I am an Old Fart and still use printed portions of USGS quads, and for that matter, a compass. Yes, I know the phone has a compass function (triangulation), but a magnetic needle compass doesn't need a battery. I see weather-proof tablet cases at REI, and the recent issue of Backpacker magazine had an article on tablets. So, does anyone here use tablets in the field, and what sorts of apps do you use?
Nancy, not to be a sexist, but can you be an Old Fart and female??
I am a retired "Old Forester". I love my old Ranger compass, analog aerial photos, and memories of days in the field trying to figure out property lines.
Today, I think you would get fired if you showed up for work with a paper map and a Ranger compass.
My IPAD. I have a Canon 6D and with the IPAD I have a viewfinder screen on my 6D. The remote app is pretty cool. If you have a wi-fi camera you will eventually want a tablet for photography.
On my IPAD is a bird guide, a book to animal tracks, spiders and insects, wildflower guide, and a star program that not only gives me a view of the current night sky but also controls my telescope. Oh, and those 6D photos taken through the telescope are downloaded to my tablet.
Then I take topo maps of areas that I am going to visit outside of cell phone range....and save them on my IPAD.
Wait, there's more on Google Earth I take screen shot of aerial photos of the areas that I am going to visit. Yeah, it really helps to be a professional Forester to interpret satellite imagery, but I am sure most people can get the basics in short order.
In Washington and Montana, I can even get ownership records for the areas I am exploring.
Really a tablet is an amazing device. If you had handed me one of those on graduation day in 1972.....I would not have believed it possible.
Unfortunately, most tech devices are marketed to urban folks. They really do not need them. Out in the middle of somewhere they really are a revolution IF you use them and think outside the so called box!!