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History Of Portable Computing Devices Essay

1307 words - 6 pages

Portable Computing Devices
Jason Coltrain
ITT Technical Institute
NT 1110 SAT AM
Research Project

Portable Computing Devices

What is Portable Computing? The answer to that question is bigger than most people think. Mobile/Portable computing is defined as the ability to use technology that is not physically connected to any static network. This actually used to mean radio transmitters that operated on a stable base, usually with the help of large antennas. 2 way radios used by police officers were also considered mobile technology but now, it means people can connect wirelessly to the internet or to a private network almost anywhere. As long as a person has one of the devices ...view middle of the document...

Most Palms use the familiar Windows interface, allowing the general public to access the internet via the usual Internet Explorer or other internet browsers. Also, people can easily download useful software, including games, Media editing tools, organization tools, and even electronic books. Mobile computing has evolved from two-way radios that use large antennas to communicate simple messages to three inch personal computers that can do almost everything a regular computer does.
So where did the tablet computer come from? The first detailed concept for a tablet PC occurred in the form of the Dynabook. Plans for the Dynabook were drawn up by Alan Kay in 1968. Kay envisioned the Dynabook as a portable computer with a nearly unlimited power supply that could be used as an educational tool for children. GRiD Systems became the first company to offer an actual portable tablet-based computer in 1989 when they introduced the GRiDPad. The GRiDPad managed to weigh in at just under 1.5 pounds despite offering a large, grayscale, backlit screen, internal floppy drive, fax/modem card, and a PCMCIA slot. Other tablet models began appearing on the market in the early '90s. IBM first coined the popular ThinkPad moniker when it introduced the ThinkPad 700T model along with several others. While other early Thinkpad models featured full color screens and the Windows 3.1 OS, with a 10.1" monochrome screen and ran on GO Corporation's PenPoint OS. In 2001 Bill Gates announced Windows XP Tablet Edition. This new version of Windows XP promised all the looks and functionality of Windows in a format better suited to a touchscreen interface. New tablet PCs from a variety of manufacturers began hitting the market in the years following. These new models generally fell into one of two categories. The first category was slate tablets, the second, more common type of Tablet PC is the convertible tablet. A company called Fingerworks began developing a multi-touch technology in 2003 that was eventually adopted by Apple for the iPhone and iPod Touch. The iPhone has proven to be a very popular entrant in the increasingly crowded smartphone market. Since its debut in 2007, Apple fans have wondered whether Apple would expand on its iPhone technology and develop its own full-size tablet device. Apple finally announced their plans to tap into the tablet market in late January 2010. Known as the iPad, this model is Apple's attempt to bridge the gap between smartphones and laptop computers. The iPad is an up scaled iPod Touch in many ways, featuring the same OS and multi-touch controls but offering a much larger 9.7-inch screen. The tablet computer has had an interesting and sometimes rocky history since the days of Star Trek and the Dynabook. Many are looking to the iPad to usher in a new age of digital media, combining the best aspects of the iPod, the Kindle, and a laptop all in one device. Others...

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