iPad Thoughts.

Okay, so I get my hands on an iPad tonight, owned by avant-technologist Toby B. And what’s the first thing I do? Check out the calendar. And then the New York Times app. And then Mail. Bored already? Here is my sixty second review, covering aspects of the machine that I haven’t seen others touch on (pardon the pun):
The form factor is strange. I’m so used to my iPhone at this point, which is more rectangular than square, that I found the iPad’s 4:3 format strange and unwieldy. For reading books or magazines, this is wonderful. For making phone calls, it’s not so great.
The applications on it stink. I mean, yes, Notes has a full notepad and Mail has a lovely new three-panel interface and the Calendar looks like a real calendar with dates and stuff. But Safari looks plain weird (as others have, indeed, noted), YouTube looks fugly with its low resolution images displaying on a large screen, and talking on it really stinks.
I can’t get over how much the Books application looks like the Classics application, which looks (admittedly) much like Delicious Library. I mean, is there really only one color of wood for a bookshelf and do books always sit exactly the same way on a shelf? Plus, it’s hard to read a book when you want to talk on the iPad.
Finally, the keyboard on the iPad leaves much to be desired. Until we all develop E.T.-like appendages, I don’t think many novels will be written within the interface. My fingers slipped all over the surface, despite my best attempts to control those ten digits. And dialing on the thing is just plain hard.