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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
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    Recommend a tablet

    I am a geologist looking for a brave new world. Currently, I use a loose-leaf notebook full of images from Google Earth printed with a UTM grid overlay combined with a Garmin GPS to know where I am. I have a program to cache GE images with geographic reference data and use them off-line (in the field). That works in a laptop running off the power in my field car but it's too heavy to carry miles across the desert and the battery is inadequate.

    I can see my future self pull a tablet out of my pack and view my position on a GE cached image generated either by a bluetooth GPS receiver or by a GPS chip built into the tablet.

    Searching for the proper tablet is daunting. I can spend around $600 and wonder if anybody in lounge-land uses a tablet in a field setting (construction, surveying). What kind? What problems? I work in the desert, rain is not an issue.
    Dan Lynch
    The stonecherub

  2. #2
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    Pretty much all of the tablets now have a GPS chip, especially at the top end, so I would look to see what apps can cache GE images and reference data, then decide on make (apple / android). As you are caching data you probably need one with plenty of RAM.

    cheers, Paul

  3. #3
    Silver Lounger t8ntlikly's Avatar
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    the apple and the android are not the only two out there.. you might also look at the Windows Surface R/T
    Thanks John
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  4. #4
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    The Apple iPad is a mature product with plenty of decent apps, sadly, the Windows Surface has some distance & proving to go before I would consider a purchase.
    I think an iPad would be your best bet imo. The only downside would be syncing to a Windows computer via the "god awful" iTunes app.
    I can't comment on Android as I have limited experience with it, but it is still well worth looking into. (research it)
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  5. #5
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    Assuming that your current notebook is a Windows notebook, check out the Windows Surface. You won't get the same battery life as with Windows Surface RT but you can load exisiting programs in the Windows desktop. There are other Windows 8 tablets which have better battery life than the surface. Currently, Windows 8 tablets do not have the same battery life as Windows RT tablets.

    I'm afraid you'd have to stretch your budget quite a bit though.

    Joe

  6. #6
    2 Star Lounger
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    Thanks to all for your suggestions, I find I'm a little ahead of the technology. Another geologist showed me how he "used" his smart phone to take pictures and the GPS in phone added location and orientation metadata to the image files. Alas, I put quotes around "used" because screen glare severely reduced the usefulness of the device here in the desert. There was no way to sufficiently shade the glass.

    It seemed like a good idea...
    Dan Lynch
    The stonecherub

  7. #7
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by stonecherub View Post
    Thanks to all for your suggestions, I find I'm a little ahead of the technology. Another geologist showed me how he "used" his smart phone to take pictures and the GPS in phone added location and orientation metadata to the image files. Alas, I put quotes around "used" because screen glare severely reduced the usefulness of the device here in the desert. There was no way to sufficiently shade the glass.

    It seemed like a good idea...
    You would have a similar problem with tablets with sun glare.
    Clive

    All typing errors are my own work and subject to patents pending. Except errors by the spell checker. And that has its own patients.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    You might look into some of those e-readers tablets that are capable of handling heavy sunlight situations.
    Only problem is it might not have the "extra" functionality your looking for.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
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