A while ago there was the fad known as the iPad. Nowadays it seemed that many different companies are following suit for a keyboardless mobile device with a touchscreen.
I have used touchscreens before. They are kind of fancy when you first use them as the interactions is a lot different from, say, using mouse and keyboard. But I also found touchscreens annoying because:
1) it's not accurate.
2) if my fingers are dirty I'll soil the screen
So in my opinion, it's a rather poor replacement pointing-device to the mouse, except it does not require any extra components like a mouse (thus more mobile).
Anyways, I don't give a shit about touchscreen. But that's not what this rant is about.
What I truly want, is something similar to an iPad or the upcoming tablets, but with a pen input with active digitizer and pressure sensitivity - making it suitable for writing on the screen. Of course, the pen itself is an extra component, but it is not very big or heavy and the tablet can probably have a holder for the pen.
I find electronic paper very useful. I take a lot of notes on physical paper, but I often lose them because either
1) they take a lot of space so I have to keep throwing things out year after year (I throw out two boxes of paper very year from the notes and assignments I write as well as handouts); it's hard to carry.
2) mechanical damage of paper (e.g. while in a binder).
3) hard to organize.
Also, with a tablet I can (hopefully) also view research papers, textbooks and other (pdf) files on it and write comments directly on the files instead of printing them out then lose them 3 days later.
Of course, currently there are such products out there. They are tablet PCs. They do exactly what I mentioned above (I own a HP tx2500), but it's very noisy, very hot, starts too slowly, TOO HEAVY, TOO BIG - basically, way too powerful for what I want to do - I just want the following:
1) good pen input (e.g. wacom) with digitizer and pressure sensitivity;
2) be able to read and write pdf files and export them to a computer;
3) be able to save and export my handwritten things;
4) reasonable light-weight;
5) no noises (say, no fans for cooling AND it does not catch fire or blow up).
6) I don't give a damn about internet, flash, youtube, stupid touchscreen iPad games, gravity sensitivity (for flipping the screen based on the way it is held), etc.
Maybe I am asking for too much as the current technologies cannot support these things right now. If it is available, I am there.