I am a strange one to rain on the parade of every more sophisticated devices coming from America's technology powerhouses.
I sold technology for much of my adult life, and I am one of the first to say that technology allowed me to do many things that I might never have tried.
Maybe I have just seen one too many iPad commercial or watched far too many folks walking about the neighborhood with their noses glued to their smartphones. Apple would have us believe that "When you start with amazing products, you can create amazing things."
It is true that some of the things that Apple displays in their gallery are pretty cool but I still believe the real spark in many things comes from the person not the technology.
I ran a farm for ten years and one of the things that you learned quickly was how to be creative with what you could find close at hand. Town was twenty long miles away. It is actually pretty amazing what you can do when you have to make do with whatever is there. It might not be pretty, but most times it will get the job done and more often than not lead to a better way of doing something.
The question many of us have wrestled with for years is at what point does technology morph from a tool to a crutch?
Of course no one knows, but I do know that having access to a fancy new tablet will not make me a better writer. It does not matter whether it is an iPad Air or the latest and greatest Android device. Using either is no magic bullet. I am not even certain that the subscription I bought to Adobe's Creative Cloud will help as we do revisions of our travel guide this spring.
I have become a better writer because I write a lot and work hard at being a writer. A tablet is not an efficient writing device for me, but I have successfully written with an ink pen, an electric typewriter, an Apple IIe, a Macintosh, a Windows computer, and just about every piece of software that has had its moment of glory as a word processor.
I currently use Draft and Word for most of my writing. More details can be found at this link. Much like the latest and greatest word processor is unlikely to being the key to your success as a writer, the fanciest camera around will not necessarily make you a better photographer.
I am often asked what camera I use for the pictures that I take. I usually refer people to this article I wrote about my Canon SX50 HS. It has been a very popular article. However, I would love to answer the question of what camera I use by saying, "Whatever camera I have in my hand." It would be more truthful. I have four digital cameras that I use regularly.
I am one of those few people who still believe that a real digital camera will take better pictures on average than a camera in a smart phone. But if you don't have a camera, the smart phone obviously will do and sometimes produces a nice photograph. I have taken some myself and enjoy many that our daughter takes of our grandchildren.
You can think of this way. You do need a hammer to efficiently drive a nail into a board, but you might do just as well with a ten year old hammer with a wooden handle as you would with the new one with titanium handle and specially forged thin and light head.
If you really want to learn how to write, you could probably do it on a tablet, but there are likely cheaper, better solutions like Draft or even a Chromebook. I am pretty happy with pictures that come from the $149 Nikon Coolpix S9600 that my wife gave me for Christmas. I usually carry my Canon because of the zoom lens but there are times when I would rather have my six year old Nikon DSLR with me, but not many.