VIATechAPC

…That is the question I’ve been struggling with for a while.  I don’t like being tethered to a single spot in my house, but sometimes I need a little more functionality than any tablet can provide.  I’ve always been a fan of laptops over desktops as a personal computer.  I like the flexibility a laptop gives you, being able to go from room to room, from table, to couch, to floor.  If nothing else, it is not nearly as cluttering.

 

Even when we used to have a computer desk at home, we had a docking station set up, with an LCD flat panel monitor, a wireless keyboard and mouse, so we could take the laptop out whenever we wanted to.  At work I have the same setup, so I can disconnect my laptop at a moment’s notice, if need be.


I don’t consider myself extremely lazy, but I sit at a desk all day hunched over a keyboard.  Now, instead of dedicating a spot in my house for a computer desk, if I could find a way to have a setup with my TV as the monitor, so that I could relax on my recliner and still do what I need to on a personal computer, with a wireless keyboard and mouse, that would be great.  I’m limited in space in the corner of my den where the TV is, so if there was a computer that was small enough to fit in that spot, without adding to the clutter, I won’t have to hear about it all the time.

Recently Raspberry Pi came out as a really small $35 computer.  It just looks like a computer motherboard, with no case and it is a little bigger than a credit card, but it runs Linux.  While it comes with most input ports that people need, like 2x USB ports, Ethernet network connection, and HDMI, the yellow RCA plug isn’t compatible with most monitors.
VIA Technologies APC 8750

Enter VIA Technologies APC 8750.  Like the Raspberry Pi, it is inexpensive at $49, and small, but unlike the Pi, it is faster, has more memory, 2 more USB ports, and 2GB of on board storage, with a microUSB slot for cards up to 32GB.  Best of all (for me at least), it runs Android Gingerbread 2.3.  It would be nicer if it ran Andriod Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0, but I won’t be greedy.  I’m not sure what they are referring to, but apparently, only non-market, 3rd party apps can be installed, and it cannot access the apps from Google Play.  Hopefully I can side-load the apps I’d want on it from a USB card.

I think it might be time for me to collect all the peripherals I’ve lent out to friends and family so I can get this set up.  Pre-orders start to ship in July.

Sorry if I got a bit (get it?) too techie in this post.  I guess I just got a little excited and carried away.  Am I the only one who thinks this is cool?  I hope not… 

– Yak

To PC or Not To PC…

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