Are "Netbooks" more eco friendly?

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default Are "Netbooks" more eco friendly?

Post by waterdragon7 on Thu Nov 20, 2008 11:03 am

An article about these devices:

http://gigaom.com/2008/09/01/choosing-a-netbook-a-guide/

An interesting question is should the use of these devices be encouraged for most of your web-surfing, email and word processing? And perhaps something on the order of an Apple iPod Touch or Sony PSP 3000 for watching videos, listening to music, etc.

Perhaps quite a few kilowatt hours could be saved by using these very small computers, even if only 10-20% of people switch to these as their main computer.
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default Re: Are "Netbooks" more eco friendly?

Post by Baldus on Thu Nov 20, 2008 2:54 pm

I would say so yes, their slower performance and longer battery life means you get more usage for the electricity you put in. I have an Asus EeePC, which sadly is a model sold with a low-grade battery (ironic for a portable PC) so I get less life than my MacBook, but it is a perfectly capable computer. And don't let that slower performance fool you, they are more than fast enough for web browsing and office tasks. Mine has enough horsepower to watch satellite TV. The screen is a bit small though, but perfectly readable.

The only caveat I would say is, if possible, get one with Windows pre-installed, or if you're techie enough get a Linux one and install Windows on it. As much as I despise Windows, Linux is pretty much a joke on these machines, even version specifically designed for them. It is a lot less responsive than Windows, and trying to get things like sound and the camera working in Linux is a nightmare of editing text files and fiddling with command prompts. It got old quickly, and I put Windows XP on mine. Asus supply you with a Windows driver disc.

Personally if I were buying one now I would look at one of the ones with the new Intel Atom processor in them, as they seem to be faster if more expensive, and I think the battery life is better. The MSI Wind gets good reviews.

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default Re: Are "Netbooks" more eco friendly?

Post by waterdragon7 on Sun Nov 23, 2008 8:34 pm

Baldus wrote:...The only caveat I would say is, if possible, get one with Windows pre-installed, or if you're techie enough get a Linux one and install Windows on it. As much as I despise Windows, Linux is pretty much a joke on these machines, even version specifically designed for them...

...Personally if I were buying one now I would look at one of the ones with the new Intel Atom processor in them, as they seem to be faster if more expensive, and I think the battery life is better. The MSI Wind gets good reviews.
Baldus, I'm considering purchasing an Acer Aspire One, which runs $350.00 US at several local "brick and mortar" big box electronics stores here for the model I have in mind. It has the Intel Atom CPU, one gig of RAM, and a 120-gig drive with Windows XP Home SP3, iirc, installed on the drive. I have not found any other manufacturer who can beat that price, and the little system is receiving very good reviews. Battery life seems to be an issue, though not so much for me, as I'd be using it at home most of the time. So I'll probably opt for this, and then replace my old Mac G3 Blue & White with the high-end Mac mini for my desktop system. I'd prefer an ultra-mobile computer from Apple, but there is no way Apple would ever sell one of these for this price, even if they do decide to manufacture one in the future.
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default Re: Are "Netbooks" more eco friendly?

Post by Baldus on Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:33 pm

Yes, the Acer netbook is a pretty good one. I think you sacrifice speed for battery life with the Atom-based ones, but if yours is like mine - mostly connected to the mains when in use - then it's not so much of an issue (my Eee's battery is really poor, less than two hours).

Apple are rumoured to be updating the Mac Mini in the near future - they have told people asking about it to "be patient," and there is allegedly a team working on upgrading it even as we speak. If true then the new one will likely be based on the same internals as the new MacBooks, so it will be nice and fast. The only drawback is there's no indication as to when it will be released. They are also supposed to be evaluating the netbook market, but anything they do won't be as useful as the Acer/Asus netbooks, it will be a bigger iPhone-style device. It'll be super-expensive, too.

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