Gig #115

Keeping up with my once a month performances since my (triumphant lul) return to gigging this year, I’ll be performing again at the KL Journal hotel this week. I’ve finally finished one of the songs that was half-complete the last time I performed it so, I’m pretty stoked about it. Hopefully I don’t forget the words. Anyway, hope to see some of you guys there this time around! It’s a real chill place with great atmosphere. Do drop by for some chill tunes and chill beer.

Poolside Open Mic #65 ft. Kirsten Long [Facebook Event Page]

Time: 8 PM – 10:30 PM
Date: 22nd November 2018
Venue: KL Journal Hotel [Google Maps]

The Poolside Open Mic is our 3rd longest running open mic night which happens every Thursday evening right on TOP of The KL Journal! Each installation features one of our finest musicians, with this one featuring…

***KIRSTEN LONG***

A classical pianist and jazz vocalist who loves folk and rock.

Classically trained on the piano since the age of five, Kirsten Long graduated with First Class Honours from University of Malaya with a Bachelor’s Degree in Performing Arts (Music), majoring in Jazz Piano.

Over the years, Kirsten has performed at multiple venues and events such as the Butterworth Fringe Festival, No Black Tie, Medini Live, MPO Unplugged and the Taipa Houses-Museum in Macau, sharing the stage with musicians, namely Az Samad, Kevin Theseira, Joe Pruessner, Julian Chan and Zalila Lee. Currently, she teaches classical and contemporary (jazz and pop) piano as well as vocals (jazz, broadway, pop).

Follow her: https://www.instagram.com/kirstenlongsy/

***OPEN MIC***

#1 JamesNakason
#2 Mr. Tim
#3 2storeyheart
#4 Ian Steven Ong
#5 Jay Ivanez
#6 Amr Mohsen

To sign up for the open mic, email us@openmicmalaysia.org 😀

~

Open Mic Malaysia is the brainchild of Shaneil Devaser, frontman of The Endleaves. Established in 2012 and currently operating in the Klang Valley, Kota Kinabalu and Johor Bahru, Open Mic Malaysia aims to create sustainable avenues for bedroom musicians, singer-songwriters and professional musicians to share their music and experiences with each other and the public, over evenings of wholesome indie goodness. In partnership with other like-minded musicians from across the country, Open Mic Malaysia aims to… Make Malaysia Great (for indie music) Again.

Senior Dog

When you hear ‘seven years’, you think that’s ages away. It’s not so soon. I have plenty of time until then. But earlier this week, I realized that seven years can fly by so quickly.

Earlier this week, my mom noticed that our dog was limping when she ran. One of her legs was raised and bent, like she was doing some sort of weird hop. Something I had never noticed her doing in the past, so it was news to me. Straightaway, I assumed that she was injured and brought her to the vet. The vet asked me – how old is she? while he examined the leg she didn’t run properly with.

I told him, over seven years.
He nodded, my answer confirming his suspicion.
She was considered an old dog, and joint issues are a common thing for dogs her age. It was something that never occurred to me – that my dog would be old one day.

The vet recommended I start giving her some glucosamine, which will hopefully alleviate the limping. Old people dog problems.

The label on the bottle of pills I bought for her said – for senior dogs – aged seven and above. It’s as though they knew.


I still remember the first day we brought her home. Snuggles was a feisty puppy, biting my finger before she got into the car. She was so tiny back then, I could easily carry her with one hand. She used to sleep in a laundry basket that we lined with a blanket.

She was a very quiet puppy. Hardly anything would make her bark back then. Now that she’s older, she barks a lot more – which is something I found out after doing a Google search – some dogs do bark more when they’re older. They also have trouble controlling their bladders.

All this just made me realize how old Snuggles is. While she still has many more years to live, I’m afraid it’ll all just pass by in the blink of an eye.

I should stop googling so much. It’s making me more upset 🙁

Dark Blue

It’s been a while since I’ve listened to a brand new podcast on a topic I’m unfamiliar with and today, I decided to check out a podcast called Dark Blue – by one of my all-time favorite vocalists, Geoff Rickly of Thursday. Coincidentally, I was wearing a Thursday T-shirt (also, today is a Thursday ). It’s a podcast series that covers a topic I don’t come across often – the struggles of being an artist and how to deal with it.

While I consider myself a part-time artist, in the sense that I write, draw, and make music in my spare time, I’ve never really thought about the lives of musicians who aren’t on the radar. Sure, I may listen to their music but whatever goes on in their personal lives – I don’t really know or even care enough to find out. Turns out, despite us seeing them “living the dream” a lot of them struggle with their personal lives.

One of the reasons cited in the podcast is that there is no guide-book on how to be an artist. Sure, in school you can learn all the skills you need to be one but what happens when you become one? Nobody teaches you how to deal with the struggles of being an artist – let alone be a successful one. Then again, speaking as an unsuccessful artist – it doesn’t seem like it would be hard to deal with. Just go get a regular job to pay the bills.

I’m not suddenly an expert on how to deal with the struggles of being an artist, so I won’t be giving out any advice here – I’m probably the last person you want to ask for life advice. However, I am really glad I started listening to Dark Blue as it has opened my eyes (or ears) to a world I’m unfamiliar with. I never thought I would find a podcast about such dark issues so compelling. I guess it helps that I’m a fan of some of the artists on the show, including the host.

Anyway, if you are interested in learning about how to deal with psychological issues as an artist, or you’re dealing with such issues yourself, I would highly recommend you check out Dark Blue. It should be available on all your favorite podcast apps or you can listen to it online.

We Could Live Like Hermits

“Stop.”

“The fuck you mean?” I snapped.

“Just don’t. It’s not going to end well.”

“And how would you know that?” I retorted. “You from the future?”

Silence.

I placed my Glock onto my lap, lifted my ski mask and looked into the welled-up eyes of my best friend seated on the passenger side of my beaten-up ‘93 Camaro. I always found it funny that we both shared the same green eyes when nobody else in town I’ve met had them. “Brother from another mother,” he’d tell me all the time.

Ever since we met, we got along famously. Through good times and bad times, we’d stick together, coming out on top. Even though today was going to be one of them, I had a feeling that he was going to get cold feet. I strengthened my resolve.

“You don’t understand, Francis. I just got let go, I’ve got a kid on the way, I’m up to my neck in debt,” I told him. “I need this.”

“Just trust me,” he replied, in between sobs. “It’s a bad idea, someone’s going to call the cops, there’s going to be a massive shoot out, and you’re going to end up… dead.”

“The fuck you on about? You gonna call the cops on me? Aren’t we in this together?”

“I’m not gonna snitch, it’s not that –”

“What happened to all that talk about leaving this town and starting a new life far away? You and Sam; me, Nancy and the little one; neighbors on a farm in the middle of nowhere. Don’t you want that?”

“I do, but – “

“But? But shut the fuck up! You in it or you out. I don’t got time for this shit.”

I pulled my ski mask back on, readied my gun, and stepped out onto the front steps of the town’s largest bank.


Writing Prompt from Reddit: [WP] You have realized that your best friend is your son/daughter from the future who wants to hang out and get to know you since you die before he/she was born

Goodbye Unifi

Yesterday I handed in my termination application form and returned my broadband modem to Telekom. I’ve been using Telekom’s Unifi service since I moved in to my current home in 2011 so you could say I was a pretty loyal customer. I never had any problems with the service – my download/upload speeds were good enough for gaming, streaming and torrenting. The network was rarely down – I didn’t have any issues with the service at all.

So why did I terminate my account? I was happy with my internet service. It was Telekom’s very own marketers that pushed me over the edge. About a month or two ago some dude called me up and told me that because I was a long-time customer, I was eligible for a “cheaper price promo”. I told him that was great, and I was interested in switching to it. But he told me that I couldn’t just switch my account to that new price – I had to cancel my account and sign up for a new account to get this new price point. We got into a debate over how absurd that was and I ended the phone call with him after about 20 minutes without agreeing to take this “promo”. Immediately, I went online to do some research about TM’s current price offerings.

My plan then was RM179/month for 30Mbps (which was supposed to be upgraded to 100Mbps for free this year but due to my condominium’s network cable limitations, it wasn’t going to happen) – a plan that they don’t offer anymore (you have to Google to get to this page, it’s not even linked from their homepage – why is it still up?). If you check their website, they currently offer: RM129/month for 100Mbps (unlimited) or RM79/month for 30Mbps (limited to 60GB a month). This meant that I was paying an extra RM50/month for my current plan. Now, who in their right mind would want to do that?

My 2-year contract had already long expired – couldn’t they have just reduced my monthly fee to match the current price? Why did I have to cancel my account and sign up for a new one just to pay the correct price? They aren’t selling my old price plan anymore, it doesn’t make any sense that I have to keep paying for it since I was no longer bound to a contract.

I wrote them a lengthy email about my situation and they didn’t answer my question. They kept harping on the fact that I had to cancel my account to get the correct price. They marketed this ‘new’ price as a promotion. How the fuck is it a promotion if it is just the correct price for a service I’m overpaying for? If I had to guess, they probably wanted me to commit to another 2-year contract, or they wanted me to contribute to their number of sign ups for the year.

Since Telekom wanted me to cancel my account anyway I decided it would be a good time to give Time a shot. I signed up for an account over one afternoon at Seng Yip’s house (the sign up process is a stupidly simple and quick process, big props to Time for making the transition so easy) and scheduled a date for them to come over. That day was yesterday and after successfully upgrading to Time, I drove to the Telekom center nearby my house to terminate my account.

I hope Time lives up to its reputation – based on my friends’ experiences I’ve made the right choice (and for the past 24 hours I’ve been very very pleased with it). When the billing date comes around, I’ll be happy with the lower price and the fact that I won’t be charged for a service I never use (looking at you HyppTV).

Also, this switch comes one year after I shut down a Time telemarketer almost a year ago. Does this mean his call worked?

Gig #114

Nothing much to say except that I’ll be performing tomorrow night at KL Journal hotel. Drop by for some cool tunes and beverages!

Poolside Open Mic #61 ft. Layla Sania [Facebook Event Page]

Time: 8 PM – 10:30 PM
Date: 25th October 2018
Venue: KL Journal Hotel [Google Maps]

The Poolside Open Mic is our 3rd longest running open mic night which happens every Thursday evening right on TOP of The KL Journal! Each installation features one of our finest musicians, with this one featuring…

***LAYLA SANIA***

Layla Sania is a 16 year old KL native. A young girl with an old soul she dreams to make it big singing jazz, soul and folk. She has been familiar with stage since she was a small girl but has been over the past 6 months more actively singing at various venues in KL, Penang and Sarawak. Amy Winehouse plays a big role in her music. Her single will be released this year. Stay tuned!

Follow her: https://www.instagram.com/laylasania/

***OPEN MIC***

#1 Senkhan
#2 2storeyheart
#3 Marlena
#4 Fadirul Fais
#5 Fadhil Zulkifri
#6 Aishah Soraya

To sign up for the open mic, email us@openmicmalaysia.org 😀

~

Open Mic Malaysia is the brainchild of Shaneil Devaser, frontman of The Endleaves. Established in 2012 and currently operating in Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu and Johor Bahru, Open Mic Malaysia aims to create sustainable avenues for bedroom musicians, singer-songwriters and professional musicians to share their music and experiences with each other and the public, over evenings of wholesome indie goodness. In partnership with other like-minded musicians from across the country, Open Mic Malaysia aims to… Make Malaysia Great (for indie music) Again.

I am not that George Wong

There, I said it. I had nothing to do with posting photos of some random flight attendant online. If you fapped to those photos, you can thank the other dude with the same name as me.

I’ve been receiving quite a few messages from people about a certain topic, and instead of having to respond to individual messages about it, I thought I’d write a blog post about it. Could have easily said this in a status update, but hey – might as well make use of my dead blog (RIP).

For those of you who aren’t aware – that’s good. Keep it that way, feel free to close this tab. For the rest of you – I’ve given you the answer above.

The fact that reports about viral social media posts are considered ‘newsworthy’ says a lot about our media – and the people who care enough to read them. If the outlets didn’t have an audience to pander to, ‘articles’ like these wouldn’t even exist.

The worst part about this situation: some of these writers call George a pervert and still have the audacity to stalk the attendant’s social media profile for more pictures of her to post in their articles. Oh, let’s take it to the next level by sharing more of her photographs to our thousands of readers!

So sanctimonious.

Diamonds In My Chain Gold

Random thought post? Sure. I haven’t done one of these in a while.

It’s interesting watching how my nephews are growing up. I’m happy that the elder one is generally obedient and very patient with his younger brother. I don’t know why, patience is one of those traits you don’t see in every kid. Hopefully his younger brother will follow in his footsteps. He’s definitely not patient right now. However, they are both extremely loving and caring towards their younger sister, so that’s a good sign. Crankiness seems to be a common factor if you try engaging with them after they wake up. They need a couple of hours to warm up it seems.

Today’s kids are the TV – or screen – generation. At least based on my observation. Not that there’s anything wrong, it’s just how times have evolved. Like back in my days, it was action figures and army men. TV only became a hobby much later in life. Nowadays, we have access to so many more displays – everywhere we go we either have a TV, smartphone, tablet or laptop. Back then, all we had was the living room TV and the shared family computer. Even I’m a TV kid now – these days I fall asleep watching Twitch streams or YouTube videos, and it’s all by my own volition. I bring my phone into the toilet to Reddit while I take a shit. I listen to podcasts from my phone while I’m driving. I read articles or watch videos while eating if I’m by myself.

Now that I own a smartwatch, I can’t imagine spending money on a non-smart one. It’s crazy. A few years ago I would’ve said that was a ridiculous thought. Then again, it’s not like I was much of a watch person to begin with. But now that I’ve experienced life with one, I don’t think I could resort to regular watches. My phone already tells the time, why would I need something that only does the same thing? Also, the fact that I can change my watch face to match whatever I’m wearing (not that I do it very often) means I have a watch to suit every occasion.

Even with access to every kind of music imaginable, these days I still find myself going back to the same old artists – Post Malone, Joji, Rich Brian, Higher Brothers, Dance Gavin Dance, Emery and Tilian are my jam right now. I guess I’m a creature of habit. Every time I hear songs from them played in random locations like cafes and clubs, it puts a smile on my face. I get so hyped for no reason. I used to feel the same way back then when there wasn’t internet streaming music. It’s amazing how the way I react hasn’t changed.

Vaping is more enjoyable when you have a good coil and good juice. It can definitely replace cigarettes. Not that I’ve been looking to do that – it’s just something I noticed. Snus are still great. I make sure I have some with me all the time.

I think I am easily influenced – at least by people I like. I don’t think I’m a trendsetter. Not that it matters, but quite a number of things I’m into now are directly because of my friends.

Dabbing for photographs is very cringeworthy.

Unironically, I’m a Pewdiepie fan. I enjoy watching his videos. He deserves his success.

Better Call Saul’s next season can’t come soon enough. I’ll have to settle for Riverdale in the meantime.

Having a beard hides your double chin. Then again, maybe I should work on losing weight instead. I have been watching my diet again though. Went for a health check up the other day and was told by the doctor that my BMI was a bit high. Fair enough, I thought, since I had let my diet loose for a while.

My laptop is still under repair, which kinda sucks. On the bright side, I still have been able to complete my work using a tablet – great because it takes a lot of weight off my shoulders when I walk around with my backpack. Typing on the screen is still terrible but I’ve got some great portable keyboards which rectifies this issue. Battery life on this tablet is also insane – I love how I don’t have to worry about keeping it charged.

Animal Bus is officially in the works. Stay tuned for updates 🙂

Tofu HHKB vs Tokyo60 showdown

Tofu HHKB
Tofu HHKB

Having received my Tofu HHKB kit yesterday and already having a Tokyo60 in my possession, I felt that I was in a unique position to offer my viewpoints comparing both of the keyboards since they are similar in terms of features and price.

After assembling my Tofu HHKB and flashing my layout on it, which was a pretty straightforward process since I built the Tokyo60 almost a month ago, I gave it a test run and starting typing out my thoughts about both keyboards. First it started off as a few paragraphs, then I realized I had a lot more to say than I initially thought. As I wrote more, I decided to just put the information down as a table (see below). Also, please forgive my terrible photography skills as I’m not a photographer and I don’t have a decent camera – regardless, you can just browse Reddit to see much better pictures of the keyboards.

Tokyo60
Tokyo60

For context, I own an HHKB Pro 2 (my first and only Topre board) that I use very often. Since adapting to the layout, I’ve programmed it on all my keyboards since I really enjoy it. When the opportunity to get a custom HHKB that didn’t need any soldering, I jumped on it – which was how I joined the Tokyo60 round 1 group buy. A few months after that, KBDFans (great online store btw) decided to release a HHKB version of its Tofu keyboard I hopped on that preorder as well. Now I own two hotswappable HHKB keyboards.

Tofu HHKB rear
Tofu HHKB rear

Tokyo60 rear
Tokyo60 rear

I love how the Tofu HHKB looks – its minimalist approach with its sleek edges and sharp corners really tickles my fancy. The shiny brass weight at the back really ties it all together, giving a little bit of spice to an otherwise reserved design. I think it looks much better than the Tokyo60 – not that it is a bad-looking board in the first place, it’s just very generic and subdued if you put them side by side. I know quite a lot of people complained about the gaps on the Tokyo 60 since they weren’t representative of the render but I honestly don’t mind them at all. Sure, it sucks that there are ways for your food to get into your keyboard, but honestly – you shouldn’t be eating at your keyboard in the first place.

Tokyo60 gaps
Tokyo60 gaps

Tofu HHKB gaps
Tofu HHKB gaps

However, when it comes to almost everything else, I think the Tokyo60 has the Tofu HHKB beat. I’m not sure if I received a bad Tofu HHKB PCB (but based on some Reddit comments that I’ve read, I wasn’t the only one) – I had a few loose Kailh sockets that I had to fix in place with some electrical tape (hopefully they hold out and I don’t have to resort to resoldering them in the future). This really affected how I felt about the keyboard – it was like receiving a substandard product. I’m not sure if it’s due to the alignment of the plate/PCB but inserting switches to the sockets was also a bitch to do – I had quite a number of bent legs despite be trying to insert the switches as carefully as possible. I only bent about 5 switch legs when inserting them into the Tokyo60. Also, when I was removing keycaps from the Tofu HHKB, most of the time, the switches would come out with the keycap. This could be due to extra tight keycaps, a tight switch stem, or issues with the tolerances for the switch sockets.


Tofu HHKB PCB

UPDATE 7th October 2018: after speaking to a KBDFans rep, they mentioned that they’ll be sending me a new PCB, so I’ll be updating my review once I’ve received it!

Update 29th October 2018: received my replacement PCB today, assembled the keyboard with no issues – no sockets coming loose and not many issues with bent pins (only bent 3 switches this time around). Everything is working as expected, so the only complaint I have with the PCB is that it is uglier than one for the Tokyo60 (which may or may not be a valid complaint for other people – I’m not bothered by it).

Both keyboards come with underglow RGB support and no way to show the lights. Tokyo60 addresses this with the round 2 extras but I have no idea if KBDFans will be doing anything about it in the future. Also, even though you don’t see the PCB when the keyboard is assembled, I appreciate the design put into the one of the Tokyo60 – it looks great, while the HHKB Tofu PCB I received was plain white with no design at all.

Here’s how the underglow looks like at the moment – essentially useless since there’s no way to see it clearly unless you look in between your keycaps at a certain angle. This will also probably vary depending on the keycaps you have installed.


Tofu HHKB underglow


Tokyo60 underglow

Programming both boards was straightforward (if you’ve used QMK before) so I had no issues there. The weight on the Tofu HHKB also works as a slider that allows you to choose which USB C port you’d like to use (or you can remove it for a lighter board and access to both ports). However, the keyboard didn’t come with a USB C cable which was a minor annoyance, while the Tokyo60 had a mini USB cable bundled with it.

 Tokyo60Tofu HHKB
PriceUSD 159.99USD 159.00
AppearanceGood, nothing to shout about - a standard-looking custom MX HHKB.Great, sleek design with sharp corners. In my opinion, a very sexy design, especially with the shiny weight at the back.
Build qualityGood, solid case, no issues fitting together. No issues when removing keycaps. Good, solid case, no issues fitting together. Weight gives it additional sturdiness. Not sure if it's due to the size of the sockets or the tightness of my keycaps, but removing keycaps pulls the switch out together as well.
PCBIn terms of design, it looks great, Kailh sockets work well without any issues.Plain looking PCB (not that it matters), but my PCB had issues with 3 of the Kailh sockets being loose (one of them even popped out during assembly). It uses holtites for the switches around the USB ports - which may or may not be an issue for some people (I don't have a problem with it).

(Update 29th Oct: received the PCB today, assembled the board with no issues - no more problems with sockets falling out and only 3 pins bent this time around!)
Ease of assemblyNo instructions provided, but there were no issues here - very straightforward. No instructions provided, but there were no issues here - very straightforward.
PortsMini USB, left side.USB C (two ports) left and right.
UnderglowRGB underglow enabled on the PCB, but there's no way to see it. However, an acrylic base is scheduled for R2, so that issue will be rectified.RGB underglow enabled on the PCB, but there's no way to see it. No idea if there are plans for an acrylic base.
Included accessoriesMini USB cable, screws, GMK stabilizers.Two blank keycaps (not sure what they are for), brass weight, magnets for the weight, screws, stabilizers (not sure what brand they are but they came disassembled and they don't have any extra legs to clip).
FirmwareQMK.QMK.

Overall, I’m satisfied with my Tofu HHKB (I really wish the Kailh sockets were soldered on properly – hopefully they have better QC in the future) and would recommend it to anyone looking for a hotswap HHKB custom keyboard. It also has the added benefit of being in stock, while buying the Tokyo60 would mean waiting for it to go live on Massdrop (round 2 just ended). In terms of practicality, they’re both the same – just choose which keyboard you want based on its design.

Other notes:
The Tokyo60 does have more exciting colors, but you’re going to have to wait til next year to buy one.
The Tofu HHKB is available in a variety of colors, with mixed halves as well, but nothing as eye-catching as Akira Red, Rose Gold or Ink.

The Tofu HHKB is my first keyboard with Gateron Greens and I’m really digging them. They are definitely less tactile than Box Navy switches (on my Tokyo60), but with the added benefit of being not as loud. There’s still a satisfying click, especially with /dev/tty MT3 keycaps.

Speaking of keycaps, this is also the first time I’m using MT3 keycaps. I’m using the full-sculpt profile (row 1-5, no row 0 on HHKB) and they’re definitely reminiscent of SA keycaps. I now understand what all the reviews are talking about when they say that these caps cup your fingers. I’ll need to spend more time typing on them to form a stronger opinion but I’m liking it so far. While I’ve spotted some alignment issues (as is expected with dyesub keycaps), they’re not too glaring. My main issue is the text thickness of the characters on the number row – in my opinion they look a little too bold compared to the alphas.

Typing Tests:

Tofu HHKB
Gateron Green switches
/dev/tty MT3 keycaps


Tokyo60
Kailh BOX Navy switches
SA Control keycaps

As requested by a user from Reddit, I’ve taken some shots of the keyboards side by side so you can compare the differences between their heights/angles.

Transitioning: Tablet Life

I’m amazed at how far technology has come. I remember when I first got my iPad, I was struggling to do anything remotely productive on it. Sure, I was trying to type on the on-screen keyboard, but the fact that I couldn’t have multiple windows open, use decent copy/paste functions and cloud storage made it such a hassle to use. This was back in a time when transferring documents meant connecting my iPad to a computer and dragging files out from it. I decided not to ever use it for productivity and it turned into my gaming/video streaming device.

Fast forward about 8 years now, and I find myself using a tablet to do my work and holy shit, the experience is amazing. So much has changed since then. “Why am I not working on a laptop?” you ask. My laptop is currently at a service center for repairs (one of the USB ports isn’t functioning properly) so I needed another computer to work with (for when I’m outside or in the office). I decided to pick up an Android tablet (Galaxy Tab A10.5) as my backup computer – since I could use it to replace my dying Android tablet at home anyway. After spending the past 24 hours with it as my working machine – I think it could replace my work laptop instead.

I don’t want to spend paragraphs gushing about the device, so I’ll just summarize my thoughts on the device. The kind of work I do doesn’t require a very powerful device: a lot of word processing, the occasional spreadsheet or presentation, checking and responding to emails and research on the internet.

Why the tablet works for me:

  • Having multiple windows open on the tablet’s display is a breeze to do (you can have split screen apps and/or floating windows), with no noticeable slowdown or lag. I can easily have multiple documents open to work with at the same time.
  • I can easily plug in any of my keyboards to the tablet (via a USB A to USB C converter) to use with the tablet, and a lot of shortcut keys remain. Even better if your keyboard has mouse move commands as that lets you have an onscreen mouse so you never have to touch the tablet display if you don’t want to.
  • Long battery life – according to what I read, I think it should last 15 hours – which is plenty of time. Longer than a regular work day for me which means I don’t have to worry about charging it as long as I charge it to full before I leave the house.
  • Because Android/Google is awesome, I have all my Drive files easily accessible to me without having to do any additional settings. I just log in to Google and I’ve got everything I need.
  • The 10.5” display is more than sufficient for my tasks, and when I’m not working, it doubles up as a great video player.
  • All the apps that I use run smoothly on this machine. Don’t think I’ll be gaming with it anytime soon, but I doubt it’ll be a problem if I ever decide to game on it in the future.
  • It’s friggin light. Having to carry it around in my backpack feels wonderful compared to the laptop I was lugging around previously.

What sucks:

  • WhatsApp for some reason doesn’t allow you to run the app on multiple devices with the same phone number. I have to resort to using WhatsApp web on the tablet. It’s not the end of the world, but I don’t see why I need to rely on such workarounds – it’s 2018, everyone has multiple devices. Please implement support for it. Then again, this isn’t the tablet’s fault but I thought I’d bring it up anyway since I use WhatsApp a lot for work.
  • The screen is a fingerprint magnet – but it is only noticeable when it is off, so not really a big deal.

That ended up being longer than I thought. I’ve only spent 24 hours with this tablet, so this piece is only a first impression, I’m sure I’ll find additional things to say about it in the future. If anyone has any experience with the transition or has recommendations about must-have apps or tricks I need to know, feel free to chime in!