Yeah, I’ll admit it. I’m pschyed about the iPad. No, it isn’t perfect. Yep there are some obvious flaws (lack of USB port or SD card reader are big ones for me), but I’m excited about how this will change how we use computers. I remember I wasn’t too keen on the iPhone at first, but I knew from the moment I saw it that it changed how we would use and interact with smart phones from then on. Same with the iPad (I agree, the name is terrible, just awful). Maybe the iPad isn’t what everyone will be carrying, fine, but I think Apple’s endorsement of the form factor and technology will boost all tablet makers. Sony and Amazon, well they have some catching up to do. Nothing that a color screen won’t fix though.
What I’m most interested in seeing with the iPad is how ebooks can combine multimedia within a book. Even live websites. Right now I’m writing Using WordPress, which is a beginner-focused WordPress book. In each chapter there will be screencasts and audio segments. Being able to pull those up in line with the text they refer to? Holy smokes that would be awesome. How about a special “section” at the end with updates and changes pulled live from the Internet?
Think about paying less for academic textbooks. Think about textbooks that can self-update over the Internet.
Sure these aren’t nearly as interesting a a game or drawing program. But I certainly can imagine using an iPad to review changes to chapters, jot notes, read books …
Now I just need to imagine the money I need to buy one.