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Digital gadgetry, or distinct lack thereof

Posted by: Jas

Tagged in: technology , gadgets

Jas

I’ve always been the more cautious of buyers when it comes to gadgets. A lot of what I buy has to do with what my requirements are, and often, my desire to have those objects is pretty low. I see this even in my attitude towards computers and technology – I’ll wait and wait, usually to the point where the systems are just about dead (like my laptop), before I’ll start looking at the upgrade bandwagon.

I’m also not a trend-follower, so you won’t find Apple in my home. I don’t believe in paying for a brand, just because it “looks cool”. It needs to be functional. Even when it comes to other people asking me for my opinion, I’ll shy away from Apple – I have no love for the company. Especially iTunes, when you think that it’s installer is nearly 100MB – what an abomination – I’d like to know what they’ve put in there to make the install so large?

Of the products I do have, the one I don’t use so often is my Sony Walkman. While I think it’s a cool device, I just don’t listen to music often enough. Even in my car, my radio is usually off, as I travel around in silence. Driving gives me an opportunity to think about what’s on my mind – I find it synonymous to when I’m swimming – the pure repetition of an action allows some portion of my mind to wander, while still being in control of the situation.

There are those gadgets that I’ve looked at that I think would ultimately be cool to have, but there is always that little voice of reason that stops me. I was recently thinking about migrating to a digital pad, as a way to save paper. But after thinking about it for a while, I wasn’t quite sure how much “greener” the technology would ultimately be. Yes, I save on paper and pens, but I’m still using electricity. And electricity in South Africa is largely generated by the burning of coal… So my “green” attitude is largely thrown out the window. Then again, the manufacturing process of paper might not be construed as ultimately green either. A tough choice, but for now I’m sticking with the paper solution – its easier to recycle than electronics.

Comments (6)Add Comment
redsaid
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written by redsaid, March 03, 2010
Apart from being seduced by that infomercial one night, I am also cautious to the point of inaction when it comes to buying new tech. I've learned a few expensive lessons before, which is why I also waited and waited before buying my new laptop last year.

Unlike you, I totally covet a Macbook Pro though...
Jas
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written by Jas, March 04, 2010
To each their own smilies/smiley.gif

I'm still a PC fan - although its not as though I can play any games with my current hardware - or more so because the laptop is dying and overheats every time I try do anything it deems mildly intensive (this includes having more than one browser window open). It's become a "single-task" machine: you can only use it for one dedicated task at a time, otherwise it simply overheats and shuts down. Most annoying when you're doing something important on it.

Some day soon I'd like to upgrade, but am waiting for SATA 6 and USB 3 to become a little more mainstream on the motherboards. Then I'm thinking quad-core all the way!
redsaid
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written by redsaid, March 04, 2010
Well, since I will never EVER buy Apple in SA - or at least for as long as they rip us off so badly with the price, repair costs, etc. and can't even bother to give us access to the iTunes store - I am sticking to PC as well. My nine month old Acer TravelMate 5520 is also running EXTREMELY hot. Last week the adapter fuse blew. Told the techie that the laptop runs hot, and he told me that it isn't a problem if it's not spontaneously shutting down (like yours) yet. It's that 'yet' part that bothers me, so I'm thinking I should start looking into a desktop for work and use the laptop only as backup and during travel. I don't want to wait until the whole thing spontaneously combusts!
Jas
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written by Jas, March 04, 2010
It's never fun. The sad thing is, I'm not in a position to actually buy any thing right now. It's going to take forever for me to get to the point where I can.

I knew when I bought the laptop that it ran hot, but only started experiencing intermittent problems from 2007 (its THAT old - I got it in 2005). Since then the sound card causes lock ups, the DVD drive doesn't work properly, and the CPU overheats all the time. This in turn causes problems with the hard disk, because it's usually when I'm doing IO that it dies. The head isn't good for it either...

For mobility, I'm going to use the EEE PC I won on MyDL all that time ago :-) Then migrate to a desktop. Laptops also have a lot of vendor-lock in with drivers - the ATi drivers are kept up to date on ATi's Web site, but HP hasn't released an update for them (suited for my system) since 2006 - so I can't use half the new features that are fixed in the software. *sigh*. At least I've learnt my lesson!
MikeZilla
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written by MikeZilla, March 04, 2010
Consider installing Ubuntu on your laptop it really breathed new life into my old dell laptop, much less resource intensive than some other operating systems.
Jas
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written by Jas, March 04, 2010
MikeZilla - the problem comes in with the failed DVD drive. I can't install a new operating system because it can't spin up disks. Unless I can figure out how to install over LAN - I can't do anything with the system smilies/sad.gif

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