Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Mac Rumors Abound: What do I Expect?

Well, it's that time of year again. The media is all a buzz with the coming of new and potentially life-changing devices from Apple. What will it be? A cure for global warming? A chip to interface your head directly with the internet? Flying cars? The wild guesses are running rampant. But, beyond all the hype, what is it that I think Apple should release? Here is my wish list (note, not predictions):

Lots of people have been talking about this, and the potential for an iPod Slate , which would be a replacement for the Newton, have full OS installed, and the ability to tether bluetooth keyboards and mice. All in all, I think it's a great idea. But doesn't the iPhone have a bluetooth antenna installed? Why not just enable tethering there?

Course, a bigger screen would be nice, but still small enough to be portable. It needs to be a fully functional machine, with all the abilities of a fully fledged Mac, but be small enough to fit in a portfolio, at least. And, most importantly, it needs to be well priced. If not, then the Eee PC sounds like the best bet for me for my next replacement notebook.

Why something so small and no notebook? Well, I don't need a lot of real estate for the classes I teach, nor the classes I hope to teach. I need something mobile, because mobility is a big deal when you are teaching all over the state (and get offers outside of the state). I also need the flexibility of being able to have a full machine that boots quick (or wakes up quickly), has access to all my files (via networking), and can be used anywhere. So, one last thing I would like in a UMPC from Apple is a 3G chip on board, and not an external device.

A Home Server
I am planning on setting up a home server anyway, once I can afford the hardware, but wouldn't it be nice if Apple set up a home server device for me? It would be configured pretty basically, but allow me to also configure it in a more advanced way if necessary. I want the ability to run simple file sharing through the device, with some web services, collaboration services, and even NetBoot if I can get away with it. If necessary (and if the price is right), I would be willing to purchase more than one server device, each configured for a specific duty. As it stands now, I am looking at getting a bare-bones Mac Mini, and running the server off of it.

And, well, that's about it. The number one thing I want is a reasonably priced UMPC that is priced like a PDA, but works like a Mac. As mentioned before, I can work without one by using a Linux-based EeePC or the OLPC machine, but I really am hooked on the Mac. It does the job for me, it's easy to set up, and I teach the platform. The server I can set up myself, if I need to. The UMPC would just be really nice. ^_^

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