So here it is. The first thing I have published pecked out on the iPad.

Reminds me of how much the world of business and publishing have changed since my early days of working in the roofing industry and for the magazine (when I used to mail in manuscripts handwritten on legal pads). I am old enough to have witnessed the demise of the manual typewriter, the electric typewriter, and the near-death of the fax machine.

The latest innovations for smart phones and tablet computers have come in the form of the software that drive them — "apps," as we have come to know them.

It seems that every time I turn around these days there is a message from someone in the industry telling us about a new app they have developed. The first ones we saw were just new versions of software originally developed for the PC.

Lately we have seen new apps that are truly fresh, developed from the ground up for today's high-powered handheld devices. Want to know what I am talking about? Head to the App Store on your smartphone or tablet PC and search "roofing." Or do a search on your favorite vendors by name. Chances are there is a tool out there that you may find useful.

Speaking of tools, I am re-confirming my belief that the iPad is a great output device, but not so great for input (like typing a note to the blog). But the world continues to change, and I suspect there will be solutions that will make portable input even easier than using a desktop or laptop. Guess we will see.