The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Apps and tablets and wondrous things in store

As you might know, I purchased a tablet computer a short time ago as my Christmas present... to me. It's a little game we play each year, Faye and I, she decides what present She wants and I buy it for Her then I decide what present I want and I buy it for me. This has worked well for the past 25 years. In our "courting" days, I had to figure out what She wanted. I usually failed... it's a "guy thing."

In any event, this Christmas I "surprised" myself with a Toshiba Thrive tablet. I have had it a little over three weeks now and I find it both amazing and a little frustrating. Amazing because it works so well and frustrating because I am old and that learning curve is much steeper than it looks with each passing year.

The first thing I did was look for free stuff to put on the tablet. Ok, the first thing was to get it connected to the Wi-Fi so I could access the internet, that magical place where anyone can be anything and too many free things are full of ads. Not to mention all the evils that lurk out there. That was accomplished pretty easily. The first app (what the desktoppers and laptoppers would call "programs") I got was, of course, security software. It came with a commercial trial version of Kaspersky but I was happy to find an Android version of AVG Free to use in its place. I am used to AVG and, being the old guy that I am, gravitate toward the familiar.

I followed that with Angry Birds and then started looking around for other time-wasters. Free ones, especially... because I am a bloody tightwad, I am. I found quite a few. Unlike our desktop/laptop computers, there are several available screens. The main screen has 3 "pages" (I'd guess you call them); most of my favorites are accessible on the primary (center) screen. All Apps show up in the Apps screens (also 3 pages of them available, probably more if you overflow those) but can be copied easily to the main 3 pages. So, now my primary screen is filled with icons (though not quite as bad as my desktop's... uh... "desktop"... at least, not yet anyway).

I learned how to establish a browser link icon to put on the main screen and did that (I've now forgotten just how I did that but, if I need to do it again, I'm sure it'll come to me) and am learning the new browser that came with it. I believe it is a variation of the Google Chrome browser. I downloaded the Android Firefox browser App and use both of these but am finding the native browser just as good or better.

My big test of this thing will come when I go on a trip out to San Diego (and probably Vegas) in a few months. That trip may last a month or so. I cannot stack up enough posts to cover that so I will either need to bring the laptop along or write posts using the tablet. If I end up doing the latter, I suspect they will be short posts full of typos. The virtual keyboard, while adequate for most tasks, does not lend itself well to large entries of text.

I have said in the past that tablets are the future of portable computing. I still believe that. In fact, I am more sure of it every day.


FTell001 said...

I have an iPad.....50.00 for a Bluetooth keyboard..makes it much easier on me on the typing part!

Douglas4517 said...

Since the Thrive has a full size USB port, I picked up a $10 USB keyboard. Works great. Now I can leave the laptop at home. Or sell it. Or give it to a relative.