January 20, 2008

Bland Andhra

[.....this post is under Edit.........WIP]

I did not want to spend the NY at Chennai ...partying and drinking and eating. Hence the traveller in me woke up again from a long slumber(its been 4-5 months since i went anywhere)...

I had 3 choices
a) Kerala
b) The West Coast - from Bekal Fort to Goa
c) Andhra Pradesh (AP)

I did not want to do #a alone , hence chucked it. #b is in my to-do list for almost a year now. And #c was equally interesting as not many people backpack across AP. Culminating at Goa wasnt a good idea, as it was a NY season and it would be crowded (and the skyrocketing prices). Hence, it was #c :) Decided to get the ticket to start off on Friday evening to Vijayawada (VJW). Once in VJW, then i could decide on the future course of action on a daily basis.

Friday evening
Came back from work(it was my last day with my employer) , did some quick packing and started off to the Koyambedu Bus stand - boarded the bus - dreamt - and slept.

Day - 1 ( Saturday , Dec 29th, 2007)
[ KanakaDurga Temple - Undavalli Caves - Mogalarajapuram Caves - Kondapalli Fort ]
Reached Vijayawada in the morning at 5:15am. Brushed my teeth in the bus stand , had a hot tea , dumped my backpack in the cloak room and left for a darshan at KanakaDurga temple.

[.....this post is under Edit.........WIP]

January 19, 2008

New Buy : Acer 4520

Got my laptop couple of weeks back. It is an Acer 4520 with nVidia GeForce 7000m and an AMD Athlon X2 processor. After having used the DELL series of laptops(Lattitude and Inspiron) for couple of years, it was a pleasant experience moving towards Acer (with an AMD processor).

Actually, i am practically in love with my laptop and did not even expect such good performance from it. Though the idea of not buying a Mac was lurking in my mind, but after a conscious comparison between my desires and my wants, decided to stick to the present choice.

The features that led me to this choice were :
1) superb keyboard
2) amazing display (14.1-inch)
3) fantastic sound quality
4) Nice form factor

In fact, the sound quality is quite mind blowing and has really good clarity. I had little difficulty in getting and installing the video drivers, but once installed , the display is almost comparable to than of a Mac. Now I have a dual boot on XP and Ubuntu and it works like a charm.

The laptop doesnt produce much heat(i used to use Acer 5050 and it got really hot after a couple of hours) and has a nice form factor. Though, the display doesnt do a complete 180 degree tilt(as in, along the plane of the keyword), but the tapered edges does it give it a nice look and feel.

But couple of things i did not like about the laptop were
- the keypad and the surrounding bay is in white - i would have preferred a blackish/greyish color, as the pad gets dirty after a few weeks for a heavy user like me who spends 15-18hours a day with my computer.
- the trackpad is a little slow (probably i am not using properly) and the buttons doesn't work smoothly.

Other features include:
160GB hard disk
8x DVD Burner(Dual Layer)
Weighs just around 2.5 kgs
all the plugs/ports/sockets intact :D
1-year Internation Traveler’s Warranty

Overall, it has been a good buy for 30k INR.

And did i tell you guys that i got a headphone+mike, 2GB SanDisk zip drive, a LCD/Keyboard vaccum cleaner and a mouse(which looks cheap) as part of the deal.