Laptop day again

13Oct07

A while back my iBook died. I considered replacing it with a MacBook but decided that it made more sense to buy a Windows machine for half the price. So after looking around, I found a great deal on a Gateway (bought it at Best Buy). Specs? 15.4 inch screen, Intel dual core 1.5 gig processor, 120 gig hard drive, dual layer DVD burner. All in all, a pretty nice machine for less than $500. It’s my first widescreen laptop. I like the big screen, though it makes it a little less portable. Still, it’s only a little wider than my Lenovo and weighs about the same, and I suspect that the big screen will pay off in terms of productivity and eye strain.

I’m trying to keep the software load at a minimum, so I installed only the basics:

  • Spyware Doctor, Norton Security Scan and Adobe Reader (through Google Pack)
  • Office 2007
  • EndNote
  • Crimson Editor
  • Firefox
  • CutePDF writer
  • A couple of proprietary applications for doing data analysis and creating LaTeX files

I don’t want to specify the proprietary apps because they are, as of now, ill-gotten (I promise to make good and buy them when I become a professor). Also, I had to make some substitutions from my first-best program list. Neither JabRef nor PDFCreator would install properly on Vista, so I switched to EndNote and CutePDF, respectively.

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