It is said that necessity is the mother of invention. While eagerly awaiting my iPad to arrive — is it April 3 yet? Pleaaaaase? — I had a stream of consciousness that went something like this: I like baseball; the iPad is a decent size to […]


It is said that necessity is the mother of invention. While eagerly awaiting my iPad to arrive — is it April 3 yet? Pleaaaaase? — I had a stream of consciousness that went something like this: I like baseball; the iPad is a decent size to watch a streaming game on MLB’s iPhone app while I’m playing World of Warcraft, or working, or — well, who am I kidding — playing WoW. The Apple dock, while in addition to being a $30 hunk of plastic, only props up the iPad in portrait mode; it’s a little hard to watch the game that way.

As I was thinking this, I looked up and noticed the paper stand that I use for making changes to copy I’ve marked up. “Self,” I said to myself, “I betcha that’d hold an iPad real well.” After a quick screen capture, some resizing and printing, I had an iPad mockup with which to test.

It fit wonderfully. In both dimensions. The stand costs about $10 at your local office supply store. As a bonus, it folds up flat so I can toss it and my Bluetooth keyboard into my manpurse carry bag. It’ll be fantastic for working on the go. Of course, I may need a shock-resistant case for the thing if Papelbon coughs up a lead in the playoffs again. Not that I’m bitter about that.

How about you guys? Any low-cost solutions you’ve found?

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  1. You may be on to something here, Mark, though I admit I already ordered the iPad keyboard which will add more bulk to my, um, satchel, though getting thin in the travel Mac dept was the impetus (i.e. justification) for the purchase. 3 April, where are you? Only 384 more hours to go!!!

  2. I’ve gone and picked up a few iphone docks off ebay – I’m gonna try modifying them to dock my ipad – it looks like a simple trick to grind/cut the ends off and glue a block on top to provide more support. This will give me a dock that I can use for syncing, charging, etc. as well as standing upright. Of course, this will only be portrait mode but that’s all you get with apple’s $30 dock. For landscape, I’ll use the case. The cost for iphone docks is only $4-5 and I’ve got scrap stuff for the rest.

    And if it doesn’t work, I can always sell a ‘slightly modified’ iphone dock back on ebay! lol

  3. You not wht’s a really good iPad stand that serves other function aswell?

    The Apple-made iPad case.

    1. Well, I meant “You know what’s…”

    2. Yeah, Nuno – I’ve got one of those coming too. I’ve got two wireless keyboards so I needed a dock that I can keep connected to power – and just don’t want to spend $30 each for those simple docks :/

    3. I’m on the fence about the Apple iPad case. In addition to concerns about the feel of it — early reports are it feels like cheap vinyl. Also, I might want the extra screen real estate with the external keyboard, and the two aren’t mutually exclusive. My main goal with this is to have it sit under my monitor landscape for viewing the game while working (the bottom of my LCD screen is 13″ off the desk).

    4. I’m not so fond of the Apple case myself – you can’t fold the lid all the way back, so it’s awkward for hand-held use (that wedge gets in the way), and you can only stand it up in landscape orientation at a full-vertical angle. I’d much rather have an adjustable case like the Quirky Cloak myself.

  4. Görsel Sanatlar Thursday, March 18, 2010


  5. I’ll just close the lid on my MacBook Pro and stash it in the laptop-sized stuff I already have.

  6. Now if someone would come up with an iPhone-sized, Bluetooth, thumb-typing keyboard, this combination of iPad, simple stand, and pocketable keyboard would make on-the-go computing a delight.

  7. Based on the huge third-party iPhone case market, finding an assortment of very slick, real leather, hard shell, etc. iPad cases shouldn’t be a problem. I’m actually interested to see what inventive ways companies come up with for integrating a stand on these cases.

  8. My suggestion is to not buy one. Really. Just because it’s new from Apple doesn’t mean you have to have it. Are you really going to sit on the couch with this oversized iPod touch? Spend a little more and get a Mac book.

    1. Wait, you mean you DON’T buy everything Apple makes as soon as it comes out?!1!! O.o

    2. I’ve got a MacBook and an iPhone. I also spend two hours a day on a train commuting into Boston. An iPad will be a LOT easier to read and watch movies on than my MacBook.

      Also, I’d like to not have to bring the MacBook with me as often as I do.

  9. I tried finding one online, but had no luck. I think its an interesting I dea, and if it doesnt work the I can always return it. Does it have a specific name? where did you get yours?

    1. Alright, I found one at a thrift for .50 cents. I have a silicone case I purchased off amazon.com. It works perfectly.
      If anything, if you have the tools for it, saw off about half of the nubs that hold it from sliding, but other than that! this is a very, very cheap and awesome solution. when its sideways, you can plug it in and charge it. It also would work to put out at a party or something and rubn the slide show.

      I have photos!

    2. The one I have my wife got me a while ago, but I the one I was thinking of when I wrote this was this one: http://www.staples.com/Fellowes-Copy-Holder-Booklite-Platinum/product_411327?cmArea=SEARCH

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