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Who is Sumocat, why is he blogging here…



… and why doesn’t he have a real name?

Hi all. Sumocat here, newest contributor to Actually, I’ve been contributing since the beginning via comments and the forum, but now I’m officially on the team, ready to join the world of professional blogging. Almost.

Funny story. I started blogging about four years ago with a vacation blog, recording my trip to Japan on my Electrovaya Scribbler slate Tablet PC. After returning, I decided to keep up the blogging and started Sumocat’s Scribbles, my award-winning ink blog. Wait, actually, my blog never won any awards, but I have! I’m a Microsoft MVP for Tablet PCs and regular awardee in the Life on the Wicked Stage Ink Blot Awards, aka the Blotties.

Back to my story, in four years of blogging, I’ve penned more than 1,000 entries, added two sidebar micro-blogs to my main blog, and expanded to videos, screencasts, essays and cartoons. But the bedrock of what I do is ink blogging. spilling digital ink from my Tablet PC.

I’ve advanced the format over the years, developing a web tool to address the key criticisms against it: lack of search and hyperlinks. Build 52, named for the Roman numeral LII, the initials for “Links in Ink”, it allows me to add color-shifting hyperlinks over my inked image entries and sneak in a hidden text conversion. Hence, my ink blog entries are as indexed and hyperlinked as any typed entry.

And this is the part where I’m almost ready to join the world of professional blogging. In four years of blogging, I’ve never really typed a normal blog entry. I’ve typed essays (and then marked them up in inked). I’ve typed micro-blog entries posted via email. But to stare at a blog interface and bang out an entry, that’s a new and frightening experience for me. But I really want to be part of the GBM team, the best source for mobile computing news and insights, so I’m taking the plunge… after this first entry which I composed entirely in ink. old habits die hard.

So if that story of ink-dependence and mention of my MVP status weren’t clear enough, let me admit now that I am a Tablet PC snob. Inkless notebooks? Not for me. UMPCs? I like ’em as little Tablets. Smartphones? My choice is the pure slate iPhone. The only non-tablet computer that interests me is a media center desktop and even then I’d hook up a Wacom tablet to it for pen input. Obviously, you can expect my contributions to GBM to be heavily tablet- and pen-centric… and probably not completely unbiased.

Yeah, sorry, but when you’re an ardent supporter of a struggling form factor, you need to push hard against the mainstream who think computing is all about typing on flat surfaces. I’ll try to be understanding, but hey, you don’t visit a specialty site for broad commentary on general computing.

Well, there you go. You know why I’m here and what I’m were to do. Did I miss anything? Oh yeah, the name. Sumocat is actually a nickname I’ve carried for twenty years. I tried dropping it in the past, but it keeps sticking. It’s just as well since I respond to it better than I do to my real name.

So that’s Sumocat. I want to thank Xavier for inviting me to the team, as well as Rob and Warner for building a team I’d want to join. Hey, how do I add a signature to this thing? I don’t have this problem when I’m ink blogging.



  1. Xavier Lanier

    05/24/2009 at 4:12 pm

    Welcome to the team Sumocat! So glad to have you blogging here!

  2. Rob Bushway

    05/24/2009 at 4:51 pm

    That is soooo awesome, Sumocat! Welcome aboard. I can’t tell you how good it is to have you blogging here on an “official” basis.


  3. GoodThings2Life

    05/24/2009 at 6:38 pm

    Welcome aboard, Sumocat, and I must say that I can somewhat relate about the name issue… everywhere I go on the Internet I am identified by my nickname, and thus far, no one has ever shared it. A Google search of GoodThings2Life will only show posts I’ve made on various forums and sites.

    Of course, I have only half the time using it as you have with yours, and people in life do know and refer to me by my real name, lol.

  4. Gavin Miller

    05/25/2009 at 8:10 am

    Nice to see another new member to the team. Will you be concentrating on certain aspects of mobility or covering anything and everything, Sumocat?

    Maybe see the occasional inkblog!

  5. Warner Crocker

    05/25/2009 at 8:31 am

    glad to have you on the team, good buddy. Now get to work! ;)

  6. Truc

    05/25/2009 at 5:30 pm

    Awesome! Welcome, Sumocat! It’s gonna be a blast!

  7. Glenn

    05/26/2009 at 2:30 pm

    Hey Sumocat, You wrote- “My choice is the pure slate iPhone. The only non-tablet computer that interests me is a media center desktop and even then I’d hook up a Wacom tablet to it for pen input.”

    How is an iPhone a slate if you are not intended to write on it? Or with it? Is that kind of like an iPod being an mp3 player? The word slate implies writing doesn’t it? Could imply pool table I guess; which I really miss on my M1400.

  8. Sumocat

    05/26/2009 at 6:31 pm

    Glenn: Slate refers to the shape, which is a single piece, as opposed to a convertible or clamshell. Loren Heiny recently declared this the “Year of the Slate,” citing such devices as the Kindle 2, CrunchPad and, yes, the iPhone. It does not imply writing. That said, handwritten input is a major advantage of the iPhone in countries like Japan that rely on character-based languages.

  9. sbtablet

    05/27/2009 at 7:31 pm


    I’m so excited to see you joining the GBM team on an official basis. I know what a voice you are for the tablet pc, and I love them, too!

    Sorry to be slow in my welcome, but I’ve had a cold turkey four days of DSL modem failure. Seems like years since I’ve logged in to GBM, and it’s good to be home.

  10. Vnteuscy

    06/25/2009 at 1:26 pm

    JMGc9r comment3 ,

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