Saturday, February 16, 2013


It's been a busy few months, I spent the early months of fall writing my first book, Microsoft Surface: Visual QuickStart Guide. It was quite the adventure and extremely time-consuming. Writing the book was a task in itself and at one point, I locked myself in a hotel room to get some chapters finished. Of course, half of the first night in the hotel the WiFi was down. Since so much of the tablet experience requires an Internet connection to make the most out of it, that put a little damper on things and forced me to take a much needed break - at least for the night. 

In my professional opinion, Microsoft's tablet is a huge step forward for the market. I think it will help push the boundaries of what a tablet can be and do. The advances in technology and the processing power available are making tablets a viable option for people to take on the road to get some work done and still have some fun. I think as a result we'll see more interesting options available from its competitors and that is something that is greatly needed to move the experience forward. 

Overall, Microsoft's design is innovative, but not perfect. That is expected and could also be said of the other tablets on the market when they first debuted. As a long-time reviewer of mobile technology, there has been one certainty: the third version of anything typically hits the sweet spot of how the product should work. Still, the Microsoft Surface is a huge departure from what people typically expect of a Microsoft product and for that I applaud them. 

Since it is so different, people will likely need a manual to make the most of the device. Performing all tasks isn't immediately evident and there are actually quite a few ways to accomplish one goal. Once you master a few UI basics, using the Surface tablet becomes more intuitive. I kept all this in mind while writing the book and set-up the chapters so that you could quickly learn how to use the tablet and then skip to other chapters to learn more about a specific feature. If you're in the market for an easy-to-read, picture-friendly book on the Surface tablet I encourage you to check it out.  

Although, I rarely surfaced during much of the time spent writing the book I was still busy making observations about living in Portland. Stay tuned.

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