Tablet vs tablet

Here's a fascinating juxtaposition. Rob Howard, ASP.NET Program Manager for Microsoft, offered a glimpse of Bill Gates at work in an internal design review:

The first thing I notice as the meeting starts is that Bill is left-handed. He also didn't bring a computer in with him, but instead is taking notes on a yellow pad of paper. [Rob Howard's blog]

The next day, Gates delivered a speech in which he said, among other things:

The PC will have different form factors. One that we'll highlight a lot today is this one called the Tablet form factor...You just simply take this pen here, and you can take notes on the surface. And so if you see an article that's interesting you simply write an annotation and share that with your friends. [Bill Gates' Web Site]

Common sense would have told me that a Tablet PC running OneNote isn't ready to be Gates' (or my) information-gathering tool of choice. So I'm not surprised to find out that Microsoft's top dog isn't yet eating this particular flavor of dogfood. But consider how Steve Jobs was eating the dogfood this year at MacWorld, delivering his keynote using Keynote, an app built to be his dream presentation tool. Howard's glimpse of Gates scribbling mission-critical notes on a legal pad tells us something about how badly Gates must want to be able to dogfood the Tablet. Imagine the pressure when the design review is focused on the Tablet!

It's very cool that these human details are starting to emerge.

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