+1 jc - my technology is plateauing out - my i7 920 does for my video needs, i hardly ever turn it on other than to edit / heavy duty ps while my smartphone, (with swype, which i think phenomenal) is all i really need to use for 'written' communication, and for more serious surfing and general ps i use a 5 year old laptop.
Rob, none of these XP licenses were newly purchased. The last time we bought them was probably 7 years ago. We were merely wiping and reinstalling PCs that had already had an XP license. And yes, Microsoft let us activate and update them.
I finally joined the tablet revolution. Sort of. I picked up a 10.1" Galaxy Tab 2 on sale. It's quite nice! The screen is absolutely stunning, and the smoothness of the video playback puts my old stalwart desktop to shame. I can see it becoming my primary means of showing off the multimedia work i create to friends and clients on the go. Even with the smaller screen the picture and the sound are far better than my newish laptop.
For the last 2 days i forced myself to use it for everything i possibly could instead of using a PC, just to give it a whirl. I'm able to ssh and remote into all our corporate servers and sites without a hitch so i can fix problems pretty much anywhere. It was great in the conference room because it was easy to pass around so that other people there could read messages coming in or look at status screens. The 8 hour battery life is also a lot more convenient than the 1.7 hours i get out of the laptop.
Typing on the screen is still awful, painful, and exasperating. There were a couple times when i had to respond to an email and type more than 10 words and i just waited until i could get back to my desk to type them. I guess a bluetooth keyboard is going to be a necessity, but that really eliminates any advantage of it being a "tablet" and then it might just as well be a laptop. The limited "mobile" versions of various websites and apps is a complete loser. In most cases i'll forgo the app and browse to the website and click "classic" or "desktop" version because that's so much easier and faster to use than the mobile versions.
Note to website developers: when i click "switch to desktop",
Overall though, the very best part of it was when i remoted into my desktop and then had XP pro (98SE classic theme) running on it. Even with the slowness of the remote connection, it was still a better user experience than most of the native apps.
Kelly, download the keyboard replacement app "SwiftKey." It has predictive text, the option to split the keyboard so that it can be operated with both thumbs and a Swype-like text input method where you just slide your finger from character to character. I typed this entire message on my tablet in the same amount of time it would have taken using a keyboard.
I also have SwiftKey on my Android smartphone. It's pretty cool to be able to drag a finger across the letters and it is able to guess the word I have in mind.
It could be that I've not spent enough time with it, but I still much prefer touch-typing on a real keyboard. I do, however, like SwiftKey better than hunt-and-peck typing on a tiny glass keyboard.
I have a little Dell 12" laptop that is rugged, light, long-lived (6 hours), and equipped with a great keyboard. I'm on a trip right now and was debating bringing this laptop along, but I'm glad I did. It's very pleasant to use and not much of a hassle to carry. But, of course, to each his own.
EDIT: Come to think of it, it's Swype that I've experimented with, not SwiftKey, though I gather the two of them are very similar these days now that the latter optionally incorporates the tracing motions of the former.
I've used SwiftKey, as well as various other Swype style keyboards. Couldn't stand them. Predictive text is also pretty much useless for me since a lot of my typing not only is non-dictionary words, but words that MUST be correct. Swype and predictive text are the first two things i disable on any phone i've had, and also did so on this tablet.
The problem isn't the keyboard behavior; it's the ergonomics of having the keypad and the display in the same plane. Lay it flat for typing and it's very difficult to see the screen. Tilt it up to see the screen and it's near impossible to type.
I just bought an Asus Zenbook with Windows8, 128 gig ssd, 2 USB3 ports, super bright/sharp 13.3" 1920x1080 touch screen and a perfectly functional keyboard.
Solves all the issues of the dreaded tablet. Runs Movie Studio 12 pretty nicely and is perfect for a quick edit and quickly transferring from SD or a card reader.
Surprisingly the touch screen is incredibly handy for surfing and getting around in Win8. I'm just starting to really understand how to use the combination of touch and keyboard in Win8. As you come to understand how it really works it's pretty fun to use.
I've been using Pc's since 8086's came out and it's pretty cool to see that we live in incredible times. The apple zealots really don't have a monopoly on computing usefulness :)
The more you use SwiftKey the more it will learn the words you use and they will end up in the prediction library. The split keyboard function makes it much easier to type on a tablet. There was a major update to SwiftKey about a month ago which incorporated the Swype-style option.
"The vast majority of people only surf, check email and use Facebook. Previously, these tasks could only be accomplished on a desktop or a laptop, now all it requires is a tablet or a smartphone and they can be used pretty much anywhere. Obviously, we editors still have a need for desktop computers but fewer and fewer "regular" people need them so their sales are going down while tablet and smartphone sales are going up. Heck, I'm posting this from my tablet sitting in a restaurant waiting for my food."
Well said. PC's aren't going anywhere. There just won't be as many of them in the future. But they'll be there for those of us that still want to edit on them.
I agree that workstations will always be needed in some form. However, the need for a family PC is fading away due to the smartphones and tablets. I think most people (families) realize they no longer need the 15 year old computer sitting in the corner gathering dust when they have smartphones and tablets that will do what they need.
My crystal ball shows there may be a slight uptick in PC sales as more people telecommute to work. Also, there will be the people that use their PC's for their job, like most of the group here running their own business, or still wanted as gaming rigs but most home PC's are quickly becoming unused and unwanted.
Personally I think the explosion of the PC market since the 80's has been a perfect storm of curiosity, technology and social networking. Now, the curiosity has evaporated, the technological advances have slowed (10-15 year old computers still doing most if not all that is needed) and social networking can be done from a smartphone.
While in the past the new windows version may have driven sales because of new hardware requirements and is the next 'new' thing, that will no longer be the case when M$ is releasing a new OS every week - and people hating the changes.
Apple still had a record 2012 in sales and profit. Its iPads lead the tablet market, and its Mac computers continue to outperform in a shrinking PC market. Analysts also say slowing growth is inevitable for a company its size.
"A weeks worth of getting use to it"
True, Microsoft could of made it easier in that sense with some better implemented tutorial as you install Win 8. That little arrow pointing in a corner was rather simplistic.
Win 8 and V12 are very robust.
And not having the start button doesn't bother me at all, the metro interface being the new start button IMO is quite convenient as you can group items, where I also have a shortcut for shutdown and restart.
Ridedale ,yes their price are down. That is expected. Analysts also say slowing growth is inevitable for a company its size. But, their products work better than Microsoft. I haven't upgraded my HP Win 7 Professional.
Because, I am working on my iMac more and more. And, I'd spend so much money on Window programs.
As many of you have pointed out, consumers are realizing that the need for a dusty slow booting PC in the corner of your family room is no longer needed when you can sit on the couch, or in the car, or anywhere, with your instant-on tablet and do everything you did with your PC and more.
Microsoft was very, very, smart to enter the tablet market. They know that the PC market is shrinking fast and they are bailing out. The domination of the Metro UI on Windows 8 is proof that they have all of their eggs in the portable device basket and for good reason. The problem is that corporations are a large part of Microsoft's income and the reaction to Windows 8 in corporate America (much of which hasn't adopted Windows 7 yet) does not look good for Microsoft.
I may have been wrong before when I said that the only people who will need PC's in the future are the content creators like us. After going to NAB 2013 and seeing some of the Cloud Computing solutions that are being worked on, I don't think even content creators will need a PC in the future. All of the heavy lifting will be done in the cloud with dynamically scalable storage, CPU's, and GPU's for processing and rendering in the cloud. All you need is a lightweight device to control it all (e.g., desktop cloud) and Sony Broadcast was one of the companies that was showing this.
Very soon, a tablet device + the cloud = the future of content creation. It's getting very, very exciting indeed.
I second your thought on that. I am very familiar with the green screen "dumb terminal". Sounds more and more like they want programs and apps "on the cloud" so you technically do not have it installed on your device.
I still plan on keeping and using my desktop. I have a tablet but I mainly use it for watching videos, browsing the web and maybe reading while at lunch (at work). I still love the fact that regardless if I am connected to the Net or not, I can continue to use Office, print out and play games etc on my desktop.
Who is to say down the road, M$ or whichever company decides to stop users from accessing Application X, they most likely would be able to. At least with physical software, you can control the software on your system.
I still do not trust the "cloud" computing in general.
I thought the people behind the developement of "Cloud" were ridiculous. I still think they are. No way will I store data on somebody else's machine. That's worse than letting someone else (Total stranger) borrow your car.