Friday, January 16, 2009

Got me a netbook

Pretty much bought on a whim, but will prove very handy on my loooong flight to Turkey in 14 days' time, not to mention on the book tour for Wake: my first netbook, an Acer Aspire One, model AOA150-1049.

Specs: Intel Atom Processor N270 1.60GHz, 802.11b/g WLAN, 1GB DDR2, 160GB hard drive, 8.9" WSVGA (1024x600 pixels), Integrated Webcam, Windows XP Home. I got it in black, and this model comes with a six-cell (5 hour battery); I also bought a third party nine-cell (7.5 hour battery), and non-glare screen protector because, like so many computers these days, it came with a glossy screen that you could use as a shaving mirror.

Otherwise, though, it's an absolutely terrific computer, with a very crisp display, and it runs WordStar just fine. :) And, unlike some of its competitors (such as the Asus Eee PC models through the end of 2008), it has an absolutely standard keyboard layout.

(Netbooks are very small notebook computers; this one's about the size of a hardcover book, and weighs 2.5 pounds.)

The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site


At January 16, 2009 9:58 PM , Blogger Puppet Master said...

What was your motivation to write SCIFI books?

At January 16, 2009 10:15 PM , Blogger RobertJSawyer said...

Hi, Puppet Master. I've been a lifelong fan of science fiction, and always wanted to write it professionally. The very first SF novel I ever read, Trouble on Titan by Alan E. Nourse, began with an introductory essay by him on the joys of being an SF writer. So instead of going through the usual process of first discovering SF as a reader and then only years later have it dawn on me that real people actually wrote these stories, and then, even later, have it occur to me that maybe I could try writing them myself, for me writing SF was something I'd always thought of doing right from the outset.

At January 16, 2009 10:25 PM , Blogger Annie said...

Hi Robert...Thoroughly enjoyed your input on TVO's The Agenda, one of my favourite shows. My friend thought you were "cogent, coherent, and what (he) liked best, controversial." My mother was slightly more forward. "(You) were the best of the three."

At January 16, 2009 10:27 PM , Blogger RobertJSawyer said...

Thank you VERY much, Annie! It was a blast doing that show!

At January 17, 2009 12:02 AM , Blogger Puppet Master said...

Thank you for sharing your experience. I am going to get "Trouble on Titan" and also one of your novels. I would like to start writing SF stories as well but I do not where to start. I think I have found a place to start after visiting your blog.

Thank you! ...and keep writing. I hope you enjoy your new netbook. I might get one of the new AESUS.


At January 17, 2009 7:27 PM , Blogger Dave said...

As soon as I saw the title "Got me a netbook", I wondered if you were still using Wordstar - and, sure enough you mention it. It's good to know our SF writers are cutting edge :) Hmmm....might be a story idea there.

At January 17, 2009 7:37 PM , Blogger brian_l_raney said...

I thought about buying an Acer Aspire One, as it seemed to be the best of the netbook lot out there, but instead bought the Dell Mini, which came as offered with my laptop purchase for an extra $99. These minis are normally price at $459 or more, and I bought an irobot Roomba with the savings.

For the price I paid, I really should not complain, but it came without a hard drive or the upgrade ability to add one. Dell instead elected to engineer a 16 GB (really 14 GB) solid-state drive with a compressed version of Windows XP installed. Not a big selling point.

After uncompressing Windows XP, turning on the page file and system restore functions, installing all the updates, windows live, MSIE 7, Java and Open Office, it left me with just 6 GB of space for anything else. Sure, a solid-state drive assures for a very quite machine, but it gives me very little room to grow, and their sequential writing speeds are far below that of standard hard drive, today.

Perhaps, I should have bought the Acer Aspire One instead of the Dell Mini. But, for only an extra $99, what would you have done? At least my floors are cleaner.

At January 25, 2009 4:41 PM , Blogger Technotaoist said...

I picked one of these up for Kimberli for Christmas. She rather likes hers. Of course, she rather likes the fact that hers is pink =)


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