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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > Powerbook Design

Powerbook Design
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Jacob
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Aug 28, 2005, 02:27 AM
 
Does anyone have any guesses as to what sort of design that the next gen Intel Powerbooks will have? We have been through Titanium and Aluminum, I'm wondering if Apple's going to stick with the Aluminum because it's light? Who knows. I think it would be silly to change it. It doesnt scratch as easy as Ti...*whew*

Anyhow, what about color? Is Apple going to stick with silver? Or do you think we'll be seeing some coating overtop the Aluminum? Meaning, are we going to be seeing sleek black Alu Powerbooks with a white glowing Apple logo? Maybe blue...just for fun. I would like to see that sort of thing. Would be very appealing.

I want to hear some ideas and suggestions!
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madmacgames
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Aug 28, 2005, 01:08 PM
 
>> Meaning, are we going to be seeing sleek black Alu Powerbooks

Hell no. If I wanted a black brick I would have bought a PC.
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phuture
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Aug 28, 2005, 10:32 PM
 
I'd like to see a return to curvy exteriors and hidden ports all in one place, rather than exposed ports scattered on the sides, ala '98-00 powerbooks. Gunmetal would be a nice color choice, and NO intel processors! Also, a return to swappable bays would be good for those always on the road so they could stick a second battery in. And put the backlit keyboard in all the powerbook models, including the 12".
     
mgl
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Aug 28, 2005, 10:53 PM
 
While I like the looks of curves, curves = bigger dimensions and what's more important in a notebook? Smaller = better.

Bays waste space. You have to have a lined bay and then the drive needs its own exterior. If the item is not removable, you can eliminate one of the linings, cutting space and weight.

In terms of design, I wish Apple would reinvent the notebook keyboard. Notebooks are a lot larger now. You can't just shift the keyboard to the left without disturbing the usability, but there is room for more creativity rather than cramming the keys of the 17" into the space of the 12". Move the cursor keys out of the block. Move the sound and expose controls to a position where they can be felt more more easily.

Colour: Black or silver, either is fine with me.
     
tracemhunter
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Aug 28, 2005, 11:21 PM
 
i wouldnt mind something a little darker than charcoal gray, as long as it has a bright ass blue apple on the top.
     
euphras
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Aug 29, 2005, 04:03 AM
 
Originally Posted by tracemhunter
i wouldnt mind something a little darker than charcoal gray, as long as it has a bright ass blue apple on the top.

Mine is white

Concerning the colour, since more and more silver PC laptops show up it´s likely that Apple will switch back to black. I don´t see a chance for coloured PBs anytime.


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tomrock
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Aug 29, 2005, 08:14 AM
 
You know it will be cool -- all of Apple's design is cool.

I just hope it's quiet, light and the battery performance is improved.
     
rhythmicmoose
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Aug 29, 2005, 09:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by phuture
and NO intel processors!
Maybe you were asleep at the time: http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2005/jun/06intel.html
     
robertj
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Aug 30, 2005, 02:02 AM
 
Originally Posted by Jacob
Does anyone have any guesses as to what sort of design that the next gen Intel Powerbooks will have? We have been through Titanium and Aluminum, I'm wondering if Apple's going to stick with the Aluminum because it's light? Who knows. I think it would be silly to change it. It doesnt scratch as easy as Ti...*whew*
I have it on very good authority that the next gen enclosure will be Admantium.
     
havocidal
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Aug 30, 2005, 11:56 AM
 
why not glossy black??? heh... like those you see on cars...
     
teknopimp
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Aug 30, 2005, 12:22 PM
 
Celabrite.

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kw14
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Sep 2, 2005, 01:58 PM
 
I vote for beautiful red cherry with a deep coat of poly.
     
madmacgames
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Sep 2, 2005, 03:34 PM
 
my wild and completely unfounded theory is that the next line of enclosures will be made out of a carbon fiber composite, and cost 3x as much.
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outsourced
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Sep 2, 2005, 03:46 PM
 
Lithium. The entire computer IS the battery.

Actually, probably still Al. It's abundant, cheap, and light. So is lithium, though...but hydrogen is lighter...

BTW: I like the idea of a blue lit Apple. Sounds cool, and it should be easy to implement.
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ApeInTheShell
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Sep 2, 2005, 05:58 PM
 
I think Aluminum is the way to go but I think it should at least match the future Power Mac designs. I can also see the iBook turning out to look a lot like the iPod Mini with curves. Of course, that was the clam book.
     
olePigeon
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Sep 2, 2005, 06:14 PM
 
Transparent plastic made of polycarbonate and woven teflon. You could see the inside of the computer AND it'd stop a bullet.
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jfelbab
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Sep 2, 2005, 06:16 PM
 
Didn't Apple file for a patent on technology that would change the color of the laptop based on set conditions? I'd love to see the exterior color change based on quantity of email pending or some other such event. I vote for the chameleon look.
     
crooner
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Sep 2, 2005, 07:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by jfelbab
Didn't Apple file for a patent on technology that would change the color of the laptop based on set conditions? I'd love to see the exterior color change based on quantity of email pending or some other such event. I vote for the chameleon look.
Never heard that but I dig the concept... The iMoodBook! Those of us older members remember the mood rings from the 1970's.

A laptop that will change color based on whether you're feeling happy, sad, pissed off, girlfriend just ran off with the mailman... girlfriend DIDN'T run off with the mailman... you name... endless possibilities!


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Laplace
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Sep 2, 2005, 08:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by jfelbab
Didn't Apple file for a patent on technology that would change the color of the laptop based on set conditions? I'd love to see the exterior color change based on quantity of email pending or some other such event. I vote for the chameleon look.

Maybe the apple on the top changes colors? That actually seems very feasible. Different programs have different color associations that could be user set.
     
SirCastor
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Sep 2, 2005, 11:17 PM
 
Anyone remember back in the day when the Titanium had just come out? I recall there being rumors of Steve being really PO'd at the fact that they were having a difficult time anotidizing the Titanium black. They got it every color except black. I have to agree that I would prefer the smaller form to the curvier looks. We went through our curvy phase in the late 90's and early part of this decade. Remember? They put the Apple upside down?

As for colors.... nah. Maybe the iBooks. Whether a shifting color or a static, leave it out of the pro line. I do like the suggestion of Gun Metal Black. Not shiny though. It'd scuff to easily.
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just a poster
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Sep 3, 2005, 01:45 AM
 
Carbon fiber
     
phoenix78
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Sep 3, 2005, 02:06 AM
 
i would love to see it go back to black.

i have had a 15"alu and now the new 17" alu and i am always paranoid of bending it in some way... aluminuim is a very malleable metal!! so something that DOES NOT BEND! lol... a little more rigid.

but wouldnt black be awesome with a glowing keyboard? provide a nice contrast.

possibly it would be a composite of plastic and metal?

OHHHHH and my biggest peev!!! smooth edges on the front of the handrest!!!!!! i cant emphasize that enough... so that your hands dont get pressure marks from resting off a sharp edge lol... and so the plastic border over the cd drive does not bend down while the rest of the aluminium case stays where itis...


lol.. my 2c worth.

cheers,
robM
     
ebow
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Sep 3, 2005, 02:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by ApeInTheShell
I think Aluminum is the way to go ... <snip>
Originally Posted by olePigeon
Transparent plastic made of polycarbonate and woven teflon. <snip>
How about a compromise? Transparent aluminum!
     
imzadi
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Sep 4, 2005, 12:23 AM
 
Originally Posted by ebow
How about a compromise? Transparent aluminum!
But has the Bounty done a slingshot around Sol yet to transort Scotty to 1980s San Franscisco? And just how did he get a Mac back then to run THAT fast?
     
SirCastor
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Sep 4, 2005, 02:18 AM
 
Originally Posted by phoenix78
i would love to see it go back to black.

i have had a 15"alu and now the new 17" alu and i am always paranoid of bending it in some way... aluminuim is a very malleable metal!! so something that DOES NOT BEND! lol... a little more rigid.

but wouldnt black be awesome with a glowing keyboard? provide a nice contrast.

possibly it would be a composite of plastic and metal?

OHHHHH and my biggest peev!!! smooth edges on the front of the handrest!!!!!! i cant emphasize that enough... so that your hands dont get pressure marks from resting off a sharp edge lol... and so the plastic border over the cd drive does not bend down while the rest of the aluminium case stays where itis...


lol.. my 2c worth.

cheers,
robM
I'd want to stick with Aluminum. Have you ever actually bent the metal on your PB? Aside from that, we'd have a hard time finding a metal as light as Aluminum (Aluminium to some). We could go back to Ti, but RF problems there, as I recall.
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Barry
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Sep 4, 2005, 12:56 PM
 
organic based on a calcuim base with silicon, carbon and hydrogen, oxygen powered battery, wireless Firewire 1600 connection to your right or left temporal region.
     
Avon
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Sep 4, 2005, 03:04 PM
 
The current style would be perfect for me. Although I know they are going to use some crummy Geforce or Radeon card, i would buy one without thinking twice if it had a nVidia Quadro Go card so I can run PC cad applications.
     
niji
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Sep 4, 2005, 08:54 PM
 
gunmetal shade of a magnesium alloy
     
Jacob  (op)
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Sep 4, 2005, 09:05 PM
 
nah...should be cheap molded generic PC plastic..yknow...like a Dell
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lamewing
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Sep 5, 2005, 08:48 AM
 
Originally Posted by mgl
While I like the looks of curves, curves = bigger dimensions and what's more important in a notebook? Smaller = better.

Bays waste space. You have to have a lined bay and then the drive needs its own exterior. If the item is not removable, you can eliminate one of the linings, cutting space and weight.

In terms of design, I wish Apple would reinvent the notebook keyboard. Notebooks are a lot larger now. You can't just shift the keyboard to the left without disturbing the usability, but there is room for more creativity rather than cramming the keys of the 17" into the space of the 12". Move the cursor keys out of the block. Move the sound and expose controls to a position where they can be felt more more easily.

Colour: Black or silver, either is fine with me.
The curves don't add that much soze to the machine, and while bays add space, bays also make replacing broken drives simple. You would no longer have to loose use of your notebook while it is being reparied because the drives are unremoveable.
     
d.fine
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Sep 5, 2005, 09:32 AM
 
Originally Posted by olePigeon
Transparent plastic made of polycarbonate and woven teflon. You could see the inside of the computer AND it'd stop a bullet.
chi-ching

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brent0saurus
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Sep 5, 2005, 10:22 AM
 
Yeah, and since it's see-through, maybe we wouldn't have to take it out of our bags when we get it x-rayed at the airport! I HATE taking my powerbook out of it's cozy case and putting it in that grimey plastic bin. But then again, since it's bullet proof, they might not even let it be on the plane....or would they...?
     
Tony Arnold
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Sep 5, 2005, 10:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by jfelbab
Didn't Apple file for a patent on technology that would change the color of the laptop based on set conditions? I'd love to see the exterior color change based on quantity of email pending or some other such event. I vote for the chameleon look.
It wasn't specific to laptops - AFAIK (if I remember right), it was originally designed with the iMac in mind (this was back in the "dalmation" phase). Cool tech though - I'd love to see a laptop with an OLED skin
     
NYGEO18
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Sep 5, 2005, 11:27 PM
 
itll be grey because thats the most neutral color (wont interfere with graphics work)
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Tesseract
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Sep 5, 2005, 11:59 PM
 
Originally Posted by ebow
How about a compromise? Transparent aluminum!


Yes, let's see a PB made of this stuff.
     
mania
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Sep 6, 2005, 12:09 AM
 
well, when I first saw the keynote with steve holding the AL book I had in mind that it was pretty solid, like a hunk of machined aluminum. but as you know I was disappointed how soft the real thing is. so my wish is cnc machined aluminum - totally bombproof.
     
spencers
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Sep 6, 2005, 12:58 AM
 
Originally Posted by madmacgames
my wild and completely unfounded theory is that the next line of enclosures will be made out of a carbon fiber composite, and cost 3x as much.
I agree..

Some of ASUS Ensemble line has Carbon Fiber structuring and casing
     
Tesseract
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Sep 6, 2005, 08:36 AM
 
A previous Apple notebook had carbon fiber structural support. I think it was the TiBook.
     
ibugv4
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Sep 6, 2005, 12:10 PM
 
I like black. I don't think Apple will go back to it, however. a Platnum grey is the future, I think. Something gun metal black-ish, but not actually black. I think the color changing exterior, as noted above, will be a set of color changing LEDs, possible like pin stripes, that can be set to whatever color one wants, and so long as the unit is awake it will have them that color. This would give it personality. I think the PowerBooks need as much style and personaility as the iBook line, if not more. The iBook is seen as a cheap starter unit, but I hate trading the "it looks like it has a soul" customability for the stregnth of a PowerBook.

FYI: You can color the Apple logo any color you want with some thin transparent plastic or papers by removing the lid. It works on iBooks and I can't see a reason for it not to work on PowerBooks. Our iBook has an orange logo.
     
ege02
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Sep 6, 2005, 01:53 PM
 
I strongly doubt Apple will go anything dark to it. Let's brainstorm some materials:

-Brick
-Concrete
-Rusted Iron
-Wood
-Carbon Fiber

Jokes aside, I think a red carbon fiber would go pretty sweetly to the PB.
     
PB2K
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Sep 7, 2005, 09:10 AM
 
Originally Posted by phuture
I'd like to see a return to curvy exteriors and hidden ports all in one place, rather than exposed ports scattered on the sides, ala '98-00 powerbooks. Gunmetal would be a nice color choice, and NO intel processors! Also, a return to swappable bays would be good for those always on the road so they could stick a second battery in. And put the backlit keyboard in all the powerbook models, including the 12".
stick with your pismo then. we want supersleek machines
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Rob van dam
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Dec 5, 2005, 10:33 AM
 
Originally Posted by PB2K
stick with your pismo then. we want supersleek machines

How about durable powerbooks
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pete
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Dec 5, 2005, 10:57 AM
 
Actually, it's not quite true. Look at the Thinkpad T-series with their ultra thin bays. The thinkpad is only 1 inch thick so the bay is really really thin. That computer also has a removable hard drive that pops out when you turn a screw.

My hopes for the new powerbook:

- softer edges. Not for design but for comfort - the pismo is really a good example of a comfortable computer with no edges that dig into your hand or wrists.

- an easy to click trackpad button. It's crazy to have a button that requires as much force as the albooks given our knowledge of RSI.

- A few external buttons for: screen brightness and sound in particular.

- a detachable keyboard using bluetooth or wifi connection

- a display that can be moved up and down to make it more comfortable to use - preferably together with the detachable keyboard

- Better displays, especially compared to the latest crop of 15"


- a two button trackpad clicker?


In short, I want a combination of a pismo and thinkpad t40 in a metal shell with height adjustable LCD and detachable, wireless keyboard.
     
Eriamjh
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Dec 6, 2005, 08:21 AM
 
Bring back the Pismo (except maybe in some high-tech materials).

( Last edited by Eriamjh; Dec 6, 2005 at 08:27 AM. )

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pete
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Dec 6, 2005, 08:47 AM
 
Yeah, bring back an updated pismo - same features, new hinge design, new specs and a cool new material. The ultimate powerbook! How can anybody argue against it?
     
Asam
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Dec 7, 2005, 01:28 AM
 
The next 13" wide screen Intel iBook will be made of carbon fibre which is harder and lighter then Aluminium, available in black or white, 25% thinnner, built in iSight, Yonah/Napa dual core, available to order at Mac World Expo in Jan, but actually shipping March/April, just in time for educational season.


15"/17" dual core PowerBooks will also be announced, using the dual core Freescale G4's

New form/factor Intel Aluminium PowerBooks will be announed at WWDC 2006, these will use the Conroe chips, they have built in feet, old skool style, but also a removable/rotateable screen which can be used with the lid closed tablet style. They'll feature Blue-Ray superdrives and contain hybrid hard drives which feature NAND flash on SATA II interfaces. Firewire will be gone, replaced with SATA II ports running with burst rates faster then 1.5 Gb/s.

ASam.....
----------------woo hoo
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driven
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Dec 7, 2005, 04:09 AM
 
My office just bought me one of these:


I got to spec it out .. it's as close to a Powerbook as I can make it.
1GB RAM, 128MB video card, 15.4" wide-screen, 2.13 Ghz Pentium-M processor.

For a PC, not bad. BUT: What's with the design?
- I put this next to my Powerbook G4 and this thing is nearly 3X as thick!!!
- It weighs several pounds more.
- The fans never ever shut off ... so it's loud too.
- All this and it cost MORE than my Powerbook. (Nearly $2695 in the current configuration!)

It doesn't "feel" as fast as my PB, but I think that's the OS rather than the machine.

If I didn't need this for work I'd never own it.

The upside: I really appreciate my Powerbook that much more now.

I hope that Apple switching to Intel won't cause them to build something that looks like this.
- MacBook Pro 15" Core i7 2.3Ghz / 256SSD (Work laptop)
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Simon
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Dec 7, 2005, 04:10 AM
 
Yuck.

     
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Dec 7, 2005, 04:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by niji
gunmetal shade of a magnesium alloy
now that would be figgin sweet
1.5Ghz 15" Alluminum Powerbook, 1.5Gb RAM, 64mb VRAM
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shunt
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Dec 7, 2005, 07:10 AM
 
Originally Posted by pete
Actually, it's not quite true. Look at the Thinkpad T-series with their ultra thin bays. The thinkpad is only 1 inch thick so the bay is really really thin. That computer also has a removable hard drive that pops out when you turn a screw.

My hopes for the new powerbook:

- softer edges. Not for design but for comfort - the pismo is really a good example of a comfortable computer with no edges that dig into your hand or wrists.

- an easy to click trackpad button. It's crazy to have a button that requires as much force as the albooks given our knowledge of RSI.

- A few external buttons for: screen brightness and sound in particular.

- a detachable keyboard using bluetooth or wifi connection

- a display that can be moved up and down to make it more comfortable to use - preferably together with the detachable keyboard

- Better displays, especially compared to the latest crop of 15"


- a two button trackpad clicker?


In short, I want a combination of a pismo and thinkpad t40 in a metal shell with height adjustable LCD and detachable, wireless keyboard.
Pete's got it right...on all counts, and all his ideas are do-able. One thing people forget is that curves add structural rigidity (if done right). Take a modern car body for example, minimal material, super thin, lighest in history, and plenty of curves in all the right places. My Tibook now belongs to my brother, the dang thing was just too delicate and flexible (yes-Ti flexes plenty, look it up) the screen frame was warped, and the edge dug into my wrist. I loved it, but on the road it was just too awkward and a little too flashy for public use.

I'm rockin' the Pismo as we speak, and for portability it's kickin' just fine. A little heavy, but rock solid.

As for materials, I say Bakelite! Dang that stuff's tough...seriously, woven graphiite or carbon fiber would be my guess...although it might hurt Wifi reception. And why not protect the corners somehow, even make them as replaceable inserts-and maybe integrate the carrycase innto the exterior, preferably with bits that have some better gripping material in your hand (dang PB are slippery little devils). Let's get some usable life back into these machines.

As for bays, only one interests me and that would be for the harddrive (s) .
Please keep in mind the ambiguously selective general understandings we've all agreed upon...
     
 
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