Saturday, August 30, 2008

Technological concupiscence returns!

So, ever since I built my sub-$500 "gaming rig"--which has been simply awesome, by the way--my Asus Eee 701 "netbook" has been collecting dust in my bedroom for months. Some reasons for this:
  1. I'm not sure if it's a problem with the SSD, but the Eee seems to be having issues with file permissions in Ubuntu.
  2. A display issue with my Westinghouse HDTV prevents it from correctly displaying 1080p resolutions from VGA cables. DVI works fine, but there is no DVI port on the Eee.
  3. With high resolution external monitors, the Eee's display is pretty choppy. But I've been too spoiled by a 1080 display to settle for its dinky 800x480 native resolution, which can't even display a modern website without horizontal scrolling.
  4. I used to do a lot of Web surfing and lightweight gaming in my bed, but I haven't done so in a long time. In fact, I haven't been doing much PC gaming at all; I've been getting my fix from my dusty old PS2.
  5. I also used like going to the local coffeebar and hanging out there, which I also haven't done lately.
But that doesn't mean that my interest in portable computing has completely faded. I'll probably do a clean install on my Eee and see if I can't get it running nicely. But I'm beginning to hone in on a possible December purchase. Here's my top candidate so far: the Gigabyte M912V. I've spent literally years thinking of how much fun I could have with one of Fujitsu-Seimens's P1600 series mini tablets, but they have never cost less than $1500. This new model will be less than half that price. Some other neat things about it:
  • The screen is big enough to be useful.
  • It has an ExpressCard slot, which I hope would become home to this Asus "XG Station" gadget. That would solve my external monitor issues quite nicely.
  • With a wireless access point in my classroom, I could take attendance without going back to my desk; I could also remote into GIMP on the desktop there and write onto an projected screen.

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