So, as I have written a few months ago my last MacBook Pro is currently broken, and I have neither time nor money to repair it (the cost to repair it is almost as much as a new basic MacBook); unfortunately I had quite a few problems with this because, lacking a laptop, the idea of actually relaxing in front of the TV, watching a movie and writing down some blog post or article was just not possible.
I thought about getting one of those shiny “netbooks”, but given I want to write a lot on them, not just take a few spare notes, I didn’t want to go that way, as most of the keyboards I’ve seen are quite sucky. The only netbooks I had seen with decent keyboards started to be way out with the price, for a 10” screen: over €400, or even over €1000 for the smaller, nicer Sony versions. I know this because I spent the whole of yesterday’s afternoon looking at notebooks and netbooks with a friend of mine who was looking for a small unit (small size mattered for him); at the end, while he didn’t find what he was looking for, I came home with a new laptop.
Saying that it’s “not very good” would be quite a compliment for this laptop, but it gets the work done, it’s a cheap (€450) Compaq/HP notebook, 15.6” screen, 160GB hard drive and 4GB of RAM, with a Sempron CPU and (unfortunately) an nVidia graphic card. It came with Vista, but it didn’t last the time to skim through the settings, I replaced it not with Gentoo (not wanting to waste too much time on a laptop that might not last the warranty) but with Fedora Core 10 (I would have liked to put FC11 on it, but for now I skipped over it; I’ll upgrade, or reinstall, once it’s out, and at that time I’ll also switch from the nvidia proprietary crap to the open nouveau driver). Beside the graphic card that needed some fighting with, the laptop itself seems to work quite decently: ath5k wireless card, bluetooth has been recognized, audio too, Fedora installed fine and even suspension works, to some extent.
At any rate, with this I should finally be able to watch TV and still write some stuff so that I don’t waste all my time. Which is actually quite good because I don’t tend to actually like staying put in front of the TV screen, alone (it’s different when I’m at a cinema, but even that I am just getting used to, before last November I never had the pleasure of the experience to go with friends, only with school and that, man, was boring). So await more blog posts from me in the next few days, hopefully.