I continue to experiment with the Ubuntu operating system. This past weekend, my family and I made a quick trip to the South Dakota Black Hills and I took my Ubuntu laptop along for the ride. My Ubuntu laptop is an older Compaq (almost six years old) that was destined for the trash heap by its previous owner. It no longer performed well for them and required reformatting and upgrading to run Windows XP and other software at any appreciable speed. I rescued it, installed Ubuntu Linux on it, bought the cheapest wireless card I could find, and now I have a completely functional and quick second laptop.
While packing last week, I wrestled with which laptop to take on the road…my tried and true Windows XP ultra-portable 4 pound laptop or the "new" Ubuntu which is bigger and heavier. I opted to take the Ubuntu laptop so I could road test it and learn more about it. At the hotel and campgrounds we stayed at, the wireless worked great. I could download my digital photos at then end of the day with the Linux version of Picasa, checked the weather and email at night with Firefox and used it to look up locations and maps of some of our destinations. Oh, and my son used it to watch a DVD movie as well.
Bottom line: I missed nothing about Windows and did not feel that I missed anything by bringing the Ubuntu laptop on the trip versus the XP laptop. I would do it again without hesitation.
UPDATE: More vista woes: A business client of mine bought a Vista laptop, but will have to return it because their POS (point of sale) software company does not and will not support Windows Vista machines anytime soon. I think I was right on a few weeks ago when I wrote about the suspiciously inexpensive computers that are all of the sudden surfacing.