It's not that touch-screens are inefficient, because for many uses, they're fine. Look at microwave ovens. We've had them for what, about 30 years now, and nearly all of them are controlled by what amounts to a touch-screen (using a liberal definition).
For doing what many people use "computers" for, a touch-screen is fine... browsing the web, watching videos, typing short messages... essentially consuming media. When you're on a train or bus and want to consume your media and send some text messages, or even write brief emails, the touch-screen is pretty nice because you can hold it one hand and "type" with the other. Using a laptop in these situtuations is not ideal, especially if you have to stand.
Now for doing actual "work" you typically do need a decent physical keyboard. I have Octave on my Nexus 7, but that's more of a neato-thing... I don't like using it for real analysis. And things like TeX and any programming, where you're always using non "writing" characters, it's a pain to use a touch-keyboard (though, if you're on Andriod, I recommend "Hacker's Keyboard"). And it is lame to sit in a meeting and watch someone clumsily type an email or notes on their i-pad.
However, I am seeing decent end-user professional uses of tablets. They don't have to process GBs of data if you've set up the right back-end setups. There are nice visualization tools that work on a tablet and connect to backend systems where the processing is done. And in our case, the data is in TBs and PBs, so even powerful desktop systems aren't sufficient for analyzing and visualizing the data. In this use, the tablets are like terminals or x-terminals... they provide a window and access to the major system that's actually doing all the work and processing.
In my home, my Nexus tablet is one of my most physically used computers. But I also have a couple headless computers where I do "real processing", etc., and for my "real work", I have a nice decent laptop (i7) plugged into a 27" monitor and with a real keyboard.
It's really just a matter of the right tools for the job. For browsing the web, reading books, flipping through PowerPoint slides, monitoring emails, watching videos, and listening to audiobooks (actually my biggest use of my tablet), a tablet is a pretty good device for the job.
And for a lot of people a tablet is all they need. But obviously, for people like you and me, it's not the prime tool we need for our work.