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iPad Help - Making Sense Of The iPad For Online Learning

he noise about the release of Apple’s iPad has been a bit overwhelming. Were you too busy to read the reviews, analysis and opinions? Here,we summarized the gist of it in a quick handy dandy rating system focusing on the iPad’s future for online learning.
Size
As Apple says, the iPad is slightly smaller than a magazine. Its 9.7 inch diagonal screen bodes well for mobile learning. You’ll be able to display more content on the screen than on most other mobile devices. Detractors say that it’s too large to slip into a pocket, but why not slip it into your brief case or backpack? It’s only 0.5 inches thick.
Weight
Weighing in at 1.5 and 1.6 lbs (.68 kg and .73kg), it’s light enough to carry around, even for wimps. Lightweight technology makes learning. collaborating and communicating convenient.
User Interface
The iPad uses the iPhone’s basic user interface with additional multi-touch capabilities. Some applications apparently work more like what you’d find on a Mac. This high-touch type of interface should enable lots of interactivity, games and simulations. This is a great way to foster engaging learning experiences.
In terms of input, the iPad has a virtual keyboard and Apple offers an auxiliary physical keyboard that connects to and charges the iPad.
Flash Ready
For a variety of reasons that probably only insiders understand, both the iPad and the iPhone do not play Flash movies. Although there will be other types of content creation tools, I see the lack of Flash support as a huge limitation for course developers.
Delivering Content
The iPad is well-equipped for delivering movies (sans Flash), music, narration, graphics and text. For eBooks, it’s using the ePub format, which is an open source standard allowing digital publications to work on different devices. Unlike the Kindle (at the time of this writing), the iPad has color capabilities. The operating system is not capable of multi-tasking, however, which could present obstacles when using the iPad for learning. Don’t you like to move between different content windows?
Collaboration
You’ll be able to collaborate on the iPad, but not through video. The tablet does not come with a video camera. It does have a built-in microphone and stereo speakers so it is audio ready. Text chat is an obvious use and VoIP services should work. The iPad then, can be used for audio-based synchronous learning, collaboration, meetings and just-in-time support.
Social Media
Because the iPad can connect through Wi-Fi and 3G (depending on the model) and has a screen size that makes text legible, it’s ideal for mobile social media activities. Users of social iPhone apps, like Facebook Mobile, LinkedIn, TweetDeck and Seesmic, will have an easy time integrating the iPad into their social media universe. On the other hand, you’re probably not likely to whip out the iPad to text someone like you would with a cell phone.
Applications
It looks as though users won’t be left behind on the iPad. According to Apple, 140,000 existing iPhone applications will run on their tablet. They have also redesigned iWork, the Mac productivity suite with Keynote (for presentations), Pages (for documents), and Numbers (for spreadsheets). Relevant to learning is the iBook app for downloading digital publications. I see hyperlinked and interactive textbooks in our future. In addition to specific iPad applications, users can access the Internet through the iPad’s web browser, Safari. As mentioned, the iPad is not multi-tasking and this can limit how one uses its applications for content creation and online learning.

More related iPad help resources:


iPad Problems - 14 Problems with Apple's iPad

Apple just revealed the new Apple iPad Tablet that will probably make it one of the first failures by Apple's latest line of products. Apple revealed this new Tablet PC as a challenger to netbooks. However, it's already been labeled a "less powerful, but more expensive netbook." Here are 14 problems that made this Apple iPad an iDisappointment.
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Why iPad not Showing in iTunes?
Backup iPad without iTunes
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