Re: [NTLK] Speculation about some sort of Apple Touch sub notebook or sth

From: Ryan Vetter <>
Date: Tue Mar 10 2009 - 16:39:43 EDT


This is just another "I wish Apple would release a tablet or netbook" thread, with a mock up as an example!

As for the mock up, nobody knows for sure whether Apple will release something like that or something different, but we have indications from past products, patent applications and statements from Apple.

I wrote an in depth article covering this subject, including dialogue on an array of patent applications and past products. Apple's official stance on a tablet is such that, they are interested in it, and see value in it (they had a working prototype, for instance, in 1983, and have had several others since, with the graphics tablet being sold before that), but, in today's computing landscape, they have challenges to overcome before they feel they can release a consumer product.

I presume those challenges are screen issues (clear and durable... tradeoffs) and software issues. The more I have thought about the slider hybrid tablet/laptop in one of their patent applications, however, the more it makes sense. I think they are closer to releasing a hybrid tablet/laptop than ever, for a number of reasons.

a. People are more ready to embrace that new technology since computing/mobile computing is now pervasive
b. Apple has had several years to research and develop tablet computers (for instance, the iPhone's OS was taken from their tablet research and development department - yes, indeed, the iPhone is simply a stripped down, mobile Mac Tablet, where much of the tech had been hammered through in and around 2004, and not for an iPhone, but for a tablet computer).
c. Some of Apple's applications look "tablet friendly" (i.e. Safari Beta - most visited sites grid; cover flow; dashboard...). In fact, some of these interface elements may have been taken from their research on tablet interfaces, and simply incorporated into OS X.

My guess is that they will probably release the hybrid tablet/laptop where Apple's applications go into tablet mode when the screen is slid into place. I used to think that they would release a special Tabletted OS X, but now, with all of the GUI enhancements I feel they will just use a uniform OS X, where applications like Safari, Email, etc. morph in such a way as they are optimized for touch input. Add accelerometers, and so forth, and the result is a beefed up iPhone that is also a laptop.

There is no question that these sorts of devices will be pervasive in the near future: tablet functionality adds mobility to laptops - laptops only take mobility so far. Using the Newton has been this sort of mobile liberation for me, and has provided me with the knowledge of how useful tablet computing is.

The way I would use such a device:

1. Reading reports and RFPs: no more mousing through long RFP PDFs with ugly scroll bars
2. Reading eBooks
3. Extracting information from the web for research (i.e. rifling through RFP sources, downloading articles, etc.). Often times very little text input is needed, especially since my Automator script opens up and logs into the 20+ RFP sources I have. Keyword searches on these sources are often less then 15 characters
4. Sitting back in a chair and reading RSS Feeds
5. Using it in a library (no more leaving your laptop unattended, or carrying it with you in an unusable form when going through aisles)
6. Traveling (i.e. looking things up in a car)
7. Surface computing (interactive presentations with clients, games with friends, etc.)

And when I don't want a tablet, I would simply slide the screen back in place to reveal the keyboard. Yes, I am desperate for a device like this, and can only hope Apple sees enough utility in it that they release it soon.

Shalom and all the best,


----- Original Message ----
From: Lord Groundhog <>
To: "" <>
Sent: Tuesday, March 10, 2009 11:18:15 AM
Subject: Re: [NTLK] Speculation about some sort of Apple Touch sub notebook or sth

~~~ On 2009/03/10 17:30, Ryan Vetter at wrote ~~~

> Based on Apple patents of yesterday and today, the tablet could be a pivot
> screen laptop: it would be both a laptop and a tablet.

"It *could*, but [a] that isn't what's described in that article (which,
though out-of-date, speculative and in no way meaningful regarding what
Apple actually might intend, is the subject of this thread, I think)"


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Received on Tue Mar 10 16:39:51 2009

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