The original iPad has always held a special place in my heart.
Sure, it is ugly by modern standards, and the software that it runs is quaint and outdated at best. And yet, it is still highly functional. It does everything that it did when I got it in 2010. It browses the web. It reads and can send email. It can download apps. It also still has much of the same text manipulation features that my new iPad Pro does (copy-paste, selection and contextual menus, etc).
I find that amazing. The fact that a piece of hardware that is nearly a decade old can still feel fresh and inviting is truly a testiment to the enduring design. Even more so, it is a testament to those folks who are still maintaining software that can run on it. One such piece of software is called Blogpad Pro.
It is a highly robust blogging platform that connects to modern WordPress sites and allows for auto-saving, image inclusion, and visual editing of your posts. The same app that you can download for your modern iPad is the one that functions on the original.
And so, I am blogging with it. In 2019. I have decided to dedicate a special spot in my home office to creating regular blog posts from this “antique” technology. It is now a dedicated machine for writing. And it is exactly what I need.
I do not need another machine that does everything. I do not need another computer or touch-based device that distracts me while I use it. Rather, I need something that I can quickly turn to and write with. I also need something that I can start writing from and pick up the writing from any other device. One, that will sync with the modern world, and I think I have found it.
And all it took was realizing that one of the best keyboards that Apple ever made was the one that they attached to an iPad 1 dock:
I bought this dock/keyboard on ebay for $10 (with free shipping!) and it was possibly the best money I have spent in quite a while.
This setup now sits on my desk, and I can fire up the Blogpad Pro whenever I want in order to write down my thoughts. It is a distraction-free environment, with a lovely keyboard. In fact, given that it sits there as a “dumb terminal,” it is all the more likely that I will turn to it for reflection and idea sharing. Everything I do on this device has to be intentional. I cannot quickly do much of anything except for write. And write I shall.
I wonder, what other types of devices could I be putting to better use. Ones that I believe are past their prime, but might serve as wonderful additions to the overall environment of intentional technology use within my home.