Monday, 24 August 2009

General rant on the HP NC6400. Oh, and "Tap To Click" on trackpads suck.

(this was in my Drafts folder, and I don't remember if I have anything
to add to it, so I'll just post it)

I've started bringing the work laptop home and trying to do - uh -
stuff in it. Its a Hewlett Packard HP NC6400, with CoreDuo CPU, 2Gb
RAM, 80Gb hard drive.

A few comments about it:

* The keyboard's not too awful, though I find the keys a bit slippery,
as if coated with Teflon. And yes, it does what it should, but it
still feels and looks cheap.

* It's got a blue "nipple" pointer controller between the G, H and B
keys. It's there, it's weird, and it's staying unused. Never liked it,
and never will.

* The button to turn of the wireless card had me stumped for a few
days, since I had turned it off and forgot what the button was for.
Then I spent an entire weekend trying to figure out why the Windows
system tray icon for the Wireless Network Connection wasn't detecting
any Wi-Fi networks! I didn't get it - this was a new laptop that I
took home the week before, and it detected mine and my neighbours'
networks. It was only when I got back to work that I realised what was
going on: no blue light on the button, no WiFi. A shame that they
didn't have small labels in addition to the button icon, just to make
things clearer.

Having had a Powerbook as my first laptop, I was used to having the
Airport icon in OS X as my main interface to WiFi. Apple laptops don't
have a button for Wi Fi. Actually, they don't have *any* buttons,
aside from the Power button. Okay, there's the Eject CD/DVD button on
the top right, but that's integrated into the keyboard layout.

<#include: usual fanboi rave about how Apple design is elegant,
uncluttered and all that.>

<#include: While mostly true for the hardware design (except that
Super Mouse.."oh, it's got 2 buttons, but we don't actually show it to
you. we like to unclutter it and keep you guessing". fktards.)>

<#digress-heavily: as for OS X... boy, the Finder is such a pitiful
excuse for a file manager. And why the hell is it so difficult to move
a bloody file? Why do I have to copy and *then* delete?>

* The screen is too dim. fn+F9 and fn+10 *look* like they're meant to
control screen brightness but don't have any effect. And coming from a
17" Powerbook, the 14" screen is taking some getting used to. No way
can you have more than one app displayed at a time.

* And then there's the trackpad. By default, two taps in close
succession are treated as a double click. This behaviour has caused me
no small amount of grief.

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