Who Needs an Office?

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I love not being tied to the office–but if I want a decent screen size, it means a damn heavy laptop to lug around, and I gotta do some major prep work to take my gear on the road. Now what if you could take your computer to research sessions, meetings, seminars, etc. with little more effort than carrying a book. No cords, no heaving clumsy stuff around. What’s not to like?

Bill Gates must have felt the same, because he’s got Microsoft working on an ultra-thin Tablet, in the $800 price range (current code name Ultra Mobile 2007) that will weigh about a pound and will have an all-day battery life.

He’s only hedging a little (“we do believe this is achievable”), and says the device will be a camera, a phone, a music device that will complement the PC.
And listen to this–they’re talking about

…a new, fixed document format, Metro, which he said will be “available free to the world.” These documents can be created on any platform and shared acoss the world. Plus, Metro-compatible printers will give a new and enhanced printing experience.

What I get out of this is that they’re coming up with a new and simplified document format that will rival the portability and universal readability of the PDF–and looks like it will require new hardwar (they’re partnering with computer manufacturer Acer). Hey, if they get it even a tad faster and easier to use (PDFs are notoriously slow to open and navigate), Adobe’s PDF could be in trouble–though Adobe’s getting aggressive about positioning itself (heck, they even recently bought Macromedia for billions of dollars).

Well anyway, Microsoft, now you’re talkin’. When you get there, a lot of us will be there. …unless, of course, someone beats you to it.

Also posted to BioMedNews.org. Hey, doctors and researchers like to get around, too.

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