Yesterday I walked into the Burlington Mall's Apple Store and tried out the iPad for the first time. (I have decided to buy the new iPhone 4 rather than an iPad and so the impulse to have one has waned.) It was much smaller than I expected but this does make it more book-bag friendly. I was very impressed with its speed especially compared to my iPhone 3G. I really wanted it to have a cover. The screen just screams at you "Please take care of me! I am going to be scratched." I don't want a sleeve: Where would I put it when it is not in use? I want a cover that works something like a triptych that folds flat into the back of the iPad or can be folded for use as a stand.
I have been thinking about interface design for the iPhone and iPad for a while now. I have been working through ideas with the design of an issue tracking application as this is a tool I will use every day. (I am a software developer, after all.) I am greatly inspired by Mag+ design. It is such a deep source of ideas. The Mag+ magazine is virtually laid out in a very strong 2d space: The horizontal is used to hold the articles side by side and the vertical is used to hold the article's content. This is a very easy visual model to internalize and it can be used for lots of different kinds of content with strong peer relationships and long content. I had assumed that Apple had this idea too. You see it in their photograph applications, but I was wrong. When reviewing the iPad's email application I was shocked that I could not swipe to view the next or the previous email. This was such a natural gesture that I assumed I did something wrong. As far as I can tell, I did not. Afterwards I realized that I can't swipe horizontally with the iPhone either.