Big iPhone syndrome
To import, you connect the iPad to your computer, go to the apps tab of your
big iPhone iPad, and look down at the bottom to see which of your apps you want to open the file with. Then you click Add and get the file from your computer, then it trundles along the wire to the iPad. After all this you can open with the app you sent it to, but only with that app.
Sending it in the other direction is possibly even more baroque. In the case of Apple's iWork applications, you go to My Documents, press the 'send' icon at the bottom of the page, and up come three options: send via email, share via iWork.com and export. Note that you can't save 'to' anywhere, you can't save at all because the iWork documents save themselves all the time, and as far as you're concerned there is no 'to'. The first options do what they say on the tin, while 'export' lets you export the file in a couple of different formats to... where?
OK, back to iTunes, connect your iPad, go to the apps tab for your iPad, scroll to the bottom, click on the app you exported it from, highlight the file, then click on Save to, and save the file onto your computer. You can't do any of this while you're working on the document itself on the iPad; you need to switch over to the My Documents section.
Nor can you name files on the iPad. Highlight a template and click on the plus sign underneath it, and you get an option to duplicate the document, in which case it'll open a file with 'copy' appended to the template's name. Edit directly from the template, and you'll find it creates a new file with '1' appended to the template's name. It gives itself two different ways to create non-relevant filenames, and won't let you have even one?
The Air Sharing workaround
It's possible to work around some of the iPad's insane file sharing restrictions using Avatron Software's Air Sharing HD, which is as essential from the point of view of sanity preservation as it is for getting stuff done. HD, the iPad version of the Air Sharing iPhone app, lets you mount the iPad as a drive and copy files back and forth wirelessly, and also via iTunes and the cable (which is a teensie bit faster if you're thinking of copying a movie). It doesn't give you access to the iPad's file system (it's forbidden, remember?), but it lets you organise your own folders within the Air Sharing sandbox.
iTunes file transfer
So you can use it to move a wide range of file formats (including audio and video) onto the iPad and then view them, but you can't use it for manipulating those files, nor can you transfer a file with Air Sharing and then manipulate it with another app - eg one of those in the iWork 'suite', which is actually rather more like three separate apps that don't talk to one another.
I could - as you may have gathered - go on. The iPad's file sharing is laughably awful, and needs fixing. But will it get fixed? And how did it get like this in the first place?
Next page: iTunes - walled garden or prison?
read this article on my n900 and had a damn good chuckle. I, for one, will never buy an apple product while they remain so horrendously locked down. Personally I like my mobile devices to be able to multitask properly and not waste screen real estate with touchscreen only keyboards. I expect the jobsian fanbois will be out in force to defend this magical and revolutionary waste of space...
your desktop computer?
I like apple and their products, but STILL don't see the point of the iPad, i was starting to think it might be useful for people who want the web but not a computer, as an improvement to viewing the web on their phone... but the author seems to assume that you need a fully fledged mac aswell.
This only negates the iPad further, how many times do you find it difficult to achieve something on the iPad before you just use your computer in the first place.
I do sympathise with the author though, having to carry an iPad AND a macbook air would be too much to carry (ease up on the lattes and go to a gym - or try carrying a macbook!!!!).
Perhaps you wont carry them both as it shows that the iPad is not really the god like device that the common myth seems to suggest?
Re: A bit out of date.
I'm not sure how that's relevant to the gripes that I was covering. But 'open in' isn't one of my favourite features either. Sure, I can open a link in Safari from Twitterific, but then I drop out of Twitterific and lose my place. Fix one problem by creating another, IMO.