Computer or Tablet, Which Do You Usually Use ?

Discussion in 'Gadgets & Tech Talk' started by Yvonne Smith, Jan 23, 2015.

  1. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    I have pretty much loved computers since I first learned how to use one of them. Not being at all technical, it takes me a while to learn how to do new things when I get a different computer; so I have been noticeably resistant to change, as long as the old computer worked at all, no matter how slow it was.
    Every now and then, my computer would completely die, and then I would beg whichever of my children was living closest to wherever I was living, to please come and fix my computer, and if that was not possible, to at least try and save all of my pictures.
    The last time this happened, my daughter (Robin, the Guruette) left me her iPad to use while she worked on the old dinosaur desktop. I had minimal instruction in the use of the iPad; but dire necessity forced me to try and learn how it operated, so I could at least check my email.

    It took her a while with the computer (maybe on purpose ? ? ), and by the next time she came to visit me; I was totally in love with the iPad and its amazing touchscreen .
    I could make everything large enough that I could actually read the print without having my nose touching the screen.
    Robin bought herself a new iPad, and I have been happily using mine ever since.
    I think the old dead dinosaur is probably still sitting at her house. I do keep telling her that I really need all of those old pictures out of there, and she tells me that they are safely stored in the Time Capsule, and we can get them out just fine.
    I have a keyboard for the iPad, and can do just about everything that I need to do , and do not miss my old desktop one little bit.
     
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  2. Fredrick Jones

    Fredrick Jones New Member
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    For readiing and browsing the web I use my android tablet. It is easier to carry around and I am not tied down to one spot. Also I can buy ebooks to put on my tablet.

    It took me a while to get used to reading books on my tablet I missed turning the pages of a paper book. But with a tablet I do not have to worry about a night light if it is dark.

    I have a laptop, but I only use it if I have to type a lot of stuff.
     
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  3. Dave David

    Dave David New Member
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    I guess it is all in what you get used to. I have tried the Ipad, casually, as my son had one for a year or so. He sold it and bought the APPLE macbook, as he did more typing than the Ipad was comfortable for. He loves the macbook, and has not looked back and he is just 25, but is working on his doctorate. I hope to get an Ipad of my own one day, as I miss keeping up with the technology that I used to do, when money and jobs were available. I did not like the Ipad for reading books, just not my cup of tea, and I still love the local library. Our library has just not been able to resolve the lending out of the few eBooks they have, something about licenses, I am told.
     
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  4. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    @Dave, if you have an Amazon account, then you can get all sorts of ebooks online at the Kindle Store. Even if you don't have an actual Kindle, you can download the Kindle app, and use that for ebooks.
    Amazon always has a lot of books that are free, and some of them are only free for a day or two and then the price goes back up again.
    If you go to the Kindle Store, type in the catagory of book you want to read (gardening, ham radios, cookbook, sci-fi, etc.) and then do the search by price from low to high; you will get all of the free books first, and then all of the $1 ones, $2 ones, and so on.

    Another excellent way to find free and cheap books is to make an account at www.bookbub.com . It is free to make the account, and you fill out a profile of the types of books that you are interested in. Then they will send you an email every day with the new books that are on sale or free that meet your selections.
    You can be as broad or as specific with this as you choose, and that determines how many books they will tell you about each day. I started out with a fairly broad catagory, and then had to narrow it down because I was just getting too many book referrals.
    For people who have an iPad, there is the Apple iBooks, and they also offer free books every month.
    If you have Amazon Prime and an actual Kindle, then there is also the Kindle Lending Library, where you can borrow a book for as long as it takes you to read it.
    You are only allowed one book at a time, and can borrow only once a month; but there are a lot of good books that are expensive to buy and you can read them for free this way.
     
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  5. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    As long as I am earning my living online, I'll never let go of my large-screen monitors. As my eyes get older, I want bigger screens, not smaller ones. As it is, I use my MacBook sometimes when I'm traveling but I hate having to put up with its 13-inch screen. My iMac has a 27-inch screen, plus I have two other larger monitors that I sometimes use. Usually, I only use one additional monitor but if I am watching a DVD on my computer, I'll use the third one.
     
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  6. Jorge Ruiz

    Jorge Ruiz Member
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    Hey all.

    My brother-in-law gave me his old "tablet". I erased all his silly games and installed Adiko (a free e-pub reader app) and Kingston office app. The Adiko I used every day.... I live in a country where books in English are not easy to come by and being able to buy books in English was a god-send. The office app was not that useful, took too long to type things in on the touch screen (I'm a very rapid typist on any keyboard).

    Then the tablet fell off the nightstand and the screen cracked. Stopped working. Within three days I'd bought myself a new tablet, Acer brand with the same Android OS. I now use this more modern, flexible tool for reading my English books, keeping track of my daily agenda for work and watching videos or checking my email when the laptop is not on.

    The laptop is still the main work tool (both for online work and for my day job-- no laptop, no data, no memory of what I'm doing or supposed to do! ha!); however, having the tablet for a quick Internet fix or to read in bed without bothering my partner (and it's nice to take on business trips, lighter than the laptop and just as versatile, except the typing part) has changed my view on the thing.

    Still love to read paper books, but don't have any particular prejudice against e-books, a good read is a good read (though can be a bit hard on the eyes, have read there are apps that help with that, have to check them out.)

    peace,
    revel.
     
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  7. Pat Baker

    Pat Baker Well-Known Member
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    I also earn a living using my computer and find that the smaller screen is very hard at times to see and when I need to do a lot of typing it is almost impossible on the tablet. I like the tablet for its mobility, I like to take it to bed with me to look at movies as I fall asleep. The kids love their tablets and phones to watch games and movies on youtube.
     
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  8. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I have a Kindle that I use quite a bit, but mine is the old type. Although I can get online with it, sort of, it's surely not a replacement for a computer. My wife has a Kindle Fire, which has a lot of other features. She uses it a lot while in bed, sitting on the couch, or in restaurants, but I don't see her replacing her Mac either. I get online with my smart phone when we're going somewhere, and my wife is driving, or while I am in a restaurant, but I hate accessing websites through the phone. I can barely read the writing and I'm all thumbs when it comes to trying to use the little keyboard thing that comes up on the screen.
     
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  9. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    I could never manage without my desktop as one of my passions is photography and I often need to edit my photos. I really need a big screen for that. My monitor died a few weeks ago and I was lucky that I still had a spare sitting around, but it's a lot smaller than the one I was using and I find it quite difficult to cope for a lot of things. One of these days I'll have to fork out money for a new monitor.

    My "spare" computer (for emergency use) has been an old netbook which still uses Windows XP. It's awfully slow and with Windows XP no longer being supported, I need to replace that too, but I'm undecided whether to buy a cheap laptop or a tablet.
     
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  10. Jorge Ruiz

    Jorge Ruiz Member
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    Hey Michelle.

    A bit of advice accepted? If you are used to a PC and if, as you mention, you enjoy working on your photos, I'd go for the laptop instead of the tablet. Though I've mentioned why I like it above, it's not as agile as a mouse and a keyboard machine for those used to those. I suppose today's youth, weaned on iPhones and the like can do wonders with their right thumbs and index fingers, but being accustomed to keyboard and mouse, I'd suggest something like it.

    I thought it would be difficult to get used to the keyboard on the laptop (it's flatter and there's that darn touch pad that has to be turned off or the cursor skips all over the page!) but got used to it at once and find the old keyboard on the PC a bit clunky to use. And a nice 15" screen does me fine for photo and video edition (though I'm going to have to get a larger screen for the video stuff, tired of shrinking all the different editing tools!).

    My current laptop cost me around $350 a couple of years ago, bought it online with content writing earnings, delivered to my home, best investment I've made in years.

    peace,
    revel.
     
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  11. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    When I was using a PC, I usually opted for the large, ergonomic keyboards. When I bought a MacBook in 2008, of course it came with a small, built-in keyboard and track-pad. By the time, I bought a larger iMac a few years ago, I was used to the small keyboard and track-pad so, rather than using the mouse that came with the iMac, I bought a track-pad, and the keyboard I'm using for my iMac is the same size as the one on the MacBook. Going back and forth between a large keyboard and a small one, or a track-ad and a mouse, is difficult, also.
     
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  12. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    @Jorge Ruiz , the salesman who sold me my desktop felt the same way and I'm inclined to think that I'd be unhappy without a keyboard. I enjoy the touch screen on my camera, but I'm not sure I'd like to try typing with one. I hate even having to type a text message on my smart phone.

    The laptop that was recommended to me was even less than $350, and I doubt I could get a decent tablet for less, so the laptop is probably the way to go. I'm not sure how much use it will get though. Not unless I can teach my Mom to use it, but I'm not sure that will happen. That was the plan with the netbook, but she didn't find time to learn then. I never liked that computer too much either, so maybe it's just as well.

    Which makes me wonder which would be easier for a first time user, a laptop or a tablet. My Mom's got a friend who has never used a computer but she recently bought a tablet. She's about 75, with seriously arthritic hands, and she seems to be coping with it.
     
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  13. Louis Ruiz

    Louis Ruiz New Member
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    I use a desktop. I think I'll never get used to write on glass. In fact I spent a long time in my youth writing on typewriters. I know people who still prefer typewriters to computers these days. I do not want to sound like a luddite, but feeling the keys and hearing its sound is part of the experience in my world. Feeling like writing on my window pane or a bottle of Coke makes no sense to me.
     
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  14. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    I have my iPad, and I would not trade it for any computer or laptop in the world ! ! I have a ZAGG bluetooth keyboard with a hardcover case that holds the keyboard and protects the iPad.
    Basically, it operates much the same way as a laptop would, except that it has the touch screen, and I can stretch things large enough to read about anything.

    I also have a Kindle Fire and an iPhone. I would not want to have to use either one of those for internet access ! !
    Even with a touchscreen, they are just too small. The Kindle is perfect for reading with, it is just the right size for reading a book, and very lightweight.
    The iPhone, I really don't use for anything beside a phone, and to take pictures with. My daughter (Robin, the Guruette) showed up at my house one day, and she had brought me an iPhone. It is fine as a phone, but the old phone I had was fine as a phone, too.
    I am starting to learn to do some photoediting on the iPad. Since you can stretch the picture on the screen, you can almost do a pixel at a time. Well, probably not that good; but it does as much editing as I need to do.
     
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  15. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    I remember using a typewriter too, and that makes me really grateful for my computer. I've never been an accurate typist and using correction fluid all the time was a nightmare. The kids of today don't know how much easier such things are, but nowadays they don't seem to bother to correct their mistakes anyway.

    I've actually still got my old typewriter packed away somewhere and I think it's time I tried to sell it because I know I'll never use it again.
     
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  16. Jorge Ruiz

    Jorge Ruiz Member
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    Oh Michelle, don't sell it!

    I've still got the typewriter I bought for about $50 to type up my second novel to send out in serial form to my friends and family.

    White-out, those little pieces of paper with dry white-out that you typed over, the IBM Selectric that had a correction tape integrated, onion-skinned erasable paper (yuck!), and that little eraser pencil with a pumice eraser and the little broom on the end. Those are all things the younger generation has probably never seen or heard of (well, white out yes, they use it to correct their homework and notes where I live! Always had to prohibit its use in class, I wanted to see their mistakes and corrections and they often used it as an excuse to wait for it to dry before continuing any exercise....)

    And, can you believe it, I've had younger students ask me (seriously!) just what a typewriter is! Pity. I loved my first, a massive, black (and extremely heavy) Underwood typewriter that I fixed myself. I tended to type too fast for it, though, and the keys always got stuck. Best typewriter ever made? That IBM Selectric with the interchangeable ball element. Great machine.


    peace,
    revel.
     
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  17. Richard Lee

    Richard Lee Member
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    I hate typing on tablets - I have thick fingers and they are not touch screen friendly. I use my tablet when I am in bed to check news and messages (FB/Skype/etc), for playing audio books, on trips where I am not driving, and instead of taking a paper into the loo :eek: - other than that, I use my desktop or one of my lap tops. My girls (daughters) have both tablets and laptops - and they almost exclusively use the laptops indoors. I have two monitors on my main computer - a high res one of standard size and a large (plasma TV size) one.
     
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  18. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    That doesn't surprise me at all. A few years ago I was in an antique shop when a kid asked his parents about one and was so impressed by this strange object that was a keyboard and printer in one.

    I wish I'd had one of those. My typewriter was a really cheap one that didn't run on electricity. I had a friend who eventually got a small typewriter with some sort of word-processing capabilities and I was so jealous. I imagine that wasn't too long before we moved on to PCs though.
     
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    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 26, 2015
  19. Richard Lee

    Richard Lee Member
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    Just today my daughter (13 going on 30) said was talking to me about an online discussion she was having with friends - they were discussing things that they would miss in the future. One of the things she said was CDs. I asked why, and she said it will be replaced with online music and personal playlists, so no need for CDs and she will miss them because you can tell a lot about people by their CD stack. Strangely enough (not) she had no idea what a cassette tape was (let alone an 8-track or a reel-to-reel) - and did not regret the demise of the gramophone record, LP/EP/45 either.

    I was thinking about typewriters today (as I sat and fixed every spelling mistake in an article I wrote) - we may all be used to typing these days, but we must be horrendously worse than we were 30 years ago when a typo meant liquid-paper or starting the whole sheet again. Also reminds me, as an old programmer that still codes, the days when a program was hand written on a coding sheet, typed into a card punch deck by a data-prep girl (not being sexist - they were always girls), had to be sorted by a deck sorter and hand loaded into a reader to compile - a single bug would reject the punch card and it was back through the process again. If you had 5 bugs it would take 3 days to do all those compiles and you'd have an angry boss too boot. Now I hit F6 to do the same code to compile process a hundred times a day - no one looks for bugs as its so quick to just let the compiler fail and find them for you! I am not sure if this has made us better programmer or not!
     
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  20. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    @Richard Lee, I remember those punch cards. I studied computer science at University for a couple of years in the early 80s, though I never used my knowledge afterwards. When we started first year, we had to use their main frame computer which must have taken up quite a big room and our first couple of assignments were done using punch cards. After that we were allowed to use terminals which made errors a little easier to cope with, but our assignments still had to go to that big computer and there could be a long wait to see whether the programs we'd written actually worked. It was a long slow process and we often had to spend hours there at night because terminals weren't available during the day.
     
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  21. Richard Lee

    Richard Lee Member
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    Yes! I remember when they brought out TSO terminals (Time Share Option) - these allowed for many terminals so we didn't have the issue you mention any more (still green screens though). The mainframes (we used to call them telephone boxes - the units were the same size) used to house one processor (many many chips - and huge water cooling systems in each) were spread over vast computer floors the size of football pitches. They were great at night though - you could sneak up there (to the computer hall) and snuggle down behind one of the boxes to sleep - they were nice and warm :)

    My first mainframe was the size of a good sized 5 bed house in floor area - and had 20Mb of memory total - it cost 5.5million pounds sterling. Gonna start singling "Those were the days my friend" in a minute :D
     
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  22. Harrison Greenberg

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    I still read regular books, but I'm starting to use my tablet a lot more because it's just so convenient. Though I'm not quite used to it yet because of the turning of pages, it feels very different to turn a regular page. But the tablet gives me so much more features such as accessing the newspapers everyday (much more cheaper than regular paper by a paperboys, and certainly a lot more faster and updated). Similarly to Richard Lee though, I don't like typing on the tablet, my fingers are huge for such a small device, so sometimes it would be a error in typing.
     
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  23. Michelle Stevens

    Michelle Stevens Active Member
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    I sometimes think I should buy a Kindle because it takes so much less space than regular books, but I've got so many books lying around already which I'll probably never find time to read that it just seems a waste. I've gone as far as downloading a few free Kindle books onto my computer, but I haven't bothered to read any of them yet. Maybe if they were on a tablet without the distractions of the internet, I'd find time to read them, but given my record of starting books and not finishing them, I'm not convinced.
     
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  24. Val Carey

    Val Carey Member
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    That brought back memories. I had one those Underwood monsters too. It was bought for me when I nearing leaving school so I could practice and increase my typing speed in order to get a job. Touch typing was a major qualification for a girl getting a decent job back in those days, just as computer skills are now.

    I use a Toshiba laptop. I'm a dinosaur, never even had a hand on an iPad and no desire for one. Keyboards have always been so much a part of my day I can't imagine communication without one. I think I've forgotten how a pen works.o_O
     
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  25. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    If you read a lot of paperback books, the kind with no pictures in them; then one of the little Kindle e-readers is perfect. You can get these on ebay for around $20 if you watch close. I used one of those for a while, and it is very lightweight, and easy to use.
    All it does is store books, and is not like the Kindle Fire, which does go online.
    The main problem with the e-reader is if you are reading a book with pictures. I was trying to read one that showed the differences in the skull of early humanoids, and I could barely see the skulls, let alone the differences !
    But for paperback type books, it is awesome.

    I ended up getting a Kindle Fire 1st generation, which is about $50 on ebay, and I only use it for reading; but it is just enough larger that I can see any pictures in the books, plus it has color.
    I still have regular books, too. What works best for me is to have a real paper book for reference books, that way it is easy to highlight important areas and flip through pages to find the information I am looking for.
    If it is just a novel that I want to read, and don't really care if I keep it, then the Kindle is perfect.
     
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