What do you do with your computer?

Do you need a powerful computer?
Email and Web Browsing
Most of the people I work with, businesses and gamers excepted, use their computers only for internet, email, pictures, music, and a few other non-processor intensive programs. For email, I recommend Windows Live Mail unless you have Outlook 2007 on your computer. Or you can use webmail, such as gmail. For Internet, there are 3 competing browsers: Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Google Chrome. I recommend Firefox for everyone except people using older (but still XP) and slower computers. Then Google Chrome might work best.

Netbook, Laptop, Desktop
Do you need more than a netbook?
In the past, most people had desktop computers. Why? They were (and are) significantly cheaper than laptops and much cheaper and easier to repair. But now, the netbook has entered the market, a small-form laptop under $400. Other than price and size, a netbook is not as heavy duty as a laptop and probably not worth repairing or updating other than adding a new hard drive or memory. It also has no DVD drive.  You might even consider it a disposable computer. You won't be happy running a processor intensive program like photoshop on it, but if you only want to touch up red-eye or crop a picture or a half-dozen other things, you can do it with Splashup Light. It's free and very easy on any computer. It works well on a netbook.  So if you want something inexpensive, small, light and sufficient for ordinary computing needs, look into a netbook.

Buying a Netbook.
MSI Wind
Before I purchased a Netbook I researched all of them. The one I purchased was the MSI Wind. I purchased that one for several reasons: MSI products have always worked well for me, the Wind received respectable ratings from sites I trust, and it came in black. The most important reason I bought it was the screen size: 10 inches. Most netbooks have 8 inch screens. I think bigger is usually better especially when you're heading toward smaller.  The downside, to make the small form computer, some of the keys are smaller and the touchpad is awkward to use.  My solution:  a Bluetooth Mouse.  The netbook I purchased came with Windows XP, but I put Windows Vista on it with no problem and am also running The next version of Windows, Windows 7 (beta) with even fewer problems.  This netbook works very nicely for my needs and may also be sufficient for yours.

If you would like more information about other netbooks or anything else discussed in this newsletter, check out the links, email me,  or call me.

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