The Attention-Seeker: My Tablet PC

Topic: Tablet PC 15 years ago

HP Compaq TC1100 Tablet PC

I went to see the doctor yesterday and while I was waiting in the reception area, I got out my Tablet PC (a HP Compaq TC1100) and tried to get some work done. When it was finally was my turn, I moved to put my Tablet away… except my doctor cried out as we he walked past “No, no! Don’t put that away, I want to see it!”

So the first five minutes of my consultation was spent explaining to him what it was — a laptop, except that you can write on it (and convert it to handwriting if necessary) — and even got him to do a quick doodle. He was instantly attracted to it and explained that he needs to fill in a lot of forms and such, but also that he needs to bring large databases of material with him. As such, he was quite concerned how large the hard drive was… until I told him it was 60 GB, to which he replied “you could store the whole world on there!” (Well not quite, I’m running out of room on my Tablet!)

This is actually an experience that happens quite regularly. People frequently comment about my Tablet and ask what it is. For example, just about everybody at the Computing Services Unit (CSU) at COFA commented about it when I went to get set up for UniWide (our university’s wireless network), including someone who had only just dropped by for help.

Funnily enough, people comment just as much when they see me using it in laptop mode (and typing) as when I’m using it in Tablet/slate mode (writing on it) — indeed, I didn’t do any writing yesterday until we were inside my doctor’s office, so what catches people’s attention? I really believe it’s the TC1100’s sleek, ultra-compact 10″ form factor that gets people more than anything else. The TC1100 is truly amazing in that regard. It’s nimbleness makes it perfect to use in just about any conceivable environment, from cramped economy-class seats on a plane or while standing on a train to using it unobtrusively in a meeting. I honestly believe HP will be making a big mistake when they discontinue this form factor at the end of year in favour of convertible units (larger, like a conventional laptop)!

The other thing notable about yesterday’s experience was that right away my doctor switched from asking about what my Tablet is, to asking how much it costs and where how he can go about getting one. Ah well, when you’re a specialist surgeon, I guess you can afford it!

No VSU in 2006 After All? My Tablet PC is a Very Sad Panda

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