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Hot air February 9, 2008

Posted by reverseengineer in Hardware, Macs.
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A good friend of mine, award-winning writer, educator and uber-Machead Butch Dalisay, got his new Macbook Air earlier this week.

Being the shallow, juvenile-yet-overaged geek that I am, I thought I’d be catatonic with envy, as I normally become everytime my early adopter friends become the first on the block to get that new thing.

I am shocked that, this time, I am not. I have actually had no overpowering desire to rush over to his house (which is five minutes away) to paw and poke his new Mac.

This means one of three things – I am finally growing up; I am losing my geek cred, or; I have something that is temporarily neutralizing the Reality Distortion Field.

Of course you know where this is leading up to.

I like the Air of course, despite it being hobbled and underpowered and expensive. I might buy one if I had the disposable cash. If they made the dimensions closer to a 12-incher, it would totally kill all my enthusiasm for the Eeep. I would sneak into Butch’s house in the middle of the night and steal the damn thing.

But as it is, the Air is just a regular flat MacBook, or as I sometimes refer to it, a FlatBook. It still takes up the same footprint as a regular Macbook, the same space in a bag, and the entire tray table of an airplane seat. Honestly, I think a smaller footprint would be a more desirable trait than thinness, which is – face it – a useless improvement.

It’s pretty sad, really. I’ve had friends who’d been holding out on getting a new Mac in the hope some ultraportable would be announced at Macworld. Or at least a 12” MacBook Pro. Instead we get a curiosity, a conversation piece. Same banana, only they squashed it. And took things out.

While the EeePC lacks the glitz, glamour and pedigree of an Air, it’s precisely what the Air coulda, woulda, shoulda been: small, light, portable, usable – and cheap. In fact, when you come down to it, it’s pretty simple: would you rather a smaller, truly portable laptop, or a regular-sized one squished thin enough to give you a paper cut.

Duh.

I’ve had more than a few opportunities to leave the Eeep at home, but somehow I can’t leave home without it. Literally, it’s no burden, so what’s a few extra ounces in the bag, right? Sure, the new Macbook is a hot item, but then I wouldn’t put too much weight on hot air.

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