Wednesday, June 22nd, 2005


A couple of weeks ago, Mr. Saturday was moving out of La Casa de Pan de Jengibre
and held up an old, dead IBM 600X laptop.  “It doesn’t work,” he
said.  “It won’t boot, the battery is dead, I don’t have the AC
adapter for it anymore and god only knows what else is wrong with
it.  Do you want it?”

Of course, I said yes.  It’s unloved technology, and if nothing else I could use it build my nest.

When asked what he wanted for it, Mr. Saturday said, “You’ve saved me from carrying it to my car.  It is yours.” 

So, I started hitting eBay.  The 600X is an old machine, and parts for it are cheap.  So far, I’ve gotten:

–a new power adapter
–a new hard drive
–128 MB of RAM for it
–a floppy-drive insert to swap for the CD when needed

Since then, I’ve installed Libranet 2.8.1
on the new drive, installed the new RAM, and turned it into a working,
fast-booting Linux laptop.   I’m probably going to go ahead
and pick up a new battery for it and then?  I was going to donate
it to NaNoWriMo, as they maintain a small collection of dead-and-dying
laptops to lend to NaNoers who have no computer at home.  I mean,
I could just donate a few bucks to NPR or something, but charity feels
better when you actually do it yourself, you know?  This is a
lesson I learned in high school when I worked on a Habitat for Humanity
house in Asheville.  There’s nothing like putting that insulation
in the wall yourself and saying, Holy shit, I just made someone warm this winter

I wanted that same feeling with NaNo, but, well… they don’t need more laptops.

How’s that for a success story?

So now, I’ve got this laptop that’s just kind of sitting there. 
The battery is dead, but it can be replaced off eBay for around $35,
and Libranet supports a few of the wireless cards (especially USB
wireless devices, of which I have a random Linksys sitting in a
box).  So… suggestions? 

Farm it out to a friend? 

Donate it to the Durham public schools (if they take such donations –
it might be too old and slow for them to be interested, to be honest,
or they might not take donations of random computer equipment)? 

Just reBay it?

Other? (more…)

Courtesy of The Onion.  An example:

Roddenberry (April 22óMay 13)
You’ve never encountered a problem that can’t be solved by the combined
mental and spiritual resources of the enlightened people of the galaxy
or by swinging from the doorframe and kicking people in the gut.

Beautiful… (more…)