Ok, so I finally broke down and bought the little devil, despite my hesitations earlier in the year. Lowest memory possible — 16 GB — but did get the WiFi-3G combo. I figured I will just need to get one and dwell for a while in order to figure out it’s real pluses and minuses. I’m sure it will be a lot of fun to own and use, but my hesitations were based on how useful it would be for the purposes of what I do most of on a daily basis, that is: EMR use, research and blogging. (Not that my schedule is letting me do much blogging lately!) I’d like to get used to blogging using a touchscreen rather than a keyboard.
Two things I’ve noticed so far. First, I can’t use my EMR system, Practice Fusion, since there is no flash capability on the iPad, short of jailbreaking the device to add an app that will allow it to play flash media. There is a logmein app that one can get from Apple’s App Store for $30, but this requires you to run the EMR from another computer. There’s also a company that makes an iPad app for PF, but I’ve heard that you have to buy the service for a $100 monthly ongoing fee, so no fun there. Incidentally, I don’t think that this is PF has anything to be ashamed of. I think that Apple should have considered adding flash capability given the state of computer technology in 2011 and the fact that this is a pretty standard way of communicating media over an internet connection. What was Apple thinking?
Second, the WordPress GUI has the option for blogging in Visual or HTML mode (when you’re on a “computer” computer). Who really wants to blog in HTML mode these days? I’m actually surprised that little things like flash and visual interfaces for blogging can make such a difference in the user’s end experience. In a way, it’s kind of like going back in time a few years to the days of Windows 95 and having to know HTML language. At the time, it was a way rad and revolutionary concept, but now… meh. I’m sure with time, I will find little backdoors and other ways of doing things on the iPad that make life easier. Jailbreak anyone? 🙂
Dr. West is an endocrinologist in private practice in Washington, DC. He completed fellowship training in Endocrinology and Metabolism at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and opened The Washington Endocrine Clinic, PLLC, as a solo practice in 2009. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. He blogs at HappyEMRDoctor.com and EHROutlook.com.