My Computer Journal

writings on computer hardware & software

Coming soon – better software.

Lets say you’re an owner of a small service-oriented company– one person, five, 10. The most common business software for running your business will be QuickBooks or Quicken.

Have you actually tried to use either. Its hard.

Lets say you do landscaping. Further, let’s assume you provide a variety of services: lawn maintenance; sod installation; tree pruning; spraying against insects; etc. So let ‘s say you did twenty installations of sod last year. You say you did more?… Ok, lets say you did 200 installations of sod. Wouldn’t you like to make sure that those 200 customers have the opportunity to also use your lawn maintenance software. Can you find the one’s who don’t use that service so you can call them and encourage them to do so? I defy to to try. Its really difficult. But should it be?

Let’s suppose you have a salesman, a bookkeeper, and an office manager in addition to your outside staff. Should the software look the same to each of the three? Nope.

The salesman wants to know things like, who haven’t I called in six weeks or who is not using my lawn maintenance services. The bookkeeper wants to know who is in arrears. Which turkeys haven’t paid their bills. And the office manager wants to know other information. So no, they should all not be using the software in the same way and should not be seeing the same information.

In another article I will talk about software that will permit exactly this.

There are three main things to consider that might be affecting your computer’s performance:

  1. Age – an older computer worked fine on day one but now is slow. One reason is that over the years software gets updated and that program that ran fine in 2010, is now running slowly because the latest version is using up more of your horsepower. Add to that the fact that you probably have a bunch more programs and voila, your computer runs slow.
  2. Computer memory – if you open a lot of programs then your computer may run slow because your computer will start load program pieces into your paging file on disk and accessing disk is far slower than accessing your programs in RAM memory.
  3. Computer malfunction – Windows is continually updated. Not every update goes in properly (although they should). So a Windows operating system issue could be causing a slow-down. But a more common problem is a slowly failing hard drive. If your computer has to read and reread areas of the disk it will definitely slow your computer’s performance.

Little screens for doing major work… I don’t understand..

But there is a type of laptop I do understand and it doesn’t run Windows and its not from Apple. I understand Chromebooks.


An Asus Chromebook

Chromebooks rely on Google Chrome for virtually everything. For most operations you need a wifi connection but these days wifi is prevelant everywhere. Here we have a tablet with keyboard. The screen flips around to rest on the back of the keyboard for use as a tablet.  And at two pounds its just slightly heavier than an iPad. And the cost? Under $300.

Chromebooks to my mind are not a replacement for a desktop computer unless you can do all your work within Chrome. But with a bunch of apps including word processing, spreadsheet, presentations, and games it may do well for many users.