The blogosphere is lit up with talk of the iPad a day before it comes out.
Respect the User
Some four years ago, I bought a Palm Pilot. I had just landed my first job as a journalist and desperately wanted something to keep up with all my new contacts.
I think I used it four times. I ended up scribbling my contacts in my reporter’s notebook, and transferring them to a text document for easy electronic transporting.
It didn’t fit into my life. Palm failed in a way with its devices.
It was faster to just scribble the name when on location and in a rush. The text file proved easier to get to and navigate than my Palm device.
Is it just Hype?
I think the Apple iPad could suffer the same fate.
Here’s my thoughts on the iPad:
- It could end up being a nice around-the-house kind of computer, perfect for checking email or browsing the web.
- It could be too big for people to carry it with them everywhere.
- As Cory Doctorow pointed out, Apple has made a killing on closed off devices and applications.
- However, the iPad might fall short of expectations because it doesn’t embrace the free/open-source mentality that’s gathering steam on the web.
- I don’t think it will save the news industry. The news is no longer a commodity. Anyone can distribute news these days, so journalists still have to figure out how to make the news they gather more valuable than most.
Final Word: No technology is perfect, so the iPad won’t be the be-all, end-all some may think. It will have its fans and detractors. I’ll give it chance, but would have to try one extensively before ever buying one.
Image by Leonardini.
Note: This post is a short assignment for my class in Contemporary Media Issues about the iPad and its release.