I'm an American who has been living and working in the Netherlands in the IT field since 2000 and in Europe since 1998.
I was born and raised in So. California but have lived in various places throughout the American west.
I became interested in technology at an early age and built many a mechanical, electrical, electronic and flying gizmo.
I also sailed a Hobie 16 catamaran as a teenager, developed a passion for music, science, art, reading, writing and just plain learning across a broad range of interests and flew small aircraft.
I was not able to complete a university education for health reason but once my health was stabilized in the 90's, I started working in IT when anyone who could do the work could get work, regardless of formal credentials. I work freelance now.
In the meantime, I spend time with my wife, friends and kitty cats and I'm teaching myself cooking and programming.
I have been a 'tablet' enthusiast since high school in the 70's. I've tried about every PDA/Tablet-like thing that has come along since the MessagePad (Newton) Model 100. That includes many non-Apple products. The tablet has always been a form factor that seemed natural to me. I used a tablet/stylus rather than a mouse until I started using multiple monitors, as soon as *they* became available, where it's not so convenient.
When the iPad became available, I bought one as soon as funds permitted, which meant waiting for an iPad 2, which was just as well, I think.
At the time, some old friends reminded me that high school I was talking then about how someday there would be a computer the size of a cereal box, operated by a stylus. I have a few sketches and foamboard and plastic prototypes of my own ideas from over the years.
Gotta admit though that I totally didn't anticipate displays until I saw a TED talk about multitouch interfaces. Then the light went on brightly.
I've got an iPad 3 now and my wife has inherited the 2. I wish I had waited for a 4, but, like everyone else, I didn't expect it to come so soon and I wanted the Retina display. But I'm content to hold out for a 5 for my next one, hopefully with more RAM, better multi-tasking, more storage and hopefully an improved camera. I really wish I had the lightning connector though. That's more Apple-like in it's simple, elegant design. The 30 pin connector has always sucked.
I also use an iPhone 3GS and my wife has an iPhone 3.
I was tempted by the iPhone 5 but I really want a larger screen, even if I can't operate it entirely with one hand. If the next iPhone has one, I will probably jump.
I'm not really married to Apple or iGizmos but, all things considered, they meet my needs the best. I'm very impressed with the Samsung phones and would consider jumping if Android had a decent tablet software base, ecosystem and the market ubiquity that iOS tablets do. It seems unlikely to me that the iPad will be overthrown anytime soon in its overall market acceptance, regardless of what market share numbers may say. I hope Apple advances technically, and not just in design, and build quality, to keep pace.
I also jailbreak and customize to my needs, sometimes to the breaking point. I would prefer it if Apple allowed developers more freedom to enhance the basic functionality of the platform. I just hope that the small band of developers that make Jailbreaking possible and develop the customizations stay motivated and that they have some apprentices who will carry on after them and that none of them gets hit by a bus in the meantime.
It seems to me that part of the problem is the price expectations that most people have for iOS software. There are a lot of things that I use that provide such valuable functionality in making the machine more of a genuinely useful 'tool', rather than a media consumption device, that I would easily pay 5x the typical $0.99. Quasar, for example, would fantastic if it were further developed and more stable. And if it's possible to replace the keyboard as with iKeyWiHD or iDitDah Text, how about one that is smaller or Graffiti compatible or how about an open text entry API that people could develop to? Graffiti is still the best and fastest text entry method I've ever used.
I would also like to do some iOS development of my own. My iGizmos are my mental 'exoskeleton' and there is some functionality I need that isn't there yet. We'll see if time, talent and resources permit ...