43 Folders

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Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.

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”What’s 43 Folders?”
43Folders.com is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.

Laptops: A blessing or a curse?

When I got my first laptop, I loved the exhilarating freedom of whipping it out anytime I "needed" it. No matter where I am, I could work on a project, balance a budget, or play a video game. Years later, despite its "convenience", I'm dangerously married to my laptop.

It's with me virtually everywhere. On the bus, at work, at home, in bed. And yes, it even goes with me to the toilet--the perfect time for multi-tasking, right? According to my estimate, I spend twice as much time looking at an LCD screen than high-definition reality.

My laptop, supposedly handy, is now just an easy excuse to work (or procrastinate) at any time, all the time. I need help, and it's time for an intervention.

Do you have an unhealthy marriage with your laptop? Have you switched back to desktops? How have you coped? Please share.

Ryan's picture

Re: Laptops: A blessing or a curse?

I would never go back to the chains of desktop slavery after experiencing the liberation of laptop portability. But being able to take our portable pals anywhere has negative consequences as well, as they often end up with us when we take a vacation. Having a notebook with you whilst on vacation is a fun killer unless you are disciplined enough to keep it switched off. Tim Ferriss has said checking emails on your laptop during vacation, defeats the purpose of that holiday regeneration period:

No Laptops on Vacation!

Right now I own a Toshiba Satellite from 2004 that is still giving sterling service, but it can be a little heavy lugging it between airports. Consequently I thought about purchasing an ultralight laptop, the Vaio TZ has great specs and a really compact form factor, but a price tag of $2000 put me off. Now Asus have released their ultraportable Eee PC with 7 inch screen and flash hard drive for only $500 I think I'll go with that. Currently it runs a Linux OS, but there will be one out with Windows XP soon.




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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