Ask a Nerd — Why So Many Gadgets?

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By Wayne Embrey

Phones, tablets, laptops, and desktops all have their place, but do you need all of them? Let’s define these nifty gadgets.

Phones—There are a bazillion phones and they come in all the flavors an ice cream shop could hope for. Sorry, until my endorsement deal comes in, you’ll have to pick a phone to fit your needs. A phone is the only one of these that is a phone. You can do almost everything on your phone, but unless you have the eyes of a 14 year old, you won’t want to do everything on a phone for hours.

Tablets—Tablets are compact. They’re quick and easy, with or without a cellular data plan, and make great coffee table Internet appliances. They are the new cool if you will, not as bulky as a laptop but with just enough speed and power for short tasks.

Laptops—“And in the Red Corner, weighing in at a normal five pounds plus the power adapter…,” is the laptop. Laptops do everything faster than a phone or a tablet with a good-sized screen that won’t send your eye doctor’s kids to college. Phones and tablets share the app market, but full computers get real-deal software and have that old-school feel of a mouse and keyboard we have all come to love.

Desktops—Desktops still have their place. Not everyone needs a computer they can move. A workstation with large screen is priceless for long hours creating documents or presentations. You might use your desktop to create a presentation, load it on the laptop to take it to a meeting, use your tablet at the meeting to search the Internet so you don’t interrupt the laptop presentation, and send a text message on your phone to get an answer to a question from your audience. Desktops act as file vault and backup in case you drop your phone/tablet/laptop. They are big, fast, and dependable. All four gadgets have a purpose.

Amazingly, wherever we are today, we can always play the newest game, read the day’s news, check our schedules, and actually do some work with all of these gadgets at the same time. Once you have all of them, only you can decide which one is your new best friend.

M! AM 2013


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