Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Eee by Gumm



OK, well you'd probably have to have been on another planet to not have seen or heard of this year's "must have gadget" the Asus Eee PC.

Not heard of it? Well you have been in the wilds then! So what is it?

It's a laptop - "Big deal" you say. Seen them before.

It's small - "Yup, seen small laptops". There was the Toshiba Libretto (Google it if you haven't heard of that!)

It's light - "Yup, been there"

It's Linux - "errrm so what. You can put Linux on any PC" - yes, but this starts with a custom Linux built for it

It's Flash-based - "what's that then?" you say. It has no hard disk but a flash memory disk. That means no moving parts (no noise, no heat and no worry about it failing because of a small drop onto a surface) but also it uses less power and it loads much faster. Getting interested?

It's very small - it's the size of a hardback book but still has a proper keyboard and screen and an Intel CPU.

It can run Windows (if you want), it's hackable ("Oh yes it is!!"), it's wireless, it's cute.... and there is a growing community at www.eeeuser.com where you can find out the best ways to install Windows, run games that it wasn't really designed to do so, modify the internals to add extra storage and so on.

So, I'm decided now to get one. The problem now is availability. You can get white ones easily enough (well, sorta!) but the black ones are a little scarcer so I will have to wait. The plan is to get an 8gb SDHC card to expand the storage (as it includes a card reader) plus an 8gb USB pendrive to hold those Xvid, Mp3 and other media files. I will be building a customised XP install CD for it (to install a stripped nLite XP, with the frequently modified files stored on the SD card like My Docs, Temp files and the like) and using customised office applications like Thinstalled Office on a totally optimised "flash disk".

And the best thing of all? It's so small I might JUST get away with smuggling the device past "she who must be obeyed"!! :-)

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