Supporting companies that offer Linux support or Linux-based products is extremely important for the alternative operating system to succeed in the retail arena. This alone is the most compelling reason why I decided to buy an Asus Eee PC.
This isn’t a new phenomenon for myself, buying Linux supported video games solely for the reason that they support Linux has become my new hobby.
Ever since the diminutive laptop was announced at Computex in Taipei, June 2007, the idea of having a small laptop for school, coffee shops and elsewhere has been lingering in my mind for quite some time, and finally I’ve found the perfect device.
I received the ASUS Eee PC 4G in Galaxy Black earlier today from Newegg, and since then I’ve shown it to several people – their initial impressions were overwhelmingly positive:
“What is this? Woooooooow! *whistles*”
“Oh, my god this is sweet!”
“This is so cool, I wish I had this when I was in Iraq!”
“Carrying this laptop around would be a great way to pickup women.”
I’m sure it will continue to be a conversation piece anywhere I take it, and will give me an excellent way to introduce Linux to people who would probably not hear about it otherwise. To someone that sells Linux, this laptop turns a cold-call into a good lead.
My first impressions:
The keyboard is cramped, but certainly usable to touch type with – this is a result of the form factor. I had similar concerns when I first received a cellphone with a qwerty keyboard, it should be easy to acclimate. The webcam is no iSight, but it’s definitely good enough for uploading to YouTube. The graphics card is well equipped to handle 3D for 800×480 resolution.
The two things that put me off have their remedies. The lack of a DVD-ROM drive can be offset by a USB version, or USB flash drive, or even the MMC/SD slot. Bluetooth is missing, and has two solutions – “lug” around a USB bluetooth adapter, or add one internally.
Also, the Xandros Linux-based operating system utilizes a panel system for navigation. It is a good compromise for the screen size, but I’m probably going to want to put something a step up from the basic interface that it comes with by default. No optical drive will complicate a normal installation, but it shouldn’t be too hard to figure it out.
As far as support goes, the unofficial EEEuser website seems like a great community built around the device. The forums move at a brisk pace, with plenty of answers for those who can utilize the search function. People who modify their EEE PC also tend to hang out there, which is what I intend to do. I’m going to put the EeePC where nobody has put one before (as far as I know), but that idea will stay under wraps for a little longer.
Let’s take a look at the unboxing:
First-Time Bootup and Initial Configuration:
This is a fantastic laptop, and I’ve got really big plans for using it in a somewhat unconventional manner. It even fits inside my full-sized laptop bags’ accessory pocket. I’ll probably write a little bit more about it later on, but this is all for now. Oh…. and by the way, I made up the last quote.