Author Topic: Thoughts on Tablet/Stylus Computers?  (Read 2901 times)

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Thoughts on Tablet/Stylus Computers?
« on: Aug 07, 2006, 02:31 pm »
Iím looking at investing in a laptop, and the Tablet PC has caught my eye.  It seems like it might be great for blocking and other quick note taking.  Is anyone out there using tablet/stylus technology successfully for SM stuff?   What are some pros and cons to consider? 
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Re: Thoughts on Tablet/Stylus Computers?
« Reply #1 on: Aug 07, 2006, 11:42 pm »
I'm not using one yet but when I get some money again and I want to invest in one as well.  I know Toshiba makes a nice one, a friend of mine has one and really likes it but he doesnt use it for stage management.  Reasons I'm looking at it is cause you can make notes on the screen and carry it around with you (good for preshow check lists) and it would be light weight (my current laptop is kind of heavy.) 

But I'd also be interested to know what others have to say.

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Re: Thoughts on Tablet/Stylus Computers?
« Reply #2 on: Aug 08, 2006, 01:24 am »
I am in the rather unique position that I have a friend who owns a technology magazine and I write the odd "Technology in the field" type article for them, and I have seen and used a lot of these tablet PC's as a part of it.

Whilst the technology is great, it is still not quite at the point where you can easily walk arround with a tablet pc resting across your arm like a clipboard. You still need to be at a desk really to use them. The exception are the 'mini' tablets (8" and under in screen size).

Tablet PC's are also useless without good software. Unfortunatly, using many apps etc in a tablet environment is not that much fun. I can easily think of ways to use it for blocking, but unless you have an application which accepts input from a stylus like device, you may as well just use pen and paper.

I must stress though that my use of them 'in the field' has been for short periods of time and I did not spend hours looking for the appropriate software. I also primarily used them for sound and video editing, as well as lighting design using CAD - for those purposes they are great.

I would suggest that you try and find a place that does short term laptop hires (there are a few places that do them) and rent one for a week or two, and have a good play.


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Re: Thoughts on Tablet/Stylus Computers?
« Reply #3 on: Nov 15, 2006, 12:36 am »
I have a tablet... I read all of these reviews that were like "blah blah blah can't carry it around" or what not, but I find it very easy to carry around if I really need to. It's extremely portable and when I look at other laptops I try to move the screen and when I realize I can't I go "ohhhh.....that's weird."

I thought it would be a good idea for stage management as well and maybe it is for people who write post-its a lot during rehearsal, but I found myself not relying on it at all during rehearsals as I like to write my rehearsal reports right away. The problem isn't the tablet, because it's really nice to write on and it translates writing extremely well for the internet and such, but it's just not easy to work with for Microsoft Word.

What I would do if you are serious about buying one is go to a store like staples and ask if they have one in the back so that you can test it out. Maybe you'll find it more useful for SMing then I have, but I wouldn't save up money if that's the sole reason you want to buy a tablet.

Though they're awesome! Definitely go with Gateway if you buy one!