Anyone here use a tablet pc or IPad for things like meetings, field measurements, sketching, etc? What do you use and how do you use it?

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I've used my smartphone to draw comments on pdfs my coworkers email me when I'm on travel. It's a pain to draw with your finger on such a small screen.  I too have thought about buying a tablet, but I'm going to wait till they improve the latency on those things. I still like my small notepad and paper, so I can wait :)

I have been using an iPad for work for a few months now and I have found there to be so many uses for it! From sketching apps, to AutoCAD apps, to GIS, and note taking apps I have found it to be very useful. I can provide you with a list of apps that I use if you are interested.

Doug - I would love a list of apps and what you are primarily using them for. It would really halp to give me a sense of what the slate-type computers can be used for. Did you consider anything other than an iPad? Do you use Mac or PC for other computing? I use PC, so would want easy interface there...


My ipad has definitely been useful, and will probably be more useful when I start working again. It's more dependable than my laptop (which crashes fairly often), and has several apps which are useful to landscape architects. I enjoy the sketching app a lot. I have more and more books on it. I take notes on it. There are several CAD apps and at least one GIS app. My only complaint is that its hard to connect to printers, but the newer ipads may be better on that.

same questions as above to you must have a stylus. How well does the handwriting recognition work? Are the CAD apps clunky or work smoothly?

I do have a stylus, but I use it for drawing, not writing. I'd rather just type, if I need to write.
The AutoCAD WS app lets you view and edit CAD work. It's useful if you need to look at plans when you're away from the office. The idesign app seems to work well for drafting, although the controls can take some getting used to. For drawing and sketching, I like the Sketchbook pro app (made by autodesk). It works pretty smoothly with my stylus.
I forgot to mention there's a google earth app, as well.

Thanks Roland - any ideas about compatability of the iPad with an otherwise entirely PC office? Would I have to buy a totally different AutoCAD?  Can you share CAD files between mac and PC? Not to be ignorant, but I just don't know!

There are no compatibility issues. I have an HP laptop.

Hi Tanya,

I use a Lenovo Thinkpad tablet which runs on Android. It's a great tablet as it has all the functionality that most tablets have (camera, 3G etc) but also has a stylus (excellent for more accurate drawing), USB and SD Card slot.

I use Evernote with a Skitch plugin to make site drawings and to take notes. Evernote allows you to append Skitch drawings and photos to your notes, it then synchronizes with your iPad, iPhone, Blackberry, Mac or PC... very handy.

Of course, it is a good idea to save often - i have measured up an entire site, only to have my tablet re-boot... yep, I had to re-measure everything!

I think that the CAD software available for Android is not so user-friendly or advanced, but currently use RedStick CAD on my tablet.

I hope this helps...

Thanks Craig - very informative! Android would be great for campatability with my PC and phone - thanks for the app list and your critique of them too.


I often pull out my iPad in meetings to pull up manufacture websites to help a client pick stone, or benches, or to pull up images of plants to verify what the client wants. I have plugged my iPad into the tv in the clients conference room and done a power point presentation, I have used it to take quick photos, there are a wide range of great uses.


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