So last week.
You might recall - I did go on about it a bit on Twitter - my internet died. It died at the very moment I needed it most... though if it'd died on another occasion, that would have been the worst possible time for it to go down too, sure enough. I brook no illusions otherwise.
But let's not get distracted. My tubes are in full working order again, and that's grand - thank you internet fairies! - but my connection has never been the most reliable thing, and given how inextricable the work I do each day is from the internet, I decided - hell, I didn't need much of a push, if I'm honest - that it was time to sacrifice a few hundred first-born squids for a shiny new tablet.
Because I'd thought about this. At length. I hate iTunes with a fiery, filthy passion - we'll not get into that today - and besides which, I don't believe the ability to make use of removable storage in addition to whatever mounted memory this or that model of iPad has should be in any sense a question. And yet.
So the part of me that's argued against every Apple product I've considered buying in the past - which is to say most of them - won out once again. And thank the lord for that. I've had almost a whole week now with my eee Pad Transformer, and if it's not quite the device that the new iPad is, nor was it anything like the price of that extortion-mongering machine - and as aforementioned, an iPad wasn't what I wanted anyway.
I wanted a tablet primarily so I'd have a practical way of staying connected when all else fails, as so often all else is wont to do. I wanted an Android tablet because the notion of slapping in a USB key or a Micro SD card stuffed full of books and movies and comics and music rather than having to filter everything through iTunes - and be forced perhaps to re-buy certain things, otherwise acquired - meant an iPad was quite out of the question, and would remain so (given Apple's well-documented aversion to surrendering control) however long I opted to wait.
Which I wasn't much for doing anyway. I'd been waiting for the right tablet for more than a year as was - since the iPad was first announced, I'd had the hankering. And before that, I'd waited an age for the right e-book reader; one with colour, so I could read all my old scanned comics on it too, and maybe - who knows? - a few new releases, too. So it was long past time to take the plunge. And then there was a sweet time-limited deal for the tablet sans dock . And now I'm rather poorer, but that's alright: whether I end up on the mean streets or not, I have my eee Pad Transformer now.
I'll always have my Transformer. :)
Now then. The scene's set. I've had my tablet for a week, and here are a few of the things I've accomplished with it in that time:
- I read two books from start to finish, which you'll be seeing full reviews of shortly
- I devoured maybe twenty comics, including some Conan and the first collected volume of Locke and Key, which may just have reignited an old (and expensive) passion in me
- I watched a film - Harry Potter, you so small! - and several episodes of South Park - when will it end?
- I managed to set up internet streaming for my entire mp3 library, for free, through the AudioGalaxy app
- and I've written an entire blog post. Well, I will have done once I've finished this!
And what I want to know is this: what do you want to know?
If any of you are on the fence about buying a tablet, wondering how viable these things are as e-book readers, or comic book viewers, or portable video players, or netbooks, or oversized iPods, well. I hereby invite you to ask me anything you please.
(And don't think I've forgotten the last time I did that - it's still coming. It is!)
So to what extent would you all be interested in hearing about the various e-book apps, their relative strengths and weaknesses? Does a blow-by-blow of the reading experience on a 10.1" IPS screen appeal? Would anyone care to read about the comic book viewers on offer in the app marketplace, for instance?
Because I'll gladly take the time to write up my impressions... if, that is, there are enough of you out there that give a monkey's. No sense in wasting your time or mine, after all.
Thus, I ask of you, fair readers: who has an ape to spare?