HP's fast fashion, Linux wins and losses: The week in laptops

HP grabs headlines with lengthy battery life, slim notebooks, and a high-fashion collaboration. Plus, Linux loses ThinkPads, gains a Netbook. It's the week in laptops!

HP's Vivienne Tam Special Edition mini-note

This week, your Intrepid Editor returns from vacation, just in time to catch a Hewlett-Packard laptop-news trifecta. First, the company announced that it had achieved a mobile-computing milestone by getting the HP EliteBook 6930p to operate continuously for 24 hours on a single battery charge . Then came word that the Voodoo Envy 133 laptop, introduced in June, started shipping to customers. And finally, the company brought a bit of geekiness to New York's Fashion Week when a Vivienne Tam-designed HP mininote hit the runways.

Sony also initiated a multipronged attack on the headlines this week, first with its 18.4-inch media laptop, the Vaio AW , followed by two more Vaios on Friday.

Meanwhile, Lenovo dealt Linux fans a blow when it quietly stopped offering the OS as a preinstall option for its ThinkPads, IdeaPads, ThinkCenters, and IdeaCenters. But Linux had a win as well: the gang at CNET Asia found a $98 laptop from Chinese manufacturer HiVision with components that aren't likely to run any OS but Linux.

This week's rumor mill churned up news of a possible Samsung Netbook that just might hit the States; reports that Intel's next-generation Atom processor, codenamed Pineview, will hit the market in the third quarter of 2009; and wishful thinking for cheaper MacBooks .

In other news, Asus released a 15-inch gaming laptop, the G50V ; we admired the wooden Stiletto laptop stand ; and the $849 Asus N10 has us wondering: at what point is a small laptop no longer a Netbook? .

And finally, watch what you surf in seat 12C: Flight attendants and management of the newly Wi-Fi-equipped American Airlines are debating whether they should filter their in-flight Wi-Fi networks to keep passengers from accessing "inappropriate" sites (read: porn).

Have a great weekend!

About the author

    Tech expert Michelle Thatcher grew up surrounded by gadgets and sustained by Tex-Mex cuisine. Life in two major cities--first Chicago, then San Francisco--broadened her culinary horizons beyond meat and cheese, and she's since enjoyed nearly a decade of wining, dining, and cooking up and down the California coast. Though her gadget lust remains, the practicalities of her small kitchen dictate that single-function geegaws never stay around for long.


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