ATI laptop tips
DanFlasar at aol.com
DanFlasar at aol.com
Fri Jun 25 10:54:36 CDT 2010
These are very good questions, Alicia, but a little more information on
your needs is needed to give the best advice.
First, how much usable vision do you have? If you have no vision,
then the quality of the screen and it's
size is not an issue but depending on what you can do visually will make a
big difference in what kinds
of display and capabilities you need to have.
What course of study will you be in? Needs are greater for science
and math software than for work
in the humanities.
What use of the Internet will you need primarily? Reading sources
on-line or a lot of uploading and
downloading of large files?
Of course using a laptop is not all work all the time - do you plan
to watch movies on the device at
times or play music?
Wireless connection is becoming ubiquitous across the country,
particularly in the cities. Most libraries
offer wireless service, as well as coffeehouses both chains and
independents. Most laptops have integrated
wireless capabilities. Though wi-fi connection can be slow, it shouldn't
be a problem for reading and small
downloads and uploads. For those times you're not in a wireless
environment, you can download
what you need beforehand and just work standalone.
How much have you budgeted for your laptop?
Include in this the cost of software. In many cases, your college
bookstore will offer significant dis-
counts on important packages like Windows Professional. You have to be a
registered student to get these
discounts but they can save you hundreds of dollars.
Will this laptop be your primary PC or does your family have a good
desktop at home you can use for
It's always a good idea to get the fastest processor and largest hard
drive you can afford because over
time, you will need to upgrade to a new operating system and newer versions
of software - including
accessibility software. These programs *always* get larger and demand
more resources. Never get
the latest and greatest - it will only be greatest for 4 or 6 months or so
and the price will drop significantly.
Dell and Toshiba are both good brands but HP loads up their hardware
with a *lot* of software, games and
junk that you will never need. It's a pain to remove it to free up the
space and thereby end the constant
requests to sign up to purchase the software add-ons you didn't ask for in
the first place.
Finally, what area are you in? In St. Louis, there is a place called
MicroCenter that offers very good
deals on PCs and laptops and offer good support service. I'm sure KC,
Columbia and Springfield have
In a message dated 6/24/2010 2:30:09 P.M. Central Daylight Time,
astarner at charter.net writes:
My husband and I finally saved up the money to purchase a new laptop for
me to start the school year with this fall. I don't know a lot about
computer hardware and wondered if some of you who are more knowledgeable can help
me decide what is most important when purchasing a laptop. How much memory
should it have? Is there anything to consider about the processor when
considering the laptop will be running JAWS? Are certain brands better than
others? Etc. I will be interested to hear what your thoughts are. I want to
use the laptop for accessing my textbooks in alternative format, reading and
creating MS Office documents, sending and receiving email, etc. Also, how
and where do I purchase Internet service that will allow me to connect to the
Internet regardless of where I am. What I want to be able to do is to
connect to the Internet to complete homework assignments and such, even when I
am not at home. Perhaps I go to the library with my children and want to
sit at a table and work on my homework and need to go online, where can I
purchase service that will allow me to do that for an affordable price?
Thanks again for all your help.
"The chief handicap of the blind is not blindness, but the attitude of
seeing people towards them"
Helen Keller (1880-1929)
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