General Discussion

Rant, moan, rave and share - for all your chatter, natter, ETCETERA! 2013
gullas at 4:33PM, March 19, 2013
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@bravo: the tank green is wonderfully relaxing, while the other one makes me think I'm a part of a 1970's B-grade italian acid movie….
Ironscarf at 3:53AM, March 20, 2013
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ozoneocean wrote:
Is your lime marmalade chartreuse?
I always thought chartreuse was purple or mauve or something… I love lime green so since I discovered the true nature of chartreuse it's one of my new fave colours!
I have many fave colours ^_^
 
It is chartreuse in all but name. If they called it chartreuse marmalade, I would probably enjoy it more.
If you're enjoying chartreuse the colour, have you tried chartreuse the drink? It's one of those liquers brewed by monks that tastes like medicine, but in a good way! It comes in two types I think; a weaker one that's yellowish in colour and the full strength one which is, well, chartreuse.
bravo1102 at 4:27AM, March 20, 2013
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Ironscarf wrote:

If you're enjoying chartreuse the colour, have you tried chartreuse the drink? It's one of those liquers brewed by monks that tastes like medicine, but in a good way! It comes in two types I think; a weaker one that's yellowish in colour and the full strength one which is, well, chartreuse.
 
The liquer came first and indeed that is what named the color.  Funny but chartreuse yellow looks like the color of Mountain Dew which many insist is the color of urine.  But medical professionals agree if your urine is that color you aren't drinking enough water.
This spot paid for Pepsico, the American Urology Association and the Chartusean Order.
ozoneocean at 6:50AM, March 20, 2013
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I'll be honest- I haven't got much of a taste for weird liqueurs. Drinking them for me is REAL hard work. I hate them.
 
Just watched The Grifters again after many, many years. It's even better than I recalled. Angelica Houston is sexy, as is Anette Benning, and John Cusak is perfect. Lovely dark stylish film!
Currently on my second attempt to try and make it through “Due Date”. There are some laughs but it's not great. Planes Trains and Automobiles did it so much better.
 
last edited on March 20, 2013 6:51AM
HippieVan at 4:46PM, March 20, 2013
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Chartreuse always sounds to me like it should be a shade of red. Maybe because “-reuse” sounds a bit like “rouge.”
 
I have to do a presentation on something in the “cultural domain.” Any ideas? It's such a broad topic that I'm having trouble thinking of something.
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ozoneocean at 7:09PM, March 20, 2013
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HIPPIE!!!! ^_^
No idea on cultural domain but I agree 100% on the red chartreuse thing!
 
bravo1102 at 11:34PM, March 20, 2013
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Would be cool if there was a chartreuse red.  In French it'd be Chartreuse rouge.  Sounds badass.  A lot better than Chartreuse vert or chartreuse jaune.
Lonnehart at 12:48AM, March 21, 2013
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Oh, great.  I guess it's nice to know there's a nuke pointed at my head now.  Then again that madman has been looking for an excuse to use them…
bravo1102 at 4:11AM, March 21, 2013
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Lonnehart wrote:
Oh, great.  I guess it's nice to know there's a nuke pointed at my head now.  Then again that madman has been looking for an excuse to use them…
When I was a kid I read a book titled something like “What if the Bomb Drops” that went into excrutiating detail about the effects of the air burst of a 10 MT bomb at City Center NYC.  It also had estimates for other yields, one just had to multiply by various ratios in the appendix.

When I was in junior high school I did an exhaustive report on the strategic arsenals of the USSR using every book then available.  I knew precisely how, when, and where a nuclear atttack would affect my little home 20+ miles from NYC and 10+ miles from Fort Monmouth.

 Now that an Asian crazy has missiles I'm so happy he doesn't have the range to come any where near me.  But some container ship can come into Bayonne NJ with a jihadist device and I'm toast.  Read another book about that a few months ago.  It's not a question of if jihadists have a nuclear weapon and it's when they intend to use it.  And if they had already tried and were stopped would the US gov't report it?  I don't think so.  That would freak out too many people.  

This just in Al Queda plot to explode nuclear device in New York foiled by FBI.  People would see “nuclear device” and completely go nuts.  The DHS and FBI etc would never report that ever.  It'd be more likely we'd get complete disclosure about extraterrestrials lving in underground bases in the US Southwest and allowed to harvest so many humans a year than that.
ozoneocean at 8:38AM, March 21, 2013
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LOL! 
 Wouldn't worry. The only country ever to use a nuke in anger is the USA, it's also the only country that is likely to actually USE a nuke now, since all its potential targets are far enough away to make a strike feasable and useful (unlike with India, Pakistan, Russia, China, Israel…), and all its weapons actually work (unlike North Korea), there is also political and military will to go that route.
That's the reality and the reason countries like Iran and NK have so much fear. 
  
But people still fear them so much… they're not nice places, well Iran is, it's just that its government is horrible, but it doesn't exercise the same dominace over the population as the one in NK.
 Anyway, if you ever fear NK or Iran at any stage, just imagine the constant fear those people live with of the USA every single day.
 
bravo1102 at 9:39AM, March 21, 2013
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ozoneocean wrote:
 Wouldn't worry. The only country ever to use a nuke in anger is the USA, it's also the only country that is likely to actually USE a nuke now, since all its potential targets are far enough away to make a strike feasable and useful and all its weapons actually work (unlike North Korea), there is also political and military will to go that route.

ROTFLMAO  Yeah, that's Sun Tzu all over.  He who destroys everything to defeat his enemy wins nothing.  Yeah, the Joint Chiefs would go for that in a heart beat.
The last general to insist on a nuclear strike on anywhere was in the 1960's and it was Curtis LeMay.  Not even Reagan ever seriously considered a nuclear strike anywhere. You've watched On the Beach, Dr. Strangelove and Fail Safe too many times.
 It's been COINTEL to release studies saying it is winnable and doable.  When those studies are shown to the command structure whose job it would be to fight that war it comes back UNTHINKABLE.  
I wrote a comic set in a world where the Korean War went nuclear.  I studied the options. 
ozoneocean at 10:30PM, March 21, 2013
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Not really Bravo, The US has always had a first strike policy and frequently there are calls from strategists within sections of the US political and military hierarchy for nuclear options.
Aside from that, the US has a massively powerful military machine that it is willing and able to throw at anyone for whatever provocation it sees fit.
The USA is simply THE most dangerous nation in existence.
 
In the cold light of day, that is how things are. It is the proverbial elephant afraid of mice.
 
I'm very fond of the US and its people and I'd MUCH rather live there than Iran or North Korea and many other countries in the world, apart from my own, but it's a simple reality that internationally it's a very, VERY dangerous and mean beast which is why even Russia still has ICBMs pointed at it.
 
bravo1102 at 5:51AM, March 22, 2013
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So what if you found out that the last kid in school to ever ridicule and tease you had jsut passed away of a kidney ailment?  You know the tall gawky one in art class you always wished would drop dead.  I found myself thinking “good riddance and he was a real a**hole”  Right, judge someone today on what they did to me thirty years ago. He's a husband, father and has no resemblance to the person who tormented me all those years ago.  First fleeting emotional thoughts as opposed remembering other times when he stood in awe and complimented the stuff I could turn out thirty years ago.

So every single set I put up prompty falls down.  And I thought I could just redress the infirmary to do the other areas.  Nope, I had to completely take everything down.  That means I'll have to put everything up again when I get there.

Really wish I could shoot this out of sequence but there's no doing it, just hope the diagrams and set photos will be enough to guide me in putting everyhting back together.  Anyone want a few hundred action figures and vehicles and accessories?

And wouldn't you know that swopping out heads has already broken a neck stem?  I just love this photo comic crap.  Then there's the never ending battle of straps and patches.  It's hard enough threading 1/1 scale straps on military equipment, just imagine doing it at 1/6th the size. 

And wouldn't you know going over all those RR tracks would mess up the sway bars on my car's suspension?  Going to have to save up some cash to replace them.  I hate RR tracks.  

 
Lonnehart at 9:40PM, March 22, 2013
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So I was reading the wikipedia entry for the novel Nineteen Eighty Four… again… and now I wonder…
 
How long can a nation like that last?  Using up resources to keep the people in line while constantly fighting an unwinnable war (which could be fictional)?  I'm sure it can't last forever.  The resources that country has will eventually run out.  And killing everyone who could be intelligent enough to realize what's going on could reduce humanity to the level of dumb animals…
 
I think too much…  But I can't sleep…
bravo1102 at 6:41AM, March 23, 2013
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Orwell arbitarily picked the date by reversing the digits of the year he wrote it.  He figured it could last at least as long as the Soviet Union had lasted up until that point which was nearly 30 years. Also similar repressive dynasties had lasted centuries in the past.

Humans are incredibly complacent and content when they have bread and circuses.  Intellectuals can turn their studies elsewhere and serve the state simply to stay alive.  Orwell was writing in the aftermath of World War II so he knew many instances of the latter from the various fascist states and the Soviet Union let alone Greek scientists who had willingly served tyrants in the ancient world.

It's entirely too plausible and has entirely too many historical antecedants.  I remember all that nearly 35 years after doing the book in 7th grade but then I moved to another county and had to repeat the book in my junior year of HS.  Then in college I read it again to refresh myself because it was referred to in my classes on the World Wars.  Constant cross-referencing.  Then when teaching I had students taking it in English while I was doing history and I referenced it again. 

Similarly Animal Farm makes teaching the history of the Soviet Union so easy.  I must have read it four or five times and even did a cross reference between it and the actual history of the Soviet Union.  

And all the torture in it is based on accounts of actual techniques from Soviet Russia and Nazi Germany.
last edited on March 23, 2013 6:47AM
Product Placement at 11:36AM, March 23, 2013
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ayesinback wrote:
So I visited two years ago – within 12 hours of landing.   Winter in Iceland means it's pitch black before 5pm.  I was there around 8 pm, jet-lagged, alone.  There's a long pathway lit by the short accent lights landscapers use before you reach the facility.  No one else was there at the time.  (I mutter at times like this).  Then there's the usual European locker room “en masse experience” that challenges my over-developed American modesty.  And then you get out to the water while the air is cold but you see clouds of steam floating around, eerily lit by sporadic spot lights – SO otherworldly.  Floating in that water, looking up at the stars, and wisps, clouds, tendrils of steam dancing here and there …
I loved it and recommend it.  Definitely a tourist thing to do, but it is so relaxing I didn't feel like a chump afterwards.  Go ahead and do it!  And don't be green, bravo.  I haven't been many places, so I darn well better enjoy the places I have been to.
 
At least it sounds like you had some fun. I heard some first hand accounts that you had to deal with some pretentious twat, who was hanging around with your daughter.
Those were my two cents.
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ozoneocean at 1:42AM, March 24, 2013
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Lonnehart wrote:
So I was reading the wikipedia entry for the novel Nineteen Eighty Four… again… and now I wonder…
 
How long can a nation like that last?  Using up resources to keep the people in line while constantly fighting an unwinnable war (which could be fictional)?  I'm sure it can't last forever.  The resources that country has will eventually run out.  And killing everyone who could be intelligent enough to realize what's going on could reduce humanity to the level of dumb animals…
 
I think too much…  But I can't sleep…
 
  I think the idea is that “Big Brother” is all of us- literally everyone watches each other and keeps everyone in line.
 
People make the mistake of thinking that's inherently “communist” or based on some political system or religion or whatever, but it's not: Humans simply have a natural instinct based on conforming, watch that at work in children all teasing those that don't fit in and later all wearing the same fashions etc.
  A clever (and nasty) government simply harnesses that natural tendency. So it's not that difficult to maintain a state of “big brother”.
Product Placement wrote:
I heard some first hand accounts that you had to deal with some pretentious twat.
   
Hahahahaha!
 
lba at 4:12PM, March 24, 2013
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So apparently that lawsuit I mentioned doesn't seem to be going much of anywhere. The lawyer this lady hired is a known ambulance chase and so far for the last couple of weeks all they've done is send me annoying messages and letters asking for my insurance company's information, which they aren't getting anywhere near. Basically, as far as my legal counsel is concerned, I can keep on ignoring them until the heat death of the Universe as long as they don't send a letter formally declaring that they want to take the case to court, which seems unlikely since I now have a copy of the police report that says this lady was driving uninsured and without a license, and that she really doesn't have a case other than I was changing lanes when the accident occurred. So here's to hoping they're smat enough to not waste time on taking things to court and I get to continue my life.

I remember reading 1984 sometime around 8th grade when I was on a big counter-culture kick. To this day I can't pick up that book again because of how terrifyingly depressing it was. Not because I'm afraid of the Big brother message, but because Orwell did such a brilliant job of making the horror, pain and suffering of his main character's complete breakdown of soul so compelling. That book just got the individual suffering across a little too well for me. To this day though, the best examples I've ever seen of that sort of watchdog state are those folks Orwell probably would have approved of most; small to mid-sized businesses. Big companies have too many people to give a crap what you're up to, but small business owners watch you like a hawk to make sure you're not wasting company time. Working at one sometimes even feels like the same sort of soul-crushing boredom.
kawaiidaigakusei at 5:59PM, March 24, 2013
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I have read 1984 three times in the last six months and I was quite surprised that most of the references people make of the story are mainly about “big brother”. What I never hear referenced is that a good chunk of the story is basically about a man (Wilson) and woman (Julia) trying to find hidden locations in the country side of Oceania for their secret trysts. The story is as close to a romance story as it gets. Winston is a relatable character as he appreciates fresh coffee, chocolate, real bread and butter and earthly pleasures. He meets a woman who allows him to indulge in all of that and they get away with it for a while before they are caught and he is tortured with the worst thing in the world for him–RATS.

I fell in love with Winston while reading this story. It was because he was in a system that he did not agree with yet his job was to retranslate history and rewrite newspaper articles so future generations would never know the truth. He lived day to day well aware that he was being monitored by the cameras but kept a journal for his own sanity.

The 1984 future is very similar to the world we live in today, everyone carries PDAs with cameras and GPS chips installed. My passport has a microchip embedded in it so it is possible to track me at all times. Video chatting programs allow people to communicate face-to-face like the government did in1984, but was any of this technology forced? Absolutely not, we are willingly bringing in these electronics into our homes and lives letting it invade our personal space.


—–

On a separate note, can I just say that it is extremely entertaining to see the gentlemen in this forum discuss interior room color schemes of the 1970s and how it relates to theDuck layout? I still remember the avocado refrigerator and burnt orange shag carpet in my childhood homes.
ozoneocean at 10:03PM, March 24, 2013
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I hated the décor in my home when I was growing up… Some vomitsome 1970s style setup- loud colours and overly decorated and twee fixtures and features.
Then we got all new stuff and finally got with the times! The 1980s! The future!
 
'80s interior design was all about beige, simplicity and clean lines (the exact SAME design dialogue as modern Apple stuff, the origin being '70s minimalism). Beige carpet, beige bench tops in the kitchen, beige rangehood on the stove, beiege couches…
But not really one colour of course, it's always based around the theme of a colour- so it's from off-white all the way through to bronze brown.
 
The “beige” carpet and couches actually had all sorts of flecks of colour in them- greens, blues, reds etc, but the overall appearance from a distance was the classic beige. They reminded me of Sauruman's robes… I was reading The Lord of the Rings at the time.
 -
This was BEFORE the whole pastel movement in the late 80s.
Pastels made me feel sick.
 
last edited on March 24, 2013 10:06PM
bravo1102 at 11:24PM, March 24, 2013
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It would be pretty easy to change some names and have 1984 take place in Imperial Russia or Imperial China or virtually any society with a secret police, torture and an all powerful autocrat.  My favorite would be Renaissance Spain with the Inquisition and the forbidden texts and forbidden romance, it'd all be too easy with the defeated Winston Smith ending his days in a monastary.  Even the petpetual war would be all too real with the ongoing wars of Catholic Spain as the champion against Protestantism.

Orwell only wrote what he did because it was 1948 and there was this huge bear in the room and as a disillusioned former Communist he had to speak out against the horrors of Stalinism.  Read the description of Big Brother carefully; it does look suspiciously like Stalin.  Or as here as Hitler with Stalin's mustache or is it Kitchener with Hitler's hair style?  Scary how they all kind of blend together.  Mustached men on posters staring at you.


And of course the great thing about Stalin was he didn't have to looking at you to still be looking at you,  Papa Stalin sees everything.
 My favorite will always be Second City TV's take on it with Orson Wells as Big Brother.  This is Telescreen, Big Brother is watching you… is watching you.
last edited on March 24, 2013 11:32PM
Lonnehart at 2:39PM, March 25, 2013
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Just finished playing a session of Mass Effect 3.  Got the first Krogan Planet bomb mission done where you save this platoon of bird-like aliens.  After every mission I visit every deck to see what everyone has to say.
So after talking to Garrus and Liara in the lounge I walk out and I hear this conversation… well, this part of it anyway…
Liara: “So there's one thing I couldn't dig up.  Is it true you took out three Blue Suns mercs with one bullet?”
Garrus: “The third one died of a heart attack.  It wouldn't be fair to count him.”
That got me chuckling for some reason…

So societies like the one depicted in Nineteen Eighty Four have lasted for centuries?  Not sure how much resources those civilizations used, but I'm pretty sure the one depicted in the book is using a lot more.  And if it does last long enough there won't be enough intelligent people to keep it going I think (as Big Brother is intent on killing them all before they can rebel againts him/them/it)…  Then again, if those civilizations lasted for centuries…
last edited on March 25, 2013 5:12PM
bravo1102 at 11:23PM, March 25, 2013
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An autocratic government can make limited resources last as long as they want.  There's no consumer culture to expand the market, there is no USA broadcasting commercials advertising “this is what you don't got, but what you NEED!”

If people don't know they don't have something, they're not going to want it.  Priorities can be skewed by manipulation of adverts.  There are more cell phones than there are toilets.  People are skewed into getting cell phones which require less infrastruture than running water.  So limited resources can be effectively managed forever.

In 1948 Britain was still under wartime rationing and would be for some years yet.  Oceania reflects this.  Understand the world of 1948 especially Great Britain when Orwell wrote the book and everything becomes clear.  It is a universal story, but it is very much grounded in the time it was written.  Oceania is Europe without the Marshall Plan, there is no rebuilding because resources are limited.  Look around Eastern Europe in 1984 and you would have seen the crumbling world and limited resources imagined by Orwell.  It actually happened and actually lasted as long as Orwell said it would. 

Orwell can be interpreted as having predicted the Cold War.  Except he didn't foresee the UK rationing of the 1940-50s ever ending.  He didn't foresee the rebuilding made possible by the Marshall Plan. Instead he  postulated a nuclear war in the 1950s.  What would a nuclear war fought with bombers and Hiroshima size bombs have left behind thirty years later?  Would the Western World have degenerated into autocracy because of the Third World War, espceially a World War III that destroyed the economic power of the USA?  That is one possible interpretation of Orwell's world of 1984.  
HippieVan at 3:00PM, March 26, 2013
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bravo1102 wrote:
An autocratic government can make limited resources last as long as they want.  There's no consumer culture to expand the market, there is no USA broadcasting commercials advertising “this is what you don't got, but what you NEED!”
Keep in mind that the Soviet Union was able to throw money gained from its natural resources (gas/oil) at inefficiencies. They didn't just have well-managed limited resources.
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Lonnehart at 3:44PM, March 26, 2013
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So how long would North Korea last?  I remember somewhere that a US diplomat that visited the place commented that the country is exactly line Nineteen Eighty Four.  It's as if someone took the book and asked if they could make it real life.  Though I have to wonder where they're getting their food from as their military is healthy and fit, but the common citizen is starving (if the stuff I read about their malnourished infancts is to be believed).
Never thought I'd do it.  Switched to Google Chrome.  IE kept giving me errors whenever I loaded this site and it just got too much.  It would “recover the tab” several times, then tell me there's an error that kept me from coming back.  And I've been told to switch to Windows 8 as soon as possible because I'm missing out on stuff.  And that means skipping Windows 7 entirely.
HippieVan at 4:53PM, March 26, 2013
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Don't do it, Lonnehart! I have Windows 8 right now and it's kind of terrible.
They tried to make an OS that would work on both a tablet and a desktop/laptop computer, but it just seems to me like an awkward mishmash of things that would work for either one. I almost exclusively use the desktop mode - multitasking is a pain in the butt with the Metro/ App mode or whatever it's called.
Windows 8 REALLY wants you to do everything full-screen, while I like to have a document open on one side and the internet on the other, or sometimes just two internet windows.
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ozoneocean at 8:31PM, March 26, 2013
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I sometimes use Google Chrome, it reminds me on Firefox in the early days.
Mozilla browsers all the way with me- Firefox, Seamonkey :)
 
Windows 7 is noice. It's exactly like Windows Vista, but fixed so it works better, faster etc.
Windows 8 is scary, especially going by what hippy says.
 
bravo1102 at 11:44PM, March 26, 2013
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As an ignorant Luddite I tried real hard to hate Windows 7 but I like it better than any of them in a long time.  Windows 8 just sounds like a step backward.  I hate touch screens.  I still remember going to one that was smeared in peanut butter.  So when anyone says tablet all I can see is peanut butter finger prints all over that beautiful tablet screen.
Lonnehart at 12:35AM, March 27, 2013
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I keep wanting one of those new fangled tablets.  However, whenever it comes time to buy one I ask myself “Why do I need one of these?”.  Then after I think about it I realize my PC does everything I'd want a tablet to do, and with more power.  But still I keep being drawn to the idea of owning a tablet…
Must be the power of advertising…
ozoneocean at 2:11AM, March 27, 2013
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Lonne- as a visual artist I'd advise yu to get a Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet and install Sketchbook pro by Autodesk on there.
I can't recommend that highly enough. You have Wacom tech in it with a fully pressure sensitive pen, you draw on the screen exactly like a Cintiq. The advantage is that you're not tied to the same spot like you are with a computer and not vulruble to a lot of the computer's potential issues, even things like blackouts.
 
When you're done with pics you can upload them straight to dropbox or any other file service so you don't even have to worry about the hard drive crash problem on a computer…
 
Plus, those tablets are way cheaper than a new powerful computer so if you need to replace it for whatever reason it's not as big of a thing- definitely not, since all your settings and stuff are automatically backed up to the Google servers all the time and you can save files straight into web accounts like dropbox, facebook, google drive or whatever, or locally onto an SD card that you can just plug straight into your next tablet or phone.
-your memory on the device is also infinite because of the ease of using SD cards… + the web.
I'm an embarrassing, tragic evangelist for this stuff, but the truth is that tablet computing finally works well.
-If you don't like touchscreens you can easily pair up a bluetooth keyboard and even a mouse.
 
As for the power of a full computer- you don't need that for most things, but I definitely WOULD still have one around because there's a lot of things that just work way better on a full comp, quite apart from highend games and stuff. My Tablet is the best device out there for drawing, better than my PC+Cintiq+photoshop combo because of the ease and the portability but it does not replace everything I need computing power for in any way
 

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