Biglig's Computers

Thursday, July 17, 2008 10:30 pm By BigLig

With my home office now built and running well, I thought a moment to detail my current collection of computers. My first computer - and possibly the first machine I ever saw, unless I got at school's BBC micro first, was a ZX81. Of course, every device I possess now is smaller, better, faster, stronger.

Work computer
Dell Latitude D630 running Windows Vista and Office 2007
Not a bad little machine: we've adopted it as out standard issue so I've switched to one to make sure I'm working with the same sort of machine I can expect one of my customers to have.
Home Computer
Apple Macbook Pro 17" running OSX Leopard and iLife
I've found splitting off work and personal into two different machines has turned out to be a great idea. My home office has a KVM fitted, so I hit a switch and change mode from "at work" to "at home". For anyone not needing to run mountains of Windows software then a Mac is the best possible choice.
Mobile Computer
Asus eeePC 701 running Xandros and OpenOffice
Well, I bought this out of curiosity really but it's constantly impressing me. I did a whole day working offsite with it and found it more than up to the task. It does web, email, text documents, instant messaging, and even skype phone calls, and is so tiny I can carry it anywhere.
Media Player
Apple iPod Touch 16Gb
Perfect for music; acceptable for video (and being able to watch iPlayer streams on it over WiFi is fabulous). The new apps I mostly use for Games so far: when a ebook reader I can load with -free texts is available it will take another step to perfection.
Samsung i600 running Windows Mobile 5
Now, this is usually a Blackberry curve, but for dull technical reasons to do with work I need to use something that supports Microsoft ActiveSync for a while. I have an HTC TyTN II that I normally use for this sort of thing, and it's a nice device, but it's the size of a house brick. So, finding a tiny Belgian smartphone in my spares cupboard I thought "why not?".
As usual, an absolute pig to get the certificates working for OWA and CWA, but once I got it going, it turns out not to be so bad. It's very small, it does push email, it has bluetooth so I can sync it. belgian keyboard though, but between the Mac and the PC I'm confused enough.
Probably a bad sign that they ship it with a spare battery and external charger?

How could this be improved? I'm very tempted to switch the D630 out. I'd replace it with a huge, noisy, and insanely powerful PowerEdge server, that would sit in my comms room, that I would connect to using a terminal services client running on any old crappy hardware in my office, the Mac when at home, and the eeePC when traveling.

And of course constantly hanging over me is the specter of consolidating the iPod and smartphone into one device. Although consolidation is exactly what I want, more important to me is that my music player to be an iPod, because all my workflow is set up for that. Oh, if only there was some sort of smartphone, supporting push email, that had an iPod in it...