Tag Archives: computer

HP Stream 7: First Impressions

I bought the HP Stream 7 for a couple of reasons. First, my primary PC is failing. The keyboard doesn’t work properly, and sound has been shot. With this in mind, I can only assume the system board (where everything is) will eventually go. This forced me to make my primary PC which is a notebook homebound. However, I never bought a notebook because that is what the cool kids are doing these days, I bought a notebook so I could be productive not only at home, but away.

In reviewing the HP Stream 7 to see if it would be worth the price, the biggest attraction was the price at $85 for a full Windows 8.1 system. Even though there is only a 7” screen – the system should at least be able to perform when away. However, I will continue to use the “homebound” PC for work done at home. The Stream 7 has an Intel Atom 1.3Ghz Quad Core CPU. This will handle basic tasks well enough, but don’t expect this to be a performer. There is 1GB of memory, and a 7” 1280×800 IPS display. Storage is 32GB of integrated Solid State Flash with a micro-SD card support for 64GB. The tablet has a 3000mAh battery, integrated mic/speaker combo jack along with an integrated mono-speaker, and micro USB which is for charging or connection to accessories. The front camera is .3MP (VGA) and a 2MP rear camera. There is Bluetooth and Wifi-N support with Miracast, but no cellular connectivity. For new purchases, there is a 1 year Microsoft Office 365 subscription which includes 60 minutes of Skype per month. Along with the purchase, I also acquired a Class 10 64GB micro-SD card which will hold content.

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Two in a Row, Good Enough

A few years ago, I purchased an HP Pavilion G62. This was to replace an incompetent Acer PC that was running Vista. However, after a few years, my system has been acting in a manner that does not give me confidence it will continue operating at any reasonable quality. For example, I do a full shut down at night time before I go to bed. I will turn the PC on, and while the PC is booting, I will get the two ready for their walk. I will log in before I walk the dogs out the door. Why, because it literally takes 20-30 minutes for the system to boot up fully.

In addition, some keys are not as good as they should be, the power button is finicky, and the SD card drive is non-functional. Since I had 3 years of this system, I will expect that it is not going to operate in optimum condition. On top of that, the system didn’t boot the BIOS which means that it could go anytime between now, and another year.

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PC Manufacturers Live in the Past

I had been looking at options for a new Computer, although I am unlikely to be able to get anything anytime soon, however I have come across a disturbing realization. Every manufacturer still has what I would consider as legacy ports. About the only one that has a complete lineup without legacy ports would be Apple. Let’s face it, Apple PCs are very expensive, and I would have to buy a Windows 7 Pro OS as I don’t see me jumping completely in bed with a company that is so overpriced.

So what is legacy, and what is not legacy? Well, the following ports are ports that have relevance now, and in the next 5 years.

  • Audio (preferably in/out combination)
  • HDMI (preferably in/out combination)
  • RJ45 (1GBPS, but 10GBPS will be nice)
  • Thunderbolt
  • USB (version 3)

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The Optical Drive in a Coma–YAY!

Just recently, Apple has finally done something I agree with in some areas, although there are still issues I don’t agree with. Let’s get to the blog post this is intended for. Apple has refreshed their line of PCs including their AiOs, and the 13” Macbook Pro. These changes I have agreed with is the omission of the optical drive. Now, I am not saying I am completely against the optical drive. The optical drive is good for workstations, media centers, and what I feel should be NADs (Network Attached Drive)s. Especially in notebooks, the Optical drive as well as the mechanical drive are both battery drains for little performance. Optical drives – by their very nature requires a center to turn at very high speeds while a laser scans the data. This is a lot of energy. When you consider a CD is only 600 or 700MB, and a DVD is at most 8.4GB, this is laughable in hard drive standards. And then the mechanical hard drive is not much better with very much the same principals with magnets rather than lasers.

Solid State Storage is like your regular memory. The only difference is SSD keeps the information that is placed in it. SSD does not demand more electricity than memory as there are no moving parts. Because of this data is many times faster then even 10000RPM drives, and if the magnet touches the platter, the drive can be destroyed – that will never happen.

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If I had $100,000

This blog post was definitely harder than I expected. It would seem as if this amount would have been worth noting, but I had to make some decisions on big ticket items such as a house of my own. Assuming that I would had to furnish it, and it would have likely needed renovation, this made it too much. Which then brought more money for other things. While I will try to keep this post shorter than I could have made it, it will still be a long post.

There will have to be some things to keep in mind. First, this amount is Net (after taxes). Second, this is to assume that it would not affect my sources of income and assistance unless I have too much after 6 months. The reason for this is imagine if someone said, here is $100,000 – but you can not work, and any financial assistance will be in a waiting line that could take 5-10 years. Needless to say, if you were smart, you would probably say no.

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Today was a relatively quiet day. I went to the local Rite-Aid to acquire a couple of gallons of iced tea, and a USB mouse. The mouse will be used for eventually rebuilding a PC workstation. It will also serve in the future if I should get an appropriate adapter for the phone.

I watched a couple of shows on Hulu, played with the dogs, and allowed them to play for about an hour in the back yard. Since it is warm out, I will be doing that on a regular basis. I also composed a couple of emails, and had a few SMS messages sent and received. I also did a little bit of site renovation with my various sites – mostly though with pilone.name.

Continue reading 2012-03-22


Today could have been a better day. It would seem my life has revolved around the proposed acquisition of T-Mobile by AT&T. This will effectively kill T-Mobile, and harm every cellular consumer in the US. And while I will like to hope that the regulatory boards will block this purchase, hope is only viable in a unicorn farm. What makes matters worse, is I would have to consider replacing my cellular phone in July considering it is a bit legacy. There is no point in spend $500 on a phone from a company that may not be around in 18 months. It would look as if I would be forced into a contract with some carrier of some sort whether be T-Mobile for the reasonable price, and hope all works out, or with another carrier.

So, that was my day of dreading the inevitable. Andie also called asking about her computer where the hard drive  died. I offered her an old 140GB, but she would have needed to get the adapter for a notebook drive on her desktop. Otherwise, this day has been pretty much quiet. As for plans for tomorrow, I will need to do an errand, and stop over at Andie’s to get something on my behalf. Hopefully, I will be able to talk with T-Mobile about what options I may have and hopefully they don’t try to sell me something that won’t be in my best interest.