Indeed, third-generation Tablet PCs, due later this year, show significant improvements over whats available now. I was up at Microsoft this week and had the chance to play with one of these machines, and I found the screen much more responsive to my handwriting and less susceptible to glare. The screen also had higher resolution, meaning I didnt have to write larger or use a broader pen for my scrawl to be legible. Solving these problems makes a tablet much more appealing to me.Hardware companies are beginning to figure out how to make decent convertible tablet screens. Still, many of us wont have (or want) a screen that spins and turns the notebook into a true tablet. Well buy normal-looking laptops equipped with a screen thats pen-sensitive. These arent tools for big-time notetaking, but theyre great for making drawings, adding annotations and signing documents.For more insights from David Coursey, check out his Weblog. Microsofts goal isnt for some people to use a pen and digitizer all the time, though that is already happening in vertical applications. Instead, Microsoft wants everyone to use a pen at least occasionally. Redmond wants a pen to be a part of a notebook computer just like a keyboard, screen and wireless network adapter. No big deal, nothing wed pay any special attention to. A Microsoft executive predicted tablets will go mainstream within the next 24 to 36 months. I am expecting it to take a bit longer, but am just as convinced that before long well all own Tablet PCs without even thinking about it. Check out eWEEK.coms Windows Center at http://windows.eweek.com for Microsoft and Windows news, views and analysis.