Sunday, February 25, 2018

Carrying the Galaxy Tab S3 or iPad Pro with a stylus pen

Both the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 and iPad Pro are compatible with an active stylus pen.

I use my pen all the time, so I have tried different cases that hold the pen next to the tablet. Samsung calls their stylus the S Pen and Apple calls their stylus the Pencil. While the Apple Pencil needs to be charged, the S Pen does not require charging. The S Pen for the Tab S3 also has a built-in clip:

Since Tab S3 and iPad Pro tablets are so thin, they lack a built-in storage silo for these pens. So, here are a few ways to hold the stylus pen with your tablet:

Pen holder that attaches to a tablet case:

Tablet case with a built-in pen holder:

Attach a pen clip and use that to attach to a tablet cover:

I sure do miss the days when stylus pens would simply fit into a built-in silo:

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 5th Gen Laptop Recall

Lenovo is voluntarily recalling some ThinkPad X1 Carbon 5th Generation laptops. ThinkPad X1 Carbon 5th Generation laptops (Machine Types: 20HQ, 20HR, 20K3, 20K4) are affected. ThinkPad X1 Carbon 5th Generation laptops manufactured on or after November 1, 2017 are not affected.

Learn more about the recall here.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

The Universal Stylus Initiative (USI)

Have you heard of the Universal Stylus Initiative?

Many people don't use a stylus pen with their tablets, but I've been a long-time user of stylus pens. Some of my first Windows tablet PCs used Wacom stylus pens. Today, you can get the iPad Pro in 2 different sizes (10.5" and 12.9") and both are compatible with the Apple Pencil. Samsung has a host of Android and Windows tablets that support the S Pen. The Microsoft Surface Pro and Surface Book work with the Surface Pen. HP, Dell, Lenovo, and other PC manufacturers offer a variety of Windows tablets that are compatible with active digitizers (stylus pens).

While some stylus pens require a battery, others use a magnetic technology that requires no power.

The Universal Stylus Initiative (USI) is working on the advancement of an open active stylus standard. The other day, UDI announced that Google LLC, 3M Touch Systems, Inc., Lattice Semiconductor, Maxeye Smart Technologies Co., Ltd., MyScript and Tactual Labs Co. have all joined the world’s largest, open, active stylus solution, member-driven industry association.

The USI 1.0 Specification also enables new usages for active styluses, such as multiple styluses operating simultaneously on a single device. The USI specification can be implemented on a wide range of touch-enabled devices, including phones, tablets, computing and entertainment platforms.

Launched in 2015, Universal Stylus Initiative (USI) is an international not-for-profit technology trade association whose mission is to define industry-wide standards for interoperable communication between an active stylus and touch-enabled devices such as phones, tablets, and computing and entertainment platforms. The USI specification provides for a stylus capable of communicating with different touch sensors and touch controller integrated circuits, so that users can employ the same stylus across numerous touch-enabled devices, as long as each device’s touch controller is compliant with the USI specification.

Monday, May 16, 2016

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet looks promising

I believe I saw the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet when I was walking around the HIMSS conference earlier this year.

The X1 Tablet is a bit of a confusing name because Lenovo has a series of ThinkPad products using the "X1" brand. You have the X1 Carbon, the X1 Yoga, and now the X1 Tablet. The X1 Yoga can be used as a tablet if you fold the keyboard around the device.

Similar to the Microsoft Surface Pro, the X1 Tablet is a 12" slate running Windows 10 and it attaches to an external keyboard. Unlike the Surface Pro, the X1 Tablet uses a different type of built-in kickstand that folds down instead of folding out.

One of the unique features found on the X1 Tablet is its ability to attach to several different types of modules. These modules provide additional battery life, a built-in projector, 3D imaging camera, and more. I like the idea of a modular design for a mobile device because it allows you to easily customize the device with the features and options that you need, when you need them.

Is it time to say goodbye to the ThinkPad Helix and the ThinkPad 10? I think the ThinkPad X1 Tablet is here to replace them.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Because of Pi Day, save on 31.41% on the Dell XPS 13 Laptop

I'm not sure how long this deal will last, but today (3.14) is Pi Day and the Microsoft Store is deeply discounting the Dell XPS 13 (while supplies last). The XPS 13 is known for it nearly "borderless" 13.3" display on a laptop that has the body and footprint of an 11" laptop.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Will Windows 7 take you to 2020?

According to the Windows lifecycle fact sheet, Windows 7 mainstream support ended in January 13, 2015 and extended support will end in January 14, 2020.

Many hospitals are running Windows 7. They jumped from Windows XP to Windows 7, even when Windows 8 was available. Remember that Windows 10 was released in July, 2015. Given that changing operating systems across an entire hospital enterprise is considerable work, I would not be surprised if many hospitals remain on Windows 7 through 2019. After all, 2019 is only 3 years away.

I've personally really enjoyed using Windows 10 and the operating system offers the right balance of functionality when I'm using my mobile PC as a laptop/desktop vs. a touch-screen tablet. Now that I've become so accustomed to Windows 10, it's hard to go back to any mobile device running Windows 8.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Taking a Chromebook for a spin (Dell Chromebook 13)

Recently, I was given the opportunity to take a Chromebook for a spin. It's my first Chromebook experience. Stay tuned as I spend some time using the Dell Chromebook 13 and I'll post my review later this month. (When they report 12+ hrs of battery life, they really mean it!)