I remember when I first started seeing commercials for the iPad on television.
It was so sleek and cool. However, given my current income, I decided pretty early on that I would never own one.
However, after Ann Arbor Journal Managing Editor Michelle Rogers was named as a contributor to JRC’s ideaLab, I figured I would have a chance to mess around with some of the new toys, including the iPad.
I was right.
I’ve spent most of the past two weeks using the iPad to help me cover sports in Ann Arbor.
In some cases, it’s limited, but in others, it really allows for some cool things.
Last Saturday, I attended the “Big Chill at the Big House,” an outdoor hockey game between the University of Michigan and Michigan State.
This event was very pro-iPad. From the confines of the press box, I was able to use the iPad to take game notes, do a live blog tweet updates to my followers on Twitter and host a live chat with the Cover It Live app. Multitasking is the name of the game for the iPad. It allows you to do so much from one place. One particular instance that was really cool can be seen on my Big Chill blog. During the game, on the big screen at Michigan Stadium, organizers played clips from the “Top Michigan Hockey Plays.”
One of the plays was a really, really impressive goal by former Wolverine Mike Legg. So, right after they played the clip on the big screen, I opened the iPad’s YouTube app and found the clip. With just a couple of finger strokes, I embedded the clip into my blog. So, within seconds of people watching the clip at the Big House, people following at home could see, too.
However, the iPad does have it’s drawbacks. The main one being that without WiFi, it just becomes a really fancy note pad with iTunes. So giving live coverage to high school games is a challenge, as most schools aren’t broadcasting WiFi.
Another drawback to the iPad that I have discovered is that I can’t figure out a way to upload photos from the device. I can put photos on it from my camera, but when I try to upload them to websites like Flickr or even to my blog, the “browse photo” button is always grayed out. Perhaps I just haven’t figured out how to use it yet.
Overall, though, the iPad is a stunning piece of technology, and when combined with a WiFi connection, it is quickly becoming an invaluable resource.