27 Oct 2008 8:43 am   //   Filed under: Technology

Computer says yes

Earlier this year, motivated by a desire to post news faster from the field, I asked my company to switch me from a desktop to a laptop. A few days later an IT guy came to take away my iMac and replace it with an Apple MacBook. That’s the one with the shiny, white plastic case – an update to the indestructible iBook which I bought in 2001 and that I still use to get Internet in my kitchen and to watch DVDs on the Amtrak.

This new MacBook – I have no idea the model number or even the processor speed – just passed a big test. It survived three days of intensive use at my magazine’s annual trade show. During the show, I downloaded hundreds of photos off CD-ROMs and USB drives brought to me by several different people. I edited images in Photoshop. I typed and posted several stories. I used the computer to make two presentations that involved connecting it to unfamiliar video projectors. I connected it to a digital camcorder and edited 12 short videos, which I then uploaded to the Internet. I lugged the computer to and from the office, my apartment, and the convention center, using different Internet connections in each place.

At no point did this computer fail to do what I needed it to do. It never crashed, not once. I don’t usually sing the praises of computer hardware, but this is the first time in my career a laptop has enabled me do my job exactly the way I want to do it.