Life in the Post-PC World

So I had an assignment due today that I spent most of the weekend finishing. It was about consumer perceptions of a couple of different brands, and required my group and I to think about degrees of association and how they affect a value proposition. Not terribly difficult, and we finished it last night. Except we didn't. This morning, the professor sent an email to our class reminding us to include a brand concept map in our report - something that the assignment itself didn't make clear. To make matters worse, I had left my MacBook at my apartment, figuring I wouldn't need it today. Oops.

All I had with me was my iPad. For a moment, I thought I was in trouble. Then it hit me: my iPad was all I needed.

I opened my Dropbox app and pulled down the report as it stood. It was a Word doc. I imported it into Pages, made a couple adjustments to the formatting, and was good to go. Then I opened Keynote. Pulling information from the initial report, I constructed two brand identity maps in about ten minutes. So I had my report and my brand concept maps. The trick was getting them together, since Keynote can only export in three formats (PDF, Keynote, and PowerPoint), and none of those can be embedded inside a Pages document. So what do I do?

I go to the App Store. I didn't even think about it. I just assumed that whatever problem I had, the App Store would be able to fix it. I opened the search field and began typing "PDF to JPEG." Before I finished, results had already appeared. The first one was called "PDFtoJPEG." I scanned its description quickly. It would do the job. I downloaded the app and imported my PDF concept maps. A minute later, I had what I needed, embedded them into my Pages document, saved it as a PDF, and sent it off to my professor.

What amazed me about the process is how easily I was able to solve what not long ago would have been an insurmountable problem. In the old days, leaving my computer behind would have meant disaster. Now it wasn't even an inconvenience, and I'm not sure I could have done everything I did on the iPad as quickly on my MacBook. (Incidently, every app I used was universal, meaning that if needed, I could have done all of this on my iPhone.)

The iPad is slowly but surely replacing my MacBook for everything, not just recreation. I'm beginning to wonder if I'll ever buy a laptop again.