This blog is about Graphic Design, Vector Art, and Cartoon Illustration

August 26, 2013

Using the Chromebook at home

I got the Chromebook to use when I travel, and on its maiden voyage last week it did great. My goal was to just use it normally, not to really test it, but I guess I have a kind of a "testing mentality". And what I discovered was its battery life. That is, how long it stays charged, which is a little over six hours.

The ads for the Chromebook say that it stays charged "all day", and I have no idea how long laptop computers are supposed to stay charged, but my day is longer than six hours. But it wasn't a problem. The Chromebook gives a nice little message in the lower right corner that tells you that you have fifteen more minutes of charge left. I suppose if you have nowhere to plug it in, that message tells you to hurry up and finish up whatever you're doing. For me, it just meant "plug it in" and there is no interruption at all.

So while I was at my vacation house in California, I carried it around. To the kitchen, out to the patio, etc. And when it needed to be charged again, I plugged it in. And unlike the old days (if you are old enough to remember) modern rechargeable batteries don't need to be completely drained before you can recharge them. And it's OK to keep it plugged in. All of the stuff we learned in the 90s is kind'a like the stuff I learned when I first started driving, ancient trivia that no longer applies. Yes, there was a trick to setting the choke on a 1973 Ford Torino to make it start in cold weather! But I digress.

Here at home, I had originally thought that I would use the Mac (which I'm on right now) exclusively. The screen is much bigger and sharper, and the keyboard is much more comfortable. But I am finding that the portability of the Chromebook is pretty cool.

Right now the Chromebook is sitting on my kitchen table. I have it plugged in, just because, well, it's plugged in. If I want to carry it out to the backyard tonight, or into the workout room, I will. And I'm watching Netflix mostly on it. Since I keep a tab open for gmail, I can check that with the click of a mouse, in an instant. If I want to compose a long email, I walk over here and type it on the iMac.

It could be that I am discovering the advantages of a laptop computer, not just the Chromebook. And since the Chromebook is only 250 bucks, it's a cheap way for me to find out. I have found my mind wandering over to thinking about a Macbook. But for a thousand dollars, my question would be "why?" I'm happy with the Chromebook.

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