Microkhan by Brendan I. Koerner

Death to Acer

September 10th, 2010 · 14 Comments

I’m writing this post while recovering from a bout of Hulk-like rage, brought about by the sudden death of my Acer Aspire 3810T’s screen. I should’ve known this would happen when I first removed the laptop from the box—the cover instantly struck me as having the strength of tin foil. Thankfully, I had a D-sub cable handy, and am thus able to get a modicum of morning work done while jacked into the clan’s TV. But I need to make an afternoon trek down to J&R Music and Computer World to get myself another laptop. Any recs from the realm? Budget is a major concern, alas, as are size and weight. And I am allergic to bloatware.


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14 Comments so far ↓

  • Jordan

    While it doesn’t help much too much on the price front, I’ve found that all of the Mac laptops I’ve owned have been incredibly solid. I actually still use a titanium PowerBook that I bought refurbished in 2003. Not the speediest thing around, but it does everything I need it to do and keeps me from having to lug a computer back and forth to work. So yeah, refurbished machines can be a totally awesome way to go. They’re hundreds of dollars cheaper than their new counterparts and usually come with the same warranty.

  • Brendan I. Koerner

    @Jordan: You and the Grand Empress have convinced me. Heading to the Apple store now…

  • Jesse

    You should also be aware that Apple offers a “student” discount. We’re all still students of something, right?

  • Captured Shadow

    I know IBM (Lenovo) Laptops were the machine of choice for the NGO folks working on Tsunami response. They were tougher than pretty much everything else.

  • Brendan I. Koerner

    @Captured Shadow: Too late–setting up my MacBook Pro right now. The dead screen plus a scary boot failure last week finally pushed me over the edge.

  • Jordan

    Welcome to the Mac side. Just make sure to buy the extended AppleCare before the original warranty expires. Those almost always pay for themselves, in my experience. I always felt really bad for people who came into the hardware shop I worked for right after their warranties had expired.

  • Brendan I. Koerner

    @Jordan: Thanks–this is my first comment from my new Mac. In the midst of a seven-hour Ethernet transfer, and spending lots of time preventing Microkhan Jr. from messing with the cable.

    Will def. get AppleCare around the 11.5-month mark. I understand that it’s significantly cheaper to purchase from a third-party vendor than from Apple.

    This thing is built like a brick, esp. compared to my flimsy Acer. Glad I made the switch, though I will be relegated to an all-spaghetti diet for a while in order to make up for the price premium.

  • scottstev

    I hope you have a backup system in place. I use an external drive (in addition to mirroring drives locally) and keep it in a safe deposit box as a convenient off-site backup.

  • danthelawyer

    Also — get used to using your mouse/trackpad a whole lot more. Apple is resolutely opposed to keyboard shortcuts.

  • Dyre42

    “I will be relegated to an all-spaghetti diet for a while in order to make up for the price premium.”

    Ow. In that case here is a link to 370 different spaghetti recipes:


  • Brendan I. Koerner

    The biggest difference so far is the absence of right clicking. I’d gotten so used to sweeping my thumb from side-to-side all the time.

    Also, it’s a lot harder to find those folders full of file types you don’t instantly recognize…

  • Gramsci

    Given the geographical reach of your post topics I first thought this said, “Death to Aceh.” Glad to know this site has not turned into Microsuharto.

  • Jordan


    Spotlight makes finding things a lot easier. I tend to use another program, Quicksilver, more often, but either way it’s nice to have a way to search for things without having to use the mouse.

    Also, you can set the trackpad to right click when you click with two fingers.

  • Brendan I. Koerner

    @Gramsci: Yes, I can see how that misreading might cause some cognitive dissonance. But you know that I’ve got nothing but love for the Acehnese–though not necessarily for their morals police:


    @Jordan: Thanks for the recs. Will try ’em both out.