Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Expenses of Temporary Housing: Computer

Here's one more thing that is bugging me about my limbo locations: it's making me really want to buy a new computer!
Neither of the places I've stayed has had a land line. No big deal for actual telephone use, but it means I have no way to connect my laptop to the internet. My laptop is an iBook, over 5 years old. It does not have a wireless card, though I could get one installed. My sublet does have free WiFi included, but is it worth it to buy an Airport card for my laptop? Considering how old it is, and that the hard drive is almost totally full, it would probably make more sense to just buy a new computer. But otherwise, my existing one works fine, and I really don't want to blow a couple thousand dollars on a computer right now, given the uncertainty of my living situation, and the certainty of having to buy furniture, curtains, etc. once I do settle down!
I decided to compromise-- since my Palm is WiFi enabled, I bought a piece of software that will let me check my AOL mail. (I can do web browsing already, but it can't handle AOL's webmail interface.) So that was $20. Unfortunately, so far I can't get it to work for my main AOL email address! I can check my alternate screen names (you know, the secret identities I use for all my online dating) but all the mail I get on those is spam. So that's frustrating. I haven't even tried to call their help number yet-- I can only imagine what kind of torture that will be. (Update: I did call the help number, which does nothing but refer you to the website and give you an email address. The email address just has a bot responding, with the most inanely irrelevant non-help I've ever gotten.)
Anyway, I don't think I'll be buying a new computer but my blogging might be a little behind schedule due to my technical limitations at home!


The Travelin' Man said...

This is actually a great time of year to buy a new computer - maybe second best behind Black Friday on the whole calendar. As students head off to college, more and more companies try to increase their market share by offering deals on decent computer models. Almost anything you buy nowadays will have a wireless card installed, and I have seen ads recently for $399 laptops. You may be able to do a little better, but a laptop for $400 seems like an incredible deal - and would probably out-manuever the one that I bought just two years ago for about $1500! :)

Hey....now *I* want to buy a new computer!

Madame X said...

I just wish Apple would offer $300 laptops! Sometimes I tell myself I'll just go with Windows, but I do like using a Mac at home since I have Windows at work... the cheapest Mac laptops are around $1000 I think but if I buy a new one, I want to get one with a bigger screen since it will double as my DVD player, since I have no TV...

Anonymous said...

Why don't you just get a wireless USB adapted for the meantime? Plug it in the side and get online for about 20 bucks.

Just go to newegg and search for wiress usb adapters. I just installed a couple in our office and they work fine. No big expense and it will work fine as a temporary solution or an on the go solution.

Your laptop is fine, just grab one of these!

- Kris

Richard said...

Here is a nice little post about keeping your computer safer and faster. Some of the tips can save you hundreds of dollars from finding alternative ways to make your computer act faster than newer computers, also tips incase you do want to upgrade your computer and if and when you should buy a new computer.

Twelve ways to keep your computer running safer and faster!