[NCLUG] A laptop computer

Rick Ross buddhadba at gmail.com
Thu Mar 22 19:49:34 MDT 2012

Completely agree with the keyboard layout, touchpads (ick), et al. I don't
know if they have a showroom or anything, but System76s are made on Parker
Rd in Denver.

On Thu, Mar 22, 2012 at 7:32 PM, Chad Perrin <perrin at apotheon.com> wrote:

> On Thu, Mar 22, 2012 at 12:36:58PM -0600, Stephen Warren wrote:
> > On 03/22/2012 06:24 AM, Kerry Miller wrote:
> > > Hello NCLUG,
> > >
> > > I am in the market for a new laptop computer.  I have been told by a
> > > couple technicians that ASUS makes the best laptop computer.  I have
> > > receintly become aware that some laptop computers have a SATA disk
> > > interface to an external disk drive and it sounds like I might like to
> > > have such an interface among the other interfaces I think should be.  I
> > > would consider offered opions.
> >
> > One recommendation: Test the laptop (preferably using Linux) in person
> > before you buy it. A little story:
> Agreed!
> >
> > I used to have a Dell Inspiron 9300 (purchased about 6.5 years ago).
> > During that time, I simply could not understand why people didn't like
> > laptop touchpads (as opposed to external mice or the Thinkpad stick
> > pointer things).
> >
> > About 1.5 years ago, I purchased an ASUS, and found the following input
> > device issues:
> >
> > 1) The touchpad is terrible. It's somewhat bad in Windows too, so I
> > think it's just the HW design. Testing the laptop in person probably
> > would have found this.
> I love the TrackPoint on ThinkPads.  It is one reason that ThinkPads are
> the only laptops I have bought and used for years.  For a long time, I
> couldn't understand how it was that most people seemed to prefer
> touchpads, but I just chalked it up to "no accounting for taste".
> One day, I found myself doing repairs on a bunch of laptops for a while,
> mostly Dells.  What I discovered is that Dell "stick mice" (I don't
> recall the specific name for them on Dells; it's different from what
> they're called on ThinkPads thanks to some kind of patented branding
> thing) are much, much worse than ThinkPad TrackPoints, and are somewhat
> worse than Dell touchpads, too.  In fact, the "high quality" Dell stick
> mice are slightly worse than the best quality Dell touchpads, and the
> worst Dell stick mice are far, far worse than the worst Dell touchpads.
> My general opinion of how various pointing devices compare has lived on a
> codepad paste for a while now:
>    http://codepad.org/2wbWRCy1
> Regardless of your personal taste in the matter, though, the lesson is
> clear -- you should be sure you will be able to tolerate your hardware
> before investing if it's expensive and difficult to return.
> >
> > 2) The idiots put Insert and Delete keys on the same physical key, so to
> > cut/paste, instead of pressing Ctrl+Insert/Shift+Insert, I have to press
> > Ctrl+Insert and Shift+Fn+Insert. This is very annoying considering I use
> > a desktop at work that doesn't have this issue, so I have to use the
> > keyboard differently. I might not have noticed this during testing, but
> > anytime I look at a laptop design now, I am careful to look at photos of
> > the keyboard layout.
> That sounds *awful*.
> >
> > 3) The arrow keys aren't separated from the rest of the keyboard in any
> > way (no space around them, and they're in the same aligned set of
> > rows/columns as the other keys). This makes it hard to move my hand to
> > the arrow keys and back to typing position without looking, so I often
> > press left arrow instead of down arrow or similar)
> >
> > (I have no idea if these issue apply to all ASUS, or just some). Buying
> > something someone else has and likes or e.g. visiting a Fry's
> > electronics or Best Buy might help.
> Where's the nearest Fry's these days?  There have been rumors of one
> opening around the northern end of the greater Denver metropolitan area
> for half a decade at least, I think, but I've never heard of that
> actually coming to pass.  The closest Fry's of which I'm aware off the
> top of my head is in Las Vegas.
> Every town should have a Fry's.
> (I'd just solve that arrow key issue by choosing more software that uses
> vi-like keybindings, but your mileage may vary, of course.
> --
> Chad Perrin [ original content licensed OWL: http://owl.apotheon.org ]
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"Life begins at the end of your comfort zone." - Neale Donald Walsch

"If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much room." - Anon.

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