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ns Level 2 (465 points)
I bought the 64G iPad today, and I am a little bit disappointed with the device for my purposes. I am a college professor and I currently lug my Macbook for teaching and research presentations. My primary intended use was presentation in the classroom or in conferences, and the ability to edit (what I consider simple) documents when I travel. Currently, I take my Macbook to the classroom or to conferences and attach it via VGA to the podium and to the projector. I wanted to replace the Macbook with the iPad, but it looks like this won't be as easy as I had thought. Let me explain my primary issues below.

1. I had originally thought that there would be some way (using some dongle, etc.) to connect the iPad wirelessly to the projector, so that I could stand anywhere in the classroom with the iPad in hand and control my presentation, move the pointer, etc. using the iPad's touch surface wirelessly. I realized prior to buying that this ability is currently not there in the iPad, but went ahead with the product anyway. Yes, I am aware of apps such as AirMouse and Apple Remote, etc. that convert your iPhone to a presentation remote, but I was hoping that the iPad will not require an iPhone (with AirMouse or a similar app) to achieve this functionality. As I mentioned, I was prepared for this drawback before the purchase. I was less prepared for the next one.

2. The part that comes as a huge and surprising disappointment - TO ME - is that my Keynote and Pages documents are altered when they are converted to the iPad version. Grouped objects are ungrouped (this for me is a big issue given my complex presentations), endnotes and footnotes are not imported in Pages, Table of Content changes to regular text, some fonts cannot be used on the iPad, etc.

This means, for instance, that I won't be able to do the following: Transfer a Pages document (with footnotes, etc.) to iPad, edit it while on the road, then sync that file back to my Macbook when I reach home. The moment I move the file to the iPad, it loses a whole bunch of things that are standard on most documents that I create (e.g., footnotes and endnotes).

Similarly, I cannot create a Keynote presentation on my Macbook (with grouped objects, for example) and expect it to transfer intact to the iPad. To use the iPad's Keynote I will need to change all my existing KeyNote classnotes (hundreds of pages) to remove the fonts that the iPad does not like, to remove grouped objects and other formatting that the iPad does not like, and so on. Unfortunately, I have neither the time nor the inclination to dumb down my years of carefully-prepared presentations in this manner

I had thought that the iPad will give me the ability to make presentations more easily and to edit documents while on the road, without having to lug around a laptop. Looks like I am not the target audience for this device yet.

I understand that it is a new device so perhaps things will become smoother over time. In the meanwhile, I am looking for helpful suggestions/tips from other users that may be in a similar bind.

Other than that, it is a great piece of technology but, alas, not for what I had in mind.

iPad, MBP 2.5Ghz, PB G4 12" 1.5Ghz, iMaciSight2Ghz, Mac OS X (10.5.6), 2G RAM
  • far182 Level 1 (0 points)
    For the first requirement, I believe this could be possible but it would require a laptop + your iPad. Have a laptop connected to the projector. Then, from your iPad, remote into your laptop and run the presentation (wireless). I know this isn't as elegant, but it should work well.

    For problem #2 this blows me away. I too intend to work with documents such as these and I didn't expect pages and keynote to strip ANYTHING out of an existing document. I can see how the iPad versions might not support everything the desktop version supports, but it SHOULD NEVER STRIP ANYTHING out unless you ask it too. I would consider this problem a non-starter for just about every business person who learns of this. Why do I say? Because when people find out that by simply opening a document that was emailed to them and making a couple of changes and emailing back, that it can wreck havoc on other parts of the document, they will not trust using the iPad for this type of work anymore. This is just BAD. This to me is like the problems with Toyota right now, a few problems of this magnitude and people will never forgot how they "lost something".
  • ns Level 2 (465 points)
    far182, thanks for your suggestion. As I said, and as you noted, I was trying to replace the laptop-connected-to-the-projector with the iPad. The iPad+laptop-connected-to-the-projector solution will require me to carry the iPad and the laptop. I can accomplish something similar with an existing iPhone+laptop combination.

    I can see how the iPad versions might not support everything the desktop version supports, but it SHOULD NEVER STRIP ANYTHING out unless you ask it too. I would consider this problem a non-starter for just about every business person who learns of this. <</div>

    I agree completely. I will, unfortunately, be returning my iPad unless I can find an accepatble solution to this.
  • Kevin Ballestrini Level 1 (65 points)
    ns, after a lengthy conversation with the Geniuses at the Apple Store today about many of these very same issues, I came to the conclusion that I couldn't justify an iPad at this time for my classroom use as well.

    It is a shame that the video out is so limited I had very high hopes of this replacing my laptop/projector connection as well.
  • hamiltonrrwatch Level 1 (15 points)
    Not to mention the lack of a basic printing functionality as well;
  • critterdom Level 1 (0 points)
    Holy cripes. Thanks you two for opening my eyes to these problems. I was holding out for next gen anyway, but this gives me even more reasons! In the same situation as ns, and wanting the same kind of functionality, I'm more than a bit disappointed to learn all this. But thank you!!
  • ns Level 2 (465 points)
    I believe there are some workarounds for printing. For the other iWork-related problems that we mention there is no solution at all, and (best that I can tell) no reassurances being offered by any party that a solution is being worked upon.

    What is also somewhat disappointing is that Apple does not mention these limitations of iWork upfront, on the iWork for iPad page. I came upon the information accidently when I was looking at this board. I think quite a few people may be in for a rude shock when they inadvertently lose significant parts of important documents on the iPad.
  • marconiusrex Level 2 (345 points)
    Thanks for sharing about pages in iWork on the iPad. I can't believe that they would create such a less capable version of their software for the iPad. What's the point of creating it if it's not a fully functioning version where files can be transfered back and forth between the iPad and other Mac computers and be worked on and updated on all machines?

    Are you sure there aren't some preference settings and such that need to be adjusted on the iPad version of the software? I can see how it might not have all of the fonts. I wonder how it processes photo images that you put in on a notebook?

    Anyway - Thanks for sharing.

  • ns Level 2 (465 points)

    Unfortunately it is not the question of setting appropriate Preferences. Apple acknowledges the partially crippled functionality of iWork on its FAQ pages (which - at least for me - were somewhat difficult to find).

    On this page ( you will find the following information about Keynote:

    *What do I need to know about fonts?*

    +Keynote for iPad currently supports over 40 of the most popular fonts and font families. When importing documents, Keynote will replace a missing font with one that matches it closely. In case a match is not found, the Helvetica font will be used instead. After the import process, any fonts that were replaced are listed for review by the user.+

    *Will there be changes to a Keynote for Mac document that I import?*

    +In many cases, you will see no difference when a document is imported and converted to the Keynote for iPad optimized file format. During the import process, Keynote creates a copy of the imported document and retains the original. After the import process, changes made to the content or document layout are listed for review by the user.+

    +There are some considerations when importing documents:+

    +Recorded or Embedded audio is not imported from Keynote presentations.+
    +Grouped objects are ungrouped. Styles, order, and location are retained.+
    +Presenter Notes and Comments are not imported.+
    +3D charts are converted to 2D charts. Chart data is retained and editable.+

    You will find a similar FAQ for Pages here (, which lists the following:

    +Footnotes and Endnotes are not imported.+
    +Documents using page layout are converted to word processing with text wrap. Linked text boxes are separated, retaining text, styles, and placement.+
    +3D charts are converted to 2D charts. Chart data is retained and editable.+
    +Changes tracked in an imported document are accepted and comments are not imported.+
    +Tables of Content are converted to regular text.+
    +Grouped objects are ungrouped. Styles, order, and location are retained.+
    +Tables that span more than one page are split into separate one-page tables.+
    +All links other than weblinks are removed.+
  • marconiusrex Level 2 (345 points)
    Wow! Once again. Thanks for sharing. This limited compatibility is a deal breaker for me.

    Knowing this, I won’t purchase the iPad at this time. I'll wait to see if they resolve these issues with the next release.

    I guess my question to you is, if you knew about this information, why did you go ahead and purchase an iPad?


  • ns Level 2 (465 points)
    marconiusrex wrote:

    I guess my question to you is, if you knew about this information, why did you go ahead and purchase an iPad?

    I found this info today - after my purchase - on these forums which, I think, opened today. Try finding this information elsewhere.

    Anyway, lesson learnt. As I said, it is still a pretty impressive bit of technology (and stunning to boot) if you use it for purposes other than making presentattions, editing documents, etc.
  • marconiusrex Level 2 (345 points)
    Sorry it did not live up to your expectations. I'm sure some other users will feel the same, while others will feel it meets or exceeds their expectations.

    That info about the limitations of iPads version of iWork should have been posted in a more prominent location. I know if I had purchased one I would be as disappointed as you are.

    Sounds like an enjoyable device, but I'll wait until it becomes a bit more capable.



  • meitnik1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I am disappointed too, but in 25 yrs I have never heard Apple really understand what scholars want/need in their digital tools (science guys yes). Often its long after the early version does Apple finally fix what we want and need. iPad is not really for making documents, but looking at them at least for now. But for now, I will wait a year or more. Thats a shame for I really want an iPad now. However, I want to be productive and effective; I am watching third party tools carefully.
  • Eric Lindsay Level 3 (720 points)
    You can not even reliably transfer RTF documents (originally a Microsoft format) from TextEdit to a Windows PC for editing in Word and back without things breaking. I am disappointed, but not surprised to hear the iPad version of iWorks does not have the capabilities of the Mac version. I now tend to regard one computer as the master. The other one I use only to take notes of alterations, without any attempt to actually make those alterations.
  • xenolalia Level 1 (10 points)
    Not unlike the OP, I am a scholar who lectures and delivers papers outside the USA, most recently in JNB now on to ICN then EDI, ARN, IST, et al.

    I am pc user with master files in Word 2007 so this loss of critical features when converted to iPad's Pages makes the iPad virtually useless in terms of my primary need.

    Very disappointing as I had visions of moving around a class and reading my lectures straight from the iPad.

    Message was edited by: xenolalia
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