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11 January 2010


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Lurker Girl

Keep that laptop, it will do you fine. You're not using fancy design programs. I have a middle of the road Toshiba now but I've had bulky Dells and sleek ibooks ... they're all fine for your purposes. As a writer, I could use any old laptop, really.

I am technologically ignorant as I've just learned how to use an ipod. However, I do know a bit about connecting wirelessly as I've had to set it up, from scratch, three times. The two different operating systems don't matter. You need a router (that is connected to your desktop). It's pretty simple to set up (following the directions included with the wirless router) but you must take the extra step of password-protecting your wireless connection (meaning, neighbors can't mooch free wifi from you -- for innocent or sinister purposes). This step is sometimes not included in the basic instructions (WTF?). Also, there's a way to make a network out of your desktop and laptop computers (so you can share files, print from the laptop) but I've never done that. Even as a writer with tons of files on both computers, I've never felt the need to take this step though it probably would be pretty cool. You don't need to hire someone -- Circuit City wanted $100 to set up my wireless network for me. I gave it a try myself and had it set up in 15 minutes. Then again, they also wanted $20 to load Microsoft Office Suite onto my laptop... seriously, $20 to put the CD in and hit "install"?

You can hire someone to do this but I know you can totally do it yourself. Plus, if you do it yourself, you'll understand it.

Do you have broadband? Who's your high speed Internet provider?


I have DSL through verizon. That's where I started to get confused when I was going through the "If you have ____ connection then do that..." flow. Then I wondered if instead I can get a thingie from Sprint (through which I have my Palm) to plug in and just use their data network. Like, how do I get on a wireless network when I'm not at home?

Do I sound totally dumb? Sometimes I so miss having a resident corporate "computer guy".

I do like the big gorgeous screen on the laptop because I intend to use it for movies and stuff.

Lurker Girl

No, not dumb. You can only get a wireless connection when not at home if you tap into a wifi connection... like people do at Panera. These are usually not secure so you don't want to pay bills this way. You can get something for your computer that means you always have wifi -- this, I believe, you can secure. Don't how much this costs... if it's a monthly thing, a usage thing, etc. This is where I start feeling dumb and looking around for a coporate computer guy.

I have Verizon DSL, too. I mainly use my wireless connection at home. I use it at my boyfriend's (I enter his password and can use his connection securely). And, yes, I will tap into Panera's occassionally but don't really have a need to have wifi outside of my home. Not sure if you really would, either, especially with your Palm Pre. How wired do you want to be?


What you described right there, B, is one of the reasons I have not yet bought myself a personal laptop for home use. Good luck getting it figured out, I know you can do it!


Good questions, LG. I had to evaluate how geeky I really want to be. Not so very much. I should probably just get the basic wireless router thing for home and then when I'm in the public wifi zone I would just go online for socializing or reading, nothing serious or secure. I think there's a built-in thingy in the laptop that allows me to tap into a wifi network. In fact I found a few of my neighbors' when I experimented and that kind of freaked me out.

Thank you!

I think I can I think I can

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