Discussion #3: Understanding the Difference

Do you think that the iPad lacks ‘information production’ – the word processing capability that we are used to on PCs?

Before discussing whether the iPad lacks ‘information production’ or not, we need to consider the differences in the use of the iPad and the netbooks/laptops/PCs.

Although I spend a lot of time with my iPhone, I also spend a lot of time in front of my PC. I rely on MS Word whenever I need to create documents for teaching. About a year ago, I downloaded an app called Docs To Go. This app helps me save any of the MS Office files (including PPT, Word documents, and Excel) and pdf files. I could open them to see and modify if I want to make some changes. The functions were not as fancy as MS Office 2010 in my PC, but work that I did in Docs To Go wasn’t too bad. I also jot down and save important things in an app called Fast Notes.

As I’m currently teaching at a Technology Immersion Program, I use WordPress more often than MS Word. Rather than creating the “hard copy” of notes and assignments for students, I go to WordPress and leave all the instructions, lessons, assignments, and activities. WordPress is an iOS that allows me to create, modify, and upload posts and comments. It’s a little bothersome as I have to know how to use HTML when creating a post on my iPhone. However, it’s much more convenient as I can check out my blog anywhere, anytime. So what I usually do is that I create a post using my PC at home. Then, if I need to modify or leave comments I use the WordPress app on my iPhone.

To answer the question as yes or no only, I think the iPad does lack ‘information production’. However, we must also understand the difference in their functions and uses. PC has the better word processing capability than the iPad, but there are some good features of the iPad that PC doesn’t have. One of them is portability (It’s easier to carry around than a netbook and longer battery life). If I was to invest money, it would be on finding ways to have both the iPad and PC coexist so that I can utilize both (one at home and one outside home). In order to do that more word processing apps need to be invented.


Posted in: Week 09: iPad Apps