David Lubar

It seems that there are almost as many laptop computers as there are laptops. Everyone has one, and the world is filled with the tappity-tap sound of typing on planes and buses, in waiting rooms, and even in restaurants. But, unlike the extremely easy-to-use plug-and-play computer on every desktop, there are some tricks and subtleties involved in getting the most out of these portable machines. As a service to our readers, here's a list of laptop tips:


When you are almost done for the day, pretend that you have an hour or two of work left. This might trick the battery into letting you finish.

Put your name in your AUTOEXEC.BAT file so thieves will know who's machine they aren't returning.

If the screen seems dim and hard to read, you may have had a stroke. See your doctor immediately.

If the screen seems bright and clear, you may be hallucinating. See your doctor immediately.

Be sure any model you purchase is capable of handling future versions of Windows, OS/2 and Tetris.

If you're having trouble controlling the pointing device, try tipping the whole computer. The cursor has a tendency to float, and you can get it to the spot you want just be tilting the screen and tapping gently on the opposite side. Honest.

Some folks have a bit of trouble adjusting to the smaller keyboard. To make typing easier, give each fingertip a quick touch-up in an electric pencil sharpener.

Tests have shown that the typical display is clearest when viewed in the light cast by a 73-watt incandescent bulb. If this wattage isn't available in your area, you can get the same illumination with two dozen candles.

Battery life can be severely shortened by misuse. This includes leaving the computer unplugged for too long a period of time, leaving the computer plugged in for too long a period of time, plugging and unplugging the computer too frequently, or not plugging and unplugging the computer frequently enough.

Don't call it a laptop. It's a notebook. Or a sub-notebook. Or a sub-mini-micro notebook. If you refer to it as a laptop, people will know you are hopelessly out of touch and probably don't have anything important to do, let alone any need to do it while in a plane or bus or waiting room or restaurant.

"Laptop Tips" Copyright © 1996 by David Lubar

Back to HUMOR

Back to HOME