Friday, March 17, 2006

Lightening your laptop

I want to start on a topic many of us fixate on daily, our laptops. I just went through a drastic transition myself and hope that sharing my insights will help you make changes yourself.

I love to travel light, there's no better feeling (no really, I can't think of any right now). The most obvious item weighing you down on travels is your laptop - I used to use a "thin-and-light" 15" laptop weighing just over 6 pounds. I don't know if 6 pounds qualifies for light, but the laptop was very quick with very good 3D capabilities. Unfortunately, to power all this functionality it run really hot and the battery life was around 2.5 hours. For the same reason the AC Power Adapter was quite a brick. I had it with me whenever I travelled, but when it came to walking the conference halls I opted to leave it in my hotel room rather than spend a day lugging it around, especially since the short battery life would often leave me stranded with a useless anchor in my bag.

Finally, I realized that to be really mobile I needed to take some drastic measures and give up my 1400x1280 screen to shed some pounds. I have done this before - I used to own a ThinkPad 701c, one of the coolest laptops I've owned (and still have). So I made the move and started converting every gadget I own to an ultraportable version of the same and I have been very happy with the results!

One thing I realized was that a lot of the technology I bought or hacks I made were not generally known, especially within the context of mobile computing. I'll share what I can and maybe help some of you make the switch!


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