iPad Can Cook

I read an interesting article yesterday that the iPad is becoming a must-have accessory in the kitchen.  Essentially, many home and professional cooks are using the popular device (and the thousands of cooking related apps it can run) to find recipes, utilize leftovers, store and index favorite recipes, and watch videos of cooking techniques.

This is all well and good, but the story failed to answer a key question.  Frankly, it is a question that I have had ever since the iPad was released, and this article brought it up once again:  what does the iPad bring to the table (in this case, the kitchen table) that my laptop or smartphone does not?

My wife and I regularly take our laptop into the kitchen, using it to view recipes that we’ve found on foodnetwork.com or other recipe sites.  We’ve used it to answer nagging questions (such as what is a caper?)  My wife (the true culinarian of the family) makes awesome fondant cakes, and she’s found some videos showing her different techniques and tricks.  All very cool, very convenient, and easily accomplished using our $300 HP laptop.

So what am I missing?  What is the iPad providing that my humble laptop cannot?  A coolness factor?  Does it double as a cutting board?  Can I use the warmth of the screen to heat up a Hot Pocket?  If you touch the screen correctly, does the ghost of Steve Jobs appear and make you an Apple® pie?

I’m guessing the answer lies in the apps – those little applications that you can purchase/download to do pretty much anything.  Surely, there are cooking apps that provide some cooking ninja voodoo not available on the lowly laptop.  But what are those special features?  I’m fairly new to the world of smartphones, but all of the above could be accomplished using my Droid (albeit on a much smaller screen), so again, what is it about the iPad (as opposed to the iPhone) that is so special?

Dear readers (especially those of you with iPads) please help me out.

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