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Buying Some Computer Equipment…

January 30, 2007 at 7:03 PM

I haven't been using my laptop that much lately...nothing's wrong with it (aside from the fact I completely messed up the Ubuntu Linux partition during an update awhile back and will probably have to reinstall it - fortunately, any important data was on the Windows partition, which is OK), it's just that I'm used to being on my desktop. This is just like it was back when my old desktop was the current computer, and I wasn't used to the new one - it will just take me some time to get used to it before I actually move over to using it full-time.

One thing that helps is a mouse, which I bought awhile back to use in place of the touchpad. However, I want a keyboard to go with that, as there are some things I can't do very well with the laptop's built-in keyboard (due to its size, as well as the fact there's no separate numerical keypad, so I need to use the "Num Lock" key quite a bit). This keyboard has to be the kind I can easily take with me in my new case, so a regular keyboard is out of the question.

So the first thing I'm looking for is a flexible, full-size/109-key keyboard, that either folds or rolls up, so that I can store it in my laptop case when I'm going somewhere, and have something a little more comfortable to type on (even if I have to sit it on something sturdy beforehand) =D

Also, I'm considering replacing my desktop monitor (a 19" CRT), as it used to only be a little blurry at the edges, but now seems to be getting blurry all over (only slightly, but more noticeable at the edges of the screen now). Not only that, but the screen's brightness isn't doing too good either (it's already set at 100, the highest it will go; contrast is also set at that) - it's difficult to make out dark colors, and short of using the "gamma adjustment" functions in various programs to artificially increase the brightness, I wouldn't be able to do things like tell apart gray and black on this monitor (they look practically identical without adjusting gamma values, and telling them apart is important when it comes to detail). Plus, the screen is compressed a bit on the left (a square on the right side of the monitor will look rectangular on the left side), and it has flickered on rare occasion.

This time, though, instead of getting a CRT monitor, I want to get an LCD monitor (19" screen size, equivalent to the screen size of my current CRT monitor) instead - it'll take up far less room than my current monitor (depth-wise), use less power, I won't have to worry about getting magnets near the screen (though I know better than to keep magnets anywhere near my computer in the first place =P), and - most importantly - details will be clearly visible again =D

[EDIT=2007/04/27] A Samsung SyncMaster 206BW has been purchased to replace my desktop monitor. [/EDIT]

I need to find a better way to back up my data - the tape drive I had installed in my old desktop just was not suitable for what I needed to back up, and I'd be using up quite a few CDs for just one session of backing up my files (in some cases, I'd have to back up files from one folder onto two disks, as the files in that folder exceeded the capacity of a single CD).

From what I've seen, though, my best bet would be to purchase an external hard drive (at least 80 GB in capacity, to match my desktop hard drive's capacity), and hook that up to the computer when I need to back things up. If it's not too expensive, I might get a second one for my laptop as well (at least the same capacity - I might want something larger in case I want to use it for file storage), so I'll be prepared this time around if something happens =)

So, if you, or anyone you know, have any recommendations for flexible keyboards, large LCD monitors, or external hard drives, could you tell me? I'd really appreciate knowing about them when I finally get around to buying them =)

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