The Random Griffith

Why I am excited about the Apple iPad

Posted in Uncategorized by Jackson Griffith on 02/02/2010

Normally I’m not the gadget fanboy. But with last week’s announcement for the Apple iPad tablet device, I have to say that I am genuinely excited. And while there are reams of copy, or the digital equivalent, splattered all over the net, pro and con. I can’t add to at mix of splooge and bile, except to state that over time and Microsoft assclowneries I’ve become a gradual convert to the elegance of Apple’s product line, because there’s usually an intuitive rightness to their interfaces, at least as far as I’m concerned.

What gets me excited are the potentials for digital publishing. As an erstwhile (read: out of work) magazine editor, writer and columnist, and as an avocational artist and musician, I have a really strong feeling and near-psychic sense that the iPad will become the new standard for digital transmission and consumption of magazines, books and other media. Which, of course, means that It’ll become incumbent on those of us “content providers” who want to stay in or jump back in the game to become conversant with this new platform, and start thinking about the ways that text, video, sound files and art can be combined to create an enriched browsing experience, he says in his best Baldy McYogapants mediawhore pundit voice (at 6’7″ I probably would look like some goofball goliath in a Coen Brothers movie with a shaved head and in yoga pants, so don’t even go there already).

Yep, I digressed. Um, sorry. The point being that the imagination can run rampant with all the cool ways to combine various forms of media, and for those of us who are either working on or contemplating working on a book (okay, I’ll confess I have several balls in the air in that respect), we need to think not only about what will go into our books, but what can be added to the enriched iPad versions. Especially for my friends who are in the comic book and graphic novel business: This thing is gonna rock, or waltz, or schottische, or break. To hell with those metaphors; this thing is gonna frickin’ shingaling.

I could give you a lot of other reasons, but I won’t. Maybe later. At any rate, I’m, like, so totally stoked I’ve gotta find my sunglasses. —Jackson Griffith


One Response

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. rpm1122 said, on 02/02/2010 at 13:46

    Alright Sri Griffitharka,

    My first take on the iPad was followed by a widening exercise of my jaw muscles in concert with cheek and chin.

    I was not impressed.

    You know the standard complaints; no flash, no usb, no secret decoder ring. I think there’s some merit with these complaints, however Jobs might be three steps ahead and that may or may not be a bad thing.

    He’s publicly dissed Flash and I am sure is betting heavily on the next format to replace Flash. Okay, I can go there. It’s smart and forcing the marketplace to adapt to it and not vice-versa. Hats off. But here is where I draw the line with Jobs and I think an old music guy like yourself will get this analogy.

    Since everything is app based and not OS, and it is driven by Apple/iTunes for content and content provision, it creates, in the hands of Apple a potential monopoly for content, something we have railed at in the music and especially the digital music space for well over a decade now. Steve’s learned a thing or two from his dealings with the major labels and it’s all about ownership and proprietary content. While I rarely question Apples taste and flair for innovation, it makes me nervous when they already hold a near monopoly in the distribution of digital music and are now positioning themselves for a monopoly of sorts with iPad and app based technology, which only they will provide.

    I’m old fashioned at times and still think competition breeds innovation and excellence and Apple has seemingly created a soft barrier towards that end in some regards.

    If you’re right about this being the next revolution, then I surely hope that someone will attempt to storm Apple’s gates with something even more compelling than the iPad, because dominating content and distribution through hardware while smart, is subtly manipulative and perhaps even unintentionally fascistic when it comes to control and domination of an emergent technological development.

    If this is truly a tipping point in the way we produce and consume content, I want tributaries, rivers and streams, not just some giant aqueduct cutting through our lives and taking everything along with it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: