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Archive for the ‘Mac Book Air’ Category

This is a really convenient way to be on top of your info when visiting conferences:

1 Install Evernote on all of your devices: iPhone, iPad, Mac.

2. Make sure they all synchronize – try a simple message, click “synchronize” and check your devices.

3. You’re all set! Now try my workflow:

A. Open Evernote, click “Take a picture” and do it, maybe the presenter with a slide being shown

B. Continue your work on your Mac, maybe a summary of the conference.

C. I have my iPad, following the hash mark of the conference, for any comment by attendees – or the ones following the livestream from elsewhere

D. Soon, the picture is available on both your iPad and your Mac

E. On your iPad you may now share the picture to the flow by simply dragging and dropping the picture – from Evernote to your Twitter client. Upload and done

F. On your Mac, include the picture in your notes by dragging and dropping the picture from Evernote to your text editor

(G. When writing books, I prefer to drag the files into “Research” of the Scrivener Writing tool, found here.

I strongly recommend the Evernote Podcast!

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If you hate computers buet love what they do – get an iPad

If you’re activities can’t take ANY strike in terms of downage, unsynch.. – get an iPad

If you’re activities include a lot of writing – get an Air.

If you need a complement to your stationary Mac – and still write a lot – get an Air.  If reading is your major break-away task – get an iPad

So what did I get – all. But that’s another story. I travel a lot and make use of all of their features!

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It’s inspiring to compare these devices – the  iPad and Macbook Air  – do you want some more?

When going for a new computer there are a few questions you may consider:

First question – what are your needs/what are your preferred performance?
Second question – how experienced are you? – Prepared for “plug and play” or “plug and pray”?
Third question – comparing with your current standard: pro’s and con’s with existing solution?

Some advantages that I see in Air:

Stylish. You will be happy every single time you open it And that happiness often spreads to neighbors at cafes and other public places.
Instant on. No waiting – all is up and running in fractions of a second
Sturdy. The mechanical finish brings great trust in the machine
Excellent, crisp screen. It’s bright, color accurate and with great resolution. Readable in bright sunlight and at wide viewing angles.
Good battery life. Not as good as the iPad, but if you disconnect wlan and reduce screen light you usually have five hours of operation
Interfaces. (I may be repeating myself here)
Two USB ports. One up from last Air model. And it is not irrelevant. Many times I had to choose when in the field – should I charge my iPhone or use the drawing board. Great step!
Mini-Display port. Same as the last Airen – and the other MacBook Pro: makers. A move to when to run beamer, but affordable, I think.

Some disadvantages:

The text gets smaller. Sometimes it is possible to zoom with finger gestures, but not always

The keyboard is not illuminated.
If you do not learn the correct fingering, this can become annoying. How annoying is probably a matter of opinion. In many situations, one can tilt the screen so that the display light lets you see the key definitions. If you write with normal fingering, this is a minor problem. I reacted at first but now not at all.

No touch screen. (As this started off as a comparison to the iPad) We are starting to become accustomed to iPad interface. Contradictive to what Apple’s said – I believe in touch screens also in vertical screens.  Just look at the ASUS laptop at CES show in Las Vegas this January 2011 – they showed a laptop with two interactive touch screens – and no keyboard in the traditional manner.

Limited memory – RAM. You can beefs up to 4GB, but will not be in the vicinity of the 8 you can provide a Macbook Pro. The effect varies depending on what you run the program, really heavy image and video editing is not Airens main areas. Still, the experience when using an SSD “hard drive” is – a very fast machine!

Simpler processor. You do not have the power of the MBPs. But few probably plan on running PhotoShop on their Air.

Limited memory – HD. A new trend for me is going for less storage on the Mac, but more in the cloud. As I don’t trust Apple’s service iDisk (Please FIX IT! It simply doesn’t synch the way it should!) – I got myself a Pro Account at Dropbox.com – 50GB houses most important files from now on.

CD / DVD player missing. Yes, it is – if you like to rip your CDs or put DVD movies on your PC this may be a problem. If less access to DVD is your model – pairing with both Mac and PC is very simple and fault free. A separate DVD drive is avialable as well, affordable – but you’ll probably find as did I – it’s not been used more that once or twice…

Some final tips and hints:

Stylish can be worn. Make sure to protect your Air well.
The “apple” inside. Always a Mac with ‘apple’ inside of your bag. I’ve got a Mac seriously damaged as a person hit the the apple and thereby damaged the screen from behind.
Flatten your battery. Let the battery go down compeletely once or twice a month. Whatever is said – it seems to have an effect on the charge depth.
Unplug. If you run your laptop often stationary – disconnect the power from time to time. The batteries are doing (like us) well to get “exercise” too …

I wish you many, happy hours with your Air! (or iPad, should you prefer it…)

Johan, San Francisco Jan 10, 2010

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This is the third and (probably) final part of the three step discussion on “iPad or Air”? So, lets drop the iPad for a moment and look closer to the MacBook Air. I picked the 11.6 inch since…

1. I already use a 13 inch from time to time
2. I need to know the implications a 11 inch screen has on my work

1. The screen:
The ordinary, very powerful screen. Blank, but if this bothers you, why not try a screen protector from the iPad protective product area? I belong to the people that prefer the crispy claer screen. Very clear, possible to use for serious office work in all light conditions tried so far. Love it!

2. Connectors/interfaces:
A BIG step forward are the TWO USB ports. I now easily copy huge amounts of data between my Photo and Music Hard Drives. Didn’t expect to use my Air for this but backup needs really indicates this will happen pretty often… The Air also goes well with my photo gear (Canon). Only inconvienence: the MagSafe® connector needs to be directed out of the protection of the Mac Book Air body. Minor disadvantage in the office, trickier on the field.

3. Market place proven/value second hand
I believe this Mac Book Air proves itself better in the market place than the last one. Price, performance, form factor, interfaces all make this a considerably stronger product than the previous Airs. (I have owned two of the older ones, both with SSD drives – which i just LOVE!)

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So, you have the iPad already – or considering to get one? Should you go for an external keyboard or not? It’s time for the second part in “iPad or Macbook Air?”…

Part 2. The iPad with external keyboard

Well, as always the way you intend to use your iPad will guide you. But stay open for new means of working! So, what are the mail benefits in adding an external keyboard to the iPad? It’s already got a builtin! My major reasons:

Keyboard feel. Nothing beats a really good keyboard. The notches on both index keys F and J are my security and a reference my brain continuously is searching for when typing.

Typing Speed. Since I do not get enough “feel” from the builtin keyboard, I tend to use only my indexes when typing on the iPad. Hence – my typing speed is 3-4 times faster with an external keyboard.

Spelling error rate. Depending on your style in typing you may find different new types of spelling errors. On an ordinary keyboard I use all my fingers – on the iPad builtin only index fingers. Hence – my knuckles easily triggers the “numbers” key – creating radically new typos…

Ergononic reasons. The combination of a built-in keyboard and screen may take you into  posistions that are less good for you. An external keyboard allows you to be more flexible.

Visibility.When using an external keyboard you can vary the range to your screen – as well as adjusting your iPad for improved visibility (which may not be the ideal for typing on the builtin keyboard.

Office feeling. If you do not feel “office-like” enough, adding a keyboard and maybe a trackpad may improve your experience. (Disclaimer: I have not yet tried both bluetooth keyboard AND trackpad.

Extra keys. The builtin keyboard is missing arrow keys – but exist on an external keyboard.

Full screen display. When editing with an external keyboard – all of the surface of the iPad (or as much as the app wants) is used for interaction. Sometimes annoying – the built-in keyboard hides approx. half the screen when used in landscape mode. Less of a problem if used in portrait mode – but they you’re stuck with a smaller keyboard…
And the built-in keyboard is always only one touch away. A good thing for me as I often type in my mother tongue – Swedish – with those strange characters å, ä and ö.

Any cons with an external keyboard?

You have additional stuff to carry with you.
You may need additional protection for that keyboard (and mouse, trackpad when applicable)

That finalises my ideas of part 2 of “iPad or Macbook Air” – stay tuned for part 3 where I look in to the Air and its advantages – and a summary. I’d just LOVE to hear your comments so far!

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Well, there are probably as many answers as there are users. Let me give you my 2c views after trying them – both at home in my office, in home cafes and on a longer trip.

You may split the competitors here into three different runs:

1. The iPad only – without any supporting devices

2. The iPad with an external keyboard (yes, there are reasons to get one!)

3. The Macbook Air

1. Starting off with the iPad only
Most applications are intuitive to such a level most people get it right away.
Obstacles – if any – often arise as you’re comparing with ordinary software and expect it perform accordingly. Like if you expect tabs in Safari you’ll have to learn to use multiple “documents” – but once you get it, that problem is gone forever.

Another opportunity in iPad is the ability to tailor any keyboard to applications. I haven’t seen any App really taking advantage of this opportunity. But that’s probably just a matter of time. And my lack of interest in computer games 😉

The impact of being able to crop, touch and shape literally with your fingertips should not be underestimated! It will continue to trigger developers in cooler and cooler apps.

My two major reasons for bringing my iPad on trips and work are
a. the battery capacity – often 7 to 10 hours of continuous work
b. the acceptance of the format – I can often work and interact with my stuff in environments where a laptop would be too intrusive.
OK, there’s a third when thinking – c. Simplicity. Some of the way this machine interacts is soo simple it makes me think diffently. Maybe it’s only me – but if I get stuck in writing – just starting a document in Pages and throwing down a few words is simple since the hurdle for some reason is seemingly lower.

*** Update ***
The iPad may introduce significantly less stress to people whose experience at work has been stressful. This today includes quite a lot of our grandparents. Get them an iPad and check their faces, as the master this new piece of wonder!

what’s your take on this?

(To be continued…: iPad with external keyboard)

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Just got the new Mac Book Air 11,6″ and just thought I’d share a few of my experiences:

1. Unboxing:
Everytime I unbox an Apple product what strikes me is – simplicity. Nothing unnecessary there.

2. Installing:
The simplicity continues through the complete process of installation; I chose to copy settings and all that other stuff from my Mac Book Pro 13″ – except the documents. Simply because the HD of the Air is too small. Since I plan to share and synch my files from MobileMe that shouldn’t be a problem.

A small flaw was of course my Air chose to “steal” the identity of may MBP13″ – but that was easy to correct (“System settings” > “File Sharing” > “Edit”)

3. The screen:
The ordinary, very powerful screen. Blank, but if this bothers you, why not try a screen protector from the iPad protective product area? I belong to the people that prefer the crispy claer screen. Updates seem to be fast – triead a few videos from Flickr and Youtube. Nothing to complain about. Will try editing later!

4. Connectors/interfaces:
A BIG step forward are the TWO USB ports. I now easily copy huge amounts of data between my Photo and Music Hard Drives. Didn’t expect to use my Air for this but backup needs really indicates this will happen pretty often… The Air also goes well with my photo gear (Canon). Only inconvienence: the MagSafe® connector needs to be directed out of the protection of the Mac Book Air body. Minor disadvantage in the office, trickier on the field.

5. Market place proven:
I believe this Mac Book Air proves itself better in the market place than the last one. Price, performance, form factor, interfaces all make this a considerably stronger product than the previous Airs. (I have owned two of the older ones, both with SSD drives – which i just LOVE!)

Any questions out there? I’d be glad to answer them, or try something you need to know of before getting an Air yourself.

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