Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Laptops and decisions, decisions

As I suspect the vast majority of everyday computer users to be, I'm not an expert when things go wrong with my computer's software or invading spyware suddenly reduces its speed to a crawl. (On the latter issue, I really wish Congress would enact a law with real teeth to stop these horrid companies doing this to innocent Internet surfers.) Presently, all I can do when my computer--a Packard Bell fossil that I bought one month before the company decided to move out of the PC business--freezes or slows down unbearably is rage as I switch the whole damned thing off at the plug and switch it on again in hopes the thing will have rectified or gone away.

Recently, perhaps because Spring is around the corner, I'm in a mood to buy another laptop. My first one, a sleek, black Hitachi beauty which came with a five-year 'on site' warranty--again bought shortly before the company decided to no longer make laptops--was nicked over five years ago from my hotel room in London. The hotel was actually a glorified B&B in Earl's Court, the theft an 'inside job', and I wasn't insured...naturally. Larry, Lynne and Lee were with me and had to console me over many beers the entire day because it felt as if a key part of me had been stolen.

Another reason I was roiling within was to do with the fact my first novel--a story about a young Catholic woman in Ulster that I now refer to as my 'cutting my teeth novel'--was ensconced in its hard drive and, in my halcyon naivete about all things publishing, I thought the thief would discover it and send it off to a major publisher, get it published and make millions of dollars!!! Yes, I really did believe that. All the compensation I received was a measly two-hundred quid from the establishment--the max. permissible under the relevant UK hotelier laws, and the surly buggers weren't worried about me suing them despite my stream of threats because they knew I lived in the States and it would have cost more to institute an action and....well, I'm sure you know how that sort of thing goes.

So, regarding my forthcoming computer purchase, I'm conflicted about whether to abandon the PC world as many people seem to be doing currently and move to the realm of Mac. I'm very tempted and leaning toward it. I've been doing my research and my friend Kevin, a computer fundy, says Macs have less problems, less viruses, and are easy to learn and use. The last bit I'm worried about on account of my computer lethargy and overall disinterest in learning new technical things about them. He also rabbited on about Blueteeth and Airport something which was way, way over my head.

A downside, he informed me about, is that the powerbook has to be left open (unlike the PC laptop) when one attaches an external screen--which I absolutely want to do because I'm highly attracted to the 20-inch screens--and uses the powerbook as a standalone computer in one's office. In effect, it means you'd see two screens on your desk. I'm not sure that would be a major concern for me, though. In any event, I've a feeling the Mac Powerbook will probably win because I'll take the risk of trying something new like I usually do with food in restaurants. For one thing, they're sleek, lightweight and look damned sexy, and I'm a sucker for anything with a shiny metallic finish. Today, I think I'll visit the local Mac shop and give it the once-over.

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8 comments:

rainyday said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
rainyday said...

Get a Toshiba.
By the way, whaddya think about the Queen's not attending her son's wedding?--or do you not give a shit?

Damian McNicholl said...

Currently, the latter cos I'm not as yet invited to the reception at Windsor that she's ponying up for

Gone Away said...

So I guess we can take it that Apple will shortly be withdrawing from the laptop market? ;)

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