The iPads have shipped!

I got the news this morning: my and userinfosolarbird‘s iPad 2’s have shipped! ETA: this Friday! We haven’t decided on names yet, though, and this will clearly accelerate the naming schedule. Not to mention I’ll have to make a point of swinging by the Apple Store this week so that I can buy my iPad its own cover.

Meanwhile though I thought I’d expound a bit on what exactly I plan to do with mine, since Dara and I have been asked a time or two what we’ll do with them.

First and foremost, I plan to put Big Fish Games releases on it! I’ve been an avid player of our Mystery Case Files and Hidden Expedition games, and the iPad form factor is very well suited to the Hidden Object genre of casual games. In fact, I’m thinking I’ll probably enjoy them more on the iPad than I will on my laptop, since I just have to tap the screen to select the object rather than doing a mouse click. So that’ll be easier on my hands.

And I’ll play other games on it too of course–Angry Birds and Plants Vs. Zombies are obvious choices, but I also have a couple other games I’ve been playing on my iPad (a Mah Jongg game and a Kakuro game) that I’ve been enjoying, and I expect to enjoy them on the iPad as well.

Secondly, I want to see if it’s possible for me to write effectively on it. I already know I can thumb-type fairly well on my iPhone, but the tiny screen has proven to me to be less than ideal for how I work on a novel. I’m hoping greater screen real estate on the iPad will counteract that problem. Again, this will be a question of being easier on my hands. I’ve been very fortunate in my life to NOT have suffered carpal tunnel yet like so many other folks my age who’ve worked in the computer industry, and I figure any preventive measures I can take to keep avoiding that problem will be wise.

I also figure that it’ll be a better writing device than the laptop for when I go to conventions or something, such as the forthcoming Norwescon. It’ll be more portable, and last a lot longer on battery life, and shouldn’t heat up like my laptop does.

Third, I fully expect to use it as a reading device, despite the fact that I’ve also got the nook. I do have a small number of books I’ve purchased from Amazon as well as a whole lot of PDFs, neither of which are easily readable on the nook without going through a bunch of hoops that I don’t wish to go through. And, if for whatever reason my nook breaks or something, I can read my B&N books on it as well with the nook app.

Fourth, if I find it’s not a good writing device, I will probably shift to using it to monitor Facebook and Twitter and my RSS feeds and such, while segregating the laptop to be writing ONLY. The idea here would be to encourage myself to have a mental space of “if I’m on the laptop I’m writing, DAMMIT, so no looking at the Internet”.

Fifth, I fully expect to use it to watch videos, perhaps on airplanes or trains or something. I do have some Torchwood I need to get caught up on, and now that I’ve been clued in to the wonders of Blu-Ray/DVD/Digital combo buys for movies, I expect I’ll have a few more interesting digital copies of movies showing up in my library. (Russell Crowe leads the way, AS HE DAMN WELL SHOULD, with The Next Three Days. XD )

A lot of this is, I grant you, perpetuating the whole idea that “bah, iPad users are just consumers of content!” (An attitude which annoys me, as I’ve already ranted about on this blog; after all, us creative types need people to consume and appreciate our content, so it is not at all nice to snark at people who do so.) On the other hand, a lot of this is also stuff I already do on both the iPhone and the laptop, including my own creative output. The overall idea here is going to be finding out whether the iPad will serve me as a better device than the laptop does, or what. And all in all, I expect to enjoy the hell out of it!

And I’ll see if any other amusing things to do on the iPad present themselves. For example, userinfospazzkat has been overjoyed with the Garage Band app on his iPad (he’s got the original model), and has had great fun creating little musical compositions with it. (Take that, ‘iPad users are only consumers of content’ people. ;P :) )

iPad users who may be reading this, tell me about anything awesome you’ve done with your devices! Especially if you’ve found ways to be creative with them, and what apps you’ve found that let you do that!