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Christmas Comes Early, Part I

Part of the reason that posting on MarsBlog has been so lackluster over the past year is that my other project, People’s Press Collective, has been claiming nearly all of my time outside of work. Since I live about forty minutes from downtown Denver, and end up down there for events 2-3 nights a week, it’s been awfully hard to find the time (or motivation when time is available) to blog from my trusty deskbound desktop PC at home.

For that and other reasons, I finally invested in a new HP dm3 laptop yesterday. Or maybe it’s a netbook. I’m not really clear on the distinction, and this one seems to be in a gray zone in between, having a dual-core 64-bit processor and faster bus than an obvious netbook and a slightly larger size, but similarly missing the optical drive of a laptop and a typical laptop’s voracious appetite for battery power. Oh, and it has a slick magnesium case, which makes it look much more hardy than the toy-like netbooks (or medical-equipment-like white Apples, for that matter).  


So, with any luck, this should make posting a lot easier, and thus somewhat more frequent.

While I’ve had limited time thus far to play with it (that will come in the airport this week), I have tried out some video from the HD camcorder I picked up last month, and it is truly amazing. The desktop didn’t have enough memory to view native .MT2 files without a lot of choppiness  (and since it was RDRAM, was not cost-effective to expand), but the little laptop was all set up and ready to go, with all the right codecs already installed for Media Player. If you haven’t played around with HD video, it’s incredible how much sharper and more “real” it is than what you may be used to from YouTube or online television watching. I still may need to get a new desktop at some point to process video, but for viewing it, I don’t think I could ask for much better.

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