This series of write-ups celebrates the Lenovo Forum's family of volunteer advocates - moderators, gurus and outstanding members of the Forum, who consistently go out of their way to help out in this community through sharing what they know, dissecting, delving and diving into various issues to educate other users and solve one another's problems. We salute and honor your dedication and hard work!
Having been involved in the IT industry for close to a decade, Peter Barnette, otherwise known as MrPeter1985 in the Lenovo Community, very recently edited his forum signature, proudly declaring his wish to be a Tablet evangelist. Intrigued, we catch up with the guru to find out what inspired this change, and also learned how he used the IdeaPad K1 as, get this, a parenting tool.
Serene: You changed your signature recently and declared yourself a Tablet evangelist. What inspired you to do so?
Peter: As a volunteer, I have limited time to contribute to the community, but I really enjoying talking with people who are passionate about new technology and helping where I can. As tablets are new and the community around them is still small, I thought it would be a great area to get more involved. I really want to see a self sustaining support eco-system develop around these new android powered Lenovo tables and really want to be involved in making that happen so as soon as I got my hands on a K1, I joined as many of the active discussions on the product that I could.
Serene: Do you think tablets are just a fad? Will it be here to stay, or just a blip and be forgotten?
Peter: Tablets have actually been around for a long time (if you think about it, the first ThinkPad was actually one!) At the beginning, these touch-based devices never took off due to their size, cost, weight, short battery life and poor application support. They only really did so when the iPhone and iPod Touch came to the market, where you have a device that had longer lasting battery life, is responsive to touch interaction, has smooth graphics flow and a gorgeous design. Most importantly, it has a large range of apps to give the device more utility. Hence, the growth in the size of such tablets is a natural progression. The iPad came to the market with its wide offering solid hardware and has a great industrial design and great trove of applications. Best of all, it had a ravenous fan base willing to get their hands on a set at all costs.
Tablets will evolve, of course. With the advent of technology and birth of opportunities to extend their capability, such as cloud computing, as well as improvements in hardware and apps, I predict the Tablet will eventually occupy a greater slice of the pie smartphones and netbooks combined have today.
Serene: How do you think the tablet trend will evolve?
Peter: Judging by the past and current trajectories of notebooks and netbooks, one would conventionally predict the tablet trend will evolve in terms of hardware - having more memory, better CPU/GPU and improved battery run time, etc. However, perhaps the more meaningful evolution for Tablets may be made through software development.
The Tablet looks set to become more powerful and the ways in which it can be used could be expanded. Improvements are made in technology, even as we speak. As it is we have the implementation of faster wireless network connections and the use of cloud computing. However, it will not rule the world. This is just another step in a longer evolutionary path. Perhaps one day a new device might supplant the touch-based system by directly interacting with your mind. Maybe some kind of head band you would wear that would pick up impulses from your brain and move the pointer around via a Bluetooth connection. Hey, it could happen!.
Serene: What are some of the things users need to look out for or check before buying one?
Peter: It all depends on what you, the consumer, want or need. Do you need a big screen? Must it be scratch-resistant? Have a decent camera? There isn’t really a list of tips for this – you must remember you are buying this for yourself and not because it looks good, and so, your purchase should suit your likes and habits.
Serene:Is there a specific audience most suited to its use?
Peter: No. They naturally have a wide range of fans as they have many applications and software services. You can use it to read e-books, surf the web, watch a movie etc. Its uses are varied and as technology improves these do so as well.
Serene: How has the Tablet impacted your life?
Peter: I’ve only had one a short while, so it is a bit early to say. The Tablet has enriched it somewhat. I am using the IdeaPad K1 tablet, which gives me more freedom to do other things that my ThinkPad T500 did not allow me to do so. I can read an eBook, watch flash media without having to carry around a 6 pounds of notebook, and do simple web browsing with near instant on capability.
Serene: You have an adorable son - does he like the K1? Any plans to get him a tablet as well?
Peter: I would most certainly get my son a 7-inch tablet (The A1 would fit the bill nicely. * wink wink*) when the chance arises. He loves playing on his Mom’s iPod Touch, and he refers to the K1 as the big iPod. He really loves the coloring and drawing apps. Last night the K1 even read him a few stories before he went to bed and was almost like a digital computer babysitter!
Got a question about Lenovo’s range of Tablets? Pop by our boards, check out and join in the discussions, and feel free to ask away! And while you are at it, say hi to Peter!