Obama Mystified By iPad

President concedes he doesn't know how to use Apple's hot new tablet computer.
While former president George H. Bush's apparent astonishment by a commonplace checkout scanner in 1992 drew guffaws from his Democratic opponents, it appears that luddite tendencies are a bipartisan trait in Washington.

iPad teardown shot via FCC.
(click for larger image and for full photo gallery)

President Obama, who prides himself on being the first Blackberry-wielding POTUS, conceded over the weekend that he doesn't know how to use an iPad—or even the simple touch screen that controls an iPod.

"With iPods and iPads and Xboxes and PlayStations—none of which I know how to work—information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation," Obama said Sunday, during an address to the graduating class at Hampton University, in Virginia.

Obama also had it in for social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter—which the President said threaten to cause a massive outbreak of attention deficit disorder.

"All of this is not only putting new pressures on you, it is putting new pressures on our country and on our democracy," said the President.

"We can't stop these changes, but we can adapt to them. And education is what can allow us to do so. It can fortify you, as it did earlier generations, to meet the tests of your time," he said.

"With so many voices clamoring for attention on blogs, on cable, on talk radio, it can be difficult, at times, to sift through it all, to know what to believe, to figure out who's telling the truth and who's not," Obama added.

Obama's singling out of the tech industry as a source of harmful distractions is puzzling, given that he maintains his own Facebook page and aggressively used social media to reach out to younger voters during his run to the White House last year.

Editor's Choice
Brandon Taylor, Digital Editorial Program Manager
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor
Terry White, Associate Chief Analyst, Omdia
Richard Pallardy, Freelance Writer
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek
Pam Baker, Contributing Writer