on his studio’s new iOS game, République, as well as the Kickstarter process that led to its development and release.

    It’s a good one. If you haven’t listened to Critically Speaking yet, this would be a great episode to get started with.

    Check it out at DYHAMB? or subscribe in iTunes.


  4. MG Siegler on the last year he’ll ever “buy a computer”:

    Having used so many computers over the years, I’m pretty sure I know what my ideal machine would be now. The 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Retina display is very close. But the 11-inch MacBook Air I have still easily trumps it in size. However, that screen is a little small and blurry for my taste… As so I believe a 12-inch MacBook Air with a Retina display would be the perfect computer.

    If such a machine magically appeared in my life, I believe I could get rid of all of the other computers I now use without any reservation. And again, I think it may be the last computer I ever buy.

    I’ve wondered for quite some time when this would come to pass. The MacBook Air I purchased just over a year ago is a good machine, but some of its trade offs bother me from time to time. Siegler seems to think that a 12” Retina Air would be just right.

    I’m inclined to agree, though I think the end-game is simply a better iPad. Siegler seems to think so, too. He predicts such a device is still a couple of years out. But it may be possible, and soon, for a near-future iPad to take the place that the general purpose laptop has occupied for a decade.

    Let’s be clear. I’m not expecting tablets of any size or capability to take over for the PC. It’s in the general purpose computing category that I think they make the most sense. So, though Siegler mentions he doesn’t sit at a desk anymore, the likely future is that the desktop PC will be the last bastion of the computer as we know it.


  5. "You’re not going out there in that are you?”

    We’ve all heard it, or at the very least thought it. On some frigid morning we’ve all put one foot out the door while still clinging to our summer shorts in hopes that it’ll warm up later in the day. Or, we’ve stepped into the spring sunlight in that favorite sweater and know within five minutes that it was definitely the wrong call. And yet we try. It seems like every year I try. Why is that?

    Comfort. Convenience. Probably a great deal of sentiment. I love that sweater or that pair of jeans or that t-shirt. Even the forces of nature can’t change that. Now, in the world of clothing and fashion, I don’t have much of a choice but to surrender. One day it will simply be too hot outside to justify that favorite jacket. And so it goes back in the closet for another time.

    My technology, however, doesn’t have to be this way. I can select a general purpose computing device that accomplishes all (or nearly all) of my current and even possible goals. Up until a few years ago, the choice was even more clear cut. But with tablets and smartphones closing the performance gap, there seems to be fewer and fewer reasons why our mobile devices should not be capable of completing the same tasks as a laptop or desktop.

    In his article, “An iPad, a Computer, a Holy Grail,” Linus Edwards makes the case for simply settling for a coat closet full of tools that only come out for their specified purpose:

    Anytime you consolidate devices, you are making compromises. If you decide to get rid of your camera and only use the iPhone to take photos, you are getting a lesser experience, as most stand-alone cameras can take better photos than the iPhone. If you get rid of your Nintendo 3DS and only play games on the iPhone, you are missing out on a more specialized gaming experience.

    These would all be true if I were the kind of person that would carry each of these specialized tools. In reality, I’d say it’s more likely that most would prefer to just have one device fill the place of three. Before the iPhone, and even as an avid gamer, I never owned a handheld gaming device. Before the iPhone I never (or very rarely) kept a camera on me. I have countless images of my children, or just the scenery around me, that I’ve shot on the iPhone simply because it was there. In its absence, I wouldn’t have taken a better picture with a point-and-shoot or DSLR, I would have taken nothing. The moment would just be gone.

    So there are obvious utilitarian reasons for going with a smartphone or tablet, but what about my earlier comparisons to fashion? That sweater I just want to keep wearing? That’s the iPad. It’s comfortable, predictable, fun, and pleasant to me in a way other devices aren’t. I want it to be the device I get to use, just like I want the weather to be right for that sweater. The difference comes in the application.

    Weather is weather, but digital tools and digital tasks are not the same as the physical problems of hammering nails, driving screws, or staying cool on a hot day. At this point, the processing power of the A7 rivals that of laptops from only a few years ago, certainly not the pinnacle of computational performance but clearly enough to get most jobs done in a reasonable timeframe. Even so, we are forced to deal with workarounds and awkward situations to accomplish some of the same tasks on a tablet that would be much easier on a traditional desktop operating system.

    The two just don’t make sense. Physical limitations, such as Edwards’ example Swiss Army Knife used to build an entire house, are virtually insurmountable. Building a house with a Swiss Army Knife is never going to make sense, but each year, building and operating a website using only an iPad makes more and more sense. The capability is there, the implementation just hasn’t quite made the leap. And if people like Federico Viticci and others who try to be exclusive iPad users don’t push the limits, who will?

    The right tool for the right job is a nice sentiment if you want to carry around a sack full of toys like Santa Claus. But when the hardware is growing more and more capable every year, why not consolidate as much as possible? It’d be like getting to wear your favorite sweater every day of the year.

    I mean, it worked for Steve, didn’t it?