Monday, September 16, 2013

Just call me Katgi

My mini computer logged a lot of miles. It traveled with me in my carry-on on every trip since the '09 Sock Summit, and it served me well. New, it was state of the art. Four years later, it's heavy and slow, and I never did love the keyboard. It's was past time for an upgrade.

I first contemplated an iPad, but after learning that it wouldn't run WORD, I scrapped that notion. I consulted my gurus and waffled between the Surface (with the detatchable keyboard) and the Acer Aspire V5-122P. I finally went with the Acer, partly because of price, but also because it had everything I wanted, and it weighed less than 3lbs (perfect for carry-ons.)

Setting up a new computer isn't like the Olden Days- now you just turn it on and it sets itself up... Except that this one demanded I give it a user name immediately. I meant to type in *Kathi* but I hit the wrong key, and then when I tried to backspace, I accidentally hit *enter*, so my official name is now *Katgi*

I texted my sons with a pic of the new computer (we're always interested in each other's new toys). I tried to explain how I ended up with the weird user-name, but Autocorrect got me.

I knew that Windows 8 was going to come with a learning curve, but I have an iPhone, and my Kindle has a touch screen, so I'm used to swiping things. Still, it took me awhile to figure out how to navigate the new OS.

The little things amuse me- like turning on the keyboard backlight.

Windows 8 is different, but it's not too difficult, and every computer in the house uses a different OS (XP on the mini, Vista on the laptop, Windows 7 on my office computer), so I'm used to switching between them. There is a finite number of programs (called Apps) that will work with the OS, but this is my travel computer, not my desktop, so all I need are the basics. I connected an external DVD drive to it (it has a couple of USB ports- must haves) and loaded Office 2010, just in case I ever decide to work while I'm traveling (fat chance). It has e-mail and Facebook and a web browser (I'm stuck with IE for now- there is presently no Chrome version for Windows 8). And there's a *desktop* icon where I can work from an interface that looks just like the old desktop. And most important: I can play Candy Crush on it (though it's much slower than on my *real* computer because trying to swipe the changes moves the entire screen. I have to use a stylus and tap each piece individually. Luckily, very few of the Candy Crush levels are timed).

I love Siri on my phone, and the Acer comes with voice recognition, so I tried a voice activated Google search (I can get to Google, but I can't use Chrome). I was looking for North Country Fiber Fair...

I guess it doesn't understand my Midwest Twang.

I'm still finding my way around the OS, but it's been a fun process, and I really really like the new keyboard. Maybe I WILL work while I travel. I'll have ample opportunity to find out- I have 5 trips (4 by plane) between now and the end of March... sigh...

1 comment:

Sophie said...

You really made me giggle! I hope you enjoy your new tool!