Do I Need a Netbook?


Do I need a Netbook?

My answer is a resounding YES. But I already have a laptop – why would I need at netbook ? Well, here’s a simple guide to differentiate a netbook from the traditional laptop. It may clear the cobwebs for most people.

I need a netbook because it is so darn easy to lug it around. The fact that my computer activity outside the office is 90% internet browsing, a netbook perfectly fits the bill for my need. Put a G3 wireless stick on it and you’re wired to perfection, totally mobile and internet ready. But more importantly , I need a netbook that works – fast, no disconnects, no freezing, no stalling and you know where I’m getting at – retrofitting the netbook’s brain with something that really works and that means discarding the fickle and overrated and Windows for the leaner and meaner Ubuntu operating system. I just bought a Dell mini 10v netbook with Ubuntu OS in lieu of Windows XP and saved 70 bucks in the process. Shipping was free and yes, I saved more money by not requiring anti-virus software. Since Ubuntu runs on Linux , it isn’t susceptible to viruses and although not totally immune, it is much harder for hackers to infiltrate and gain control of the system and inflict serious damage. Therefore I don’t have an anti-virus system twiddling its thumb in the background depleting my memory resources causing the system to stall and freeze.

Ubuntu being an open source system can be downloaded for free, including all software that runs on it. My netbook came with version 8.04 which is certified for the Mini 10V. It has Open Office Suite – totally inter-operable with Microsoft Office. It also has slew of games, entertainment, productivity and educational software – all free ! What do I need Windows for ? With Ubuntu, you don’t pay for software and subsequent version upgrades except for customized applications .  Ubuntu support is free whereas with Microsoft you pay an hourly fee. So what’s the catch ? Windows can be compared to gas powered cars. You keep on making them because it keeps oil refineries pumping and the assembly lines running – but not for long though. Sooner or later people will start buying computers but download all software for free. I’m already thinking of partitioning my other laptop with dual OS – Ubuntu and Windows.  I’m sure there are consumers out there who think like me, wanting to ditch Windows permanently.

You can also resurrect your old Pentium PC with Ubuntu.  Its applications aren’t memory hogs so you don’t require a truckload of memory to run them. My wife plans to buy a netbook here to ship to her nephew. With 40 bucks more, you can get a 6 cell battery which could last for 6 hours. Charge and use it for 6 hours. Perfect for those who don’t want to get ripped by the blood sucking Meralco who charges the most ludicrous power rates in Asia. So my new netbook found its parking spot in my daughter’s bedroom. The size is just perfect for her. She doesn’t have to remember crtl-alt-del. I could have spent six times more to buy a Mac, but then, we all could be queueing up for our turn, never wanting to use the Windows laptop any longer. 🙂


images_KARATEMy 8 year old daughter goes to a karate class. Hard to think that a little girl who couldn’t swat a fly and craves nothing more than a sleepover with her friends or a new giggly monchichi would be interested in going the way of the dragon, learning flying kicks and slamming people to the floor. It was kinda difficult for me to assess the benefits of karate lessons other than having fun with 4 of her classmates who will be in the same class. Alright, I gotta think social skills this time. They say karate fosters self-discipline and respect for others. She also gets a kimono with the fee and time to hang out with 4 of her pals. I told my wife that if it teaches her how to deal with bullies and not becoming a bully herself then fine. Last Saturday it was my turn to take her to the karate school. I was greeted with a handshake and a bow by the receptionist, a lanky guy who speaks with a slight French accent. What’s with the bow anyway?? Do I look like Shintaro Katsu or Bruce Lee? It felt awkward but when I saw him doing the same routine to every parent who came to drop their kid I realized it is part of the script. 🙂 They should have put someone believable like some Asian guy in kimono and it didn’t matter if he looked like Max Alvarado . The more mean looking the better. 🙂  It gives the club a bit more authenticity. 😉

So what did the kids do? Well, there was a TV monitor that showed what the class was doing. It looked more like a stressful version of calisthenics session to me but its rather early and the moves may show up a few lessons later. I just hope other parents aren’t expecting their kids to beat the crap out of Darth Vader once the lessons are over. My expectations ? Frankly none. Zilch. I just hope she has a good time. When she came back from the lessons today I asked her ” so how many people did you beat up today?” . She replied “ Dad……” I quickly said ” .. just kidding :mrgreen:

36 Responses

  1. If NetBooks increases its pricing, existing customers continue to pay the old price. Drop Ship

    • That’s strange but there’s a grain of salt in it. I’ve seen latops only 50 bucks more than a netbook but hey, most netbook buyers have laptops already and they’re doing it more for convenience than anything !

  2. I hate Microsoft too but no other choice. I find the netbook screen just too small for me.

    As for karate, I think its for grown ups. Kids ? I’d not take it seriously.

    • Now there’s a choice in Ubuntu 😉 My netbook is 10.1 in. screen but it suits me well. the keyboard is 92% the size of a standard laptop so it’s okay.

      True. For kids it’s just mainly for fun 😉

  3. I was thinking of getting me a netbook too for all my blogging activities. Hubs who uses a laptop says I only blog either at home (where I have a pc and his laptop) or at work (where I have a pc). So we totally scrapped that plan. Luckily my wonderful friend and realtor gave me/us a laptop last month. So I am now blogging next to hubs at night in bed instead of over at the computer desk 🙂

    • Hey, that’s a nice token of appreciation from your realtor ! You must have bought a real nice house 🙂

      Nowadays I browse with this little devil when I’m watching TV hehe.

  4. It’s my first time to hear about Ubuntu. Is it compatible with a lot of softwares like Photoshop?

    • Nope, there is no Photoshop release on Ubuntu/Linux platform but sooner than later, they will come up with a similar product with similar strength and functionality. Here’s some free software on image manipulation : ( they say now comparable to Photoshop)

      Also here’s the rule of thumb why you should stick with Windows ( for now).

      There is no reason why you can’t configure your PC/laptop with dual operating system (O/S) – Windows and Ubuntu. You can boot your machine with your choice of O/S . Boot with Windows if you want Photoshop and with Ubuntu for the rest. The good news is Ubuntu also recognizes the Windows filesystem 😉 The great news is Ubuntu can be booted from a USB memory stick 🙂

      Seriously, other than my Photoshop Elements and Olympus Maestro software, I have no use for Windows Vista. It’s crap. With Ubuntu, my wireless connection never drops. Also when I inserted my USB mouse for the first time, it worked instantaneously. There was no “device discovery” and “loading driver” delay whatsoever .

  5. Wifey has this small laptop where she can watch Noypi dramas in her workplace with friends. There was a gadget called “slingbox” my daughter bought so they were able to tap into the TFC channel. Was so complicated I never paid so much attention.

    Kids who are into karate/judo will grow more disciplined than those who didn’t.

    • hehe.. now that’s what we call being totally wired and mobile, watching TFC anywhere 🙂

      Really ? That’s nice to hear. I guess karate fosters discpline if taught right eh ?

  6. I also keep a netbook (white MSI) because I find it necessary for me. Woweee, I hope I’m not too old for karate lessons. I’m thinking about that last night. Effect siguro ng panonood ko ng Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. =)

    • hey, nice color. I got a standard black one because I didn’t want to pay $20 for any other color. I wanted to spend the cheapest amount of money without compromising the functionality 😉

      Nope – you’re never too old! THat’s OK for you for self-defense esp in that society you’re in 🙂

  7. A majority of computer owners are willing to ditch MS OS if they could find a better alternative. They’re tired of this monopolistic yet unreliable attitude of MS. Ubuntu (sounds like an African surname) might be the answer!

    • there is also a collusion between Microsoft and the stores. Come to think of it, you’d be dinged twice when you buy a PC. You pay for hardware and software, plus forced upgrades to software versions that are no longer supported. duh 😦

      How about buying hardware and NOT buying any software?? Download them all for free so there is no software piracy issue ? Sounds like a great plan isn’t it? Great for consumers indeed. We can forget about businesses who prefer buy their Windows software. For all we know they feel secure that they can sue someone of the darn thing doesn’t work or compromises the integrity of their much valued data. 😦

  8. I wish i could buy another netbook for my personal use.. coz i gave the first one to my daugther.

  9. I have been looking around for the best netbook available. The only problem is that i can’t decide which one.

    I guess I need something that offers me the good things from both worlds, mac and pc.

    I have been following the hackintosh peps and i am convinced that it is possible but i am not confident that I can play around with a brand new netbook.

    Your netbook according to hackintosh peps is one of the models that works extremely well with Mac OS X, Snow Leopard, an excellent hackintosh laptop. all the hardware components works with Mac OS X, installing OS X is a straightforward process with minimum hacking required.

    • The MAC is tops – no doubt. To me, it is what the ultimate home pC should be, totally user friendly , robust and stable with extremely powerful graphics. It is not a coincidence that people who work in publishing use MAC with the ever popular Quark software. I wanted to buy a MAC laptop but it is pricey and also fear that we will not use our Windows PC’s any longer hehe 🙂

      Ubuntu also allows you to configure your PC desktop with a MAC look and feel. 😉 Hackintosh is still pricey to do. I’d probably just by a Mac Mini.

      The netbook is really a 2nd PC/laptop to me because of its relatively smaller power which is perfect for internet usage – for browsing, and downloading music, video, pictures. I paid C$329 for it – no shipping charges. It also comes with webcam and the full Ubuntu 8.04 suite. THe darn stores may no longer sell these netbooks with free Ubuntu and force you to buy it with Win XP as default – and pay for it of course. That’s what we call arm twisting. Of course you can always download Ubuntu on it from the web for free. Microsoft has very well entrenched its position in the market, thanks to its unholy alliance with the stores and distributors.

      Why Linux is better than Windows :

  10. I have a Mac and I love it. I’m a die hard Mac fan forever !

    Those monchichis are so very cute. I want one 🙂

  11. I was thinking of getting a netbook to compliment my full-sized laptop, but then I realized that I’m often on the go and would have little or no time to sit down and go online. So I did the next best thing, got myself a new Samsung touch phone that is 3G and Wi-Fi ready for those times when I need to check on my email and blog, hehe. 😀

    • I have a Blackerry with internet access but its so small duh. I like the netbook coz then I can sit at the fast food and browse while the wifey is shopping. 🙂
      The mouse you see on the pic is actually a micro mouse 🙂

      One time she decided to have her hair done at almost 5pm and I had to watch a movie to kill 2 hours ugh. The netbook is great to lug around on short vacations too 😉

  12. Microsoft has just released Windows 7 to replace the crappy Vista. People are excited to get Win 7. That’s an easy 100 bucks for the upgrade !

    • good if its only 100 bucks? It’s probably more. Of course, those suckers who are suffering from the aggravation of Vista would part with their money to migrate to a supposedly more stable Windows 7 😦

  13. I am also considering getting a Netbook although I totally am in love with my MacBook. Netbooks are so much lighter and I heard the battery life is very long.

    LOL at your question to your daughter! 🙂

    • the Mac is amazing. It just works flawlessly and the graphics are incredible. In my view, if one has to pay money, the Apple Mac is one that’s worth paying for, both from the hardware and software perspective.

      LOL, today it’s the wifey’s turn to bring her to the karate school 🙂 She has to learn how to tie the kimono properly 😉

  14. I like netbooks but I’m having the difficulty of typing in its “miniature” keyboard. The smaller screen is also like a blown-up screen of a cellphone. But I guess one of these days, I should get one. It is more useful for light-traveling. I also like the idea of using free softwares in it and ditch Microsoft products for good. In my present laptop, I’m using Windows 2000 but already discarded my XP Office in favor of

    I used to train Martial Arts when I was in high school until the earlier of my college days. It’s a good training for self-discipline actually, as well as unity between mind and body. I was able to enhance my quick reflexes in my Martial Arts stints. Unfortunately, I discontinued the training when it was put into the least priorities in my life…

    • Mine is 92 percent of the regular keyboard size so it isn’t that bad. In truth, a country like Pinas or India where students are on a tight budget, the Ubuntu/Linux system is perfect. Imagine NOT BUYING any software for a change – that certainly helps not only students but everybody ! The other night my Ubuntu did an upgrade of its software and it too more than 30 minutes because it upgraded ALL the software active on my netbook at the same time ! What could be better than that ? 🙂 I also find that the Ubuntu filesystem navigation is much simpler than Windows plus, there is no need for defragmenting the hard disk. In fact no need for CRTL-ALT-DEL coz the system doesn’t hang 😉

      I agree, it’s good for teaching self-discipline which one can carry into adulthood. I think its best for boys so it can control their hyperactive behaviour 😉

  15. Hey, thanks for telling us about this Ubuntu OS. I might just give it a try. We bought Windows Vista two years ago. Gosh, it sucks real time. This makes me want to become a Mac convert.

    I like Dell and Compaq. The Dell notebook you bought seems nice. My husband bought a Dell XPS, but my golly, it weighs like a heavy toolbox, LOL. My sister calls it “your luggage.” So I just bought a Compaq notebook later on…easy to lug around indeed! But the OS sucks…

    Wow, karate class. I’ve always wanted to be a martial arts expert, but I guess it is too late for me now.

    • Try it out and you don’t need to wipe out your Windows Vista. It will partition your had disk and it will give you the option to boot with Windows or Ubuntu. You will appreciate the simpler but enhanced productivity it will offer.

      Hey, your bones aren’t brittle yet. It is never late to learn martial arts. The ad on the front of my daughter’s karate school says they accept anyone from 4 to 150 years old hehe 🙂

  16. P.S. I still prefer working using the computer desktop, though. Typing on these mini notebook keyboards aggravates my tendinitis and CTS.

    • If you check the pic, I’m using a micro mouse. It’s 1/3 the size of a regular mouse and very easy on the hand. It does fit a netbook and I thought it is perfect for my daughter but you know what, I kind of like it too. 🙂

      • Actually, the bigger the mouse, the better (for me, at least). But it should be light. The Dell wireless mouse we have is so heavy.

        I also prefer ‘bulky’ cell phone units. I can hold it much better. I drop cell phones — and cameras — that are too small.

        I wonder if your daughter will let you have your new notebook. 🙂

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