In praise of the iPad

I’ve never been a big fan of Apple products. I tried a Mac a year ago and discovered that maybe I’m not that intuitive. I use an iPod at the gym, but haven’t attempted the sophistication of playlists. I’m a shuffle kind of guy.

I guess that’s my way of saying I never had iPad envy. Sure the device looks good, but I’d struggled with the iPhone’s keyboard and thought iPad would be more of the same. Besides I hate lining up for anything; it’s too much like those old images of Soviets waiting for hours for a roll of toilet paper.

But…all that aside, I saw people I know and respect using iPads, heard them extolling its virtues, exclaiming what a breakthrough device it was. So I succumbed. I put my name on a list and waited. And after I got the email telling me it had arrived, I went to the Eaton Centre bought it, took it out of the box and was immediately struck by buyer’s remorse.

And then, I loaded my first apps (is that also short for Apple?) – Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook, WordPress, Kindle – and each effortlessly appeared. At first, I felt like Neil Armstrong on the moon. I was moving in a direction I wanted to go though it sure felt cumbersome.

Once I stopped looking for the start button and mastered some Apple idiosynchracies, things got a lot better.  Though I’m still not great at selecting and moving text – I opt to retype.

But when @thornley told me about Reeder, the RSS heavens parted. All of a sudden I could catch up and manage my blog feeds in a way I hadn’t been able to for a long time. The interface is fun and functional and the portability of the iPad means I can read them wherever I have a few minutes and don’t have to feel laptop-bound.

Do I need an iPad? Do I need a latte in the morning? Not really. Both are guilty pleasures, I suppose.

I do have to hand it to Apple for taking Internet portability to a new level and coming up with a visual-verbal-content-device. It reminds me a bit of the Moleskin notebook in its utility and minimalist-cool design.

I remember the first time I bought a Moleskin, took it to a cafe and started writing. I felt like a real expat author, even though I was still in Canada and wasn’t wearing a beret.

I get a similar feeling with the iPad. I’m just glad it didn’t come with a hat.

Note: this was written and most of the links added on the iPad WordPress app and then cleaned up with additional links added on a laptop. If anyone can tell me an easy way to add links on the WordPress app, I’d really appreciate it.

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