Laptop League Tables in the Land of the Lounge Lizard

For those of you who don’t remember the great 1980’s computer game “Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards” the title of this post will seem strange. Why don’t they write games like that any more? Maybe because they write better ones. But the screen scene with the blow-up doll in the closet was a cracker.

On a recent trip to New York I was struck by a new form of business paranoia – laptop envy. Given that everyone has a BlackBerry it’s hard to stand out from the crowd in the BA Lounge unless by your hardware. Believe me size counts. I even got chatted up on the plane when I pulled out my little one but more of this later.

There are three types of laptops. The first is the most common and by far the least cool. Pull out a 15 inch Lenovo, Dell and HP and you say to the world that you are a corporate drone. Clearly a successful drone or you wouldn’t be eating you own body weight in free BA sandwiches and guzzling the complimentary fizz but a drone when it comes to technology.

To be player your hardware must be very big or very small. The lust object du jour is the Apple Air. This is both big and small thereby winning you instant first prize. Big screen but as thin as a biscuit. Everyone will know you are a fashionista cyber-roadwarrior and you will immediate be upgraded to First Class.

The next guaranteed winner is a large MacBook Pro. Get the one with the largest screen you can carry and everyone will think you’re in the movie business. It will help if you avoid wearing a suit, have a pony tail and wear sandals. Loud conversations sprinkled with words like treatment and talent helps as does dropping names like Brad, Quentin, George etc. If you have a friend called George who lives in Eastbourne who has a bad hip just call him from the BA Lounge in December

“ George how are ya. Did you like the treatment. You did? Fantastic. How about I come out to the coast and we talk turkey.”

Tech credibility points: Huge

Alternatively, think small. Get yourself either a tiny Sony or an Asus eeePC. The joy of the Asus is that it is tiny, light and very cheap. Your average micro notebook costs over £1000 while the Asus costs under £200. Mine is white and has a 7” screen, less storage space than the average camera but it is very cool. The eeePC was designed for children so the keyboard is a bit small but it runs a version of Linux designed for newbies like me and has Open Office to read and write MS Office formats and wireless browsing with Firefox, music player and picture viewer. You can pop in a SD card or USB drive and boost your storage to whatever you need.

The best bit is you look like dotcom wunderkid even if you’re an old farty like me, The secret is to pretend to type by tapping randomly and people will think your writing the next Google Earth in textpad and be awed, except for the real geeks who know you’re just cheapskate corporate drone with a kid’s laptop.

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