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I Almost Had to Rename My Netbook

Updated on September 2, 2009
Here is a newer version of one of mine. Nowadays they have the battery life up to around 10 hours.
Here is a newer version of one of mine. Nowadays they have the battery life up to around 10 hours.
As you can see they can pretty small.
As you can see they can pretty small.
They come in all colors but white and black are seen most often.
They come in all colors but white and black are seen most often.

How It All Began

Starting in late 2007 a company called ASUS released a tiny 7 inch computer. It used a Linux operating system and was "cute" and a novelty, but it was not very useful. I say this from experience because I own one. The screen was way too small and it really wasn't compatible with windows applications. There were programs to be downloaded from the Internet but these were not easy for the average person to find. What was significant about the release of this"toy" was that it spawned the birth of a whole series of small inexpensive laptops that were dubbed "Netbooks". This is where the problem began.

In 1999 Psion, a British company, released a series of notebooks based on the "Psion Series 7". These were trademarked the "Netbook". Ironically I was a Psion "fanatic" and I have at least one of every small PDA and Netbook they ever made. Psion's Netbook was a far more useful device than the toy released by ASUS. It had the best scheduling program that I have ever found; It synchronized with windows programs better than most Windows devices; The specs said you could drop it 3 meters to a hardwood floor without damage(it was sturdy!). You could feel it was solidly built when you held it in your hands. Somewhere in early the 2000s Psion stopped making any personal devices, but they still service them- at least they still do as far as I know. They did have a down side that caused their doom- their internet connection was dial-up. They were an over-sized PDA with about a 9" screen, I loved them but that is what they were.

On 23 December 2008, Psion issued cease and desist letters stating that "Netbook" was a registered trademark and that it was a violation of that trademark to call these new impostors Netbooks. This prompted a series of suits and legal paperwork calling for a cancellation of trademark, etc going back and fourth.

Finally on June 2nd, 2009 Psion released it's right to the name "Netbook"- so there is no need for me to think of another to call my collection of "Netbooks".

So What Netbooks Do I Have?

Well as you might have guessed- I'm a gadget junky. I, however, do not own a dozen netbooks. There are only so many that one person can use, even though they are relatively cheap, unless one has unlimited funds it would be silly to have book shelves full of netbooks. I only have 3 not counting the Psions. I have one of the original HP mini-note lap tops, and I have an Eee PC 1000HA in addition to the original "toy" I already mentioned.

When I bought the HP mini-note I had to wait 2 months or so for delivery due to high demand. I found that the 8.9 inch screen made it far more useful than the original Eee pc. Of course I got the one with 160 Gigabyte hard drive and 2 Gigs of RAM and, since I didn't use the upgrade to Vista and kept it at XP Professional, I found that it was extremely functional. It didn't have a CD or DVD player so I had to buy an external drive but this was not expensive and I can use it with any of my laptops. I loaded the entire Oxford English Dictionary along with other smaller references as one of my first actions and this took up very little of the 160 Gigs. This gave me an incredible portable library at my finger tips. My only problem was that the battery life was only bout 3 hrs- though it was rated for more. Batteries seldom last as long as they are rated because often you don't set everything to the maximum energy saving settings because the screen is dim and the thing shuts off every time you pause to think.

So when ASUS said they had a Netbook with a 7 hour battery life- well lets say I was chomping at the bit to get one. I got the 1000HA with the same configuration as the Mini-note- 160 GB hard drive and 2 megs of RAM. I am using it right now to to put this Hub together. I love it, and with the 10.9 inch screen it is as useful as any other Laptop I have ever owned. My problems with battery life were resolved and life was good. I never go any where without this netbook- I guess you could say it has become part of me. I can often be seen at Starbucks with my netbook and DVD player working away. I am right now working at a Carl's Jr.-I had a coupon and I like their Steak and Egg Burrito. Of course to do this I am using an adapter from my cell phone company since there is no Wi-Fi access at Carls Jr. As you can see I really am a gadget junky.

Well, now you know I have a passion for Netbooks and if I could afford it I'd probably buy a couple more with longer battery life. I strongly recommend them for anyone on the go, because they are small and light weight and just big enough to be a very effective tool for business and education. Alas, if you want to play video games they just aren't powerful enough to handle something much stronger than "Pong" so they are probably not what you are looking for. For routine use, however, in my opinion they can't be beat.


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    • GreenMathDr profile image

      GreenMathDr 8 years ago

      I absolutely agree. I'm at a Starbucks now and I just finished my 30th hub in the 30 hubs in 30 day challenge, and have handled my email and watched a short live webinar.

    • wannabwestern profile image

      Carolyn Augustine 8 years ago from Iowa

      I love this article! We bought an Acer Aspire One computer with a 10 inch screen. I wanted the bigger screen but didn't want the larger price. It works really well for me. I can put it into my oversized purse and take along in car and I haul it around the house while my children go from room to room. It's really impossible to work on a computer that is fixed to one location with two toddlers. I think the greatest thing about these little computers is the price point. They are functional for us writers and much easier to use than a souped up cell phone.