Dear Mr. Mack,Well, there's a subtle answer to this.
I have been following your website, EricMackOnline for about a year. I still check in regularly and enjoy immensely for almost every topics from robot to home school :) Particularly, I enjoy your work ethics that was also mentioned in your opening of your first tablet PC. I'm writing this email in regards to your recent use of your tablet PC. Since November (almost 6 months ago), I have not heard anything related to your Tablet PC adventure. I think many of your loyal followers still would like to know how you apply this fascinating technology to your works. Your opinions mean a lot to your sincere readers.
Chun Shun Lau
(posted with permission)
In November, I decided to purchase a second laptop as a backup for my Toshiba Tecra M4 Tablet PC. I needed the peace of mind of having a spare computer that was always synched up and ready to go, if the need arose. I really wanted to move to the ThinkPad X60, however, it was unavailable. Since David Allen asked me to recommend some new high-end laptops for his executive team, I decided to follow my own recommendation and purchase the same model that I had carefully researched and recommended to David - the ThinkPad T60p, by Lenovo. We were not disappointed. Well David wasn't. Two weeks after I received my new T60 and I recommended that a client buy a Toshiba Tablet, IBM shipped the X60. Such is life.
Anyway, In December, I loaded both the Tecra M4 Tablet PC and the Lenovo ThinkPad T60p from scratch, using only the Base OS provided by the vendor and a single set of CDs for everything I installed. Only the serial numbers changed between the two computers. I set the two side by side. Having two laptops allowed me to leave the Tecra in full-time slate mode with an external ThinkPad USB keyboard. This worked great, especially for mind mapping with MindManager.
But gradually, I stopped using the tablet on a daily basis, and eventually slowed to using it for mapping. Even then, I'm doing more mapping on the ThinkPad than the Tecra M4.
Prompted by the email requests, I thought about why this is. I concluded that there are at least three reasons:
1) I am a little less mobile than I was when I was working on my management degree
2) Lotus Notes, my favorite tool for personal knowledge management and collaboration is not easy to use with a stylus. (However, it could be.)
But, the most significant reason:
3) I subconsciously changed my computing behavior because the ThinkPad simply works and the Tecra M4 simply crashes, locks up, slows down, etc. Not always, but often enough that I subconsciously stopped using the Toshiba Tablet PC in favor of my more reliable ThinkPad.
Does this mean I'm not YABHTU?
I guess so. I still think the Tablet PC is a powerful productive tool - when it works. I don't know if the problem lies in the XP Tablet OS or if it is in Toshiba's implementation of the device driver. Whatever it is, the ThinkPad implementation is stable and the Tecra M4 with very few programs loaded is not. So, while I still believe in the Tablet platform and I plan to purchase another Tablet PC someday (I still owe $$ on my Tecra M4) this particular Tablet PC did not boost my productivity sufficiently to put up with the problems. before I bought the ThinkPad T60p I had forgotten how reliable a computer can be. Now that I'm back to the ThinkPad, I'm spoiled.
Will I continue to use a Tablet PC?
Absolutely, but right now, I'm only using it for specific activities where the Tablet PC offers me specific advantage. Which means, that I'm really not benefitting from all that I could with a Tablet PC. I don't regret my adventure into the Tablet PC space or my decision to purchase the Toshiba Tecra M4. I wanted to experience the Tablet PC and I wanted to have the largest screen possible. I got to do both and I was able to learn a great deal about the Tablet PC. because of this experience, and my 8-week paperless challenge, I now have more experience with the Tablet PC than I did before. I wrote over 130 posts on the Tablet PC, more than any other single category on this blog! Because of it, I'm better qualified to demonstrate and recommend Tablet PCs to my eProductivity consulting clients.
I think I'll start getting things done with my solid ThinkPad T60p. I'd consider the X60, however it's underpowered compared to the T60, so I'll enjoy what I have and wish for the next Tablet PC from Lenovo.
I hope to be YABHTU again.