Damn you, Indecision!

Rant about touchscreen Tablet PCs

First off, I love my Pigio (Fujitsu P1610).  It’s such a great size and weight for a laptop.  However, there are a couple things I really dislike about passive digitizers:

  • Inking is UGLY.  I’ve ranted about this many times, no need to rehash any more than for this bullet point. *smirk*
  • No hover is a PITA.  Hard to tell where the cursor will start inking again, can’t hover over things to see a caption (like right now, trying to find out people’s names from their tiny Twitter icon is not happening without using the even more hated trackstick), trying to take a quick glance at statuses in the system tray doesn’t work without hover, etc., etc., etc.
  • Right-clicking by pressing and holding the stylus down on the touchscreen is very flaky.  I don’t know if it is the particular digitizer on Pigio or not, but pressing and holding down to get the context menu to pop up doesn’t work very well.  I’ve tried many different ways to make it consistently work, but it just doesn’t.  Pressing down extra firmly is the worst thing to do, while pressing down at a more normal pressure may or may not work after one or many attempts.  And it seems that once the press and hold fails during a certain attempt, the likelihood that subsequent attempts fail rises exponentially.
  • No pressure sensitivity, owing to the ugliness of inking, and making ArtRage not so fun to use anymore.

I hate to say it, but I find that I want to ink less and less with Pigio.  Right now I’m using a medium ruled Moleskine Cahier journal for my notes at work instead of OneNote.  Well, to be fair, my partial resistance to using OneNote is from my lack of organized back up strategies.  When I restored Windows on my M200 a while back, none of my backed up OneNote files went back on it, mainly because I didn’t need a lot of them anymore and didn’t want to fill up the HD with them again, and partially because copies of my OneNote files were spread over several DVDs and I couldn’t be bothered. πŸ˜›

Keep in mind I am not a super-busy consultant like James Kendrick, or anything, so I don’t often need instant recall of notes from a week or a month ago.  Otherwise, I would depend on OneNote more.  But still, OneNote with a touchscreen device is less-than-ideal for me. 

I still want to keep Pigio around, but the TabletKiosk i440 slate with the user-switchable active/passive digitizer is VERY tempting to me.  I still really like the touchscreen for navigating with a finger like when I use Pigio as a nav system on road trips, or hitting play/pause on iTunes without having to find a stylus, etc.  But for inking, which is what I like to do most on a Tablet, touchscreens are the pits. πŸ˜›


One response

  1. Having just started using a Samsung Q1 after being a long-term tc1100 owner, the passive digitiser is taking some getting used to. I can’t honestly say that I like it so far. Not having a keyboard (and yes, I know you can plug one in or use a Bluetooth one, but it’s not the same) means you’re solely reliant on inking, and the touchscreen just isn’t as good as an active one.
    I thought that, as you say, being able to just peck at things to select them would be the payoff, but (and perhaps this is a side-effect of the smaller screen) even though my fingers aren’t exactly chunky sausages the accuracy isn’t especially high.
    It’s interesting, because I was looking at upgrading to a Lenovo X60t and have always been torn between the beautiful, higher resolution SXGA+ active-only screen and the handy MultiTouch XGA screen – now I’m thinking that on balance I’d probably prefer the former, as the latter’s passive performance would just frustrate me.

    March 15, 2007 at 5:14 am

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