The whole Tablet PC thing has me perplexed and an article from JKOnTheRun has pointed out why.
I like the concept of a Tablet PC and they seem to work OK (from what I’ve seen). I have times when pen & paper just frustrate the hell out of me but I think pen on paper is the best interface invented so far. The idea of taking electronic paper into meetings, MindManaging, or sketching concepts is wonderful. So why I don’t I have a Tablet?
Too slow – Ok for office app’s but CAD with 3d models, I don’t think so.
Too expensive – Compared to comparable spec laptops.
Too big – To carry around everywhere, everyday.
I don’t even have, or want, a PDA!
Too limited – A few 10’s to a few 100’s of MB memory, not enough.
Too small – Ok for contacts but serious work, even “proofing” or referencing docs from office app's? – No thanks.
Too much hassle – Cut down OS, Cut down applications, all that syncing and converting (for CAD view), and limited features in the files/applications that do work.
The only “connected” mobile device I have is a Nokia phone that I sync with Outlook. The only reason that appealed was the pain of entering name, number, email etc into a phone via its keyboard. That it can carry a few weeks’ appointments, some notes/reminders and other information was enough to eliminate the desire for a PDA. The Phone + USB Memory Drive to transfer work between desktops at home and work are as mobile as I get for now but its only because I haven't found what I want and it’s my money I’m spending.
JK has written the spec for a new class of hardware - the Mini Tablet PC. He has the distinct advantage of working with something close to a Mini Tablet PC now. Running the full XP Tablet OS on a Sony U70 has allowed him to create the specifications for a Mini Tablet PC based on real life experience. I like the idea of a tablet but have not got close to getting one. Have a look at his article about the specification for the Mini-Tablet PC and decide for yourself: Would you buy one?
I would, it’s just what I want.