And I can do all my work just fine using cheap computers. (the Dell cost me less than $300). I also have a Dell Chromebook 13 (check the outlet) that is my portable computer when I need to be at my desk.
Chrome OS is Cheap
Both computers cost me less than five hundred dollars.
Chromebooks and Chromeboxes have enough ram and enough storage and the docs I create do not count towards my Google Drive Storage. And with a Chromebook purchase it also includes 100GB of storage as well.
I can use Google docs for letters or papers or resumes or pretty much any other document I can think of. I tend to use it for writing blog posts that I publish here and on other sites and thanks to an the gabriel add-on I can post directly from Google Docs to my Jekyll site on Github pages.
Probably the best thing about writing blog posts in Google Docs is the fact that I quickly add links. I highlight the word or phrase and google searches and suggests and most times it’s spot-on because, well, it’s Google.
It’s Better than an iPad.
I’ve tried writing on an iPad but I could not get used to using the touch and even though my Dell Chromebook is touch as well. Perhaps it’s my age but I just can’t get used to touching the display and I much prefer using the touchpad.
Speaking of the touchpad I think this is where ChromeOS is superior over any other OS. The multi-touch gestures allow me to swipe and scroll to navigate rather than using a traditional mouse to point and click. Once you use this for a while it seems so old school to go back to just using a mouse.
Google Docs Runs Everywhere
I could write this on every device I own. I could start it on the phone, grab an iPad or Chromebook and then finish up the article when I get back home. There’s not much of an excuse not to write when using google docs.
Free Updates Every Six Weeks
One of the best things is how the update system works. About every six weeks there’s a ChromeOS update that downloads in the background. When it’s done downloading the update all you need to do is restart the computer. No pinwheels of death. You get five years of this before your Chromebook is end of life.
Synchronization Across all Devices
Not only does google docs sync your writing across all your devices, the OS will also synchronize across all devices too so all your settings are the same on any chromebook or Chromebox you use.
A Powerwash Fixes All
It’s very rare, but if you do have problems with your Chrome OS device, a quick ‘powerwash’ fixes all issues and resets the device like new. You don’t have to re-install operating systems and update drivers and all that jazz.
There are some Nice ChromeBooks
It seems like Chromeboxes have been forgotten about but new Chromebooks are released regularly and you have choices from about $150.00 to more than $500 for higher end models
Chrome Extensions Increase Your Productivity
You can personalize your ChromeOS experience with extensions. I run a must-have ad blocker and the todoist extension to help keep me organized but there are many others that are available on Google Web Store
We’ve come a long way. The idea that you can buy a computer for less than $200 that for the most of us - myself included - can do all that you need for your everyday computing is really quite amazing.
As you can see from the date of the previous post, it’s been awhile since I have written here, and I hope to start writing more regularly.
But I have been thinking about what I want ramseeker to be for the next 20 years and now that it’s close to 20 years since I launched this site I have been thinking about what’s next for ramseeker.
ramseeker started as a hobby site and it’s come full circle and is indeed a hobby site again and I’ve tried some stuff in recent years and months as I try to figure out what direction I want this site to head.
And that’s the problem: I have no idea.
When I started this site I had no idea I would be tracking prices of memory but I ended up doing that for more than a decade and helped a lot of people - both vendors and users.
But thanks to the iPhone, and the MacBook Air for starting a trend of memory upgrades that are not user-replaceable there’s not a whole lot of demand for ram prices unless you’re looking to buy ram for legacy macs. Any computer you’ve been using lately has probably not needed a ram upgrade or will do with the amount of ram it already has.
Heck, I’m writing this on a Chromebook with 4GB of RAM and that’s more than enough.
So here I am.
One thought would be to write about every mac and it’s specifications but that’s been done and much better than I ever could. I thought about writing about ram upgrades for every PC but I think I would rather shoot me. Besides, computer memory sales I would guess is for the for the hobbyist or somebody trying to squeeze a lot out of their mac.
This is a hobby site now and one thing that a hobby site needs to be is fun . Back in the late 90’s and early 00’s tracking ram prices (and learning html) was fun. It was exciting times to watch technology march on so fast as ram got bigger in capacity and yet cheaper at the same time.
But now a couple hundred bucks will get you a pretty good computer for most everyday users and writing about tech and apple has been done to death and to be honest I am not all that interested in writing about every software release or new Mac or mobile device. I’ve never been a deal site or news site and I have no urgency to start now.
So I have decided I will start to write about what I want. I doubt I will write about what I had for lunch (there’s twitter for that) but this site needs to be fun for me if I need to continue on with it in any shape or form. If I had to guess it will more than likely be tech-related still.
I’m also hoping that by just writing more regularly something will rise up to the top that I will recognize that it’s a topic I want to explore more. It happened before with ram prices. I just stumbled into them over time so perhaps it will happen again.
And if not, then at least I will have fun trying.
If you’re looking for RAM prices you can find them here
The Apple iMac comes in 2 different screen sizes and 5 different configurations:
21.5 inch iMac with 1.6GHz Processor, 8GB of memory and 1TB Storage
21.5 inch iMac with 2.8GHz Processor, 8GB of memory and 1TB Storage
21.5 inch iMac with 3.1GHz Processor, 8GB of memory and 1TB Storage and retina 4K display
27 inch iMac with 3.2GHz Processor, 8GB of memory and 1TB Storage and retina 5K display
27 inch iMac with 3.3GHz Processor, 8GB of memory and 2TB Storage and retina 5K display
Actually there are many more iMac configurations than this because you can always add more ram or buy a SSD drive at time of purchase (both recommended)
but if you are looking for the stock iMac then you’re looking at these five.
There can be some disadvantages to using an iMac vs something like a Mac Mini and that’s the fact that these Apple desktops combine processor and display all in one unit. The iMac is a popular seller and closing in on it’s 20th anniversary but that’s something to consider.
Probably the biggest disadvantage is the fact that you have to spend close to $1000 and you’re still stuck with a spinning hard drive in 2016. I know, as desktops these are meant to be used either in the Office or Home and may hold many documents and photos and even the 1TB storage is too small, but if it were me I would not buy any computer that doesn’t have a SSD Drive standard.
There is a Fusion Drive as standard but it’s either extra money for this option or you have spend more and buy the 27 inch model.
The Pros of the iMacs are the fact that it’s an Apple and offers features that only an Apple computer can offer. If you want what is arguably the best screen on an all in one computer today, you should consider an iMac.
Is an iMac worth it?
Only you can decide, but I can tell you that I don’t need one. I have ditched paying the Apple tax and am fully invested in Chromebooks where a little over $100 will give you a pretty competent machine for everyday computing tasks.
But, if you’re a power user and want a very fast computer from Apple with a very nice display and lots of choice when it comes to both storage and hard drive options then the iMac might be a very good choice.
Expect to pay from about $499.00 and up for a brand new Mac Mini from Apple in 2016.
The Mac Mini (the current one) comes from Apple in the following configurations:
1.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
500GB hard drive1
Intel HD Graphics 5000
2.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
1TB hard drive
Intel Iris Graphics
2.8GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
1TB Fusion Drive
Intel Iris Graphics
The cheapest Mac Mini you can buy today is $499.00 as a new unit but you may be able to find it cheaper as refurbished model. (as well as the other configurations) Check for refurbished Macs here
The other models offer faster processors, more RAM and in some cases: fusion drives. The last feature is really what you should consider as the most important feature if you want a faster Mac Mini.
The starter model comes from Apple with a spinning 500GB hard drive and it’s a shame because prices on SSD storage has dropped considerably and if Apple had equipped this with even a 128GB ssd (the maximum on most phones) then they would have had a very nice desktop mac with very nice features at a very nice price.
But currently you need to spend another $200 to get the 2.66Ghz Mac Mini and then you are close to spending one thousand dollars on a desktop Mac with a SSD drive which is another $200 upgrade. This begs the question: maybe you should buy a PC instead? Or perhaps just switch to an Apple notebook like the MacBook Air which includes portability and a display keyboard and touchpad too.
Power Users will want the $999.00 model which is a bit faster and inludes the fusion drive as standard but at a thousand dollars is the Mac Mini a deal when you compare it to other small format desktop computers?
I guess that last question is up to you but if you’re looking at the cheapest apple computer you can buy you’re looking at spending **at least ** $$500 for the base configuration