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future generation iPads vs. Surface

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi, everyone.

 

How do you think Apple will change the iPad to compete with the next generation Surface that is supposed to debut in January?

 

My understanding is that the surface will be the full fledge Windows operating system on a tablet....

 

Do you think we will see an iPad with a stylus designed by Apple and with higher resolution input? Maybe an iPad with a true filing system?

 

Any thoughts?

post #2 of 10
Apple has to do nothing. Microsoft is destroying itself.
Windows 8, the OS on the Surface, is two different things. There is a version for phones and low-end tablets. There is also a version for high-end tablets and conventional computers. The two versions look alike. They run applications that look alike. They are also incompatible with each other (at the application level).
If perchance by Surface, you mean one of those laptop computers that flips and folds, then worry not. This is not the first time that this idea has been put on the market. It failed before. Based on news reports, fan sites, and personal conversations, I surmise that these flip-and-fold computers in their latest incarnation will also fail.
They are a dumb idea. Apple does not chase dumb ideas.
post #3 of 10
Windows 8 (non RT) has been built as a hybrid system by trying to hold onto the legacy UI and support but adding touch input in much the same way that HP added their own touch controls in TouchSmart computers.

Some of Apple's patents show the full Mac UI on touch devices but they'd have to figure out how to deal with modal windows and menus before it's practical. It looks usable in the following video:



but obviously the screen would be better lying down. They have to figure something out with the mouse pointer too. It works to have both:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=5BEVZjjdpGo#t=99s

but it's a bit clunky jumping between two input methods.

Windowing is a big problem for touch UIs. Microsoft tried to do some split pane view but it looks terrible:



but if you don't have windowing, imagine launching the calculator on a 27" display. Some apps are going to have small UIs.

- menu bars are bad because they are too small (status bar is necessary)
- windowing doesn't work properly
- app-centric filesystem doesn't work in a productive environment but the Finder doesn't work in a touch enviroment because it's a windowed app
- multiple input methods are clunky
- dock doesn't work unless it's always visible

If you don't do a split-view though, how can you do something as simple as comparing two photos side-by-side or an email and a Word document or an Illustrator document and a Photoshop document? If you do have a split view, small UI apps like the calculator will only fill a small portion of the height of the split, which looks bad.

This setup might not be too bad:



but iPad apps are designed for fixed aspect displays. Mac apps have to scale to different sizes.

I think it's a good idea to make filesystem management passive instead of active so it should move into a panel activated by the say the Spotlight icon and look like the notification panel:



You would be able to create multiple panels and drag them left and right. There would be no column view and never side scrolling but as you clicked down the folders, the path could show as a stack. This view would always be on top so when you were in a fullscreen app, you can not only access the filesystem but do file management without leaving the app.

Say you are in Photoshop full screen, you just tap the icon, and drag files into the app. It would have a media browser like iOS so photos, music etc can have special tabs and easier to find. You'd also play and manage music this way. It wouldn't necessarily get rid of iTunes but you would no longer need to use iTunes to play music.

Most apps would be fullscreen capable and there would have to be a split view somehow but done properly.

The menu bar obviously doesn't work when apps are side by side so the menu bar functionality has to go. They can perhaps do something like the notification bar gesture so you'd drag down to access command buttons. This would mean no horizontal splits in the split view though. Apple has documents about using alternative menu styles like radial menus you could invoke with a gesture. Something like a 4 finger tap can bring up the menu and it has a circle of options. As you tap an item, the circle can be replaced with the submenu and tap the centre to go back. It can actually be a fixed height scrollable list view too so that it allows for large menus. It could behave like the Finder panel with stacking commands.

How you create a split, assign apps to them, hide/show apps, what happens with an on-screen keyboard, portrait view and so on are further complications among probably a long list of things. The UI we use on the desktop now feels old but it was obviously designed very well to cover all of these uses and it will take a lot of work to create a touch UI with that flexibility. I think they are working on these problems and the UI changes we've seen like the hiding scroll bar, Launchpad, Mission Control, fullscreen mode, resizing from all sides etc are fixes for some of the problems.
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi, guys.

 

Thanks for the responses. Those were great. Here's my problem - perhaps you can advise me.

 

I want to get an iPad to use it as a replacement for a notebook. I want to take notes on it at conferences and lectures I go to (etc).

 

But, I find it frustrating to write with my finger and even with the various stylus inputs. The fat rubber tip is just not cutting it for me. Plus, the "input resolution" is simply too poor to be functional. It's made for a finger and not for a fine point.

 

I just don't think it will work for my needs. Maybe I am wrong? I don't know.

 

The other problem, of course, is the lack of a way to organize my notes since there does not seem to be a real file system.

 

Thanks.

post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr.Bimane 
I want to get an iPad to use it as a replacement for a notebook. I want to take notes on it at conferences and lectures I go to (etc).

But, I find it frustrating to write with my finger and even with the various stylus inputs. The fat rubber tip is just not cutting it for me. Plus, the "input resolution" is simply too poor to be functional. It's made for a finger and not for a fine point.

You get iPad cases with keyboards built-in:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Leather-Case-Cover-built-in-bluetooth-keyboard-for-iPad-iPad-2-and-iPad-3-/321012364093?pt=US_Tablet_eReader_Cases_Covers_Keyboard_Folios&hash=item4abdd3f33d
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr.Bimane 
IThe other problem, of course, is the lack of a way to organize my notes since there does not seem to be a real file system.

If you get an FTP host, you can copy documents to it and manage them in folders from the iPad. Some apps will have more advanced file management:

http://www.quickoffice.com/quickoffice_pro_hd_ipad/

You just won't be able to open those files in multiple apps easily.
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi, Thanks for the response.

 

I don't want to "type" notes. I have a laptop I could bring in for something like that.

 

I want to take notes in my own handwriting and be able to draw pictures and write equations freely...I want a digital notebook.

 

I don't think the iPad is there yet.

post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr.Bimane View Post

I want to take notes in my own handwriting and be able to draw pictures and write equations freely...I want a digital notebook.

I don't think the iPad is there yet.

You can do that with apps and a capacitive stylus:

post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


You can do that with apps and a capacitive stylus:

I've considered purchasing one to sketch out ideas. For concepting sometimes I want to get further away from my primary computer. We shall see. I meant the ipad, not the surface.

post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi, Marvin.

 

Thanks for the post and the information. I have seen a similar video for that app.

 

I don't know...I just think it's silly to have to use an app to be able to write higher resolution. It looks very clumsy and awkward and unnatural. I honestly cannot imagine having to do that to actually take notes at a conference or lecture. 

 

I think I will be sticking to a pen and notebook for now.

 

Thanks, though.

post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr.Bimane View Post

Hi, Marvin.

 

Thanks for the post and the information. I have seen a similar video for that app.

 

I don't know...I just think it's silly to have to use an app to be able to write higher resolution. It looks very clumsy and awkward and unnatural. I honestly cannot imagine having to do that to actually take notes at a conference or lecture. 

 

I think I will be sticking to a pen and notebook for now.

 

Thanks, though.

It's actually very easy an intuitive. It's not as intuitive as writing on a piece of paper but you'd be surprised at how quickly you adapt.

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