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Could I use a 64-bit iPad 5 or a Surface 2 as my main work computer?
As we get ready for the next batch of Apple announcements (most likely the iPad 5 and a new iPad mini) on October 22, there's been some discussion about whether the iPad 5 (which will likely sport a 64-bit processor) can do the heavy lifting of a main work computer.
To be fair, we've covered the iPad (and tablets in general) as work computers before, and — depending on what you do for work — the answer has been generally positive.
But I wanted to see if I could use an iPad as my work machine. Could it handle the breath of tasks my current Windows laptop does easily, or would I be left out in the cold, unable to get the job done?
To sweeten the story a bit, I decided it would be fun to compare the expected new iPad with the newly announced Surface 2 Pro (which runs full Windows) and Surface 2 RT (which runs Office, and not much else).
Oh, and one last note: I'm not considering a jailbroken system. I want to know if it's possible to do my job, not take on a new job in addition to all I do.
Stay tuned. At the very end, I'll rank the winners and losers. You might be surprised by the results.
Image: GraphicStock and Microsoft
Can it be used to grade my classes?
I teach an object-oriented programming course at UC Berkeley extension and we use the ANGEL learning management system. ANGEL requires the availability of both Flash and Java, as well as — in some places — Windows media.
64-bit iPad 5: No way. iOS does not support Flash or Java.
Surface 2 RT: No, although not necessarily well. Surface RT originally only whitelisted a few sites for Flash, but now just blacklists those sites it doesn't trust. But it doesn't run Java.
Surface 2 Pro: Yep. It's Windows on Intel.