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celtic_elk

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Tablet Talk: the OS question [Jan. 31st, 2010|11:27 pm]
celtic_elk
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or, why Windows tablets suck. Or something.Collapse )
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Tablet Talk: hardware and design [Jan. 31st, 2010|01:45 pm]
celtic_elk
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...or, why doesn't the iPad have a USB port? Or a webcam?Collapse )
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Tablet posts forthcoming [Jan. 31st, 2010|01:12 pm]
celtic_elk
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In the wake of the iPad announcement, I've been thinking a lot about various aspect of its design and functionality, and I'd like to record my thoughts here in a series of posts. I want them available to the open web, so I won't put them on a filter, but I recognize that this is not an interesting topic to most of the people on my friends list, so the text will be under cut tags, and you won't hurt my feelings if you don't read them.
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Tablet predictions [Jan. 28th, 2010|03:48 pm]
celtic_elk
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As a break from the work stuff I'm doing today, some predictions around the Apple iPad:

For tech geeks only. You won't hurt my feelings if you skip this one.Collapse )
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Tablet thoughts [Jan. 27th, 2010|04:06 pm]
celtic_elk
[Tags|]

The Apple Tablet - excuse me, the iPad - release event is now over, so I'll take a break from the tech blogs, where everybody's shouting about how much it sucks, and register my opinion.

It's pretty, but we've come to expect that from Apple, right? It's thin, it's light-ish (1.5 lbs), it's reportedly amazingly fast, and it does pretty much everything I need a portable device to do. There's no Flash, but that's a known Apple quirk, and while I'll need to find an alternate way to get my Homestar Runner fix (YouTube, probably), I can probably live without it. Lack of multitasking is a bigger surprise, and a bigger disappointment - does Apple really think we'll never need to switch between web browsing and word processing without losing our places in either? This could conceivably be fixed in an OS upgrade, though, and I'm pretty firmly convinced (albeit with no hard evidence) that Apple will roll out an OS upgrade for the iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad this summer that provides multitasking. It runs all the iPhone/iPod Touch apps out of the box (well, except the ones that require missing hardware, like a camera or GPS), and the SDK was released today, so I expect a suite of device-specific apps to be available when the device ships in March.

Shockingly, I think Apple nailed the price point on this: $499/599/699 for 16/32/64 GB WiFi-only models (with a $130 premium for 3G on each level). That's well within my budget, even at the 64 GB level. The enTourage eDGe I've been considering is comparably priced ($530 to get it in black, and then I'd need to get a 16GB SD card for additional storage, so figure $570-600 total); it's also substantially heavier, and there are vastly more available apps in the Apple ecosystem than for Android. So it looks like I'll be buying an iPad. I'll let you know how that goes. (More info at Apple's iPad site.)
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Unnecessary alliteration: on [Jan. 18th, 2010|10:26 am]
celtic_elk
It was a weekend largely of intellectual pursuits for me, most notably the inaugural session of what alfrecht and I are jokingly calling the "Crazy Celtic Cafe," wherein we hang out at a coffeeshop for a few hours and discuss Celtic studies and related issues (read: anything else we feel like talking about). I had a really good time: alfrecht shared some of the material he's been thinking about lately, and was very encouraging about the plausibility of one of my own potentially-wild-ass theories, and there was coffee and baked goods and general hanging-outness, which is not something I've done a whole lot since grad school.

Apart from that, the weekend was largely reading, writing, and a few chores (including inexplicable yogurt fail - the temperature was wrong, or I got a bad packet of starter, or something). MLK Day today means no classes, which means a refreshingly quiet campus and some time to plan my 100-level biology instruction session for Thursday. Onward!
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Weekend [Jan. 10th, 2010|04:47 pm]
celtic_elk
[music |The Divinyls - I Touch Myself (internal)]

I've kept pretty busy this weekend, but it's been a good variety of busy. On Friday night otterkin and I went out with alfrecht; he and I have had some conversation in other LJ venues, and as he's teaching at the U this semester, I thought it would be fun to spend some time hanging out. Fortunately, I was right. =) We went out for dinner, and then dragged him across town to pick up some housewares for his apartment, and generally geeked out in various regards along the way. On Saturday I spent some time reading over coffee at Panera, ate the heavenly beef-and-noodles dish that otterkin prepared for dinner, and went out dancing with alfrecht at Plastic Passion, where we met a few other library folks and generally got our 80s rock on. I made sure to spend some time stretching afterward, so hopefully I won't suffer the same sort of unpleasantness as last time I went dancing, when I strained an iliotibial muscle and was pretty much inactive for a few weeks. Today I've been lounging around the house, rewriting an article on the Dagda for submission to Thorn, catching the last of the CES coverage on the tech blogs, and doing a little kitchen cleaning. otterkin is back from her tamale-making workshop, so we'll be making a pizza for dinner.

In summary: life is good, with expectation of more good to come. I'll take that.
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Tablet thoughts [Jan. 8th, 2010|02:49 pm]
celtic_elk
[music |Dub Trio - Not For Nothing]

As I said earlier this week, one of my to-do items this year is to buy a slate-form tablet computer. I've never owned a portable computer, and now that we have the MiFi, I'd like to have a device of my own for using in the living room and taking out of the house, rather than borrowing otterkin's laptop. I do far more content consumption than creation, and most of my content creation needs are fairly light, so a slate form factor makes sense to me: I can choose to carry a Bluetooth or USB keyboard if I think I might need one, but otherwise I'm free of the weight. (This is one reason not to buy a convertible tablet laptop; another is that I really dislike the design of the pivoting hinge that all of those devices seem to use.) I will admit that the "wow, that's cool!" factor of an all-touch computing device is also in play, but it's not the driving reason to purchase one. At least for me. I think.

With that in mind, what am I looking for? I have a few seemingly-simple requirements, but they're making it a bit challenging to select a device:

Here's the listCollapse )

[EDIT: the Notion Ink Adam is also looking very tempting, and is slated for release sometime in Q2, with final design and pricing announced at Mobile World Congress in mid-February.]
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New year, new tasks [Jan. 5th, 2010|02:41 pm]
celtic_elk
[music |Talking Heads - Psycho Killer (2005 remix)]

2009 sucked ass. Between physical pain and emotional pain, things totally my fault and things completely out of my control, 2009 was the Year That Sucked. I am determined that 2010 will be a better year. Some things I'm planning to do in that period:

List below the cutCollapse )
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Gone but not forgotten [Jan. 5th, 2010|02:13 pm]
celtic_elk
Gerald Elmer Martin
Feb 7 1948 - Dec 12 2009

Thanks to everyone who expressed their sympathies, either directly or through otterkin's various communication channels.
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