Tablet Thoughts?

As the holidays approach, I suspect many of us are in the same position- most folks have no idea what to shop out for us, gift wise. This generally leads to a lot of Home Depot gift cards and terrible T-shirts. So this year my wife actually asked me, and I gave her a better idea- just have folks pitch in, what I could really use is one of the Tablet machines. When I'm doing my photography, it would be very useful to be able to proof shots on a screen bigger than the camera's viewfinder, and to be honest, I get laid up a lot. I have an old Acer laptop, but it's a beast, one hinge is cracked a bit, and the battery lasts 40 minutes on "power saver" these days.. a small, light "laptop" or something becomes a necessity.

To be clear, I'm thinking in the lowest ranges, Android, a maximum of $200. Since CVS now is selling a 7" Android (made by Craig) tablet for $99.. I'm hoping that I can put my hands on something I can use for web and photo proofing with at least the 7" if not a 10" screen. Of course I'll be wanting to connect to Arduino in some way also.. bluetooth seems to be the best idea currently.

Since a number of you out there have these beasties already, what should I be looking at? Brand name means nothing, I want a machine that's going to service my very basic needs without costing much...

Thoughts?

Hi focalist, I wonder if the digital photo frames could be adapted for that? http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Insignia&%23153%3B+-+9%22+Widescreen+LCD+Digital+Photo+Frame+-+Black/Silver/9376784.p?id=1218095178919&skuId=9376784

Either that, or maybe use one of the little solidstate harddrive netbooks. I'd much rather have a keyboard to use then trying to tap away on a touch screen.

Yeah, I know that I will end up having an external keyboard if I end up typing a lot. I don't really need to type War and Peace on it however, at most a couple of paragraphs at a time. I like tactile keyboards, I miss the DEC and IBM keyboards with that satisfying Click.. guess my VT Terminal and Selectric roots are showing...

I don't really care about running heavy apps on the thing, a netbook is possibly a usable answer.. but when it comes to quick proofing and all that, I think the tablet tough screen interface is probably the best to work with. I'd assume that any of them is reasonable enough in terms of web browsing.

I have used a digital photo frame before, they tend to be so slow that it's not really manageable if you are sorting through shots to determine if you got "the shot"-- which is where the usefulness is for the purposes of photography. I've lost amazing shots because a photo looked good on camera, only to discover when brought out in real resolution, that it is out of focus. Being able to re-shoot a missed shot is everything, when you are backing up a makeup artist, model, and getting permission to use a location.. re-creating is easy if everything is still there.. and impossible once folks leave.

"I've lost amazing shots because a photo looked good on camera,"

Might that explain your icon? You need to do something about that!

focalist: I miss the DEC and IBM keyboards with that satisfying Click.. guess my VT Terminal and Selectric roots are showing...

A real VT100 keyboard, adapted to work with a PC ... that would be too cool! Oh dear, now I'm thinking I could actually do that with an Arduino.

CrossRoads: "I've lost amazing shots because a photo looked good on camera,"

Might that explain your icon? You need to do something about that!

I was worried it might be a self portrait, until I recognized Dr. Lizardo. :grin:

"Laugh while you can, monkey boy!" or "As soon as I complete my Overthruster, you and the rest will perish at the hands of the lords of the eighth dimension!!"

And one for any gathering:

"Look- Over there! Evil, pure and simple! Lectroids from Planet Ten by way of the Eighth Dimension! Get them!" (of course by this point, we now know Dr. Lizardo is actually Lord (John) Whorfin, the leader of the Red 'Lectroids....)

"Buckaroo Banzai (Across the Eighth Dimension)" is a cinematic tour-de-force nearly approaching "The Fifth Element" status. I love a fine cheese. Bad movies are awesome.. I've been known to trot out my copy of "Howard the Duck" on VHS, but I have to admit I so far have been unable to stomach the immense load of tripe known as "Waterworld" in one sitting. Even I can only stomach so much. Maybe it's because in Waterworld, they were trying to be serious, which makes it all the better that it rots so loud. I like a good movie, but it's really really BAD movies that I sometimes love.. especially older sci-fi.

I've been known to drop everything if a Tom Baker episode comes on (if the name isn't enough, your education is incomplete), and once spent a day at work with an "H" taped to my forehead. When I walk on the beach, I check over my shoulder for Rover. Some awesome stuff has come out of the Brits, but they seem better at the TV shows than cinema...

Why oh why did "BB Against the World Crime League" get trashed...

Tell me that isn't an Uno. Go ahead and tell me it isn't, and I'll not be convinced...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d682xV0n1YY

Anyway.. am I right in assuming Android is the way to go?

Well, I never got into Dr. Who. Red Dwarf was fun.

Can't tell you much about tablets, except that I'm biased towards android, given its Linux roots. I hope this means much greater flexibility and choices in the long run. Not sure if it helps you on pricing, but it's possible to root a Kindle Nook and put Android on it.

@Focalist,

Make sure you look for reviews of any electronics you want to buy from CVS. I have a friend that bought a small laptop from CVS for $99 which seemed like a deal until they tried to use it. It was so slow that I could hardly manage checking E-mail! I then looked it up on the internet to find a way to upgrade it and found that it had horrible ratings!

I have a ZTE V9, it cost AUS$250, I put a 16G microSD card in it.

I freakin' love it!

A lot of the reviews go on about how it "feels" cheap and "plasticy", but you can buy 4 V9's for the price of an iThing.

The camera is not as bad as the reviews make out, you just need to switch it to manual!

I still carry my eee 900 around with me, but with a tablet you don't have to wait for it to de-hibernate. And you can make phone calls, not just send txt's and emails.

I would buy an android tablet. You can BT serial with it right away with a btBee and XBee shield, which I tried and love to do more with, on my android phone. I want a $400 price range android 3.1 tablet, possibly Toshiba or something else. There are only Toshiba, Samsung, and a few other companies making them. Don't get yourself an iThing, not worth the money and no freedom under late lord jobs.

Go for a name brand. Go for lot's of internal memory (the apps are stored there, although you can store them on SD card as well, you will soon end up with out of memory). You need a capacitive touch screen. Android 3.x Look for something with a tegra chipset as the speed is so much better, I have a Android phone which is so much slower. You wan't to look at foto's then look for one with usb connection so you can add a card reader. Most of them if not all have single micro sd slot. I don't understand those designers that they don't add a second full SD card slot. I have a POV Mobii which is simular to a Advent Vega. It's good for it's price although I was an early adapter and thus paid a premium price.

justjed:
I’m biased towards android, given its Linux roots.

I was, too. Until I tried it.

A friend asked me to load Android-x86 on his Asus eeePC for him because I’m a Linux geek. The experience reminded me of my OS/2 days, when I sometimes had to do work on Windoze or DOS machines: the environment was vaguely familiar, with occasional jarring differences and an overall feeling of comparative lameness.

I thought it might just be my lack of familiarity with Android, but he asked me to install it because he’d become a major fan through using it on his phone, and he found it unusable because it didn’t work like his phone, either. Even though the image I loaded was designed for the eeePC, he couldn’t get it to network via either WiFi or Ethernet (apparently due to driver problems).

It’s back to running Windoze now.

Not sure if it helps you on pricing, but it’s possible to root a Kindle Nook and put Android on it.

Actually, the Nook is already running Android, according to what I’ve read: all the “rooting” does is make it accessible. Anyone thinking of doing it should research carefully before doing it: a couple of sites I read warned that newer versions have different hardware, and can be bricked by following the old instructions.

Getting back on topic: I don't know whether this is the same tablet CVS is selling, but saying the reviewer "panned" it would be too mild by half.

Kindle Nook

?? B&N "Nook", Amazon "kindle", right? Two different machines?

[quote author=Ran Talbott link=topic=75631.msg577276#msg577276 date=1319356424] Getting back on topic: I don't know whether this is the same tablet CVS is selling, but saying the reviewer "panned" it would be too mild by half.

[/quote]

Hey, is that 'Awesome-O-Meter' using an Arduino?

westfw:

Kindle Nook

?? B&N "Nook", Amazon "kindle", right? Two different machines?

Yes, my bad. And yes, I meant 'root and reflash' -- was thinking Cyanogen.

I personally got an Toshiba folio 100. they do not appear to sell that much any more, both Toshiba and retail stores give massive discounts, due to the ROM (operating system) it comes with.

HOWEVER, install foliomod and BAM! awesome tablet! :) you NEED foliomod though, fixes the touch screen and multi touch drivers, increases performance by far (it has a nividia chip in it! damn fast!), android market, rooted, launcherPRO!

I got 50% off (and it was worth that much with the stock ROM) but it really is worth it if you search a little on the internet.

[quote author=Ran Talbott link=topic=75631.msg577276#msg577276 date=1319356424] Getting back on topic: I don't know whether this is the same tablet CVS is selling, but saying the reviewer "panned" it would be too mild by half.

[/quote]

Strangely - some of the problems the reviewer experienced sound very similar to what happens to my G1 if I let it "auto-update" nowadays (I have it turned off now); at a certain point, the touch screen becomes completely unusuable - there's a particular update out there for 1.6 that totally hoses everything. I've yet to figure out what it is, but the best thing I have found is to just not do updates any more (not like they are updating the OS anyway). Probably the manufacturer shipped it with that update - hosing it out the box. If you could somehow get that update removed, then this tablet might be a better deal. That doesn't explain the wireless connectivity issues, though.