ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Weston Ochse is a former intelligence officer and special operations soldier who has engaged enemy combatants, terrorists, narco smugglers, and human traffickers. His personal war stories include performing humanitarian operations over Bangladesh, being deployed to Afghanistan, and a near miss being cannibalized in Papua New Guinea. His fiction and non-fiction has been praised by USA Today, The Atlantic, The New York Post, The Financial Times of London, and Publishers Weekly. The American Library Association labeled him one of the Major Horror Authors of the 21st Century. His work has also won the Bram Stoker Award, been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, and won multiple New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards. A writer of more than 26 books in multiple genres, his military supernatural series SEAL Team 666 has been optioned to be a movie starring Dwayne Johnson. His military sci fi series, which starts with Grunt Life, has been praised for its PTSD-positive depiction of soldiers at peace and at war. Weston likes to be called a chaotic good paladin and challenges anyone to disagree. After all, no one can really stand a goody two-shoes lawful good character. They can be so annoying. It's so much more fun to be chaotic, even when you're striving to save the world. You can argue with him about this and other things online at Living Dangerously or on Facebook at Badasswriter. All content of this blog is copywrited by Weston Ochse.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Where Art Though Electronica? What shouldest thou get?

So I'm looking at all the new computers, iPads, MP3 players, Netbooks, Kindles, Nooks etc. There are just so many choices. How does one get to just one or two pieces of electronica? What is the single source solution?

Right now I have a netbook (Samsung NC10), a desktop, Dell Inspiron 500 series with two monitors and a cheapo MP3 Player. I also have a CD player in the office and one in the car.

I love the Netbook. Samsung was the company that broke the code on lightweight long-lasting batteries. My NC10, which is 2+ years old, has a 10 hour battery life. It also has instant on, meaning I can put it to sleep and within 30 seconds (which is instant for a windows system) I'm back to my program, which in most cases is msword. It's fast and has a great camera. The speakers suck, though, but that's why Edison invented ear buds.

My desktop is adequate. I use two monitors, which I love. No complaints there, but it is pretty big.

My MP3 player is about dead. It's tiny, holds about 2 gigs and is about as no-frills as a 1950s vibrator.

So in looking at new pieces of electronica, I realize that I want an iPod, an iPad, a Kindle, a Macbook Air, a netbook, and a replacement desktop, probably an all in one touchscreen monitor. With all that I might as well carry around a blender for my foofoo drinks and a microwave for my snacks. You can pick me out of a crowd because I'll be the guy with the wheelbarrow.

And I haven't even talked about the phone. I'm locked into Sprint right now because of the Everything Data Plan for two phones which runs about $125 a month. I like my HTC TouchPro 2 and can't afford and iPhone or the service contract for one.

So what should I get in the future?

iPad vs Netbook: Mac/Apple purists have a single choice. I'm not an anything purist. I do have to say that having to deal with the foibles of microsoft all of my life I've become attuned to troubleshooting and I know the MSWord program like it's my little demented brother. With the iPad I can't write novels using the screen keypad. I've tried. I could get a universal keyboard, then it would work, but the formatting for the programs in iPad aren't perfect for submitting to NY Publishers. Then again, iPads have the cool touch screens with the apps. It is certainly a better social media tool.

What if I throw a Kindle or a Nook into the Mix? Do I have to have an iPad too? What if all I want is an eBook reader? Of course I can download Kindle for PC too?

I think I may have found the perfect little computer... or at least the first generation of a computer that will solve these needs. I checked out the Asus EE PC91, which is a netbook with a Rotating touchscreen.

A quick check shows that there are an increasing number of these sorts of netbooks out there that will give me the social media functions from an app-rich environment touch screen, the ability to convert to a functional eReader, and the ability to triple as an actual computer with the sometimes clunky, but industry standard Windows-based MS word.

I'm going to keep my eye out for the best one. My Netbook has a few months left for sure.

So on to the MP3 vs iPod. I've been reluctant to make the switch because of the price, but I have to. I'm going to get an iPod pretty soon. I have a CD player in my office that I haven't used in ages. I also have a stack of CDs that are dusty enough to have been excavated by Indiana Jones. Plus, my MP3 player doesn't have enough power to be heard when I'm riding my motorcycle, so I need something with a little muscle.

So Netbook with rotating touchscreen and iPod.  Check.

But what about a desktop? I have to admit, I love the Macbook Air (which I'd use as a desktop). It would be pretty ridiculous to have a Windows notebook and a Mac desktop. As peaceful and congruous as the relationship between a Muslim man and his Jewish wife. Still, I like the Mac. I'm up in the air with this. One of the problems is that there'd be a steeplearning curve. I hear there are camps and intervention groups that will help you through the transition, but I know how to deal with my demented little brother. Why should I get a new better brother and try and learn how to socialize with him now too? My father has an HP Touchscreen All in One Monitor. I like that and how it uses such less space. Maybe something like that would be perfect. I'll keep my eye out for them.

So I'm not sure about the desktop yet. But allow me to score your brain and leave you with this stunning image of a Mac thief. I can only imagine what I'd look like if someone was able to hack into my camera.

Read the full story here -- http://thisguyhasmymacbook.tumblr.com/ -- it's freaking hilarious.


  1. wow. you need a lot of tech. i have an 18'' laptop (desktop replacement), a sony e-reader and an iPod, and that's all i'll need for probably the next ten years (besides upgrading the computer once or twice, obviously). i'll probably never own another desktop pc again, though those all-in-ones with the touchscreen ARE tempting.

  2. Ah, just get a MacPro. You can use Scrivener, sync your devices, make movies, do really cool things with your photos, and the thing lasts. Yes it's expensive - but you get a lot in return. Also, most viruses are made for PC's!
    -Mac Campbell