Constant improvements make good products great

Apple are masters of the glitzy product launch. By witholding all details of whatever new piece of kit they’re announcing, the company whips the media and its loyal fans into a frenzy of excitement and speculation.

This hype machine generates levels of publicity that other companies can only dream of. The recent iPad launch is a prime example.

Now, that sort of PR comes to Apple, in part at least, because the company’s products are pretty impressive. With each launch, they work to improve everything – not just the headline features that persuade people to part with their money.


Writer’s review: Toshiba NB200 netbook

I had a bit of an accident with my last netbook. After flogging it on eBay then doing heaps of research, I settled on the Toshiba NB200-10Z as a replacement.

I’ve been using it for a couple of weeks now. Here’s what I think.

Styling and design

Several reviews of the NB200 slate how it looks. But actually, with its silver keyboard and brown lid, I quite like it. Maybe that says more about my tastes than anything else.

It’s certainly well put together – if a little plasticky – and I like that it’s uniformly thick, rather than wedge-shaped. The screen pushes back a good way too, giving you a bit more flexibility in where you work.

On the downside, the high capacity battery sticks out and looks like an afterthought. It’s not particularly neat, but hardly the end of the world.


Economic losses caused by snow? £140, so far.

Broken Asus Eee laptop

It’s snowed a fair bit in the last few days here, and despite dire warnings on the radio and telly, actually it’s been lovely.

However, this chilly weather isn’t without its dangers. You might have read about my new Asus netbook and how it’s helped me get out and about and find new places to work. Since buying it, I feel I’ve got a lot out of it.

Looks like I’ll have to manage without it for a bit now though. Yesterday I took a tumble on some snow and contrived to fall so the bag on my back took most of the impact. That’s the bag which contained my unmarked laptop.

Well, it’s not unmarked any more. The screen’s cracked, the LCD has gone all black and skewiff  in one corner, and it’s going to cost about £140 to repair.

The perils of working on the move, eh? Maybe it’s time to invest in some sort of heavy duty computer. That might make me look cool in the local cafés too.