By Alan Graner
After reading all the articles about the wonders of iPads and Android tablets, I finally broke down and purchased The Yellow Pad.
The standard Yellow Pad is 8.5” x 11” x ¼” thick. Additional form factors include the 8.5” x 14” legal tablet, and the 5” x 8” ultra-light notebook. Both offer the same features and benefits of the standard model.
One of the Yellow Pad’s greatest features is it’s incredible portability. You can take it anywhere—school, work, movies, restaurants, bathrooms, bed—and it won’t bother a soul because the tablets are eerily quiet.
And say goodbye to backaches from carrying laptops. The Yellow Pad is as light as a feather. In fact, it’s the lightest tablet on the market, so you can easily stick it in a purse, briefcase or backpack, or simply carry it by hand.
The Yellow Pad’s operating system is simplicity itself. Forget Microsoft, Apple, Linux and Chrome. This one platform allows you to write in any language, perform complex mathematical calculations, create stunning visuals, compose musical scores, create spreadsheets and more using nothing more than a single input device. No additional software or hardware is required.
It costs nothing to run a Yellow Pad. It’s always on 24/7 with no battery required. It operates (or did at one time) on photosynthesis.
Thanks to a thriving aftermarket, there is a plentitude of third-party add-ons that increase versatility, style and protection from the elements.
Since there is no keyboard, the Yellow Pad requires a third-party input device. Fortunately there is an endless choice. For my purposes I selected a classic monochromatic Dixon-Ticonderoga #1 yellow pencil featuring both edit and erase modes. Ink pens provide more permanence but sacrifice the erase mode. Prices for input devices range from a few cents to thousands of dollars, so there is one for every taste and budget.
Color output is a bit more complicated (and expensive) since multiple input devices are required. The most common are colored pencils and crayons, though more exotic alternatives exist.
Since the input device is also the printer, no expensive inkjet or laser printers are required. When you’re finished, printing is instant.
To keep the price low, Yellow Pad manufacturers eliminate some creature comforts. For example, the tablets don’t allow you to access the Internet, make phone calls or take photographs. There is no spell check, no grammar check, no automatic calculations in spreadsheets.
Yellow Pads are not backlit, so some outside illumination device is required, especially in dark environments.
Add-ons can be expensive. Photocopiers are required for multiple copies, and a scanner is necessary to convert Yellow Pad documents into digital form on the Internet.
Unfortunately, Yellow Pads are very susceptible to the environment. Wind, rain, fire and other elements can render the tablets useless.
Perhaps the Yellow Pad’s most glaring deficiency is its short lifespan. Fortunately, initial prices are so low that the cost of replacing them is negligible.
If you’ve had experiences with the Yellow Pad tablet, we’d like to hear about them.
Image: Kimberly Vohsen
Alan Graner is Chief Creative Officer at Daly-Swartz Public Relations, an Orange County, CA marketing communications firm. To transform your input into output that will make your company memorable, email Jeffrey Swartz at email@example.com.