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Hands On With Notion Ink's Pixel-Qi Equipped Adam Tablet

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the feel-free-to-send-one-this-way dept.

Handhelds 109

Jax7 writes with this snippet from Technoholik, which dispatched a team with a video camera to get some early footage of the upcoming Android Tablet from Notion Ink, with Android and a Pixel-Qi transflective screen. Also interesting is the back-mounted touchpad. "We flew down to Hyderabad and caught up with the Notion Ink team just before they left for Barcelona to showcase the Android-based tablet tomorrow at the Mobile World Congress. Note that this product was 'one engineering day short' but we aren't complaining since we literally badgered them into giving us this sneak peak. The top panel over the screen was still a bit loose, so they took it off before booting the system."

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109 comments

Nice, but Android? (3, Interesting)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142282)

I like Java as much as the next guy, but why would you want to force all your developers into that language?

Since it's clearly able to run Linux, just provide a standard Ubuntu installation. That'd be much better.

Re:Nice, but Android? (3, Informative)

LukeWebber (117950) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142310)

Java has the advantage of running in sandbox, and security is serious issue for something as connected and pervasive as a smartphone. I also means that Google only need to provide a single API, hence fast turnaround of new releases.

And it must be said that coding in Java beats the hell out of writing Objective C on a Mac, which is the only supported environment for the iPhone.

Not really (4, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142326)

And it must be said that coding in Java beats the hell out of writing Objective C on a Mac

Having done both for a great deal of time on each platform, I disagree.

It's not that much different, and most memory problems you have are the same ones between Java and Objective-C - over-retention. That's not something GC fixes for you.

Re:Not really (3, Interesting)

renoX (11677) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143180)

>[cut] most memory problems you have are the same ones between Java and Objective-C - over-retention. That's not something GC fixes for you.

A GC *could* help: there has been some research with GC which cooperates with the kernel's virtual memory manager, the main advantage is that memory referenced but unused can be swapped instead of being kept in memory by the garbage collector, see http://lambda-the-ultimate.org/node/2391 [lambda-the-ultimate.org]

Unfortunately this require modification of the kernel's virtual memory manager, so AFAIK the research has never been used :-(

Re:Nice, but Android? (2, Insightful)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142330)

But it’s not real Java. It’s some messed-up version from Google. So the whole advantage of running pretty much every cell phone app out there (which are nearly all Java apps) is gone.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142610)

There's a much wider variety of non-Java apps for cell phones out there than you think- almost all Symbian and Windows Mobile apps are C++. All iphone apps are Objective C. Java has a large number, but less than half.

And even of those that are in Java, Java on one phone is not the same as Java on another- there's custom APIs involved. Even of those platforms that attempt to implement J2ME there's huge differences. Write once run everywhere is a joke on normal platforms, on cell phones its so broken it isn't funny.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143900)

You are not quite right here. As Java apps often are not labeled as Java. It’s just expected to work. Since at least 95% of the market can do Java. Even crappy old phones.

I guess I thought about the global market share of the phones.
And you thought about the app count of the US market.
Which of course are completely different things. :)

Uuum, you don’t need to explain J2ME to me, as I am a J2ME developer and make a living with it. :)
I”m just saying Java, because it’s obvious that it’s J2ME. :)
About “write once, run everywhere”: Well, of course the main API is pretty basic. But for extended APIs you just add a check in the code, and you’re good. (If the API is not there, that functionality can not be used anyway.)
If you just use the base APIs, it really runs everywhere.
It’s a hardware thing, and is not a fault of Java. And that is impossible to avoid.
You can’t even use software implementations because of the speed limitations, and because the hardware is usually not there anyway.
So: It’s really: Write once, run everywhere, where the needed functions are available. Obvious. :)

I could just as well say: C++ is a joke, since when you recompile a C++ app on a computer without a sound card, you won’t get any sound from that app. ;)

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 4 years ago | (#31147978)

I was a mobile dev until 3 months ago. I didn't work on the J2ME stuff, but my company did. They would put in hundreds of hours per phone to get it to work- minor breaks in the API ended up snowballing. In the end there were so many manufacturer and phone specific hacks they had to use special tools that extended Java to add in #defines to keep track of it all. It just doesn't work well, because the OEMs don't try very hard.

And you'd have no problem with sound of a C++ app if you recompile it on a computer with no sound card, the code is all there. You just wouldn't get it if you *ran* it on that computer.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142902)

Honestly, the number of true "cross-platform" Java apps written out there has to be easily countable. Almost all of them have some platform-specific code or library in there, completely wrecking "write once: run anywhere."

Re:Nice, but Android? (4, Insightful)

cduffy (652) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142426)

Well -- not so much, really.

Android doesn't rely on Dalvik doing sandboxing as much as it relies on the OS to handle security constraints; each application gets their own UNIX user and group created, and these are automatically managed to give applications access only to what the user approved for them on install.

This is why availability of the Android NDK doesn't compromise security.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143484)

Did I miss something? This isn't for a phone. This is for a tablet style PC. Who cares what coding for a phone is like?

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

jo42 (227475) | more than 4 years ago | (#31145950)

writing Objective C on a Mac, which is the only supported environment for the iPhone

Don't know much about iPhone OS, do you? Mac OS X and iPhone OS share over 80% of their core source code. Why the frak should Apple bootstrap OS X development under Windows or Linux when they already have a perfectly wonderful OS [apple.com]? All Apple had to do was add iPhone support to Xcode [apple.com]. GCC is used as the compiler, so as long as your UI code is in Objective C, your work code can be in C, C++ or Objective C++ [apple.com].

Re:Nice, but Android? (3, Informative)

cduffy (652) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142416)

Android has a NDK [android.com] (Native Development Kit); it's possible to write Android apps for the Market in languages other than Java.

Re:Nice, but Android? (2, Interesting)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142636)

Possible, but definitely not recommended- the APIs for anything OS specific except file access are non-existant. You end up with a Java GUI calling C/C++ via JNI, which probably has to call back into Java via JNI again. There may be multiple levels of language switching there, all of which are expensive. And that leaves you an environment pretty difficult to debug.

In reality the NDK is only really suited for creating a graphical UI to a command line C or C++ program. Anything else and you'll feel less pain rewriting. Which is a shame, since its just a linux box in the end. Google needs to release some real C APIs. At a minimum give us draw to screen APIs and the like, they don't need to copy the whole activity model to C. In fact I'd prefer if they didn't, I don't see a lot of value in it.

Re:Nice, but Android? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31142776)

You can use opengl from NDK AFAIK

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 4 years ago | (#31147898)

You probably can, but that's way way overkill if your app is a standard window type app. But since they're almost certainly running a custom widget kit on top of X, they could just give us access to that.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

Tapewolf (1639955) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142670)

AFAIK you can only write subroutines in native code, you have to use Java for the main program and IIRC the user interface. The NDK is intended to be used for number-crunching, or reusing large amounts of existing logic written in C/C++.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31142496)

It's not locked down in any way so you will be able to install standard Ubuntu on it once it supports the Tegra platform.

Re:Nice, but Android? (2, Informative)

EdZ (755139) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142540)

Since it's clearly able to run Linux, just provide a standard Ubuntu installation. That'd be much better.

The spec page [technoholik.com] lists "Android, Ubuntu, Chromium" under OS. I'm guessing that just means they're leaving it open for you to install whatever you want on it rather than shipping multiple version with different OSes, but I could be wrong.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31143572)

Good luck getting drivers for Nvidia's proprietary shit on non-x86 archs.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142640)

I'm guessing Java never really made it onto the radar. This is an answer to the iPad+iPhoneOS combo: a different tablet with Android as the OS. It has has some of the same advantages, using a smartphone-style, fairly simple, app-centric OS for a tablet, rather than a normal desktop/laptop OS. Java just comes along for the ride because it's what Android happens to use for its apps. Whether Android should be using Java for its apps or not in the first place is sort of a separate discussion (although Android does already have a native development kit).

Re:Nice, but Android? (3, Insightful)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142916)

The swivel camera is an amazingly obvious (in hindsight) fix to complaints about front or rear-facing cameras, and (as pointed out in the video) you could position the camera in the middle to record while taking notes.

I also like the trackpad on the back. I think it would take some getting used to, but once you figured it out, there would be no need to move your hands from front to back all the time.

Re:Nice, but Android? (2, Interesting)

naz404 (1282810) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144506)

Interesting thing I see about rear-touchpad is that your finger won't obscure the display. That's one problem when building apps for touchscreen such as games, because your big clunky fingers will get in the way of seeing stuff like small targets onscreen.

How's the rear-touchpad supported by the OS/apps? (1)

joh (27088) | more than 4 years ago | (#31147664)

One thing I'm wondering about: A "normal" touchscreen needs no cursor (or mouse arrow or whatever you may call it) since you see where you tap.

A rear-touchpad needs to work much more like a normal touchpad on a notebook: You move around some sprite on the screen and click/tap if it's in the right place.

How does this work on this tablet and how is it supported by the OS and the apps? I think one important thing with tablets is integration: In the best case you don't have to care at all about such things. You click the thing on, use it and click it off again. This certainly is something Apple is doing perfectly right.

Anyway, I love to tinker around with my devices and to make them mine, but now and then something that just works and even fights back hard against all attempts to tinker with it may be somewhat relaxing.

Well, the rear-touchpad is a nice idea. We will see.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142642)

Depend what you call "better". Sometimes a full desktop operating system with an interface meant for mouse with several buttons and keyboard could be more complicated for the tasks meant for a simple touchscreen interface? Accessing Android market of apps (some fitting pretty well to the hardware features of it, like camera, gps, or accelerometer) won't hurt neither.

Why ChromeOS if you plan to use that device more for playing multimedia or reading local books than accessing internet? What if you want it primary as internet terminal over all other uses?

And having Ubuntu doesn't have to mean full ubuntu, could be the NBR edition, or running Moblin.

All the alternatives have their own strenghts depending of the use you plan to give to it. And one of the strong points of the device is to have those alternatives.

Re:Nice, but Android? (2, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142924)

I don't know exactly why loads of random vendors who would never have touched linux are putting out android devices rather than stock linux devices, or maemo devices, or moblin devices; but I'd say that Google's motives for using more-or-less-java are fairly clear:

First, of course, they bought Android when it was a startup, founded primarily by ex-Danger guys. They were using java for Android because they had used it for Sidekick, where they had presumably been using it to give themselves some degree of architecture independence.

Second, if Google is planning in the long term for Android, they won't necessarily know what architectures it will be running on. ARM is obvious today; but, who knows, intel might get their mobile act together, or Android might become the darling of set top boxes, or whatever. If the vast majority of 3rd party applications are running in Dalvik, rather than natively, there is some hope that the market won't be hopelessly fragmented by devices of different architecture.

Re:Nice, but Android? (0)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143036)

Android is fine, no touchscreen but a trackpad in back?? EPIC FAIL. this junk will never sell.

Re:Nice, but Android? (2, Informative)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143098)

Android is fine, no touchscreen but a trackpad in back?? EPIC FAIL. this junk will never sell.

It has BOTH. The rear trackpad for when you're holding the device in your hand. Touchscreen for when it's on a desk or your lap.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143410)

It did seem to have a touchscreen since the guy was tapping on things but I couldn't tell if the screen was colour or mono, or switchable between the two. I sort of like the form factor although it's a little too thick. The weird lump looks (well weird) but it would make the device easy to hold while moving around so the device would be quite practical. The biggest question mark is over the OS and what apps it ships with (for bookreading etc.).

Re:Nice, but Android? (2, Informative)

Per Wigren (5315) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144222)

The screen is colour, but it "looks" black'n'white when the backlight is turned off, aka "e-reader mode". Probably you'll see some colours without the backlight if you have a very bright light source (the sun). It will come with Android but it's not locked down so you'll be able to run any Linux distribution on it as long as it supports the Tegra 2 platform.

Personally I want to have one already! *drool*

Pixel Qi displays (3, Informative)

naz404 (1282810) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144464)

I've had the pleasure of getting my hands on a One Laptop Per Child XO-1 laptop (which uses a Pixel Qi display).

I'm relatively sure they were shooting it in color backlit mode in that footage. When you put a Pixel Qi display in sunlight/under bright lights, it'll look like classic black and white LCD even when the backlight is on. When you move it back into the shade/low-light, you'll see the backlit pixels in color again. The nice thing about it is that even if you don't turn off the backlight, it'll still be sunlight readable.

Even nicer is that if you turn off the backlight, the display will look like those old black & white Nintendo Game & Watch or Gameboy LCDs and it consumes so little power, extending battery life tons.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143282)

Well you don't have to use Java (strictly speaking it's not Java but Dalvik), since Android supports native methods. Your Java app could be a stubs that invoke C/C++ for the most part. I am not sure there is any reason to do this unless you absolutely have timing critical code to execute.

Most of the time apps are bound by latency of the user, the network, the database or whatever so it really doesn't matter what they're written in so long as they are responsive enough. Java fulfills this role admirably and also relieves the programmer a lot of the pitfalls and drudgery of development and providing decent system APIs.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

hazydave (96747) | more than 4 years ago | (#31145332)

Java is the high-level language, at least assuming you're using the standard SDK. Dalvik is the byte-code/virtual machine model. There may be other ways to generate Dalvik byte-code in the future.

Re:Nice, but Android? (1)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143334)

I assume Android doesn't insist that your Java bytecode was compiled from Java source.

So if you're really averse to Java syntax, pick from Jython, jRuby, Groovy, Scala, Clojure etc., or compile to Java bytecode from C, Ada, even Cobol!

Re:Nice, but Android? (2, Informative)

Jimmy_B (129296) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144790)

You aren't forced to write in Java, you're forced to write for the JVM. There are other languages [wikipedia.org] that target the JVM, including versions of Ruby, Python, LISP, and my personal favorite, Scala. Using the JVM means that Android isn't locked in to using any one particular CPU instruction set (which was what destroyed the original PalmOS), and that all Android programs and libraries are API-compatible with each other without the need for setting up special bindings.

RAWR (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31142300)


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a_______\___.__C____)_________(_(____>__|__/____a_ _
t_______/\_|___C_____)/INSERT\_(_____>__|_/_____t_ _
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e_____|___(____C_____)\_HERE_/__//__/_/_____\___e_ _
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*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*_


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Like the LCD (4, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142340)

The LCD does look pretty impressive, it seems like it would totally address all of the concerns of those who claim you can't read books on an LCD. They forget that no LCD is emissive, they are all reflective at heart... it's just a matter of what the light source is.

I think the form factor seems decent, I like the faux notebook look and I think the bulge up top is to let you get to the trackpad easily when the device is on your lap - though the trackpad on the back seems a little wierd when you already have a touch-screen, it will be interesting to play with that and see how it works in practice.

The only thing that I saw as a potential downside is the tracking looked kind of slow - when he scribbled rapidly across the screen it lost almost all the input, it was only when they drew much slower that it worked and even then there was a little lag. But hey, they are still working on the software. I wonder what the SDK is like for this device, since it's Android what have they added I wonder?

Re:Like the LCD (2, Interesting)

xlsior (524145) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142368)

though the trackpad on the back seems a little wierd when you already have a touch-screen

Except the touchscreen is difficult to use while you're walking around -- a 10" panel is kind of unwieldy to balance in one hand, especially while applying pressure to the touchscreen in varying locations. Overall this looks like a pretty ingenious setup, although I do wonder if the touchscreen on the back is going to be affected by other things than fingers pressing it.

I'm curious how the monochrome version compares to actual eInk displays.

Re:Like the LCD (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31142638)

Most touchscreens are capacitive these days, so I don't think it will register anything else beside fingers.

All eleven of them.

Re:Like the LCD (1)

joh (27088) | more than 4 years ago | (#31147728)

Most touchscreens are capacitive these days, so I don't think it will register anything else beside fingers.

All eleven of them.

It's somewhat curious that the multitouch touchpads on MacBooks indeed support exactly eleven touch points [blogg.se]...

Re:Like the LCD (1)

cvd6262 (180823) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143732)

I agree with you. Putting a trackpad on the back - if done properly - could be one of those I-can't-believe-we-didn't-think-of-this-before ideas. I hope to see it on more devices, if it works. Even if it does work, it might not catch on. The old Garmin 12 had thumb controls *above* the screen. Despite its efficiency for one-hand use, that format never caught on.

Re:Like the LCD (1)

Arthur Grumbine (1086397) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144340)

I'm curious how the monochrome version compares to actual eInk displays.

Pixel Qi screen's are just as readable [youtube.com], except without the terrible refresh rate of eInk. Also, I don't know if you just misspoke, but do you realize that there are not separate "versions", but that the screen is able to be toggled between black-and-white (no backlight) and full color (backlight) with the press of a button?

Re:Like the LCD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31145258)

Here's a video with a side-by-side comparison with a Kindle's e-ink display-- in sunlight: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oawX3wenxNc [youtube.com]

As far as how the display works, Popular Science has a graphic in this story: http://www.popsci.com/gadgets/article/2010-01/pixel-qi-lcd-screen-could-finally-kill-paper-forever [popsci.com]

(Direct link to the graphic is here: http://www.popsci.com/files/imagecache/article_image_large/articles/pixelqi-howitworks.jpg [popsci.com])

Re:Like the LCD (3, Informative)

hitmark (640295) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142514)

the one problem i have had with browsing when using a touch screen, is the need for "mouse over" various elements.

Re:Like the LCD (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142560)

the one problem i have had with browsing when using a touch screen, is the need for "mouse over" various elements.

This is where I think a variable pressure touchpad would help.

Re:Like the LCD (1)

suomynonAyletamitlU (1618513) | more than 4 years ago | (#31145276)

That's a crappy solution and you know it.

I've commented on this before, but you can NOT use a touchscreen with windowing system features designed for mouse and keyboard, and mouseovers are a good example of this. The effect of a mouseover is to make something happen exactly where you're pointing, so that's a strike against the touch interface even if you do something like variable pressure, double click, or click and hold.

It might be better to have a dedicated button that turns part of the screen into a faux-trackpad strictly for times when you need mouseover capability, which can be turned off the rest of the time--or, you know, just not designing sites to need that kind of ability.

Re:Like the LCD (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#31148096)

I am not claiming a touch interface can work exactly like a mouse interface. I just think it makes sense to touch something lightly to get information about it, and more heavily to interact with it.

Re:Like the LCD (1)

hakey (1227664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144960)

the one problem i have had with browsing when using a touch screen, is the need for "mouse over" various elements.

Watch the video, they put a trackpad on the back so that you can mouse over. Looks like a neat idea, but hard to say if it will catch on or not.

Re:Like the LCD (3, Informative)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142630)

The LCD does look pretty impressive, it seems like it would totally address all of the concerns of those who claim you can't read books on an LCD. They forget that no LCD is emissive, they are all reflective at heart... it's just a matter of what the light source is.

Actually, LCDs are transmissive by nature. Put a mirror behind it, and it becomes reflective. This is how digital watches and calculators have worked for ages, though the "mirror" is not a smooth, shiny reflector for practical reasons. Today you can have a transreflective display with both a backlight and a mirror, thanks to improved light transmission through the LCD.

Re:Like the LCD (1)

pavon (30274) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144474)

Thanks, I'd always wondered how the OLPC screen managed to be both emit light and be reflective. I learned something new today.

Frankly... (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142360)

...this is the first touchpad I was ever excited about. And the first device since the N900.

Let’s see what it costs, and if you can easily format it and install Linux (including working drivers)...

Re:Frankly... (1)

markus_baertschi (259069) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142438)

I agree. this is the kind of device I want. The sunlight-readable screen and the long battery life are essential. Finally I can read my ebooks on the beach !

I might prefer Chrome-OS or a Linux tablet edition over Android. We'll see.

Re:Frankly... (1)

Arthur Grumbine (1086397) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144980)

According to this chart [technoholik.com] (that I've been shamelessly pimping around /.), it will be able to have ChromeOS, or Ubuntu installed on it, although I do not know if Notion Ink plans on this being one of the options in the initial release. Personally, because of the app base, I'd probably choose Android to start with, and then if I was feeling adventurous later, try out ChromeOS. I haven't seen a good touch-friendly gnome or KDE implementation, so I might hold off on Ubuntu until there's an effective touch-UI.

Re:Frankly... (1)

hazydave (96747) | more than 4 years ago | (#31145460)

I agree. There are several things I must have an in eReader, to even bother with one. It needs to work on the beach, and it needs at least an easy day of life of book reading. I also want color and decent resolution on the display, so that magazines and datasheets are at least possible to read. This seems to be the first device that does that, thanks to the Pixel Qi display (been following that one for awhile).

The nVidia Tegra 2 chipset, though, clearly makes this more than an eReader. They've done a great job on the hardware.. as long as they're supporting each of these OSs correctly (nVidia hasn't been great in the past, but they are really serious about being a force in the device market), they were delivering 16+ hours of 1080p video on the devices that were floating around CES this year. This also has HDMI output, so it's definitely going to work as a larger-screen PMP-style device. That's also a dual-core Cortex A9 in the Tegra 2.

I'm wondering about storage... I kind of expect them to go with internal flash rather than a 1.8" HDD, particularly after seeing the size of the thing. I didn't see a memory card slot either, but at least you could "dock" with a USB drive of some sort. That's also key to allowing the device to act as a video/photo field accessory... if I can offload photos and video to it (at least MP4/USB video, I don't imagine I'm getting to hook an HDV camcorder to it), then it's additionally useful in the camera bag.

In short, this one's very exciting to me... and seems to have corrected most every mistake they made on the Apple iPad.

Re:Frankly... (2, Funny)

DeBaas (470886) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142564)

...this is the first touchpad I was ever excited about. And the first device since the N900.

So you haven't been exited about a device since September last year.... Hard times

Re:Frankly... (1)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142742)

Android is Linux. You mean '...and if you can easily switch to another distro.'

Re:Frankly... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31143080)

Android is Google's fork of linux.

"literally badgered" (5, Funny)

jellyfrog (1645619) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142374)

What, with real badgers?

Re:"literally badgered" (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31142622)

real badgers, mushrooms and an occasional snake.

Sigh, (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31142402)

Apple in a way hit spot on, there is no reason to pack the tablet full of features when the form factor hinders utilization of those features, what can you seriously do with a tablet?..
I know people argued the same about netbooks, mainly because of the smaller displays, but fact remains it's a 'hold while using' concept with input requiring at least one free hand, preferably two. I don't have 4 hands and holding it with one will be quite a strain (tried reading a book while lying on your back).
Applications; writing/coding (not really), drawing (not really), reading/browsing (yes), movies (maybe if you don't mind holding it and arching forward, very inconvenient if you eat while watching), gaming (not really) unless you are really into arcade games.
If everything was as easy as it was in Stargate Atlantis for McKay to control everything with only a few clicks, sure, unfortunately, not there yet.

Not saying I wouldn't see the benefits of a tablet in certain situations, but then I'd really prefer an iPad which is 'slimmer'!

Re:Sigh, (2, Informative)

obarthelemy (160321) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142494)

Since that thing has integrated USB ports, you can put it pretty much on any stand you like to keep it propped up while you eat. It will also work with a range of USB and Bluetooth keyboards/mice, making conversion to a netbook easy. The CPU should be quite good, and the screen looks like a winner. I'm a bit worried about price though.

Re:Sigh, (2, Interesting)

Arthur Grumbine (1086397) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144556)

According to Notion Ink, there will be different versions (probably based on 3G capabilities, internal storage like the iPad) ranging from $327 to $800 [gizmodo.com]. I don't really know how they could be making a profit @ $327 with everything they crammed in there, but I'm pretty damn hopeful.

Think Kick Ass Book - Not Computer (2, Insightful)

Shihar (153932) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142914)

I think a lightweight tablet has a lot of potential if it is cheap enough. The $500+ Apple tablet I think costs WAY too much for any but the fanboys who will buy anything Job's touches. If they could get this tablet down to the $200-$300 range I think they could have a winner. I would love to have a little tablet that lets me browse the web, read e-books, store/play music, maybe watch movies, and do other passive media consumption tasks. It is easier and more ergonomic than a laptop when lounging around the house, is the sort of thing you can take on the subway on the way to work with you, and in general is a decent substitute for a book. I can't pull out my laptop and use it while waiting in line, but I could pull out a tablet.

The real issue is that this IS a limited device. It overlaps with smartphones and computers, and it can't be used for much "real" work beyond reading e-mails. The price has to be such that you can justify getting media consumption tool that is only better than your other tools in its convenience. At $500+, it just costs too much. $200-$300 is, in my opinion, closer to the range you need to be in. If you could get it down to $100-$200 and still turn a profit I think every middle class family and their dog would get one. The real issue in my mind is the price. Price is going to determine if this thing breaks open a new market or if it flops horribly. Apple's price is too high. Their tablet is only going to do well on fanboi'ism, and even then I don't think it will go far. An Android tablet is going to battle it out on price alone. If they try and sell at Apple prices this thing is dead on arrival.

Re:Think Kick Ass Book - Not Computer (2, Interesting)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143240)

I work in education IT. An application I'm keen to see in a tablet is the ability to control a desktop computer via a wireless tablet such as this device or the iPad. Especially if the software involved allowed the instructor to enter a mode where they can draw/write on the screen that the students see, allowing them to visually communicate information about applications or web sites they are using.

Why not just use the tablet via some wireless video technology directly to the projector? Because it would be hard for the teacher to run Photoshop on a low-power tablet. But controlling it via the same tablet is quite possible.

There's a market for a product like this. In the small school district I work in, we're seeing substantial spending being directed at presentation technologies, and none of them really do what teachers would like. Having an on-screen remote control like a tablet would be perfect for most of our teachers who use projectors...I'd estimate that's 80-100 teachers in this one small district. Multiply that by the thousands of districts in Texas, half of them larger than us, and this state alone could buy enough units to justify the product. And all you'd really need is a 802.11x tablet that could run VNC with a little extra software to provide the draw-on-screen capabilities.

Re:Think Kick Ass Book - Not Computer (1)

phaggood (690955) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144054)

clicking thru to the 'pictures' link in the article, a comparison chart [technoholik.com] between this device and the iPad says it should be somwehere between $327-$800.

Re:Think Kick Ass Book - Not Computer (1)

joh (27088) | more than 4 years ago | (#31147950)

I think a lightweight tablet has a lot of potential if it is cheap enough. The $500+ Apple tablet I think costs WAY too much for any but the fanboys who will buy anything Job's touches. If they could get this tablet down to the $200-$300 range I think they could have a winner. I would love to have a little tablet that lets me browse the web, read e-books, store/play music, maybe watch movies, and do other passive media consumption tasks.

As always the question is how much money your time is worth (and if you want to have it metered). If the iPad with its OS and apps require/allow much less tinkering than that tablet with Android and Android apps, $500 may be cheaper than $300.

I have seen only very few Android apps that are really great and the fact that there is so much hardware and different screen resolutions to be supported by those apps makes me think that for "just use the thing" an iPad isn't that a bad idea.

I'm not an Apple fanboi but Apple *is* good at making the technology vanish and to make it look like magic instead. Android doesn't even try, it still looks and feels like an OS. I do not want to deal with an OS for consuming media, I want it to be magic.

Saving $200 at my current rate means I have 4 hours over the lifetime of such a tablet to waste with tinkering around before the return turns negative.

I may very well end up with an iPad for the lazy/magic part and an Adam tablet for something I can hack... Or with just hacking real computers, which I have more than enough of. I'm still not really sure if this isn't the point to take some time-out from always screwing around with my devices and get one to just turn into a mindless user now and then. And I'm *very* tempted by the iPad, my geek mind just wants to explore how it feels to just use something that my mother could also use. There may be new fields of insight to be found here.

Re:Sigh, (2, Insightful)

quadrox (1174915) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142956)

Obviously you'd have to lay it on a desk or your lap when you for example want to type an email.

For me the point is not that this sort of device can be used as a handheld device (and ONLY that), but it should work well as a handheld device IN ADDITION to being a proper computer, albeit with lower performance than a big desktop machine.

That way you have ONE device that you can take with you anywhere, which is always useful AT LEAST as a handheld device.

Re:Sigh, (1)

Arthur Grumbine (1086397) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144708)

Obviously you'd have to lay it on a desk or your lap when you for example want to type an email.

For me the point is not that this sort of device can be used as a handheld device (and ONLY that), but it should work well as a handheld device IN ADDITION to being a proper computer, albeit with lower performance than a big desktop machine.

That way you have ONE device that you can take with you anywhere, which is always useful AT LEAST as a handheld device.

And with (to my knowledge, the first) dual-core Cortex A9 MPCORE (1GHz), you may actually be getting snappier performance than most netbooks/bargain-laptops. Especially when you consider the 1080p video encode/decode ability.

Re:Sigh, (1)

quadrox (1174915) | more than 4 years ago | (#31148580)

yes indeed. I'm just wating for one of these devices to come out with a proper screen resolution (1024*768 - seriously?) and a proper Desktop-like OS.

Re:Sigh, (1)

joh (27088) | more than 4 years ago | (#31148122)

For me the point is not that this sort of device can be used as a handheld device (and ONLY that), but it should work well as a handheld device IN ADDITION to being a proper computer, albeit with lower performance than a big desktop machine.

That way you have ONE device that you can take with you anywhere, which is always useful AT LEAST as a handheld device.

To be honest, the keyboard-dock for the iPad was the point where my modest disappointment with the iPad (I hadn't expected anything else than a larger iPhone anyway) turned into shy interest. This thing, along with iWork, looks *so* much like an old-fashioned typewriter executed with modern means. It's probably just a dream but I had some flash of finally using a computer just as a tool I have to and want to waste only very limited thoughts on. I very much doubt that we're there yet, but the dream is still alive.

I'm sorry but no. (1)

pavon (30274) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144860)

I'm usually a fan of Apple's minimalistic design, but the iPad feature set is worthless to me.

Reading: the main purpose of a device like this, but reflective displays are much nicer than emissive. +1 Notion Ink
Drawing: these ought to be great for drawing and sketching but iPad can't due to lack of stylus. -1 Apple
Note taking: again this could be a major use case, but the iPad doesn't support it at all. -1 Apple
Slide Shows: external monitor support, both will require dongles for some situations, iPad always will. -0.5 Apple
Data Transfer: Even for a view-only device I need to copy things off of USB drives and cameras. -1 Apple
Data Sync: I don't want to have to use a fucking remote server to sync with my desktop computer. -1 Apple
Multitasking: I wanted in on the Palm Pilot, you bet your ass I'm going to want it here. -1 Apple
Single hand use: I agree that the UI of these should allow one barehand control for everything it can, which both the iPhone OS and Android should do a better job at than previous Windows Tablets +1 Apple & Notion Ink

And that isn't even getting into the fact that Apple has set itself up as a gatekeep for what applications are even allowed on the device. I love my 20GB iPod and Mac OS X and can see the appeal of the iPhone. I don't get the iPad at all.

Failed a patent on the swivelling camera? (1)

argent (18001) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142720)

Hey, friend, swivelling cameras like that have been around on laptops and handhelds for years.

Eg, Sony TR3A [images-amazon.com].

Amazing (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31142738)

It's amazing how many companies get it wrong on what to bring to market. I'm sorry to say this, but 3 USB ports makes this a neckbeard device. These poor guys in India read the comments on engadget and elsewhere and think that by adding all these superfluous features to a device they'll be able to get the competitive edge over Apple. This formula has been tried before in MP3 player space and it failed in the most spectacular way. I remember Neuros bringing out this monster of a device that supported every format under the sun and 50+ features over the iPod. It still failed. Simplicity won the day.

The general consumer who spends money on these things doesn't think like a geek. They think in situational terms on how it will fit into their life. Spec sheets and feature matrices are the last thing a casual buyer would pay attention to, especially when the tablet category isn't even defined yet.

Why in the hell do I need 3 fucking USB ports on an underpowered toy? What well-adjusted person would connect a fucking tablet to a TV? What is the benefit of running 1080i video on this tiny ass screen?

I'm going to chalk this up to other vaporware products like Crunchpad/JooJoo/Courier. I bet it misses its June target, ships in September and is promptly forgotten 2 days later.

Re:Amazing (5, Insightful)

0ld_d0g (923931) | more than 4 years ago | (#31142958)

Why in the hell do I need 3 fucking USB ports on an underpowered toy?

So that you can connect an external keyboard/mouse? You can step into any generic computer store and buy a cheapo disposable keyboard and work on the device as opposed to being forced to carry apple accessories.

"Hey Apple! Instead of allowing me to connect my existing keyboards, let me pay you extra money so I can only connect apple keyboards!"

What well-adjusted person would connect a fucking tablet to a TV?

To watch movies, photos, online TV (Oh right forgot to mention.. this thing supports flash ;) )? You can step into any generic electronic store and get a HDMI cable for your TV.

"Hey Apple! Instead of allowing me to use my existing HDMI cables, let me pay you extra money so I can only use apple approved TV out connectors!"

What is the benefit of running 1080i video on this tiny ass screen?

"Oh no. This device supports high quality video, let me get that other device that doesn't"

A real genius you are. Got the consumer mindset all figured out...

Re:Amazing (0, Troll)

hiscross (1226636) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143242)

Don't like the iPad or any other Apple product, then don't buy any other their products. Do you think for a New York minute that Apple reads and listens to people like you? NO! They produce, not whine. They build and shop products, not complain about what others (whiners) can't do and that is Produce.

Re:Amazing (2, Insightful)

0ld_d0g (923931) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143602)

Yes, I won't buy the iPad in its current form. Whats your problem with people expressing their opinion? Regardless of whether you do or don't like their products, do you *want* Apple to screw consumers?

Its a typical strategy which many consumer device manufactures use. "Invent" some proprietary way to connect accessories to their device and get a cut for every "apple approved" accessory sold.

Re:Amazing (1)

hiscross (1226636) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143858)

To the best of my knowledge Apple isn't forcing anyone to Buy their products. Be true as it is, then whoever buys a Apple product is making their own decision. That is called consumerism. Now, at work I am forced to use Microsoft products. That is called enterprise. If you look carefully Apple doesn't have a much of a foot print in the enterprise. The reason being is they are a consumer company who sell products to people who want them, not the people who are forced to us them. Your opinion is flawed.

Re:Amazing (1)

0ld_d0g (923931) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143946)

To the best of my knowledge Apple isn't forcing anyone to Buy their products.

Nice strawman. Nobody claimed or asserted that they were.

Your opinion is flawed.

Heh. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opinion [wikipedia.org]

Might want to read up on what it means.

-

Seems you have no point and just want to rant. Anyway, not wasting my time anymore. Goodbye.

Re:Amazing (1)

hiscross (1226636) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144060)

You wrote to me I just responded to your flawed opinion that Apple was somehow hurting the consumer. A opinion that is flawed like yours has no merit. I just pointed that out to you. I'm not concerned a single bit if you don't agree.

Re:Amazing (1)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144142)

So any time any company brings out a product that could be better, nobody's allowed to point out the problems because "you're not forced to buy it"?

Where's the fun in that?

Re:Amazing (1)

masmullin (1479239) | more than 4 years ago | (#31145804)

Whats your problem with people expressing their opinion?

welcome to the apple mindset. Thou shalt not question the almighty Jobs.

Re:Amazing (1)

iluvcapra (782887) | more than 4 years ago | (#31145982)

So that you can connect an external keyboard/mouse? You can step into any generic computer store and buy a cheapo disposable keyboard and work on the device as opposed to being forced to carry apple accessories.

I think the point is that when you buy a bunch of desktop accessories for your tablet, doesn't that sort of defeat the purpose of buying a tablet? The only reason you buy a tablet form factor over a netbook is because a tablet doesn't require a table and can be operated by a standing human, and if you buy a bunch of peripherals that require you to put the thing on a table to use, why didn't you just buy a netbook? A tablet with keyboard and mouse attached, will never fit a desk as well as a netbook.

And besides, in the specific case of the iPad it connects to Bluetooth keyboards and mice, so the ports are just another thing to break or collect schmutz in.

Re:Amazing (1)

0ld_d0g (923931) | more than 4 years ago | (#31148316)

if you buy a bunch of peripherals that require you to put the thing on a table to use, why didn't you just buy a netbook?

Apple themselves are trying to define the market as a device for web/movies/email with a little bit of productivity use thrown in. In that scenario you'd want to make sure that customers can connect k/b / mice easily (well unless you're apple :P)

Also the HDMI out seems pretty logical for a device positioned for presentation use. My general point was these ports make travelling/carrying the device *easier* in many situations.

And besides, in the specific case of the iPad it connects to Bluetooth keyboards and mice, so the ports are just another thing to break or collect schmutz in.

I agree with open ports collecting gunk over time, but we'll have to wait and see if apple allows any generic k/b or mouse to be interfaced with the iPad. Apple's own bluetooth keyboard/mouse? Yes. El cheapo keyboard/mouse? Nobody knows.

From http://www.apple.com/ipad/design/ [apple.com] :

"And because iPad has built-in Bluetooth wireless technology, it works with the Apple Wireless Keyboard, too."

Re:Amazing (4, Insightful)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143066)

Why in the hell do I need 3 fucking USB ports on an underpowered toy?

Keyboard, mouse, flash drive, and they're all used up.

What well-adjusted person would connect a fucking tablet to a TV?

Just as an example, you could show one person your holiday photos on the tablet, or plug into a big TV to show a larger group of people.

What is the benefit of running 1080i video on this tiny ass screen?

They important thing is that this "underpowered toy" can *decode* 1080p video: no need to transcode to a smaller format just to play it on your tablet. Plus, as you noted, plug it into a TV to see the full resolution.

Re:Amazing (1)

MartinSchou (1360093) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143474)

Plus, as you noted, plug it into a TV to see the full resolution.

Screw the TV, I want to plug it into a projector for use in presentations.

Re:Amazing (1)

Fantastic Lad (198284) | more than 4 years ago | (#31143868)

I actually looked up "Neckbeard Device" and found nothing. I have no idea what you are talking about. Please advise, because if you have a cool explanation, I'm totally using it at the next cocktail party I attend.

Also, as has been pointed out. . .

Mouse, Keyboard, USB stick. Done.

Though I sort of agree with you on the video out. Seriously? Has anybody ever truly said, "Damn! I really need to plug my laptop into a television!" -Though, I can envision some sort of emerging market whereby your computer game controller also happens to be your handheld computer. -People being able to bring their own fully personalized game controller to a gaming meet. . , that could be very popular. People extend self-identification to the devices they carry around and use all the time, so being able to plug it in and compete with it in public could be very appealing. But this Notion device certainly isn't thinking that way, so essentially the video-out is just there because of market momentum and because it probably cost them virtually nothing to include.

Still, I have to say that this is the first device of its kind which I have an inkling of interest in. The screen tech is pretty advanced. But you're right; I don't think the Indian manufacturing market has worked out how to sell to the garden variety American. Indians are super-charged with economic energy and optimism, and that's great to see, but they're also operating under the influence of a truly different set of cultural imperatives. The Indian and Western cultures really don't fit together comfortably at all. It'll take a few tries to get it right, and Apple is like GM. It has home turf advantage. Funny thing is that in a few years, (if we're all still here), when the billion people in India transform into potential customers and as our economy tanks, they probably won't bother even trying to sell over here with such verve.

-FL

Re:Amazing (1)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#31144110)

I actually looked up "Neckbeard Device" and found nothing. I have no idea what you are talking about.

http://encyclopediadramatica.com/Neckbeard [encycloped...matica.com]

Though I sort of agree with you on the video out. Seriously? Has anybody ever truly said, "Damn! I really need to plug my laptop into a television!"

Yeah, for a couple of reasons:

Watching Movies and TV programs available online, whether through legitimate channels (BBC iPlayer and 4 On Demand in the UK, or Hulu in the US) or otherwise. Hell, I've even had groups of people round for drinks, and ended up with people gathered round the TV watching YouTube clips.

Gaming. Some games are going to be perfect in tablet mode. Some games demand a desk with a keyboard and mouse. Some games only really shine when you play as if you're on a console, on a big TV, sat on a sofa with a controller. Warning Forever [wikipedia.org] is a great game on your laptop. Use an Xbox controller and a TV, and it's even more magnificant.

Unfortunately my laptop doesn't have HDMI, and my TV's VGA input is fussy about modes. I can't seem to get a full widescreen with correct aspect ratio. It's annoying.

Re:Amazing (1)

Orbijx (1208864) | more than 4 years ago | (#31145380)

Has anybody ever truly said, "Damn! I really need to plug my laptop into a television!"

I have.

Plug a set of speakers in, connected an S-Video cable and the AC Adapter, disabled screensaver.

Watch Hulu and Youtube videos on a screen significantly larger than my laptop's, so I can sit back and enjoy the first week of being in my new apartment (Cable company came and hooked us up to the internet on the same afternoon we moved in, which was amazing).

It's one of the draws to a compact device -- knowing you can carry it from room to room and show videos.

Depending on the setup, I could see this as being useful in an educational setting -- give the teachers a lightweight device that they can check out from a central repository (the media center at my old high school comes to mind), and something to project images up to. When they're done, check 'em back in, or chain them down securely to something that's immobile.

Instead of those boring laminate slides and the plain overhead projectors, you could have something that can be colorful and interactive. It could certainly make Biology much more interesting, for example.

If a device like this catches on in an educational setting, you could end up with lots of applications that can save money in the long run.
Virtual dissection for biology class, anyone? Can't object so much to cutting things open when there's no formaldehyde smell (note to self: if this app happens, create a formaldehyde scented diffuser for that "Real Dissection Smell"...).
No? How about 3D rotatable molecules for chemistry classes to help visualize what's being worked with?
No? How about a visual math application, helping people who are learning the basics of algebra visualize how you get from one point to another when using it? I know I could have used it -- I nearly failed Algebra the first time, because I couldn't make it make sense in my head until someone actually started drawing some of it out for me.
I'm sure that there are a boatload of other suggestions that are out there, too. Make the device and the necessary gear to set it up in an educational environment affordable, and I'd dare say there are schools that would consider running a pilot program to see how much it boosts education by, at the very least.

But alas, I ramble too much and feel like I might be preaching to the choir. :)

Re:Amazing (1)

hazydave (96747) | more than 4 years ago | (#31145614)

> Why in the hell do I need 3 fucking USB ports on an underpowered toy?

So you can hook in a mouse or keyboard. Or your digital video or still camera, to preview what you just shot on a big screen (Epson sells specialty devices that do this for $500+). To access additional information from USB storage devices, keys or HDDs. To download routes to your car GPS unit (they're not all wireless yet). To download music to your media player. USB is a dandy thing to have... Apple as bone stupid to not support at least one USB port in the iPad.

> What well-adjusted person would connect a fucking tablet to a TV? What is the benefit of running 1080i video on this tiny ass screen?

The 1080p output is for the HDMI connector.. obviously, you don't run full resolution on a smaller screen. The reason you'd want to hook this to a TV? Same reason you would want to hook any PMP to a television -- you have this portable media player with you, and hey, look, a TV. Same reason I can hook every one of my camcorders to a TV. Apple was bone stupid not to offer HDMI out on the iPad.

The whole point of a general purpose tablet computer is to replace a bunch of things done by "digital appliances" today. It's an eBook reader. And a PMP. And a photo/video previewer. And an internet tablet. And anything else you want it to be.

Ever used a smartphone? If you use one for awhile, you'll notice it's not really so much a telephone anymore, it's a general purpose pocket computer. It's a GPS, It's a PMP/MP3 player. It's an organizer. It's a mobile search engine. Same thing here with a well designed tablet. This is a well designed tablet.. in fact, perhaps the first one with the hardware necessary to actually deliver more than just "fat iPod" functionality.

As an eReader (1)

masmullin (1479239) | more than 4 years ago | (#31146102)

Im being picky here, but the screen is an awkward shape for eBooks. 1024x600 as 10.1" is a rather elongated rectangle, and isn't anywhere near the same ratios as 8.5"x11" paper (22:17 which pdfs emulate). It's not a 16:9 ratio It's a strange 128:75 ratio

I think this will leave readers of pdfs with a shrunken page so that it will fit into the slimness when the tablet is held vertically, and with a little bit of the next page seen at the bottom of the screen.

I dont think the screen shape will be good for text reading, I dont think it will be good for holding, I dont think its good for movies, I dont think its particularly good for normal applications.

Other than "because thats the size the pixel Qi makes" I cant think of a good reason for this elongated screen.

However, I truly truly hope that I am wrong. I really want this product to succeed, but why the weird screen?

Re:As an eReader (1)

joh (27088) | more than 4 years ago | (#31148262)

Im being picky here, but the screen is an awkward shape for eBooks. 1024x600 as 10.1" is a rather elongated rectangle, and isn't anywhere near the same ratios as 8.5"x11" paper (22:17 which pdfs emulate).

As much as I like the Pixel Qi displays I have to admire Apple to be bold and go back to the good old 1024x768. I was totally surprised by that but they're right.

There's another problem with 1024x600: When you turn the thing around the height/width ratio changes so much that you either have to totally re-adjust your UI or have to accept some awkward compromise that somewhat works with both orientations and somewhat sucks in both.

OK, Android apps have to deal with so many different screen solutions that this probably is the smallest of your problems. But I very much doubt that this will help Android with UI excellence.

Got my Adam Tablet, now where's the Eve. . . (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 4 years ago | (#31146620)

I just need to inject some Eve now, and I'll be all set for my trip to Rapture!

The Sort of Innovation We Wanted from Apple (1)

donnacha (161610) | more than 4 years ago | (#31148788)

The rear trackpad is wonderful. Before the iPad was introduced, I suspected that Apple would use two rear trackpads to allow users to type while gripping the pad, I thought that was what the rumors about a "surprising" input method meant. Whether for cursor movement or the more advanced idea of text entry, using the back of a pad - where our fingers will be most of the time anyway - if such an obviously good idea. When you have a small screen, why obscure it with your hands? I had also hoped that the iPad would use the Pixel Qi screen. Apple decided to build upon their previous iPhone innovation rather than introduce new innovation - Apple are remorselessly focused upon creating a mainstream, "appliance" product and, to be fair, that makes a lot more business sense than trying to delight techies like us. Congratulations, though, to Notion Ink for creating a truly innovative tablet.
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