walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

Messing with Bluetooth

When I set up my home office back in the summer of 2013, as part of a massive decluttering, rearranging, decorating project (we got the interior painted and replaced a bunch of furniture, among other things -- looking back, it was a massive amount of work, but I did it in pieces and the pace wasn't crazy so it didn't seem that big. There's a lesson here somewhere), I decided to replace my laptop and then create a sort of docking setup in the office that it could connect to. That way, I could work on my laptop wherever, but when I was at home and wanted to do something complicated, I could have the Big Monitor experience with the laptop as a second screen, the optical drive that was no longer available on Appple laptops, etc. I'm very happy I did it that way, but even while I was setting that up, I kept wondering:

Why Can't I Make This Work With My iPad? Or my Phone? Or a Chromebook?

In any event, whether it was because of graphics card weaknesses or the engineering tradeoffs in shipping bits between a device with a graphics card and a monitor (it is amazing how important those annoying cords really are), I recognized that I was not gonna be hooking that display up to anything other than my laptop and maybe somebody else's laptop from Apple and bought at around the same time. I'm not sure _why_ I wasn't very focused on the Magic Trackpad not connecting to the mobile devices. Basically, once I knew the monitor was a no-go, I sort of gave up, and tried to maximize the shared functionality of the parts I knew could work with mobile devices: the keyboard and, later, the printer.

I got the Logitech Easy Switch, made sure it worked so I could bring it with my iPad in a backpack -- and then never moved it away from the monitor (probably there is a lesson there, too). When I started thinking about this again, I had different devices, so I had to re-pair them with the keyboard, and at first, the iPad mini didn't want to switch with the one button push, but making the device "forget" the keyboard and re-pairing fixed that. In the back of my head was the idea that I really ought to have a keyboard in the adjoining room, because it sort of sucks using the Apple TV remote to do a search. In the end, I didn't use the Easy Switch for that purpose, but instead found the case/cover Logitech bluetooth keyboard that went with my original iPad. I paired it and stashed it on top of the stack under the guide I'd written for using the system.

I can't help but think that iOS 8 was simultaneously really brilliant in its basic themes (start working on something on a mobile device, walk up to your computer, continue it there) and unbelievably kludgy. Wouldn't it be better if you could start working on something on your mobile device, _walk up to a bunch of dumb peripherals_, _have those dumb peripherals pair based on permissions and/or proximity_, sit down and continue working using the Bigger Screen, Better Keyboard and Pointing Device -- but still, ultimately, on your mobile device, that you will ultimately walk away with?
Tags: our future economy today

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