So all kidding aside, my iPad arrived today, and it is a pretty cool device. My normal attitude toward new gadgets is “great, more video driver bugs to fix”, but the iPad is exciting.

I’ll blog some other time about why I think the form factor is important and there is a spot for something bigger than a smart phone and smaller than a laptop.

For now I just want to point out that it flies X-Plane; X-Plane for iPad a bunch of new features, including 2-d panels while you fly, 3-d airports with full taxiway layouts, a completely rebuilt user interface, improved sky and water effects, and even some auto-gen buildings.

Also first impressions of the device itself: it’s really responsive. I have tried to surf the web with my iPod touch (which is based on first-gen iPhone technology) and it’s a tough experience – between the small screen, slow CPU and limited RAM. The iPad surfs the web like a desktop. A very light weight, portable desktop.

About Ben Supnik

Ben is a software engineer who works on X-Plane; he spends most of his days drinking coffee and swearing at the computer -- sometimes at the same time.

6 comments on “Yes, the iPad is Magical

  1. Oh Really.. you guys have to get a new cause. It is another Apple closed source gimmick that Austin and you with develop for. This will force the apple community to think that they they MUST get one and spend hard cash on what is a mediocre platform..

  2. meanwhile back on planet Earth….

    (anonymous, either you haven't spent anytime with OSX or you have a weird, personal definition of "mediocre")

  3. Anon: I don't think closed source is particularly pertinent. Windows is closed source, PARTS of OS X are closed source, all of x-plane is closed source. Closed source commercial development goes back forever.

    What is new about the ipad/iphone is that it is a "closed ecosystem". Not only can you not get the code to other people's apps/OS, but you can't get your own code on without a gate keeper.

    It's certainly different, and it's too soon to tell what is good and bad about it. More commentary on that some other time.

  4. i would love to have one. the first thing i would do is to void warranty and try to get a linux kernel running on that thing 😀

  5. Ben, picking one up today (Australia, finally). Chip and I are pleading- a more advanced version of xplane remote will be amazing- full sized efis, fmc or a/p anyone?! Hurry, we'll buy. Dang it, I could buy six and have a full flight deck! Simon W

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