I know … look at it! Bless. It’s only a wee little thing. But I’m afraid it’s no more. It’s finally gone to the digital graveyard in the bottom drawer of the spare room, buried amid the coiled cables of its digital ancestors. Coiled cables that may return, like a mythic triumvirate of kings, to prove that nothing will destroy the names of Parallel, Serial and Null-Modem.
And I’ve not made the choice lightly. It’s been a wrench. That Eee PC had been a trusty writing tool for me for nearly six years now. I even did some coding on it – wrote my wife’s website on it, started designing an overly complicated spying game on it and started a few other (shelved) projects. Yes, that Eee PC could run a local LAMP stack. It did it pretty well as well. But it got too slow. Website design outpaced that tiny 7″ screen. You ever tried to use Google Docs on a 7″ Eee PC? You get about an inch of workable screen.
I know there are people out there who hated the Eee. I can understand why, as well. If you’re sat at home, waiting for it to chug through a picture-heavy news site, it was quite a wearying experience. If you wanted to work with pictures or (God forbid!) video, you were struggling. Even, if you had to run any kind of serious word processor, you had to manage your expectations. That was why I worked with the basic text editor.
But I don’t think these Eee-haters have ever commuted by train. That’s where it came into it’s own. It was light, it was small, it was cheap. You could type without getting your elbows in your neighbour’s face. You could carry it in your bag without needing to bulk up on whey powder and skinless chicken. You could have it stolen safe in the knowledge that your thief was going to struggle to make any money from it.
Nearly all of Monastery was written on that little Eee. Dozens of little txt files written on the train, all saved locally (no need for wifi). Then I’d email them to myself later on. Backup and transfer at the same time!
However, I’ve replaced it at last with something whose battery doesn’t leak away within five minutes and where I can at least surf the internet on the sofa. I went with ‘light’ as being the major factor (no netbook was ever as light as the the Eee) and also cheap, so it had to be a ChromeBook. One of the cheapest ones, mind – I’m not going to push the boat out! I know, I know, I’m a cheapskate. But if it works, it works. Can’t justify giving up my hard earned pounds to pay for some overly-tanned Apple brand manager to pay for his fourth yacht. And I’ve had it Windows, so never going back there again.
Writing this post on the ChromeBook, in fact … fingers crossed it lasts me another six years!!