Millions of high schoolers will be graduating soon and will be leaving for their respective campuses (campii?) at the end of the summer. These students will more than likely go to college with a computer…probably a laptop. I would like to suggest two possible laptops ideas for these students.
Both of my ideas involve good systems that will allow college kids to word process, chat, email, listen to music, watch DVD’s, browse the web wirelessly(for school research of course), create presentations, spreadsheets, download and edit photos and much more. Neither involve Windows and thus don’t require a degree in computer security and maintenance. One of the computers costs between $1200-1800 and the other costs less than $700.
My recommendations stem from first hand accounts from parents whose college kids call home frequently with tales of woe about a slow, non-functioning new computer. Students need to have their computers operational, and running around to the campus IT people or dropping the computer at a fix-it shop for expensive repairs. These two recommendations will keep calls home for repair money, tales of woe, and computer down time to a bare minimum.
The more expensive laptop I refer to is an Apple Macbook. Macbooks are sleek, easy to carry, powerful and safe computers that should get most students through their entire college career. Adding software like NeoOffice or OpenOffice give the MacBook complete compatibility with Microsoft Office documents for free. And for me, the biggest advantage of a Macbook is there solid reputation and the fact that the student will not have to worry about virus and spyware threats like a Windows machine.
My lower cost laptop involves watching weekend sales at the big box stores, then snatching up a machine with at least 2GB of Ram (they all have wireless, fast processors, and DVD burners these days). After the purchase, download and install Ubuntu Linux. Like the Macbook, it will be fast, Microsoft Office compatible, and capable of all the functions that a college kid needs. All this without the hassle of worrying about virus protection and spyware protection. Again, like the Macbook, Linux computers aren’t susceptible to the kinds of devastating attacks found on Windows machines. Great performance for a great price.
There will be some students who are studying a particular profession where a Windows machine is a requirement, but for the majority of students a Macbook or Linux computer would make great choices.