Living

Mr. Modem: Laptop-to-tablet transition is fairly easy

Patrons settle in with tablets and newspapers at an eatery in Washington.
Patrons settle in with tablets and newspapers at an eatery in Washington. The Washington Post

Should I be thinking about replacing my laptop with a tablet? All my friends are telling me to get a tablet.

If you are a happy Windows user, many affordable Windows 10 tablets are available today. The transition from a laptop to any tablet, whether Windows, Android or Apple, is not that difficult — assuming you are motivated to make the change. Sure, there is a learning curve, but if you really want to learn to use a tablet, virtually all tablets are so intuitive and user friendly, it’s not that big a deal. (I know what you’re thinking, “Easy for you to say, Mr. Big Shot.” Personally, I think that’s a bit harsh, but let’s forge ahead, despite the affront.)

Mrs. Modem jettisoned her desktop PC and laptop several years ago and now uses an iPad exclusively. She is not a computer enthusiast and refuses to read a manual (she says that’s what she has me for), but she managed to figure it out almost entirely by herself. I showed her a few very basic tablet functions on one occasion and from that point she was off and swiping.

If you plan to switch to a tablet — any tablet — you will probably need to get comfortable with the cloud. Tablets do not have large hard drives in the traditional sense. It is generally anticipated that tablet users will save things like documents and photos to a cloud storage service — in other words, on the Internet.

Having used Android, Windows and Apple tablets, I prefer Apple’s iPad, followed by the Samsung (Android) Galaxy. If you plan to use your tablet for email, Web browsing, social media and games, a tablet will fill the bill quite nicely. If there is a particular app (program) that you use on your PC that you absolutely, positively must have on your tablet lest life no longer be worth living, make sure that app or a comparable one is available in the appropriate app store for your device.

To answer your specific question (finally), with few exceptions, it is certainly possible to replace your laptop with a tablet, but only you can answer the question if you should. And keep in mind that there is no reason you can’t have both a tablet and a laptop while you become comfortable with the tablet and determine if it will meet your needs. For some users it does; others still require a computer.

Mr. Modem publishes “Ask Mr. Modem!” each week, featuring PC tips, tricks and plain-English answers to your questions by email. For more information, visit www.MrModem.com.

Mr. Modem’s Sites of the Week

Hoax of Fame

http://hoaxoffame.tumblr.com

A treasure trove of photos, some Photoshopped (fake) and some legitimate but falsely attributed, described, or taken out of context.

 

Saipancakes

www.saipancakes.com

This is the blog of a man who creates pancakes that are works of art. When you arrive at the site you will be greeted by a vast assortment of artistic, grilliantly-executed pancakes. To navigate, simply scroll down the page and select a pancake that tickles your fancy. You will find lots of pop-culture, music and thematic pancakes. Once selected, you will be whisked away to that pancake’s page where you will find a larger image of the fabulous flapjack and possibly a video.

Extra Special Bonus: If you prefer to watch the PCP (pancake creation process) via video, head on over to the Pancake YouTube channel: www.youtube.com/user/saipancakes/videosl. Ready, set, batter up.

 

Viral Nova

www.viralnova.com

You have probably heard about videos that “go viral” and are seen by tens and even hundreds of millions of people. In fact, so many videos do go viral, it has been about impossible to keep up with them — but not any longer. Viral Nova aggregates viral media and brings it directly to you in one convenient location. When you visit the site, start by browsing the featured content on the main page. If you want to view additional videos, check out the navigation strip at the top of the page, where you will find categories of videos.

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