"WE HAVE ONE - and only one Fujitsu Siemens A7640 Athlon 64 3200+ notebook to give away but you'd better be fast and witty because sob stories are going to be trashed forthwith."
1 Why do you want to win this machine (remember, no sob stories)
To have a notebook of my own, what bliss! Wireless! Games! Photos and MP3's to reminisce! And when at last it's time to work, OpenOffice.org won't pause and won't jerk. And 64 bit, to match my PC, More than enough for a poor hack like me. And then when my friends set up for a LAN, I'll give all their Intels a rather nice tan. Ah, if only a notebook I had for myself. Instead of this old Dell sitting on my shelf.
2 What was the best portable computer you've ever owned, and why?
Rough toss-up, really. Only owning two doesn't give me many options. My Dell Inspiron 8100 is kinda peppy, but the HDD's slow, the CD-RW is broken, as is the built in NIC. But boy howdy is it easy to carry around compared to my other laptop. My Zenith Data Systems 286, however, is heavy, hard to carry around, and the screen is just about shot. But the 3200 modem still works beautifully, the HDD doesn't have one bad sector on it, and I was able to re-solder the keyboard back together after a nasty fall put a deep crack in it. I'd have to say for durability and repairability, the old Zenith wins. Too bad it doesn't play anything more advanced than Zork I.
3 If you were allowed to have only one application on your notebook, what would it be?
Rough toss-up. I'm presuming all the normal bric-a-brac is included in the O.S. (E-mail client, web browser, text editor, basic CD-burning software as appropriate, solitaire.) I guess it depends on how the notebook is purposed. Given that I'm back in school, and work requires a lot of spreadsheet work, OpenOffice or StarOffice are at the top of the list. If it's just for me to kick around with, I'd have to go with Unreal Tournament 2k4. Since you didn't specify, I'm going to have to be a responsible, forward-looking and hard-working person and say Unreal Tournament 2k4.
4 When buying a $1,000 unbranded notebook for business use, how
much extra would you be prepared to pay for a similarly configured one
from a well known brand?
None. I've had a Dell laptop, and after four trips to the repair facility with no resolution to the problems, I've realized that you can often get more by going with a lesser known brand trying to make it than a better known one that's gotten lazy.
Probably should've submitted this earlier and had people proofread, but I didn't think about it.