Sunday, 31 May 2015

Weekly Rundown: New Laptop

I actually wrote this post back when I first got my laptop, almost a month ago. It was the first one I wrote on my shiny new toy. And then it kept on getting bumped back and back and back. Until now, because I want to show off and share it, because I love it.

Also, I've been made aware of a Photography Scavenger Hunt @ Gallo Organico hich runs from June to September. The new laptop is going to come in handy for that, as will the new camera lens. I am clearly a spoilt girl at the moment.
from Gallo Organico
For months and months I’ve been bemoaning the state of my laptop. I’ll admit, I’ve been half hoping that some laptop company might stumble onto my blog, see how in need of a new laptop I am and offer to send me one to try for free. Obviously none of my readers work for a big laptop company so I’ve been forced to get one myself.

Basically my family took pity on me, and decided that my whining about how slow and difficult to use the poor old thing was. Suddenly a new laptop went from ‘probably a Christmas present’ to ‘an absolute necessity which is needed immediately’.

And so that’s how, just over two weeks ago, I ended up staying for several hours at my in-laws’ house getting my shiny blue laptop set up. It’s a bit of a learning curve, since I’m now on Windows 8.1 after roughly four years of Windows 7. I was slightly concerned that I wouldn’t be able to get the programmes I use working since I remember the hassle of Vista and getting things to work with it. I needn’t have worried, so far everything’s gone on without any trouble (including my ancient copies of Photoshop and Microsoft Office).

I went with an Acer since every laptop I’ve ever owned (or part-owned in the case of my Grampy’s which I adopted and kind of killed). I did play around with the idea of an HP or or Toshiba, until I found a decent offer on an Acer which ticked all the boxes for what I wanted. And it’s blue. I’ve never had a laptop be anything other than black (with silver) before.

Blue isn’t actually my favourite colour (you may have noticed from things around here that I’m partial to the colour green) but it seems that not many companies give you a green option. My phone is blue (albeit in a purple case) and my camera is blue (also in a purple case) so it stands to reason that my laptop should be blue (and I have it on good authority that Father Christmas is going to see what he can do about replacing the black and orange case with something more appropriate).

The one issue with having a blue laptop is that certain desktops seem to clash slightly. Normally I go for a nice greenish theme. It doesn’t look so good against the bright blue colour. I’ve gone with shades of pink and purple at the moment.

I’m slowly getting used to the keyboard. Whereas in the past I’ve had no need for a numeric keypad, I find myself using one at work and so when I’m without one I feel like I’m looking for it all the time. The keys are different to the old laptop, more spaced out, so I’m needing to change the way I type slightly. I’m adaptable. I’m getting the hang of it.

And what about Windows 8.1?

Well, I’d read all about it and had determined that I would wait to replace my poor old laptop until Windows 10 came out and proved its mettle. But it’s a lot better than I was expecting. I actually quite like the big blocky apps screen and I like that I still have the option for a desktop view as well.

It’s really designed for best use when it’s connected to the internet, lots of the tiles don’t do anything when I’m at home because they’re linked to things like the news and weather which need to be online to display correctly. It was rather frustrating to see Nigel Farage’s ugly mug on that tile until I figured out that clicking on it made it attempt to load the news, realise there was no connection and so return to the logo instead of his face.

I’m sure I’ll find more little bits and pieces to share in the future, as I get to grips with my new toy. Suffice to say that I’m going to have a lot more time to visit blogs and respond to comments from now on, because this thing is so, SO much faster!

I've pretty much got all of my software installed on it now, which is a good thing because I've needed put together a presentation this weekend. I spent all of my normal blogging time working on, got to 6:30pm and realised that I still had to actually write some blog posts. On my old laptop this would've been a problem. Not so much on the new one.

In other news, I started my Metformin on Friday and so far, no problems. I did feel a bit funny on Friday but I think a lot of that was just me thinking I might be having side effects rather than actually having any. I'm sure that might change on Friday coming when my dose is doubled.

I'll let you know how it all goes.


  1. I was the same, trying to stick with my old laptop until Windows 10 came out, but my old one died. To be fair it was ancient but I was strangely attached to it. I actually quite like 8.1, but I think I'll still be getting 10 when it comes out! I've always had Acers and was going for one again, but there was a fab offer on the Lenovo I ended up getting and I really like it. I know what you mean about different keyboards though, you have to learn how to type again!

    1. The Lenovo laptops look really nice. They were all well out of my price range when I was looking for this one. I think you get so attached to them because they're so crucial for the things you do, hobbies, work, connecting with friends. It's your link to so many things that are important for you.

  2. I bought myself a new laptop a couple of months ago too. It was too slow and kept freezing on me. I went with Acer as well but decided to stay with Windows 7 because so many people I know were having problems with Windows 8 and I like Windows 7 and know what to expect. Mine is black and I'm quite happy with it. Congrats on the new laptop.

    1. I kept my Windows 7 disc just in case I couldn't get on with Windows 8.1. Turns out I love it, though I'm reserving judgement on Windows 10 just in case I want to upgrade further down the line. I think sometimes it's best to stick with what you know, especially when there's such a huge learning curve in the new version - even now I have to keep Googling "how do I do X in Windows 8.1"

  3. You could get stickers and such to cover the unsightly blue. I'm sure they make things to personalize your laptop. And they do make numeric keypads that connect to your laptop. I've seen them. I think I want one for my very own.

    1. I don't actually mind the blue. The lid has a sort of grain effect to it which looks quite pretty. I have seen some lovely covers though, including some that look like they've been knitted. I think if I was to go for one, that's the style I'd go for! ;-)

  4. So pleased you will be having a go at the Scavenger Hunt - can't wait to see some for the photos you'll take for it especially with your new lens. Your laptop looks lovely in that shade of blue.

    1. I've been a bit late starting with hospital appointments and things, but the weather's looking a lot nicer today so I'm hoping to get some time out with the camera later and to make a start to my list.

      Thanks for pointing it out to me. :-)


Let me know what you think. :-)