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Netbooks for Bschool?

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Joined: 15 Jan 2009
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Netbooks for Bschool? [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2009, 23:52
I looked at the laptop discussion thread and didn't find the answer I need. I also searched and didn't find anything. Since Netbooks are not exactly the same as regular Laptops, I think discussions about Netbooks warrant its own special post :) but in case this topic has been posted already, feel free to let me know if it needs to be moved or whatever.

I currently have a desktop at home and it's sufficient for my current and anticipated bschool needs. However, considering many bschool students carry laptops to campus and many bschool students also use laptops quite often on campus, I'm starting to investigate getting a netbook to carry around on campus.

I'm leaning towards a netbook rather than a laptop b/c it's 1) cheap 2) light weight, smaller size 3) can still run Office Suite and browse the net

The downside w/a netbook that I can see is 1) some models have funky keyboards that are difficult to type with 2) no dvd drives

I'll still use my desktop at home for heavy duty work, but my questions for current bschool students are:
1) how essential would you say having a netbook/laptop is for bschool?
2) would you say that a netbook is good enough for bschool needs? (i.e., would most bschool assignments require anything other than Office and the internet?)

Thanks very much for your help!
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Re: Netbooks for Bschool? [#permalink] New post 05 Jun 2009, 16:22
I'd say netbooks still aren't worth the money if that's the primary reason you're going for them. A new 320gb duo-core/3gb ram notebook is ~499 now, and netbooks are like ~200. I'd imagine the types of applications you use would depend on what type of classes you're taking. if you take econometric forecasting, for example, you're going to need to be using software like R which require a heavy processor for all the computations.
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Re: Netbooks for Bschool? [#permalink] New post 16 Jun 2009, 12:31
I thought about getting a netbook when my laptop keeled over. My IT friends informed me that the netbook wouldn't keep up with the computing power I needed, such when using as Crystal Ball or other add-ins. And if you like to have a couple of windows open and work off both, the screen size will make that tricky, especially with large spreadsheets.

The other thing with these is that the smaller your interface, the more likely you are to have repetitive stress injuries.
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Re: Netbooks for Bschool? [#permalink] New post 16 Jun 2009, 15:54
I have a netbook right now (and I like it!) and I also had the same idea as you: have a netbook for mobile use but have a nice desktop at home for most of my work. The more I thought about it though, the less I thought that this arrangement is a good idea. Here are couple of reasons,

1. One is the right number of computers in your life. Trust me on this issue, and even if you don't, trust Randy Pausch who also said the same thing. At one point, I had five computers in my life, and while this polygamous arrangement was necessary at that time, managing data consistency over so many computers was hell. Simplify your life, try to stick with one computer. Back up your data often but you really want to stick with just one computer if possible.

2. Netbooks are portable and great, but they are not for long sessions of work. The small keyboard and screen are fine for short sessions but any long sessions (more than 30 mins IMO) of work, it becomes a hassle. I bought a small keyboard that I carry around when I know I'll be using my netbook to take notes or minutes to avoid this problem. There's nothing I can do about the small screen though. My netbook is basically used as a PMP and e-mail-on-the-go machine. I don't really use it for document work unless I have no other choice.

The issue of not having an optical (DVD or CD) drive is really not that big of a deal. Flash memory is so cheap and convenient that you really can get away without having one. In fact the laptop I intend to purchase (Lenovo X200s) will not have one either. I carry around a 4 GB (and will be getting a 16 GB one soon) flash drive with me, so if I need to install anything off a DVD, I copy the contents to this flash drive and run it off of that.

To give a direct answer to your questions.
1) I think a laptop or portable computer is absolutely necessary for b-school. You won't just be working on individual assignments, you will be working in teams a lot that means you need to have some form of a portable computer.
2) I think a netbook + desktop solution is also doable (you're probably not going to be running any hardcore simulation software when you hold your team meetings, so you can do that stuff on your desktop) but I think a single laptop solution is much more convenient and sensible.
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Re: Netbooks for Bschool? [#permalink] New post 12 Feb 2012, 20:10
prefer netbook for school... easy & light to carry, than laptop...
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Re: Netbooks for Bschool? [#permalink] New post 12 Feb 2012, 22:14
I love my Mac Book Air (MBA). It's light weight, good battery life, fast boot up and can do anything you want.

At home, I have a big 24 inch screen where my MBA can dock in.

My blog on MBA life, App Prep Guide, and the baller things that B-Schoolers do.

Re: Netbooks for Bschool?   [#permalink] 12 Feb 2012, 22:14
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