The Apple iPad continues to get constant attention online, especially since its April 3 release date grows closer. Pre-orders were impressive but seem to have slowed down a bit.
Zdnet recently reported that Apple has updated its iPad FAQ or Frequently Asked Questions page to reveal that when it becomes necessary to replace a faulty battery, the user will receive an entirely new iPad with the new battery for around $106 including shipping.
Sounds good, but the downside is that apparently the user will receive a factory fresh model, losing any data or settings on the original device, according to the article.
One question I answer constantly via e-mail is if I think a PC user could move completely to an Apple Mac without a major hassle. The one-word answer I always give is, absolutely.
I often use our friend Dalton Roberts as an example. I have taken care of Dalton's electronic and computer needs for several years, and he was a PC user for all of that time. When he found it necessary to replace his old computer last year, he decided to go to an Apple iMac.
Within two hours of setting up the machine, he was totally comfortable with its layout and function. It's helpful to remember that both the Mac and PC Windows operating systems are based on the same GUI or Graphic User Interface principles created at Xerox PARC many years ago.
While there are some features in each that are a bit different and need to be learned, they are generally using the same desktop metaphor. Dalton has told me many times that he loves his Mac and has never had more fun using a computer.
Bear in mind also that a Windows user who did not care for the Mac interface can choose to run Windows on any new Mac. This is done two primary ways: using the included Boot Camp software on the Mac or running what's called a virtual machine.
Boot Camp is a very simple program that partitions or divides the Mac hard drive and places Windows on the new partition. Virtual Machines such as Parallels or VMware Fusion use memory to simulate a separate hard drive installation. Each has its advantages and drawbacks, and each requires that you own a licensed copy of Windows to install on the Mac. I use Boot Camp to run Windows XP on my iMac, and it works great.
One trend I follow constantly is location based technology and services. Regular readers are familiar with services I've covered here, such as Loopt, Foursquare and Gowalla. Using techniques such as checking in with other friends when a person reaches a certain location, these services are gaining users quickly.
Now, even Facebook and Twitter are going to allow location data to be shared with others. Obviously, location will be an important issue for some time to come. My concern here is the same as with any personal information: we must be constantly aware of and in control of what we are sharing.
There have already been instances of stalkers using the Apple iPhone to track their ex-spouse or girlfriend, and spammers and malware authors would love to have more targeted and constant access to any of us.
So, be aware and watchful, and be willing to assert control over your privacy and security.