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‘Computers’ Category

  1. How to buy a laptop computer

    June 24, 2013 by Karl

    Laptop Picture berry berry berry berry berry

    Wondering which computer is the best deal?  This article will give you some tips and tricks in knowing which computer will give you the most bang for the buck. This advice is true whether you are buying a desktop computer or a laptop computer, though generally laptop computers are not going to last as long as a desktop, and will be more costly to repair.

    Generally speaking. most laptops have the same basic features.  They all have keyboards, touch pads, microphones, cameras, DVD drives, USB ports, and LCD monitors.  So why the big difference in price?  What exactly are you paying for?  It all boils down to 4 basic things:  the type of processor, the amount of memory, size of the monitor, and the size of the hard drive.  These 4 things are what you need to consider when making a purchase.  The most important of these 4 in making a decision  is the processor.  The hard drive and memory can be upgraded or swapped out easily.

    The brand name no longer means a whole lot.  Historically, there have been good Dell laptops, and bad Dell laptops.  There have been good HP laptops and bad HP laptops.  What you are buying with the name is really the ability for the computer to be serviced during the warranty period, or down the road if it breaks after a few years.  Almost all computers come with a limited 1 year warranty, and generally most of the big name manufacturers offer the same level of support.

    The laptop monitors are all pretty basic.  They have an LCD display with a backlight behind it that allows you to see the display.  There are no magic secrets to deciding which display is best.  Go with the biggest you can find for the money you are shelling out.  A 15.6 inch display has become pretty standard over the years.

    In today’s world, any computer should have at least 4 GB of memory with a 300-500 Gigabyte  hard drive.  Again, look for the biggest you can get for the money you are spending.

    So, how do you distinguish between processors?  20 years ago Intel was the only name on the market, so you had a choice between their older 386 processor and their newer 486.  There was no confusion about which was better.  Now there are many manufacturers out there with hundreds of processors on the market, and distinguishing between them is a guessing game to the uninformed.  Unfortunately, some manufacturers take advantage of this and sell low-end processors in their high-priced computers.  The uninformed public often doesn’t know any better.  However, there is a better way!!!

    Geeks love to get together and compare toys.  Benchmark testing is what the geeks use to figure out which processor is better than another.  Lucky for us, these geeks also like to share their results!!  Here is a site where you can compare microprocessors to see which is faster than another.  Without this basic tool, there would be almost no way to keep track.  This page shows almost all the laptop processors out there, along with their benchmark score.  The higher the score, the better the processor.  Often you will find two laptops around the same price, and one will have a benchmark of less than half the other.  It’s kind of sad how the manufacturers play to our lack of knowledge.  Please note that the prices listed on the benchmark page are for the processors only and should NOT be used as a gauge for the price of a laptop.

    I have a list of recommended laptops in the Frugalberry Store, which I will try to keep up to date.  Please post a comment if I fall behind and it needs to be updated.

    Benchmark Tool Link:

    Processor Image


  2. Don’t buy cards at the store…..

    March 29, 2013 by Karl

    cards photoberry berry berry

    Buying cards for birthdays, holidays, and special occasions at the store can be very costly.  I have recently been introduced to a method of sending professional quality cards through the mail (not e-cards) for less money, which is also more convenient than shopping, writing, addressing, and sending traditional cards.   You can choose from hundreds of existing designs, or create your own design with photos from your computer.  You don’t need to print them, stuff them or send them.  All this is done for you at a lower cost than a traditional card bought from the store.  Send one card, or send 100.  Quantity doesn’t matter.  Whether you send cards to personal friends or business  associates, this is a fantastic way to let people know that you are thinking of them.

    Sending cards is something we can do to have a significant impact on the lives of family members, friends, business contacts or even strangers.  Many people have a desire to send a card to people several times a month for various reasons (sympathy, birthday, anniversary, etc.).  More often than we would like to admit, the card does not get sent.  We struggle to find the time.  We don’t get to the store.  We forget.  The cost of the cards is high.  We aren’t thrilled with what the inside of the card says.  There are many obstacles.

    There is a movement going on in our world toward computer based services.  Sometimes we aren’t sure if it is a good thing or not, but it is becoming an increasing reality.  There is always good and bad associated with change.  What did Netflix do to the video rental industry, Amazon do to the bookstore industry or itunes do to the music store industry?  People are getting used to getting products and services online.  So, let’s revisit the need to send cards for different occasions.  A company I have discovered is revolutionizing the greeting card industry.  That company is SendOutCards.  It is an online greeting card and gifting company.  Imagine being able to pick a card from a virtual card store, personalize the message on the inside, and send it for less than a third of the cost of a card purchased at the local card store.  Imagine doing this from your home, office, coffee shop or even the beach.  With the click of a button a card can be sent in a matter of minutes.  The card is printed, stuffed in an envelope, stamped and taken to the post office by the next morning.   Because of this cost and time savings, it is possible to send cards more frequently.  It has a positive effect on the recipient and creates a positive feeling in the sender as well.  There is so much more that can be done with this system, but you can explore and find that out if this has aroused your curiosity.  I have found it to be very helpful in my day-to-day need to reach out to people, and I am now using it to help market my business.

    Click on the image below for more information.  This will link you to the site of a friend of mine who is in the business.  You can test drive the system at no cost!!  There is also an income opportunity with this company and product if interested.

    SendOutCards Link