On Tour With My iPad

I've finished my first two book on my iPad - "A Visit From the Goon Squad" by Jennifer Egan and "Wild Years - The Music and Myth of Tom Waits" by Jay S. Jacobs. "Goon Squad" is a truly contemporary book that wanders shamelessly through time, observing the tumultuous lives of a cast of characters all vaguely associated with the music industry. I liked it a lot. The Tom Waits book is a pretty straightforward chronicle of a very private man's career. I would have liked to see more detail, but appreciate what I learned.

I really enjoy reading on the iPad. On the whole, I like it better than reading traditional books.

At first I missed not being able to gauge, by the amount of pages shifted from the right hand to the left, how far along in the story I was, but it's not so much a loss as a change of habit. My iPad has helped be break that habit and realize that reading, like life, is all about the journey. The distance yet to be travelled should not be a distracting consideration. At any rate, a quick touch of the screen will show me.

I've read my iPad in airports, on planes, in vans, in restaurants, in hotel rooms, in beds in hotel rooms and in all circumstances, except bright sunlight, the experience has been more comfortable and all-round more rewarding. Part of this is due to the excellent Marware Eco-Vue case I bought while waiting for my iPad to arrive. Thanks to the multiple configurations of the case, I rarely have to hold the iPad with my hands. Even while sitting with my legs crossed the micro-fibre lining grips my jeans and holds the screen in place.

I was most looking forward to reading comic books and graphic novels on the bright, colourful and nearly comic-book-shaped iPad screen, and that experience has been everything I hoped for. I've been re-reading some favourites and discovering new titles (like Ed Brubaker's amazing "Criminal").

Although the time difference probably measures in miliseconds, the iPad is quicker in and out of the backpack and, as a result, more likely to be deployed. There is a general feel of convenience to it that my heavier, hinged, MacBook Pro seems, more and more, to lack.

For the moment though, and until I'm more used to the iPads glass keyboard, anything longer than a few paragraphs gets written on this trusty laptop.