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[#] Sat Dec 03 2011 23:57:39 EST from ax25

Subject: old 8 bit computer for a portable tablet.

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Just hook an lcd to an old 8 bit computer with some flash lookup (many 8 bits can be wired to read an sd card) -  and wire a controller of your own design to the keyboard overlay (should be simple as the keyboards were simple back in the day).  Then you can just push up / down / left / right and navigate a simple OS you can write.  It would be DRM free, only allow you to read things that are out of copyright date, and be accessible in the future as the owners of the hardware designs will probably give up the rights on thier death beds.  Plus, if it was light weight like a TS-1000, if you got hit in the head with it from a sudden stop, it probably would not kill you (try that with an average smart-phone or kindle!)....


[#] Sun Dec 04 2011 08:22:07 EST from the_mgt

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Fr Dez 02 2011 01:26:36 CETvon zooer

I would love to have a lightweight Netbook or tablet but don't want to spend a lot of money, just something for trips to watch movies on. (doesn't have to have a DVD player)  My notebook was purchased in 2005, is heavy and I don't know how long it will last.  I thought about getting rid of the smart phone and getting a USB dongle or an integrated wireless machine.  If I could get something powerful enough to watch movies, yet lightweight and cheap I would be happy.  I am not number crunching, or playing intense 3D games with it.

I own a Lenovo Ideapad S12 (the VIA Nano CPU version) which I bought for 250€ one and a half year ago, it was released two years ago. It is about 1.3kg, 12" glossy display (1280x900 px), 1.6GHz 64bit super-scalar CPU, 1GB RAM onboard, another slot for max. 2 additional GB and a crappy VIA gpu (which does some hardware acc for videos on windows or if you use the binary driver on linux which only works with older kernel versions). I didn't yet try full hd movies but 720p runs fine as I read. Every other vid worked well, too.

All in all it is a pretty descent device for that price, it has hardware aes crypto acceleration and allegedly some intel-vt support which is totally deactivated in the bios and I didnt find a way to activate it. That and the keyboard is the only letdown. It has a ExpressCard slot, card reader, wifi, bluetooth and three usb ports. Included Windows is only Home but performs quite good. Linux runs fine, see

I bet you can get this as used for a decent price. There is also the S10 versions (some with touchscreen) and 10" display featuring pciexpress cards. The Intel Atom + ION versions even run MaxOSX as I read on some page. There should be newer versions with two cores on the market now.


[#] Tue Dec 06 2011 16:56:59 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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It's becoming increasingly clear that Microsoft has commanded all of its "traditional PC" vassals (Dell, HP, etc) to exit the Android tablet business and prepare to begin manufacturing Windows 8 tablets. Note that products such as the Dell Streak have now been discontinued.

At this stage of the game it appears that Barnes & Noble is hitting a price/performance/size sweet spot; their new Nook tablet is selling well this season. It could be the product that finally puts Android tablets on the map in a significant way.

Once someone offers a tablet with a screen size and performance level comparable to iPad but at half the price, that's when things will shift in a significant way. Not-iPad at iPad prices simply aren't going to sell.

[#] Wed Dec 07 2011 04:50:38 EST from dothebart

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just heard about a collegue who got an asus tablet with keyboard flipunder.

WAF seems to pretty good; price tag also, plus it runs android.

there are lots of android tablets around (like the batteled Samsung, or Archos especialy who have been in that market for a while now)

Can't speak for the american market, but in .de android tablets sell pretty well.

we'll see how the vista8-tablets work out... Right now I doubt they get the same success-story as netbooks... but... otoh, users are dumb.

[#] Wed Dec 07 2011 11:50:27 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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Well, the iPad is a status symbol, but it also happens to be a very good tablet.
I don't want one because it's expensive and I really do prefer Android, but the iPad is still a nice piece of equipment. However its current market share and price point will eventually be helpless against the forces of commoditization.
The process simply has not completed yet.

[#] Sun Dec 18 2011 18:00:29 EST from Sig

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My Asus netbook is 2 years old now. 160gig HD, 2G RAM, 1.6Ghz Atom something or another processor. Run of the mill for its era, it was the very last model they offered with WinXP. Still works great, though the battery life has gone from a comfy 4.5 hours to more like 1.5. I'm thinking about dropping 35 bucks for another battery, and maybe even a good bit more for an SSD hard drive for it, since that seems to be the real performance Achilles' Heel. I'm not sure that will be cost effective, but it all still works; I don't see replacing it any time soon.

[#] Mon Dec 19 2011 05:21:56 EST from dothebart

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my primary reason to upgrade my netbook always was to get a better screen for cheap money.

EEe 701 800x480

Acer Aspire One 1024x600 9"

Acer Aspire One D522 1280x720 10"

but the first two are also still in use by others.

[#] Mon Dec 19 2011 16:50:32 EST from wizard of aahz

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You realize you can get a pretty darned good quad processor Acer laptop for under 500 dollars? Why bother with a netbook.

[#] Mon Dec 19 2011 17:06:50 EST from dothebart

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because of I had a 15" dell one in advance, and its a lot to carry around, the screen starts to hump while you type to it on your lap.

it was > 10x as expensive as the netbooks were.

typing dvorak makes typing on tiny keyboards not that much of a hassle as typing qwertz on these.

as for the big ones... been there done that. prefer the smaller ones for ones not standing on the desk having _huge_ screens.

plus... using a windowmanager as scaling equal well on tiny as on huge multi screens is a clear advance.


[#] Mon Dec 19 2011 18:53:54 EST from zooer

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It is a weight issue for me, I want something lightweight.  My laptop still works, and I have decided I will just continue to use it until it fails but it is heavy.

[#] Tue Dec 20 2011 01:24:44 EST from Animal

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Yep... with the "internet everywhere" deal, most of the time anything I
can access another computer on is enoguh to do what I need to.
LogMeIn rocks.
But sometimes, you need a machine to dump GPS data to, dump pics/videos
from the day onto, and clean off memory cards. Nice to have the
capability to work with the larger files locally too... graphics/video
editing over a remote desktop is teh suck.

I've considered a netbook before, but the Droid now fits the
portable-wifi-device pretty well. A lot smaller than carrying a
netbook, and if I'm near internet or in cellular range, I can remote to
my laptop.

[#] Tue Dec 20 2011 09:48:09 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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AT&T has officially ended its plans to acquire T-Mobile USA.

This is good for pretty much everyone whose name is not "AT&T." The deal would have reduced competition and screwed subscribers, while limiting choice and destroying jobs -- essentially the exact opposite of everything AT&T said in its obnoxious press releases.

I have little doubt that T-Mobile USA will eventually get acquired by *someone* -- simply because Deutsche Telekom wants to get rid of it. T-Mobile *is* profitable, but they don't currently have the capital to do an LTE buildout.
While I personally think HSPA+ is a perfectly good 4G technology, there are some who refer to it as "faux-G" because it isn't LTE.

Anyway, if T-Mobile is to be acquired, I'd like to see it acquired by someone who isn't already one of the major wireless carriers. Google comes to mind, but that would probably incentivize other carriers to switch to non-Android phones.
Hopefully that will keep the computer industry's two big bullies (Microsoft and Apple) off the list of potential suitors as well.

[#] Thu Dec 22 2011 08:08:47 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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My phone woke me up last night with a lot of beeping and booping, so I looked at it and it said that it was getting ready to do a software upgrade. I thought, awesome, I'm getting Ice Cream Sandwich! I was disappointed to learn that it was just a point release upgrade of Gingerbread.

However, they did add T-Mobile's lovely WiFi Calling software to my phone, which is cool. Actually it's a good reason why I may actually consider *not* going to Cyanogenmod when it becomes available for this device. AT&T and Verizon charge big bucks for femtocells; T-Mobile just builds it into the phone software.

[#] Sat Dec 24 2011 23:25:35 EST from fleeb

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Ha... glad I didn't jump.

[#] Sun Dec 25 2011 06:14:39 EST from dothebart

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time to install cyanogenmod?

[#] Mon Dec 26 2011 01:16:36 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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Yup. Basically there's room on the S for either ICS or their custom crap, but not both, and the custom crap won, or something like that. But there will be very little trouble getting Cyanogenmod running on the S.

I have the S II, which will be getting an ICS update. I may put Cyanogenmod in anyway.

[#] Mon Jan 02 2012 10:24:26 EST from zooer

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IGnat, are you a T-Mobile subscriber?   I think my one sister is and she has some coverage issues.  I was think of giving up Verizon for many reasons but didn't know if I should go with the major names Sprint or back to AT&T or on to something like T-Mobile.


[#] Mon Jan 02 2012 12:37:00 EST from IGnatius T Foobar

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Yes, I'm on T-Mobile and I'm quite happy with them. I checked out their network in 2007 and it was terrible, then I looked again in 2010 and it had improved quite a bit so I signed up. Count me in among the many people who are happy to do business with anyone other than SBC (or as they call themselves these days: "at&t")

[#] Mon Jan 02 2012 13:24:51 EST from zooer

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I still have time to decide before my contract expires and then I have to think about what smartphone or classic phone and tablet to get.

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