Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Mini computer for the students...I like

Asus is coming out with a new mini computer for students called the Eee Box. About the size of a hardback book, the idea is that students could take this to and from school so they'd always have computer access.

I like this idea. In fact, I'm always surprised that we're not already at a point where there are student / cheap / basic computers so that all students have their own computer. I mean, for all the nice cell phones, iPods, cameras, etc. that I see in the school, if there was something for under $300, it'd be hard to justify NOT getting one.

Looking at the Cnet review they break it down by specs, which is a nice start.

The basic specs: Linux OS, 1.6ghz chip, 1GB RAM, 80GB hard drive, Bluetooth, WiFi, audio outs, two USB 2.0 ports, S/PDIF, DVI out (no optical drive)

Some questions I have, or places where I could see an upgrade in years to come:
- no mention of ports for keyboard / mouse, which means that unless you have a Bluetooth keyboard or mouse, the two USB 2.0 ports would be taken up. Which makes using a thumb drive an issue (or any other USB tools / toys)
- no optical drive means no installing anything via CD / DVD (download them instead?) or using those formats for lessons / information
- if it's going home with kids, at some point it'd be nice to move to a solid state drive (like the Mac Air ) so that it's less likely to die. I know this isn't affordable now, hoping that solid state drives get cheap as fast as Pentiums did.

And that's it. Kudos to Asus for coming up with this, you'd think that some PC companies would have mimicked the Mac Mini. And kudos to them for using Linux, which means less kids picking up viruses when they use their computer on MySpace, Facebook, etc.

Thoughts? (I know, brevity, brevity...)

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