[SATLUG] $200 Laptops Break a Business Model

Todd W. Bucy toddwbucy at grandecom.net
Mon Jan 26 22:10:59 CST 2009


wow with a flash drive that thing could be the new brain on my roomba.

Todd

On Mon, 2009-01-26 at 21:44 -0600, Charles Hogan wrote:
> Is this the one you are talking about:
> http://www.hemmy.net/2006/05/02/space-cube-smallest-pc/
> 
> Alan Lesmerises wrote:
> > Since everyone else has been commenting on the service and not really 
> > addressing one of your main questions below ;), I'll chime in here.
> > 
> > I recall a few e-mails being passed around the group (I think it was 
> > last year or maybe 2007) about very small computers along with a link of 
> > one someone had found and wanted opinions.  That prompted me to do a 
> > little looking around and I came across an ultra micro computer that 
> > looked to be barely big enough to plug in an RJ-45 jack at one end, and 
> > maybe about 2 to 2 1/2 inches long.  I don't recall if it had a USB port 
> > (I think it might have), but I can't believe it would draw more than a 
> > couple of Watts given it's size.  It supposedly ran a stripped-down 
> > version of Linux from a solid-state data storage chip, if I remember 
> > right.  Unfortunately, I don't seem to have kept a bookmark to where I 
> > found it, but I _can_ say it's out there.
> > 
> > Also, I came across some other very small computers that were just big 
> > enough to house a CD/DVD drive with a fairly full complement of I/O 
> > ports (ps2 for mouse & keyboard, DIN-15 for video, USB, etc.).  I would 
> > expect the power requirements to be pretty low here as well.
> > 
> > Al Lesmerises
> > 
> > 
> > Borries Demeler wrote:
> >> Just wanted to share a couple of items with this group:
> >>
> >> 1st item:
> >> I recently ordered a MagicJack - anyone knows about this? For $39.95 +
> >> s/h you get a little usb plugin device that at the other end allows 
> >> you to
> >> plug in your home phone. If you run Windows or Mac OSX and have 
> >> broadband,
> >> this allows you to make/get unlimited calling in the US, Canada and
> >> Puerto Rico.  There is a $19.95 yearly charge for this service (first
> >> year is included in the $39.95). It includes voicemail, a local number,
> >> and caller ID. I run the software on an XP image running under VMWare on
> >> my linux laptop. If you set up your network correctly, it works great,
> >> sound quality is very good, even on international calls (for which you
> >> have to pay, but only very little). You can also use a headset instead 
> >> of the
> >> phone. They are working on a Linux driver, but no ETA yet. The concept 
> >> and
> >> cost is the best VOIP solution I have found, so now I want to get rid of
> >> my landline and replace it with this MJ device. I did have several 
> >> startup
> >> difficulties, which were all resolved with the help of their online chat
> >> help, but it was tedious and time consuming. The problem was the original
> >> number didn't work for incoming calls, they changed my number, now it 
> >> works
> >> great. One word of caution: They chat help is pretty incompetent, 
> >> until you
> >> get elevated high enough in their hirarchy.
> >>
> >> 2nd item:
> >> So, now I am thinking about getting a very low power consuming laptop
> >> that I can leave on all the time without a big draw of electricity. It
> >> only needs to run the MJ device. I was looking at the 8.9" intel Atom
> >> netbooks, and also was wondering if there is something very low power
> >> consuming but also very cheap, that may even come without a screen and
> >> runs off of a CF card that I could preload with WinXP until they come
> >> out with the Linux driver, so I don't need to have VMWare running all the
> >> time. My current Linux system is a Inspiron 9400 power hog with lots of
> >> memory, big screen and big harddrive, so I don't want to let it run 24/7.
> >> I'm hoping I can get something for less than $200 that draws maybe 8-10
> >> watts max.  Any suggestions?
> >>
> >>
> >> 3rd item:
> >> here is an interesting article in today's NYTimes:
> >>
> >> $200 Laptops Break a Business Model
> >> By BRAD STONE and ASHLEE VANCE
> >> As consumers are finding ways to buy computers at a lower cost, 
> >> high-margin businesses are hurting.
> >> http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/26/technology/26spend.html?th&emc=th
> >>
> >> Some excerpts:
> >>
> >>    "...So who's up, who's down and who's out this time around? 
> >> Microsoft's
> >>    valuable Windows franchise appears vulnerable after two decades of
> >>    dominance. Revenue for the company's Windows operating system fell for
> >>    the first time in history in the last quarter of 2008. The popularity
> >>    of Linux, a free operating system installed on many netbooks instead
> >>    of Windows, forced Microsoft to lower the prices on its operating
> >>    system to compete."
> >>
> >>    "...The makers of open-source software also continue to benefit from
> >>    the growing appeal of their often cheap, if not free, products. Sun
> >>    Microsystems distributes 65,000 downloads a day of its MySQL
> >>    database, which has turned into the favored business software of
> >>    new companies. The job search engine Indeed.com shows a thriving job
> >>    market for MySQL and Linux developers..."
> >>
> >> So maybe us Linux geeks and programmers are recession proof this time 
> >> around?
> >> Let's hope so...
> >>
> >> -Borries
> >>   
> > 



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