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New Sharp 3D Notebook Available with Linux

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  • Autonomy ? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by mirko (198274)
    Something that really concerns me is these laptop's autonomy, I think that it's of no use if it cannot at least play one DVD on batteries. What about this one ?
    • by mirko (198274)
      Battery life : approx 1.8 hours.
      I guess it's only when using the notepad with the light dimmed and no sound.
      This "carryable" is a joke !!!
      • Re:argh! (Score:3, Informative)

        by BenjyD (316700)
        It says:

        Estimated Life: 1.3 hours

        on the linux version. That's barely one average commute by train.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Yeah, I wouldn't want my laptop to be self-governing.
    • Re:Autonomy ? (Score:3, Informative)

      by bcmm (768152)
      If it's like my Actius MM-10 (got it cheaply on ebay) it isn't really intended to be independent. It's really small and light, and it has a docking station so that it can act as a USB disk when powered down(a proper one - not with stupid drivers). However, it's not that powerful and it has a small HD (not that that matters when you use the docking station).
      It's definitely intended for use with a desktop.
      • How do you like it so far?

        I've been thinking about getting the MM series' successor, the MP30 [sharpsystems.com].
        • Someone else is using it now, I don't really need a laptop now. It's really light. 0.95 kg or something. The one you're thinking about is heavier. It's not powerful, but that's not what it's for. It runs XP pretty slow; I wanted to put a small Linux or something on it but it didn't have the original bootable CD. Not very good battery life. But really really small.
    • Re:Autonomy ? (Score:2, Informative)

      by delire (809063)


      I get 4.5 hrs, including watching a DVD on my Asus M6N, though I don't quite know why this performs so well; considering watching/ripping DVD's is around twice the battery load.

      . http://store.agearnotebooks.com/asusm6nphotos.html [agearnotebooks.com]

      I run a fairly light window manager, which I'm sure hits the GPU and processor with a softer hand albeit.
    • 1.3 hours is not long enough for most movies, but I think I could fit about 8 cartoons into that time. Maybe the problem is what you're choosing to view.
  • by Dancin_Santa (265275) <DancinSanta@gmail.com> on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @06:48AM (#12010239) Journal
    I was going to say "Bah, what's the use", but this is actually really cool.

    Put aside that it's running Linux for a minute. Who cares what software is running it? Not important.

    What is important is that we are finally moving away, on a hardware level, from flat, 2 dimensional displays. While the "Help me Obi-one Kenobi" 3D displays are still a long way off (or disappeared a long, long time ago), this is an immense step forward.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @06:56AM (#12010283)
      While the "Help me Obi-one Kenobi" 3D displays are still a long way off (or disappeared a long, long time ago), this is an immense step forward.
      Ah yes but
      EmperorLinux, Inc. is the distributor. May the dark side of the force be with you.
    • by CaymanIslandCarpedie (868408) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:05AM (#12010317) Journal
      Me too! I'm always skeptical of new claims of 3D, but then I looked at the Sharp marketing materials! Did you see the way the dolphins are coming right out of the screen!!!

      I love dolphins!!!! I'm going to buy one of these right now!
      • Insightful? That's an intelligent moderation.

        Anyhow, it is insightful, dolphins do sell laptops, but more to the point with this, is will joe consumer or the PHB see enough here to spring the extra? I don't think so, not yet. Stuff like this needs to demonstrate real usefulness, fad appeal or low price difference before it hits the mainstrean. It's too far out in the 'noosphere' for now.
        • "...dolphins do sell laptops..."

          There's gotta be a great joke in there somewhere, but I'm at a loss for one right now. That being said, I've seen one of these laptops in action and thought it was crap. The "3D" looks like one of those rigged images that shows a different picture when you look at a different angle. Basically it looked like it was just flipping between two slightly different views depending on where my head was. It also sucked a ton of juice.

  • 3d post (Score:4, Funny)

    by MarkoNo5 (139955) <MarkovanDooren@noSPAm.gmail.com> on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @06:48AM (#12010242)
    Sorry, couldn't resist :)
  • Problem is... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by knownsense (558106)
    I dont ever see the discounts that are supposed to accrue from not paying MS Tax... Another point, what about the peripherals?
    • Re:Problem is... (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      that's because there is no discount.

      first off. Nobody is fucking stupid enough to pay the full $300 for Windows. Only end-users get charged that. OEM's like Dell and other manufacturers have contracts and pay around 30-34 dollars per copy.

      Second off, Emperor Linux doesn't get the Sharp without Windows. They buy it from the company with Windows installed just like you and I do, and just install Linux over it and sell it as a 'linux notebook'. If you look closely you'd notice that dual boot doesn't cost ext
    • Re:Problem is... (Score:3, Informative)

      by FauxPasIII (75900)
      We have to pay the MS tax too. ( I work at Emperor ).

      It's not that bad for us since most of our customers still want dual-boot, but it's disheartening when somebody
      orders a 100% Linux (the "no-Win situation" in our parlance) and still has to pay the same Windows license price. =/
      • We have to pay the MS tax too. ( I work at Emperor ).

        Isn't this blatantly illegal?

        We're talking about a company that has been convicted of abusing there monopoly position multiple times. It seems like Microsoft forcing distributors to refuse to sell their laptops without Microsoft's OS is an obvious abuse of their monopoly position.
        Have you filed a complaint with the FTC?

        As someone who's been looking around for a Linux laptop, I am NOT willing to pay an extra $500 AND the Microsoft tax. It's a
  • by TheLoneCabbage (323135) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @06:51AM (#12010255) Homepage

    How exactly does Emporer Linux justify chargin $500 more for a computer without a licencsed OS?

    I'm not great fan of Windows, but why should I pay $500 so that some screw up can spend 15min installing a version of Linux I don't like (vs one I do like)?

    I think I've just stoped wondering why linux as a desktop OS has never taken off.
    • The $500 is undoubtedly BS, but they're some shop I've never heard of before... and Sharp may never have heard of before, or reasonably close. They're probably paying full price, with MS tax.. etc... heh...
      • > but they're some shop I've never heard of
        > before... and Sharp may never have heard of
        > before, or reasonably close

        We're actually official partners with Sharp, IBM, and Dell (working on Sony). The AL3D we demoed at Boston LWE was
        a prototype that the Sharp mobile division guys hooked us up with. It's serial number was 3. =)

        > They're probably paying full price, with MS tax

        We do have to pay the microsoft tax, sadly.
        • Heh, figures. I should learn to keep my mouth shut but it was a late night and I thought after my post "oh, that came off pretty badly"... Oops, what do I know? =) the MS tax is unfortunate though, and I still agree with the OP that $500 is a pretty good disincentive =/
          • > and I still agree with the OP that $500 is a pretty good disincentive =/

            -nod- If this thread isn't evidence enough, we find our biggest challenge is convincing potential customers that what
            we do is far enough beyond what your average 30-minute Linux install gets you that it's worth our markup. The support is
            a big part of that. Getting all the wacky drivers for wireless, modems, power managment, etc together is also not
            as trivial as some people who haven't done it think it is. Considering that Sony
        • What happens to your *finely tuned system* when up2date or apt-get comes out with an upgraded package? Do you run your own update servers?
    • Should be noted that it isn't that the OS is unlicensed, but rather that it theoretically (and most likely practically) doesn't cost anything for them to license it.

      But, yeah, Linux hasn't taken over the desktop market because all the distros with OEM deals make crap.

      • The $500 is just spending money to save time. If your time is valuable, you'd do it.

        They ot only install the OS but also add a whole bunch of other software.
        Media players, full office suite, graphics programs, games, scientific programs, network utilities (more than you can count). Probably several hundred pieces of software.
        Of course, its all free software. You could just do it yourself and save the money.

        For the money you get to not have to spend your time installing and configuring the OS and software.
    • by Mjlner (609829) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:44AM (#12010440) Journal
      How exactly does Emporer Linux justify chargin $500 more for a computer without a licencsed OS?

      They justify it by doing stuff to it. Whatever stuff is and whatever pricetag they choose to put on stuff is their business. Your business is to decide whether or not you want to pay for stuff.


      Their version of linux is just an option. You don't need to buy from them. Some people do want to pay for a pre-installed OS. And don't forget the PHB's who don't linke the sound of "cheap software/freeware". (Yes, I know the difference between freeware and free software.)

      • > > How exactly does Emporer Linux justify chargin $500
        > Your business is to decide whether or not you want to pay for stuff.

        It is his business also to ask how stuff justifies the gap between $3499 [sharpsystems.com] and $4000 [emperorlinux.com].

        Thanks for that LoneCabbage.

    • What Emporer Linux charges for their custom version of Linux is a matter for them and the customers they can attract. A more interesting question is if Sharp forces them to pay the Windows tax, or if Sharp lets them buy the laptop without Windows pre-installed. I don't mind paying extra for a nicely setup linux system that is tuned for the hardware I am using. But I do mind giving money to the anti-competitive company MS which tries to sabotage linux and other software I use. Especially since I have not use
    • How exactly does Emporer Linux justify chargin $500 more for a computer without a licencsed OS?

      Their Linux is lovingly hand-crafter, rolled between the thighs of Indonesian virgins and each package is sealed with a kiss from Linus Torvalds himself. And it's not "Emporer", but EMPEROR!!! EMPEROR, damn your illiterate bones. The finest of Linuxes.
    • by FauxPasIII (75900) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @10:20AM (#12011247)
      > I'm not great fan of Windows, but why should I pay $500 so that some screw up can spend 15min installing
      > a version of Linux I don't like (vs one I do like)?

      Somebody didn't rtfa (yeah yeah, I must be new here). First, we install all the major distros standard, and will do any
      distro you like for an additional fee. I'm the maintainer of our Debian and Ubuntu installers, for instance. And, we
      "justify" our markup because we put hundreds of hours of work into building a custom kernel for the machine that
      supports everything on it. That's winmodems, wireless, all the power management features, etc. When necessary,
      we write the code ourselves (and submit it upstream.)

      We also provide technical support to all our customers, and frankly I suspect that's why most of them keep coming
      back to us.
      • How is this flamebait?
      • Excellent Post!

        I've done Linux on laptops more than once, and I have to say that this markup is cheap at twice the price. The frustration of getting modems, wireless, graphics, power management, etc. etc. all working can be nearly overwhelming.

        Yes, I know that some of you are kernel hackers, and write video drivers in your sleep. I am a good Oracle DBA, and a fairly deft hand with Linux, but I'm not a bona-fide expert. Dropping a modern distro on a desktop is a pretty straightforward job (though I still

  • Dolphins? (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Hehe.. Those should have been penguins.. ;)
  • EmperorLinux (based on Fedora 3), Slackware, Red Hat Professional, Mandrake, Suse, Debian....they offer quite a good choice. Especially as most of these come for $0. Perhaps cusotmers will be more attracted to this notebook, when they see they don't have to pay extra $$$ for an operating system.
  • by harlemjoe (304815) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @06:53AM (#12010263)
    can anyone detail software optmized to take advantage of the 3D display technology

    I've never heard of any software (CAD/CAM included) that is optimized for 3D glasses -- what utility does the A3CLU add to the computing experience?

    And what linux apps are optimized for this? It would seem a bit of a waste if the only 3D tools were, say, KDE Widgets...

    Besides the cool factor that is...
    • "can anyone detail software optmized to take advantage of the 3D display technology?"

      I'm gonna go with "Jack Shit", at least at the moment. I mean, this is literally the first consumer product the bring this technology to market.

      Although JackShit 2.1 (the development fork) has limited support for the technology right now. You can grab a CVS snapshot from Sourceforge.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      I can't say for sure as I don't have the hardware, but 3d card drivers can come with support for stereoscopic displays. Therefore, all you would need is a regular opengl app, and the driver would take care of the rest.
    • by delire (809063) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:36AM (#12010415)
      Alot of medical imaging, chemistry software for Linux exists, and also alot of proprietary animation/modelling software, like Maya, which can exploit stereo imaging. The freely available Blender can also exploit it, as part of the render chain:

      http://ltc2.smm.org/visualize/node/64 [smm.org]

      The real question is not what Linux software uses it, but why and when you'd want to use it in the first place. I remember a few years ago a man tried to sell me a pair of USB stereoscopic glasses at a game development conference. He just couldn't believe it when I told him that immersion doesn't necessarily have anything to do with being inside the medium.

      I see this laptop will be marketed at imaging professionals needing a mobile presentation device that serves a larger audience than the standard LCD; Polarisation/blacking distortion is annoying when you're trying to sell your good-looking wares.
      • From what I can tell, the good news about this laptop is that you don't need glasses to get the 3D effect.

        The bad news is that you have to put your left eye where the left "viewing diamond" is and your right eye where the right "viewing diamond" is. Of course, this might just be my pessimistic side talking.

    • Well , actually you dont need the glasses to perceive the 3D [pcworld.com] in this kind of laptops. Once I used one of this ones, And I really didn't ejoyed it, I got a headache .... Its just to weird :P
    • Actually, no. Not yet. Nothing to take on this feature really seriously.

      That's probably why they've chosen Linux.

      With free software community behind the project, soon there should be a plenty. Think "a box of Lego". Give it to a company expert and expect an analysis stating "This project isn't profitable enough". Give it to enthusiast kid and get some marvel made of it.

      Lots of open source software just waiting to be modified to support the new feature (instead of begging manufacturers of the software to
    • I believe that Pymol [sourceforge.net] can display stereo models. It's a modelling package for chemistry/biology. And it's open source. There are countless non open source software in chemo/bioinformatics that use stereo views.
      I guess that's the reason why they call this laptop "molecule".
    • I use several software suites for drug discovery that use stereoimaging using 3D glasses.

      It is extremely useful to see in 3D when trying to mentally fit a drug compound into a binding pocket on a protein. Doing it in 2D is a pain.

      This laptop (for me) will be GREAT for dragging along to academic conferences and business meetings. Being able to show people exactly what work I'm doing for their new drug or whatever will be a great thing.

      A niche market, but everybody is a niche for one market or another.
    • > And what linux apps are optimized for this?

      Disclaimer: I work at Emperor Linux. We worked with the guys at Delano Scientific [delanoscientific.com] to get PyMol (the
      open source Python molecule viewer) to get a demo of it ready for the show. However, the nVidia driver for Windows
      already includes support for it directly, and the Sharp guys are working with nVidia to get that pushed into the
      Linux nVidia drivers, so that any OpenGL app will work with the display. Even now, it only requires two additional
      OpenGL calls to get a
  • Yes, but... (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Yes, but does it run li... oh, sorry, my bad.
  • Finally... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by MoralHazard (447833)
    Just when I thought I'd never be able to buy a $4,000+ laptop again, they come out with this baby! Way to drive the high-end market, Sharp!

    Seriously, though--I just finally bought an LCD desktop monitor last October, when a 19" got below $400 with shipping (thank you, NewEgg!). I bought an MP3 player for $50 in December that accepts CF card media, which is about $60/GB (thanks AGAIN, NewEgg!). Now THAT's some cool shit.

    time getting excited about it until they're selling enough volume to bring the pri
    • Re:Finally... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by C10H14N2 (640033)
      Meh. Laptop specs seem to be flat-lining, but the prices are distinctly not dropping. I mean, come on, three years ago, I bought a UXGA/1Ghz/1GB Dell for $1,100 LESS than this, with TWO optical drives (one CDRW, one DVD) and about the same battery life. Yeah, gee-whiz technology, but from previous reports, it's about as "3D" as a prismatic baseball card (and, frankly, about as high-tech). The rest of the specs are downright underwhelming. Even if that damned screen was by itself worth $2k, this is still way
  • Win-modems (Score:4, Informative)

    by szlevente (705483) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @06:59AM (#12010292)
    The software win-modems on the Kiwi, Raven, Toucan, SilverComet, and Rhino series systems are fully supported in Linux with win-modem drivers.
    They just forgot to add that there is no free Linux driver for software win-modems with Conexant chipsets. The best I could find was at http://www.linuxant.com/drivers/, with a free version limited to 14.4 kbps. Add $14.95 to the price, if you want your modem to work.
    • Actually, the modem is supported by a free driver; the Linuxant driver before relicensing [int21.de]. Use that instead; in my experience it's quite stable and fast as long as it works with your kernel.
      • I also used that, last year, after looking really hard, and it worked just fine with a 2.4 kernel. However, after upgrading to 2.6, I couldn't convince it to run anymore. I gave up after a few tries.
    • Win-modem? What's that? Is that like that "dialup" thing my grandpa is always ranting about?
    • I have some very bad experiences with the Linuxant drivers on my Suse 9.0 box. After I double-checked I installed the correct module with respect to the kernel version, it just kept crashing (like 100% lock-up) the PC when I had the connection open. Next I got myself a software modem (which was cheaper that the Connexant-based one!), which had full Linux support and have been a happy camper since.

      By the way, just from a equality point of view, I bought the thing for EUR 15,- and pay nothing to use it in Wi
    • Re:Win-modems (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bmw (115903)
      They do actually say in the product details that the modem is only partially supported. This seems like an awfully strange choice of hardware given the circumstances. I know modems are nearly uesless these days with all the wifi networks everywhere but not only did they not include a wireless nic but I have to wonder what kind of company would sell a $4000 laptop with hardware that isn't fully supported by the pre-installed operating system. Pretty stupid if you ask me.
    • Re:Win-modems (Score:3, Interesting)

      by FauxPasIII (75900)
      > They just forgot to add that there is no free Linux driver for software win-modems with Conexant chipsets

      Not to give away the family jewels (I work at Emperor Linux), but... check under the alsa heading of your kernel config,
      and google for slmodem.
  • by expro (597113) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:09AM (#12010327)
    Quite a hefty price for a laptop without a wireless card. Putting good wireless service into a Linux laptop would be a bigger step forward.
  • New concept (Score:2, Funny)

    by gazpa (863326)
    New concept in 3D sex TGP's. The next must be "Touch it" tecnology. ;P
  • Gah price! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by allanc (25681) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @08:09AM (#12010498) Homepage
    You know, I want to support Linux vendors, but the model with Linux costs *$500* more than the version with Windows direct from Sharp. That seems a little pricey for a free OS, eh?

    (And I have to assume the sort of person who'd spend $3500 on a laptop to run Linux on either knows how to install Linux themselves or has people paid to do it for them)
    • Re:Gah price! (Score:4, Informative)

      by FauxPasIII (75900) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @10:37AM (#12011400)
      > You know, I want to support Linux vendors, but the model with Linux costs *$500* more than the version with
      > Windows direct from Sharp. That seems a little pricey for a free OS, eh?

      I responded to this above, but briefly:

      o) All our laptops work out of the box with Linux. Wireless, power management, winmodems, etc. all work. Most
      of our customers don't have time to spend half a week getting their laptops up and running, but they do need
      Linux for a variety of reasons.

      o) We provide Linux tech support to our customers.
    • And I have to assume the sort of person who'd spend $3500 on a laptop to run Linux on either knows how to install Linux themselves or has people paid to do it for them

      This isn't much of an argument. $500 would pay for half a day of my time at our full commercial rate, and I can easily imagine it taking me more than that to install Linux and kick all the drivers for Sharp's weirdo laptop hardware into action. So, paying someone else $500 while I earn the company more than that would make sense.

      Whether th

  • One moe! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ajaf (672235)
    I think it's great to see laptops with linux being sold, but I ask one thing, who buy this kind of laptop? A linux user, or a person who doesn't know that it comes with linux? If it's the second option, does this person keeps linux, or install windows after he realize it's not the operating system of choice?
    It'd be great to see some statistics about that :)
    • > but I ask one thing, who buy this kind of laptop?

      A lot of our customers are engineers and research scientists, and a lot are college professors or otherwise attached
      to education in some way. Most of them come to us because the already know they want Linux; we're not in the business
      of trying to sell Linux, just Linux Laptops. =)
  • ...till someone writes a Firefox extension to exploit the z-index: CSS parameter for rendering HTML in 3D :)
  • WARNING: SHAMELESS PLUG

    I lead the team developing stereoscopic software that has been distributed with every Sharp stereoscopic 3D laptop ever produced. Well... All the Windows ones... If your interested in trying our DDD TriDef software with one of many stereoscopic viewing methods (anaglyph glasses; other glasses free 3d displays;) please send me an email mailto:Brendan.Langoulant@gmail.com [mailto].

    DDD TriDef software enables you to:

    • Watch your current 2D DVDs in stereoscopic 3D
    • enable stereoscopic display
  • by tweakt (325224) * on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @09:11AM (#12010776) Homepage
    The guys at Emperor Linux had one on display at LinuxWorld in Boston last month. It was creating a mob scene of people wanting to check it out. It's actally quite slick. The only thing is, it is very viewer-position dependent. Meaning, you have to be sitting right in the sweet spot to get the full effect. If you're a little off, you can still see it, but it's not as pronounced and you start to see some funkiness with the colors. The 3D mode can be switched on and off and in 2D mode, it looked usable (but 2D res looked pretty low to me, I'll stick with my SXGA+ thinkpad thanks).
    • > The only thing is, it is very viewer-position dependent. Meaning, you have to be sitting right in the sweet spot
      > to get the full effect

      -nod- There's a little color-strip at the bottom that helps you find the right orientation. They're making big
      strides in viewability though.

      > but 2D res looked pretty low to me, I'll stick with my SXGA+ thinkpad thanks).

      It's 1024x768. We're hoping the next generation is higher res. But, considering I'm on an IBM X31 right now, that's
      the res I'm used to; th
  • The Emperor Linux version is speced with a 1.3 battery life. That will certainly be a down side at your local coffee shop since there never seems to be enough plugs.
  • I saw this being demo'd at LWE. I have to say it was the coolest demo I saw at LWE, by a long shot. Hard to to it justice on the web..
  • For the sake of cash, because I'm broke, I got a cheap Dell Inspiron 1000 (with barely enough $$ to shell out for extra memory, but it was worth it) running, of course, WinXP. What I need is an iBook, and then one of THOSE babies, with 512...That'd be the easiest way to test cross-platform performance, now wouldn't it? *sigh* I'm thinking I'm the only one who gets bouncy excited about these things.
  • Is this I time warp or what? Yes it's kewl, but scheesh. Holy luggable batman! Granted I'm biased as I used to use petite Sony VAIO laptop (haven't bothered to scrape up the cash to update the thing) so 3lb to 8lbs is a bit of a jump.

    Seriously though, the trend is lighter and longer battery. Bigger and power hungry applications are the domain of the desktop (but hey, if they want to start using laptop tech to reduce power consumption, more power to them.) My back/shoulder demands it and lets face it, yes
  • I've had a few sharp products over the years, and think they are very good at innovating new products, but the overall quality of thier products is very low. I bought a Sharp laptop a year ago and have had to return it 4 times already to get it fixed becaues of it breaking down on me. I doubt this new laptop will last much longer, and its probably just as easy to somehow mess up the 3D display.
  • by defile (1059) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @11:16AM (#12011801) Homepage Journal

    I got the smallest of the small Sharp Actius laptops and they pre-loaded it with Debian Linux at my request. They don't just slap a Linux distro on and push it out the door, they make sure everything works as advertised, customizing whatever they need to to make sure it does. The modem works! Software suspend works!

    The model I got comes with a really small battery, and I bought an optional larger battery that has more life, but has a big buldge in it. The unit itself has no removeable disk drives -- everything is attached via USB. It comes with a docking station which allows the laptop to be used as a USB hard drive while it's powered off. Way cool.

    EmperorLinux provides a detailed manual on making the most of your laptop through the Linux environment. But enough about the geek stuff.

    The most important thing of all: when I pull this baby out at Starbucks, the chicks all turn their heads. A Dell doesn't do that. A Titanium Powerbook doesn't do that (anymore).

    Score!

  • I saw one at EmperorLinux's booth at LinuxWorld not too long ago. While the pseudo-3D display tech is interesting, it unfortunately comes with a quit-ugly interlaced look - like a TV.

    I'll wait, I guess.
  • When I first saw this story I was thinking ye-haa, but on closer inspection it looks like a pretty weak machine for the money in terms of RAM, weight, and hard drive size. My natural inclination is to switch from OSX back to Linux at the first opportunity for an "easy" transition, but this is somewhat tempered now. In a professional setting where price is less of a concern, you just can't beat OSX's combination of a "no worries" simplicity, unix capability, and the availability of open source products. I

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