Just because I’m a fat American doesn’t mean I’ve always wanted a fat American computer. Over the years I have grown to hate so-called performance laptops from Dell and HP. They were big, ugly and heavy enough to rip your shoulder out of your socket, and getting bigger, uglier and heavier all the time. Why didn’t we get those little laptops, you know, the ones made for Japan and available only on Dynamism? Like the lady who buys shoes a few sizes too small, I sought a computer that could be used for emails and surfing and not require steroid supplements to transport. Oh, and could it be cheap, too? I spend all my money on fast food.
Netbooks are wonderful.
When the Asus Eee PC arrived, it subverted every laptop tradition that had come before it. It was the first cheap drool-worthy laptop (not counting the judgmental hippie Kumbaya circles of the OLPC), and its mentality was different, too. Not there to replace your PC, but not there for the business traveller either, the Eee was simply a fun machine, a computer just made for dudes who like computers. Seriously, how many laptop ads have you seen that feature a model relaxing on the beach? There’s a reason for that.
And maybe the most innovative paradigm shift—oh, I went there—was that this amazing laptop wasn’t even built out of laptop parts! There was a freaking digital camera memory stick in the thing in place of a real hard drive. Had we been lied to? Could digital cameras double as computers for all this time??
You see, my MacBook Pro, that’s for work. My phone, that’s for outside. My mini note? Perfect, it won’t even distract me from the television.
Take the iPhone. It’s great, but it’s streamlined for productivity. It’s so good at what it does, filtering news headlines from air and emails from inboxes, playing music on command and calling web numbers with just a tap, that I’m trapped in productivity.
Sometimes I don’t know where I want to go online, just that I want to go online. And it’s this digital improvisation that begs for a mouse, a keyboard and speakers to play any stupid songs off any stupid web advertisements. I want the full effect, only smaller.
Just as an HDTV can bring a movie theatre home, so too can one of these put a full computer back in your actual lap. Have you ever Skyped on a mini-notebook? Yeah, it’s like one of those telephone conversations from the future as told by an ’80s sci-fi movie. It’s fantastic.
For those who crave more power, don’t worry, as processors shrink this platform will become synonymous with the laptop. And for those who crave more comfort, get over it. You’ll learn to type on a new keyboard or stay away from the second helpings.
I’m just saying, there’s a reason James Bond carries a Walther PPK.