I admit, I use Tracey's netbook a lot - it is the one setup option that allows me to watch TV and surf at the same time since my 17 inch HP Laptop is connected to the HDTV and there is no picture in a picture option.
But the Laptop has Visit, a operating system many people just have never liked and this little Netbook uses XP Service Pack 3 (fully updates with all Windows program fixes to date.
What a simpler life it was under XP, sure you can argue that Vista was built more for home and business networking, but beyond that it always seems like more work than XP.
I have install a great deal of programs in the Netbook and everything runs wonderfully, only seeing any lag issues in the processor differences which you need to expect.
It is a walk down memory lane, XP was many peoples favorite system and Windows 7 with a 10-22-09 due date in the stores supposedly takes the charm we miss in XP and jacks it up many notches which exceed what Vista does with home networking. Indeed the best of both worlds.
Those who have taken the Win7 betas for a test drive and although most of us missed the fact it was out there and free since 2006 and now it is ready for your upgrading, almost.
Ideally, we will see more computers in every home than TV sets. The cost of these min-laptops is so low that most families can afford to get their kids their own PCs and have simple access to wireless networking. The idea of course to make the Internet in every room in your house, whether a unit is desktop or carried into that rare room you'd never surf in days past.
I'm laying on my couch in the living room, knees up and netbook on my lap, relaxed and nearly weighless at well under 3 pounds. I carry this thing about NEVER geting tired because of the feather weight - I cannot say that about my laptop which has a case nearly weighing as much as the laptop. With the Netbook, a simple sleeve that it slides into and a flap that tucks the opening into the sleeve is all I need, if even using that - around the house I just grab up the Netbook by the back end where the six celled battery is located, it is the widest spot and makes for secure grabbing and carrying.
But XP did have and still has a great fan base. Its low use of processor resources alone made it affordable when memory costs were a lot higher than today. Today, memory is unimaginably cheap - we have SD memory chips that hold 16GIGS of storage that sell for under $30, I think next to portable hard drives, like my 1000 gigabyte drive which was under $150 - remarkable prices by any accounts.
But the 16GIG SD cards can store about 20 full length movies, thousands of songs, complete backup for any operating system, practically every photo you could take in a year as a casual home photographer, full length home movies and these cards can be kept in your wallet, easily shipped and shared with friends and 16GIG is a lot of storage for something the size of a Scrabble tile - it is almost magical technology.
You all know I'm a big movie buff and I go back to shiftwork in a few weeks - when I do I'll be keeping most of my computer HD space freed and using these high capacity SD chips to move videos from one PC to another and always have a dozen or more movies on a chip I can cover up with my thumb.
So Win 7 surely has gotten ome new features which will have a learning curve, but the reviews and walk throughs I have seen really explain how great it was thought out and made to meet the needs of how we now live in the ENTERTAINMENT AGE - we left the communication age a few years ago, although it is every bit as popular, we now want videos, TV, movies, concerts and anything that makes on-demand entertainment available only one click away.
What a neat time to be around, seeing USABLE MINI-PCs like this Samsung N120 at half the size and 1/3rd the weight and triple the battery life as my 2 year old laptop is wild. So many devices exist from mp3s to cellphones loaded with every bells and whistles are out there, but they all have the same two flaws that make them more geared toward the younger users 1) tiny screens are NOT freindly to anyone for long term use and 2) these thumb-operated "QWERTY" style keys are just too tiny to do much on besides text messaginng. But the Netbooks have typically a screen about 10 inches, a nice processor and large hard drive, as well as webcam for seeing and talking to anyone, freind or family or work literally anywhere on Earth and the ability to type on a fullsized keyboard using normal typing skills, not thumbing your way around and having to use abbriviations - yes, you can just type and enjoy a bright screen with easy to see text and brillant still and moving images.
So, I have mentioned I'm waiting until Win 7 is preinstalled in this N120 before I buy my own, Tracey will likely keep the XP in this one and I see no real reason for her to upgrade. So hail to XP your reign has been long and yourfollowing has stayed dedicated to your more simplistic look and feel. I hope that after a few years of Win7 we can all say the same thing about it - something tells me it will be loved and I think its simpler searching features, connectivity and home networking options will make it a classic.
Lastly, I decided that I will likely also get the WHITE N120 from Samsung, I will probably mark it with a label or something so Tracey and I aren't grabbing the wrong machines, but the white is very nice, it is BRIGHT even in subdued room light. I'm not big on black prducts, they all seem to disappear in a darker room, trying to see the white lettering (or God forbit some whacked color on knobs etc.) and to have white keys, frame, wrist rests, shell and the only back is the print on the keys - the black stands out and I need far less light to see what I am doing, so white is my choice for now, unless they come out with a greater color selection - they did add blue, but I find the same issues as the black color design Netbooks.
Lastly, soon everyone will have a PC of some type or another in your home - at least those old enough to care for one. I could by three of these Netbooks for what I paid for my Laptop, and although it is a very nice HP Notebook, it isn't worth 3 of these Netbooks for the casual user, especially a family with kids.
I get a kick out of the back-to-school commercials where they have middle-school kids holding up a 17 to 20 inch laptop that they want you to believe they use in school. Honestly, this would wear out these kids in minutes toting these monsters from class to class, removing them from thier cases, setting them up, waiting for them to boot and then the class is over and repeat the process over and over. A Netbook can lay on your desk and you still have room for books, it boots up in under 30 secs, handles all school like software as well as a larger laptop and you just fold it up, toss it back in your backpack and on to the next class. It is so light you don't know if it is a schoolbook or a computer.
The world is changing, I suggest that you keep an eye on stock as we near Christmas, I totally believe that Netbooks are the stocking stuffers of 2009 and some investor may make a hefty profit jumping in before the rush!
Later today and tonight I'll be running the Netbook Cam at www.livestream.com/beemaster
- I'll post when. I hope to go to the library and play there for a while today, it should be cool having the people and rows of books behind me in the cam.
I guess the best part is that you feel like you have a computer for the first time - remember the thrill of getting that first PC, even in the old days when they really didn't do much, it was still exciting... That is the excitement of getting a Netbook and then multiply that about a million times and imagine your kids face when opening up a gem like these that are geared ideally for smaller hands. I can't imagine any child NOT loving these, of course peer pressure exists and I'm sure some yingyang would bust a kid about why they didn't get a real computer. My answer, big isn't always better, and often isn't. So go play with a Netbook at your local electron stores, hopefully they'll have them Internet connected and see what they can do and IF your child struggles in any school subject, you have an affordable way to catalyst them to passing grades and without a doubt, if you have a child getting on an honor studnt list - these thingsare the perfect gift to congratulate them and imagine how much more study time will fill their day when they can flop on the floor, sit at the table or lay in bed and do anything with the comfort of the world they create and enjoy.
My friend and coworker several months back made a deal with his 6th grade son that if he passed school on the honor roll, he'd get his own laptop, the son did and the father followed through with his promise buying him a HP 15.4 inch laptop. The son loves it, it goes everywhere with him.
Now after seeing the Netbook, he is going to buy one for the rest of the family to use as needed, from his 9 year old daughter to him and his wife. Between the two computers, the desktop will remain in the basement where it rarely got used - his wife didn'twant a whole desk in the living area dedicated to the desktop. Now, they use a small folding table or take the laptop to the dining room table or down on the floor and they use the compter 10 times or more than they ever did the desktop. Once they get the Netbook for Christmas, I foresee the whole family surfing and learning and entertaining themselves as never before.
He was a perfect example about having an older computer, at one tme on dialup - he said they rarely use the computer and he couldn't justify cable internet or a updated computer. I explained that the whole reason no one used it WAS because of the dialup, outdated hardware and location. I told him it has to be fast, portable or centrally located where everyone has easy access. Now that they have the HP Laptop on cable, the Internet is used much of the day, everyone takes turns using it and school work is taken to a whole new level. With the addition of a Netbook, this family will have all the tools that they will need to be Internet saavy and always learning because now it is fun, not going to the basement (which is very nice) but still out of the way. It is like home GYM equipment, if it is tucked in the closet or under the bed, you will NEVER use it.
So, I talked a lot here, been sick lately with some flu or something - today I felt like typing and getting the whole family into computing and doing it affordably is a great topic. I'd like to hear your thoughts :)