Of new computers and Windows 8

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic
Imagine my face in that picture. For the last three months. Because of my laptop. You see, it was old. Eight years old. Young to a human, dinosaur for a computer. It ran Windows 7 and we got along fine for two and a half years. I loved its massive hard drive, my desktop gadgets, the fact that it was free. Mostly because it was free, a hand-me-down from my mom.

But, being a dinosaur, it weighed a ton. As in more than eight pounds. That's a ton when you're kicked back on your bed writing. Needless to say I didn't do it much. It also ran SUPER hot and a cooling pad was a necessity.

It started acting up. Freezing, hanging up, not doing what I told it to do. The first time it took me TWO DOZEN clicks to get it to restart I told my dad I might need a computer soonish. He agreed, said he was thinking about upgrading his laptop and I could have his old one. Free computer, I can totally deal with it being bigger than I want.

Except things kept getting worse. And worse, and worse. Until I could only run two programs at a time. I'm a multitasker and a writer. Two programs doesn't work for me. I couldn't stream Pandora or Netflix. Oh the horror! But I couldn't afford a new computer. So I talked to my parents, they agreed to replace it for me, and I started researching. Decided I wanted an ultralight. Found one on NewEgg, researched it, asked questions. Was settled on it, in fact. The thought of Windows 8 didn't bug me, because I'm a geek, and I know my way around Windows. Mostly.

Then I decided to look around town and see what was here. Went to Best Buy first this past Friday, intending to work my way back home. Sitting on the display shelf was a sleek little HP. On clearance. For less then the one on NewEgg. With a better processor and real dual memory slots. I picked it up. Heaven! Weighed less than four pounds, same size as my dinosaur. A really sweet older gentleman employee came to see if I needed any help and we set off looking for the battery life. Never did find it.

But we kept chatting while we looked, I shared my woes. Asked how many of this model they had in stock. Just the one on display. But he'd take another $30 off if I bought it that day. So I did. I was beginning to fear I'd wake up some morning and find my dinosaur DOA.

Called my mom, said I'd be longer than planned because they had to wipe the demo stuff off of it. No biggie. I had a book in the car and needed some food. Came home. Handed it to my mom to see her jaw drop at how little it weighs. Texted the product card to my dad, and Saturday morning at work he researched my processor and geeked out over it being top of the line in this category.

Friday night and Saturday I set up, installed, copied files, and gushed about the awesomeness of my new computer. Showed it to EVERYBODY who's come in the house. I actually kind of like Windows 8. I don't find it heinous or The Worst Idea Ever. My Netflix is blazing fast. I can run Chrome now. I have a battery that'll last four hours if I'm not surfing the 'Net.

So what did I get? An HP Sleekbook 14. For under $300. With TWO USB 3.0 ports. I am one happy writer.

Isn't it awesome? His name is Zanzibar.


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