Traveling with just the iPad. Review from week two.

The second week I had my iPad I traveled to San Francisco – for 5 days. I travel light – I can travel for a week with a single backpack. I have not checked luggage in 10+ years.

So what worked?

No WiFi on the plane, even though it was United both ways. Their bitch airlines (err, partnerships) don’t seem to offer it. But I had placed a number of videos on my iPad that me and a coworker were able to view in-flight that made the flight seem shorter that it was (headphone splitter required).

In five days I never even had to consider battery life – the device just worked when I needed it to. I did plug it in when I remembered – but unlike my iPhone I was not “jonesing” for power all the time.

Email with corporate worked wonderfully until I needed to print, sign and fax something – so I thought I have found the iPad’s Achilles’s Heal. Until I realized that in a foreign office I would not have been able to print the document even from my Macbook Pro. Instead I emailed it to someone in the office, got the paperwork done, and moved on. Easier than installing printer drivers on a MacBook. So no issue.

Connectivity. I do not have a 3G iPad – so I relied on WiFi during the entire trip. Guess what – 90% of the time that is available in a city like San Francisco. Or San Antonio. ONLY once was I left without WiFi and that was in a scary little bar in China town that I should not have been in.

I received no attachments I could not view and comment on (sure – I could not edit them). Basically I had email, and Skype, and GTalk (although not all at the same time – hurry up that multi-tasking, Apple)

Bottom line is that I can travel with just my iPad. No Laptop Required. For what I need to do when on the road the iPad just works. And gives me the added pluses of battery life, entertainment, light weight and being instant-on. When I needed it, it was ready.

So if you have an iPad, and are doing a trip – trust the iPad. It is a good replacement for a laptop unless you have to create a ton of content.

My early experience with the iPad

Since I am reviewing the iPad I am also writing his post on the iPad.

I wl not correct any typos
Or odd formatting errors (like the random carriage return above)

As you canp seethe onscreen keyboard is a challenge
Pbut the devce is amazing.

OK – the above was written using the iPad o-screen keyboard – which either I need to get used to, or it sucks. I thought the iPhone keyboard sucked at first but learned to use it, and expect the same is true of this. Right now I am typing with the (optional) bluetooth keyboard – which I have had for two years so I am used to it.

So what is bad about the iPad?

1) It does not multi-task – so for me it can NEVER replace a notebook unless it adds that capability. I am a multi-tasking fool and need Twitter, numerous IM clients and email and Browser open always.
2) I can’t program it with NewtonScript (yeah – leave me alone – I liked NewtonScript!)
3) I couldn’t afford more than one of them.
4) The docking port is in the wrong place. I would have put it so that when docked I was in wide-screen (so I could watch movies, etc)
5) It is WAY too slippery. I would have preferred a rubberized coating that gave me some grip – you almost HAVE to have a case for this thing – which makes it feel much larger that it really is.

What is great about the iPad? Almost everything else. From reading books, to streaming wide-screen Netflix movies, reading news sites – it is amazingly easy to use. It is amazing easy for even me to spend even more time online (and trust me – that is saying something).

It is so natural to pick it up and read on it – especially for anyone who grew up with books. This feels like a good-sized novel. About 1.5 pounds. But it carries thousands of books.

The battery life is amazing. Apple (kudos to them!) sold me a unit that was 96% charged – so after 10 minutes on the charger I had a full charge. After two hours completely undocked and watching video, reading blogs, etc I still am at 93% power.

Apps built for this device look amazing – and apps that weren’t built for it kinda suck – but I still prefer them on this device than on my iPhone – partially because I can actually SEE this screen 🙂

I’m sure I’ll have more later, but for now this will have to do. TIme to go watch some Netflix on my iPad!

Things Geeks Appreciate

I spent the day at the new Rackspace Headquarters.  First visit since I went with Scoble early this year.  It was under construction then (I am now a Mosso/Rackspace employee).

What impressed me?  The Dyson Airblade.

Really – a hand blower/dryer that actually works!

Everything in the bathrooms is no touch – even the soap dispenser (which I love, coming from a medical background).

But the Airblade – very cool.  It actually works!  In like 15 seconds!  And your hands are dry.

I want one.

I tried to take one, but I didn’t have the right set of tools to steal one.  Besides, I was in a high level meeting, and walking in with the hand dryer would have been odd.

I love great tech – and Dyson makes amazing stuff.  I LOVE their vacuums.  How many geeks do you know that talk about vacuums?  Only the ones who have bought a Roomba OR a Dyson.  The Dyson is a work of technology and art.  The Roomba is a conversation piece.

Some of the key Mosso/Rackspace employees geeked out over the Dyson products today.

I did 🙂

Oh Really? Vista?

Microsoft did a “blind taste test” with a group that thought they were looking at the NEXT version of Windows – code-name Mojave.

Some of the clips showing the reaction of people that had preconceptions about Vista are pretty classic.

First, the “Oh Really?” group:

Then the main site:

I like Vista myself, even though I am now on a Mac every day – I run Vista on it in VMware Fusion.

Nicely done, Microsoft (could have been done in Silverlight instead of Flash – perhaps after the Olympics drive more Silverlight adoption, ok?)

Across The Universe (Movie Review)


I watched this movie this morning – it was lent by a friend, and I had no idea what it was about. 

It is a musical.

And normally that would have ended my review (and viewing) – there are few musicals I have enjoyed enough to watch all the way through.

If you enjoy music by The Beatles you will almost certainly enjoy this film. 

The movie is a kaleidoscope of the sounds and images of the turbulent 1960’s.  I really enjoyed not just the sound track, but the storyline.

Definitely worth a watch.


Across the Universe is a 2007 Academy Award-nominated musical film produced by Revolution Studios and distributed by Columbia Pictures. It was released in the United States on October 12, 2007. The script is based on an original story credited to Julie Taymor, Dick Clement, and Ian La Frenais that incorporates 33 compositions written by members of The Beatles. The film, directed by Taymor, stars Jim Sturgess, Evan Rachel Wood, Joe Anderson, and T.V. Carpio, and it introduces Dana Fuchs and Martin Luther McCoy as actors. There are cameo appearances made by Bono, Eddie Izzard, Joe Cocker, Salma Hayek, and others.



Across the Universe (film) – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia