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This week in laptops

Crave presents the week's laptop news in digest form.

Crave presents the week's laptop news, in digest form.

After last week's feast of product announcements, a laptop famine seemed inevitable. This week we were so hungry for new laptops, in fact, that CNET UK declared the chocolate-colored Asus U6 to be "completely edible." Here in the United States, we did our best to sate appetites with reviews, performance testing, and related news from around the Web.

Groovy laptop cases are on the menu at Etsy. Janine King Designs/Etsy

The meal began with an amuse-bouche of tiny-laptop news: The Vulcan FlipStart saw a significant price drop, and PC World reported on a coalition of seven companies that are working on a Linux-based open-source platform to compete with Windows-based UMPCs.

Moving on to appetizers, we'd hoped to dig into the quad-core Xtreme Notebooks 917V, but its display issues compelled us to send it back. Meanwhile, our sampler platter of cheap laptops failed to appear. And CNET Labs staff was dissatisfied with its first bite of gaming on the Intel G965 integrated graphics chipset. In the end, the only member of our team to consume anything was Matt Elliott, who was forced to eat crow after canceling his order for the apparently fictional Medison Celebrity. (Still, at the table and in life, it's better to be hopeful than cynical.)

The main course fared better. We enjoyed the juxtaposed flavors of handmade crafts and high technology in our roundup of the best Etsy shops for decking out your gadgets. We also marveled at the Velocity Micro NoteMagix X25, which has the distinction of offering both faster performance and shorter battery life than almost any other laptop we've tested. Unfortunately the $829 Sony VAIO NR160E/W was not fully cooked, though it does hold the distinction of being the cheapest VAIO we've reviewed.

For those who think fruit constitutes dessert, there were two Apple finishers: the sunny report that Macs now account for 17.6 percent of the laptop market, and the bittersweet news that Mac OS X 10.5, aka Leopard, will likely be released in late October. Gluttons, meanwhile, were enticed to register for the October 10 ThinkLive event, sponsored by Lenovo and NotebookReview.com; participants are eligible to win a $5,000 ThinkPad Reserve Edition laptop.

With our plates clean, we push away from the table for another week. Have a great weekend!