back to article Too fat to fly: Kevin Smith and OpenOffice

News has surfaced of humiliation for two oversized geek icons. Director Kevin Smith has been deemed too fat to fly by SouthWest airlines, who turfed him off an Oakland to Burbank flight just as he'd buckled himself in. Meanwhile, OpenOffice has been deemed too fat for Ubuntu's NetBook distribution. "I'm way fat... But I'm not …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Further muddy the waters

    A netbook is no longer the cheap and under powered thing it was since they have to at least try and run windows now.

    So at 200 or more of your currency, and with laptops at 300 or a little over, just what is the point anymore.

    1. Peter Mount

      sometimes there is

      Having recently forking out for a netbook, yes there still is a point - at either £300+ for a laptop or £200+ for a netbook, it all depends on what you want them to do.

      In my case I really needed something smaller than a normal laptop but larger than a tablet/phone - so an 8" netbook was just what I needed - a 14" laptop would have been overkill for what I needed it to do.

    2. Haku

      Netbook vs laptop

      "just what is the point anymore"

      Physical size and weight.

      For me, my Asus Eee 900 is very convenient to carry around because it's lightweight & small, for a little more I could have gotten a bigger screen, bigger harddrive, faster laptop but the weight & size would make it awkward to carry around with me everywhere.

      I really dislike the trend of the average smaller size of netbooks having 10" screens, my 8.9" screen netbook is perfectly fine for me and I have no troubles touch typing on the keyboard, in fact I now find 'fullsize' keyboards more difficult to type on because they're so much bigger.

    3. heyrick Silver badge

      What's the point?

      15" laptops.

      17" laptops.

      Laptops bigger than a place mat. Laptops that you can put an LP in, close the lid, and there's no overhang.

      It's the nerdy version of what cars are to penis sizes.

      EeePC901. Itty-bitty. Like a grown-up organiser, but it runs a real operating system with real software so I can get real work done. Small form factor so I can take it pretty much anywhere I go. It is unobtrusive. It is perfect. I don't WANT a big laptop.

      * - Additional benefit #1, the guys at work see me watching MP4s I've recorded off the telly, and they think it's some sort of DVD player. :-)

      * - Additional benefit #2, the management types at work have newish "proper" laptops, and they're always toting wires and stuff around because the battery can't be relied on to get from one end of a tediously long meeting to the other. Wanna know how long MY battery lasts?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bloated? Compared to what?

    I use OpenOffice for almost everything, but I also have MS Office 2004 and iWork 09. OpenOffice 3.2 is smaller than either suite, two-thirds the size of iWork. Probably a lot smaller than Office 08, but I don't have it for comparison. OpenOffice has a wider range of tools than either of them too.

    So why is OpenOffice branded as bloated? Can we have some hard data to illustrate this?

    1. Ian McNee

      Hard Data

      Yup it's true: the Open Office 3.2 32-bit Debian package is a whopping 139MB - I mean talk about bloatware! Whereas M$ Office 2007 is so svelte and neatly trimmed that it fits on only 3 CDs! Oh...erm... *cough*

      As for the inclusion of AbiWord (and presumably Gnumeric as with Xubuntu) it seems a sensible compromise as an install of Open Office is only a couple of clicks away. And I would imagine GIMP was removed as it's fairly processor intensive, overtaxing the Atom.

      p.s. Andy: nice to see the merits of Umbongo are growing on you at last :-)

    2. Captain Thyratron

      Simple answer.

      Office suites in general tend to be clusterfuckware, because the whole point is to have a single software suite that does everything a beancounter could possibly want. Somebody hid a flight simulator in Excel 97 as an easter egg and nobody inferred this from its size; that was in 1997.

      To claim that OpenOffice isn't bloated because iWork and MS Office are bigger is isomorphic to claiming that to weigh four hundred pounds doesn't make you fat just because people exist who are too fat to walk. You can still hide sandwiches between the folds; ergo, you're fat.

  3. Duncan Hothersall

    "Google Gears doesn't really work"

    Oh shit, really? It appears that I've been incredibly lucky then, what with me using it on multiple machines for several years now without fault.

    Google Docs is a perfect solution for a netbook. It's the right decision.

    1. Dave Murray
      Thumb Down

      Right for you maybe

      "Google Docs is a perfect solution for a netbook. It's the right decision."

      For you maybe but not for everyone. I do my best to restrict how much Google track myself and my gf online. We don't have the Google accounts required and we don't want them. Constant digital surveillance and advertising are not features we want.

      Netbooks are perfect for working on while on the train, bus, in the airport, etc but if you want internet access there then you often need to pay for it. If I want to edit a document while travelling why should I pay to do so?

      1. Duncan Hothersall

        Gears means offline

        Understandable that you don't know how Google Docs works since you said you've never used it, but while I agree it would be completely impractical if you had to be online to edit your documents, the whole point of Gears is that you don't. Google Docs with Gears runs offline, and then automatically synchronises your work when you go online again.

        Fair enough if you don't want to use Google on a point of principle - it's not like Ubuntu netbook edition will bar you from installing whatever software you want, so just install what you need. But I continue to think that Google Docs with Gears is a very good default for a netbook.

    2. breakfast Silver badge
      Thumb Up


      I've found Docs to be great for the netbook because I can pick up with my documents on a real computer later and not have to worry about copying them manually or emailing them about. For what I'm working on at the moment this is a real boon.

  4. Ian Ferguson
    Thumb Down

    Kevin Smith

    Actually, Kevin Smith is just being a whiny dick.

    According with SWA's policy on overweight people, he purchased two seats to accomodate his hefty arse. He didn't make his flight on time and asked to be put on a standby list for another flight. When that flight had been boarded, they allocated the standby seats; there were only single seats left, no double seats. As he couldn't fit in a single seat, they couldn't allow him on the plane. This happened at the gate, not on the plane.

    As much as I hate airlines and their cattle-class policies, I have to side with SWA on this one. They were just following their own rules, which he had previously happily followed too. I mean, would you like to be one of the people sitting beside him, if he was too wide to fit between the armrests?

    1. SuperTim

      erm....yes i would...

      I would be more than happy.

      I would rather not sit next to some thin dick who thinks his thinness is down to his lifestyle choice rather than it just being a fortunate metabolism....

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Gosh yes.

        I think a metabolic inability to resist cake *is* unfortunate.

      2. Anonymous Coward

        Ah yes of course

        It's metabolism and NOT overindulgent gluttony that makes someone eat on a daily basis 1000s of calories more than they ever need to survive.

        1. Peregrine


          Of course it has to be that the man eats hundreds of thousands of calories per second.


          You ever consider the fact that not ALL overweight people eat tons of calories? Of course not, because you are a self-indugent tosser who doesn't have the thinking capacity to realize anything outside your own idiotically uninformed decisions made in that brain that most downs sydrome people would sigh and pat your ass on the head sadly for. You need the shit kicked out of you. Repeatedly.

          1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

            Re: sigh (rejected)

            Folks - I'm sure I'm on a hiding to nothing here, but could we keep it civil and y'know, non-violent? Express our strong feelings calmly without reference to the mental powers of the disabled and how other commentards fail to make the grade? Peregrine, I'm looking at you. Ta.

          2. JEDIDIAH

            It's really simple math.

            > You ever consider the fact that not ALL overweight people eat tons of calories? Of course not,

            > because you are a self-indugent tosser who

            No. I don't consider the idea because I realize that the universe is governed by universal laws that can be easily expressed in terms of numbers and equations. Some people are genuinely big. They have long legs or wide shoulders. However, most people become big because they eat crap and they eat far too much of it. They also don't bother to exercise.

            Eat too much. Don't exercise enough.

            Everyone that makes excuses are just enablers and are doing no one any favors.

            Chances are, you have no clue what's in what you eat.

        2. Mark 65

          Of course it is

          If his metabolism was faster the 1000s of extra calories wouldn't matter.

    2. Sampler

      Sides of stories

      There's also a photo he took of himself sat on the plane already boarded - so one of them isn't telling the whole truth.

      Apparently he had both arms down and the belt fastened without the need for an extension which fits SWA's policy to the T on overweight passengers.

      So I suppose it comes down to who you believe.

      I for one side with Smith as he's invited SWA to bring a few chairs down to the Tonight Show where he states he will sit in them (as described above) and if it proves he can't he will donate $10k to a charity of their choice.

      Now he may work in Hollywood but he doesn't have that kind of money to throw around!

    3. Chris Haynes

      Ian Ferguson, I think you're wrong

      I just listened to Smith's SModcast where he states that he only buys two seats because he doesn't like sitting next to people. He *can* fit into one seat, and was actually on the plane (not at the gate), buckled in when Suzanne/Susanne (the SWA girl who had rather stupidly previously cost him $200 by printing out the tickets for three seats instead of the two he had ordered for this flight) came along and told him that the pilot said he was breaching Health & Safety rules.

      He *did* make his flight, in fact he was early and wanted to know if he could get on an earlier flight, to which they said yes and put him on the standby list for the earlier flight.

      He also pointed out that there was a much much fatter guy sitting a few rows behind him and he wasn't asked to leave the plane.

      I think you're wrong on this one. I'd side with the person who just put out their side of the story - Kevin Smith. Your response was factually inaccurate on more than one point.

      Oh, EeePC girl. Something about Ubuntu? I missed the rest of the article.

    4. Nick G

      Kevin Smith...

      Disagrees on pretty much every point:

      He was actually EARLY for his flight & asked to be bumped up to an earlier flight.

      He could sit in the seat, without using an extender & could get both arms down (the SWA litmus test exactly...)

      And it happened on the plane...

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    It had

    very little local storage indeed but great norks!

  6. Dr. Mouse
    Thumb Up

    Well done

    I had almost forgotten about the EeePC girl...

  7. Andrew Smith

    Abi Word?

    I don't care much for Open Office but an offline word processor or ms word file reader is essential, Abi Word is lightweight, usable and makes a good work of most formats. Shame that it hasn't been included, I'd recommend it to anyone with an ubuntu netbook edition.

  8. Identity


    "Dogma" is the better movie

    1. Will Leamon
      Thumb Up


      Mall Rats.

      1. Haku

        no, Clerks

        Thirty seven?!?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    the trouble is

    ...a lot of SSD-based netbooks with 20 gig SSDs have a fast 4 gig area for boot drive, and a slower, separate 16 gig device (often used for /home). Umbongo can have a few issues fitting in the 4 GB if you're not careful, as you need enough space to distupgrade too (unless you cheat with softlinks for bits of /usr during the upgrade).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      just bought a new 16gb SSD to replace the stock one in my 901 for exactly that reason. As a bonus it's much, much faster.

      1. Freddie

        There's a program you're forgetting

        |OOo| > |abiwork| > |antiword|.

        Everything I use fits nicely on my 4GB ssd, thanks. If it were a main machine, or I was sharing it with someone who wasn't as happy to nerd around as much the space might get a bit restrictive, however.

  10. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Anonymous Coward


      Piss-poor excuse for a 'fan-shirt' if you ask me. Voted Down.

  11. Tom 35

    Keep it small

    It's not like you can't install what you want if you have the room. But if you have a small flash drive you don't what a bunch of stuff you don't need taking up all the space.

  12. Sergio BR
    Thumb Up

    Yes, OpenOffice is to fat for a netbook

    I'm a heavy user of OpenOffice, both at Home and at Work. I've been using OO in multiple OSes since 2002 so I think I'm not negative biased in my opinion.

    I'm not sure Google Docs is ready yet, but I'm sure OpenOffice running on a 1G machine does not provide a good user experience. And the tiny screens present on these machine make things even worse. There are too much toolbars and dynamically shown screen elements that prevents to have a good experience.

    Clearly disk is not a issue anymore, but most netbooks are limited to 1GB memory limit hardwired, so it should be considered.

    1. heyrick Silver badge

      1Gb memory limit hardwired?

      What, don't the Netbooks you've seen take some sort of SIMM/DIMM/whatever? Mine's a 1Gb model, but I can upgrade it to, I think, 4Gb by changing the memory. Not that I need to. Since I trimmed the rubbish installed in Firefox, it is a LOT more stable (no longer runs out of memory and dies) plus marginally faster at starting. So 1Gb does me.

      Oh, I'm running Thunderbird, Firefox with six tabs, WinSCP connected, Metapad, PhotoImpact5, Apache/php local (EasyPHP), WinAMP to and the usual bunch of services, antivirus etc. All in 1Gb with no swap. I have around 100Mb free memory, but then I could quit PhotoImpact, done with it. <clicky> There, done. Nearly 300Mb free now those images and dozens of undo buffers have been tossed.

      If I can write, design, and test a bunch of PHP on Windows on a 1Gb netbook while taking pictues of it and checking my email, surely it is possible to run an office suite under Ubuntu in a gigabyte?

  13. vagabondo

    Ubunto Netbook keeping OOo

    I thought that Rick Spencer, from the Ubuntu Netbook Edition had U-turned on Thursday, and OOo is due to remain in the distribution.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fuck Kevin Smith

    and his basement-dwelling fanboys

  15. zanto
    Thumb Up


    the beach girl is back.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Good decision

    I've flown with hippos in the seat next to me and it sucks. They were right to pull his fat arse off the plane with one seat and put him on the plane with two seats. The guy needs to get help for more than his weight issues.

  17. Jelliphiish


    troll much AC at 14.48?

    also, dogma: if only for Chris rock..

    I'm with Kevin, and I'm not fat either..

    as for the IT angle, it's linux on a netbook.. sooo last year..

  18. Mike Hanna

    Chubby Kev...

    ...should cut out the pies, but then he wouldn't have something to complain about, and he can be very funny when he's complaining. Check his interviews about turning down the Superman movie.

    Clerks is the best (specifically the Death Star II contractor conversation) with Dogma a very close second.

    Do people use NetBooks for resource heavy stuff? Surely if you know that you want something to run OO you'd go for a laptop?

    1. Rob
      Thumb Up

      Nail on the head

      "Clerks is the best (specifically the Death Star II contractor conversation) with Dogma a very close second."

      Words of wisdom, completely agree :)

  19. Andrew Oakley

    CPU grunt not storage space

    I'd have thought that Ubuntu's decision to ditch OpenOffice on Netbook Remix has nothing to do with storage space (as El Reg suggests) and a lot more to do with processing power. Most netbooks are single-core 1.6GHz affairs which lack the oomph to run OpenOffice - which is not only already bloated, but also runs in Java. If Sun made a native X86 version of OOo then I'm sure it would be a much better experience all round. Sun could also cut down the bloat by moving much of the "features" into plug-ins (OOo 3 already supports plugins).

    1. Keith Oldham

      Re : CPU grunt not storage space

      Why do you think OO runs in Java ?

      It's the first thing I turn off in an OO installation - speeds up starting

    2. Keith Oldham

      Re : CPU grunt not storage space

      Just to expand on this :

      These are the software requirements to COMPILE OO under Linux

      software requirements

      * glibc:

      o for OOo<=3.1: 2.2.x or higher

      o for OOo>3.1: 2.3.2 or higher

      * C/C++ Compiler:

      o gcc >= 3.3

      o gcc 4.2.3 is the current reference compiler

      * The X11 development libraries and header files[1]

      * PAM including the development headers[2]

      * bash[3].

      * gtk2 and libtiff including the development headers[4]

  20. Ian Ferguson
    Paris Hilton


    Well, in regards to Kevin Smith / SWA, at least one side of the argument are lying out of their arse. Probably both sides distorting the story, to tell the truth.

    I'm still more inclined to believe SWA than Kevin Smith, as a corporation stating their position in a press release have to be bloody careful, whereas a private citizen (and a celebrity at that) can pretty much say what they like, truth be damned, and still get the public on their side.

    If Kevin Smith is 100% right about the incident, it's probably because the pilot had seen Chasing Amy, so you can't blame him.

    1. Juiceman


      Perhaps the pilot was one of the uptight religious folks that had a hissy fit over Dogma and finally saw his chance to get back at him? A long time to hold a grudge I admit, but it's not out of the realm of possibilities.

  21. Paul_Murphy

    Can OO be run from an SD card?

    just saying.


  22. Rippy

    Who is she, anyway?

    The eeePC model that is ... she has become so iconic to the industry (or at least to ElReg readers) that we really need to know her name to properly honour her.


  23. Anonymous Coward


    I did not witness this "putting off" event. But I know from the huge amount of travel I used to have to do that self-important pompous asses sometimes do not do well on SWA flights :)

    1. Gannon (J.) Dick
      IT Angle


      It has always amazed me that the commercial world does not see the advertising value in the treatment of self-important pompous asses. I always considered it a feature, not a bug.

      I noticed when I downloaded OO 3.2 that the install file is smaller than the previous 3.X. I know, it means little for an app running in limited memory, however it does remind me of something I learned, and seem to relearn with every new toy - - just because the new gadget has an alarm clock, or a calculator or an Address Book etc. does not mean you have to use it. Furthermore, this is not quite the same thing as leaving your watch at home because you have your cell phone in your pocket.

      I do think little stickers for the iPhone that say "my other watch is a Rolex" would have fit right in with Apple's Marketing. Target Audience

  24. Neil Greatorex

    EEPCGirl :-)

    Can we have her as an icon. Please.

    Pretty please.

  25. WonkoTheSane

    @Andrew Oakley

    Sun will never make a native-x86 version of OpenOffice... as it's been bought out by Oracle.

    1. Keith Oldham

      Re @Andrew Oakley

      OpenOffice, as mentioned above IS NATIVE x86 - here's the first line of soffice.bin (Linux)

      0000:0000 | 7F 45 4C 46 01 01 01 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | .ELF..........

      It only uses Java for certain functions like Wizards.

      Turning off Java & enabling Quickstarter are the usual way of speeding up launch !

  26. Ihre Papiere Bitte!!

    Ahhh, nerdy arguments and a girl in a bikini. Perfect end to the day....

    Clerks is definitely better than Strike Back - much lower budget, but made itself throug the script and dialogue - the Death Star is fantastic, but a little over-used. How about the chewing-gum salesman? Absolutely inspired.

    Dogma is better than Strikes Back, but Strikes Back is better than Mallrats. Definitely. Clerks 2 was a lot more mainstream, and was amusing in a different way - but I defy anyone to keep a straight face whilst Randall lays out the plot for all three Lord of the Rings movies in 90 seconds... They're all better than Jersey Girl. Yep, even Chasing Amy is better than Jersey Girl.

    Kevin Smith may be fat. But christ on a bike, have you seen his wife?? She'd give the bikini-Eee girl a run for her money. It's very possible she only married Smith for the money, but she lets him stick it in her (kid=evidence), so I wouldn't complain.

    1. Mark 65


      I just looked on Google images for pictures of his missus in order to verify this claim and, unless he's remarried recently, she is decidedly ordinary.

      1. Ihre Papiere Bitte!!

        Decidedly ordinary?

        If that's "ordinary", I'd like to live where you do please....!*

        (*look, I live in Sheffield. Round here, not having pie-filling smeared around the mouth, a voice like a foghorn are not-always-available-plus points!)

  27. jevs

    Boot up seed

    It's about the boot speed innit. The holy grail is about ten seconds from power on to desktop. Chrome is likely to boot at some shite hot speed, so Ubuntu NR or Moblin have to compete. Then you want apps that open quickly. OO hangs a bit on startup.

    1. Robert Pogson

      No Problem for Me

      If you run on the old-fashioned thick client, you get what you deserve. I use a GNU/Linux terminal server because I like to share... My binaries are already in RAM when a user clicks on an icon and using the shared memory features of 'NIX OS, everyone gets to use the single copy so my window pops open in 2s or less. My login to a useful desktop is only 5s, unlike that other OS.

      Eat your heart out, folks. This is the 21st century. Do your computing the right way and you can enjoy the benefits of modern hardware.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Google Docs would instead be the way users must open and edit Office documents


    Is this some sort of distro where I can't install my own packages? There's no must about it!

    The whole reason I gave up on ubuntu was because they started deciding what apps I should be using to do various tasks and installing them by default, which invariably weren't the ones I wanted to use.

    You give me a working clean-slate, I'll decide what I want to do with it.

    1. James 132


      Fatgate and Open office, that's straining the seams of Andrew's tenuous trousers..

      @Simon Rowsby give a Arch a look.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Kevin Smith fat?

    No - his mum says he's just got large bones.

    1. Plasma

      Big boned?

      As one of my mates once said to a young lady who claimed to be 'big boned' - "I've never seen a fat skeleton"

  30. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge

    @Ralph 5

    "Bloated? Compared to what?

    I use OpenOffice for almost everything, but I also have MS Office 2004 and iWork 09. "

    Compared to everything else. Office is very bloated, and apparently iWork is too. If you try almost any other office suite available they FLY in comparison to Office and OpenOffice. Is this the right decision? I don't know, people will probably just pick apart every possible incompatibility with Office, no matter how esoteric the feature is, rather than judge Abiword or Google Docs on their own merits. But undeniably they will be much faster.

    That said, OO is fine even on the old "underpowered" netbooks honestly, I have a Mini 10 and OO (2.2? whatever version comes with Dell's netbook Ubuntu 8.04...) works fine on it (and 3.x has gotten a little faster). If I got a new netbook with Ubuntu Netbook Remix I would probably install OO on it. That's the thing, there's an easy enough app to add applications it really doesn't matter that much if one is missing out of the box.

  31. Eradicate all BB entrants

    @ Ian F

    You arent familiar with corporation press officers are you. They have a 5 step process for when their staff screw up in such a manner, it is as follows

    1, Coverup/Deny

    2, Coverup/Deny

    3, Coverup/Deny

    4, Coverup/Deny

    5, Find scapegoat, promise they will remind all staff of policies and give customer useless free stuff

  32. jim 45

    face reality

    Celebrity or not, if you pay for one airline seat, you get one seat, and not yours plus half of mine.

    This guy had better start facing reality and deal with a critical health problem.

  33. Deadlock Victim

    The real question is...

    ...why was Kevin Smith, who arguably has more than a few dollars to his name, flying on the dirt-cheap value airline/flying bus?

    1. Steve Roper

      And the answer is...

      because if he'd flown in his private Learjet he'd have been derided not only by the greenies for filling the atmosphere with CO2 but by everyone else for being a too-rich bastard. Guess guys like him can't win, hey?

  34. Anonymous Coward

    @ CPU grunt not storage space

    I use OO on my Atom N270 based netbook all the time and it works just fine.

  35. Anonymous Coward

    Not a chance

    Complete idiots! So that's a no deal f*** you very much! Blow it out yer port hole. etc.

    The latest incarnation of OOo is a real zippy critter as well. Why in hell's name would I want to use Google Docs?

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Thats's it for UBUNTU then...

    Think I'll vote with my feet and kick them to the curb while I still can.

    1- GIMP is now out by default, you must install it later.

    2- No OOo, want us to use cloud services instead. Perchance is Canonical a business partner with Google?

    1. GIMP is not for everyone agreed, but it is good image processing software and does not suffer from the possible pitfalls that MONO based projects may be susceptible to.

    2. I don't use cloud services because once you NEED to use them then you're on THEIR hook, and I do not want to be dependent on the cloud.

    Back to Fedora with me, or perhaps Mandriva, or Debian... the nice thing about Linux, we can (still) avoid lock-in.

    1. Duncan Hothersall

      You do realise

      that Oo.o and the gimp have only been removed from the default install of Ubuntu Netbook Edition, and not from Ubuntu itself?

      Thought not.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Black Helicopters

        Out of sight out of mind.

        Removed from the default install and still available from the repository... if you know what to look for (many newcomers will not). The idea then (no matter what spin Canonical et-al puts on it) appears to be one of "out of sight out of mind".

  37. Steve Hodson

    The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

    SWA has an open seating policy so there would have had to be only one seat left on the plane, otherwise it's a simple case of asking someone to move for a passenger that actually paid for two seats.

    Oh and Chasing Amy is a great film :D

  38. Dana W
    Gates Halo

    Was that called for?

    "and for the kind of dinky 3lb laptops that Apple doesn't make, ?

    Or the svelte 4 1/2 pound ones they DO make? What do I get for that extra pound and a half? I get a real cpu, "an Intel core Duo 2 instead of an Intel atom" enough screen real estate to be useful, and a graphics card that usual for at least casual gaming. And the screen is three inches bigger.

    I had a "netbook" phase" when everyone was hackintoshing them, and I have to agree with the Steve on this, netbooks don't really excel at anything, they are simply cheap underpowered computers. I have yet to see one that even comes with a decent wireless card.

    I think I can suffer that extra pound and a half for all of that. This is a good metaphor for society's weight issues overall. People claiming that a netbook computer is better if its a pound and a half lighter and 1/4 as functional.

    1. tomjol
      Thumb Down

      That's nice...

      ...some people have different needs and expectations to you. You suffer on with your pound and a half (or, realistically, slightly more), the rest of us will buy the right product for the job - whatever that may be.

      Seriously, way to fit the Mac-user stereotype. Thanks for that, really helps the rest of us.

    2. HollyX

      Of course, you are everyone

      Sorry, but my EeePC is small enough to fit in my handbag and quick enough to do all my home computing. If I use your logic then nobody has any need for any Apple product because they don't make anything that suits me.

      Now, on topic, Eeebuntu LXDE is the way to go, complete with OpenOffice by default ;-)

      1. Keith Oldham

        Re : Of course, you are everyone

        Couldn't agree more - not that I have a handbag! - but for traveling we have a 901 which serves us well for browsing, email, watching videos and SSH to the home server - I can't understand why so many people try and equate these useful devices to large notebooks and desktops

        | also use Eeebuntu but am planning to change to OpenSUSE to match all my other machines

        A refreshing post - I'm an OO fan as well

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      you might want to look...

      at the Alienware mx11 netbook. Small, light , good battery, silly lighting effects, and can run crysis easily at full detail settings :) If i didn't already have a wind i'd have one of these winging it's way to me already.

      Netbooks have moved on from their original purpose as net appliances, they are now just ultra portable laptops! Even my low spec MSI wind is a higher spec than my 7 year old gaming laptop (aside from the graphics card, which admittedly, makes a massive difference)

      They excel at exactly what they were designed for, they are small and very portable, but still usable! I can just pick up my netbook in a morning, and chuck it in a rucksack with the rest of my work gear, no 'please mug me' laptop bag necessary*. A mac air might also satisfy that, but it's still bigger, and thin enough to worry about breaking.

      They aren't meant for gaming, but with a bit of effort (intel graphics are fun) you can get them running anything a few years old quite comfortably, you'll have more issues with the widescreen display than with the power of the thing.

      *If you've ever worked at a company that went for cheap office space, no matter what, you'll really appreciate this one. You're lucky not to be knifed for your shoes outside some of our places.

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    jay and silent bob

    strikes back was in no way the funniest, it was the most base and had me in stitches, but Clerks and Mallrats were far far far funnier, the characters were better and the jokes more interesting.

  40. spegru
    Thumb Up

    Can't understand the problem

    My ORIGINAL Netbook - eeepc 701 (8.9in screen). Works perfectly well with openoffice.

    Ok so it's running ubuntu derived easypeasy (so startup is slower tan the original xandros, but then it is much more mowerful), but I cant see that makes much difference to ooo.

    Heck startuptime is pretty ok: Just timed it from cold boot to user screen (including logging in, mounting a flash memory card and getting a network connection in 1min:48secs and to openoffice in a further 10secs.

    Pretty good compared to my old Win2000 laptop that used to take nearly 10 mins! Maybe it's just the windows versions that' have the problem..............

  41. ashwynfalkingham

    Apparently it's back in again...

    according to this article

  42. Switchy


    The screenshot is of Jolicloud, the rather brilliant lightweight os.

    But it still offers Open Office if you must.

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Different versions

    What about Netbook Edition Starter, Netbook Edition Home, Netbook Edition Professional, and Netbook Edition Ultimate?

  44. Will 6


    Eee girl is back. I vote a eee girl icon too. Please....... pretty pretty please???

  45. Winkypop Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    I'd even join twitter if...

    ...the EeePC girl was on it.

    Just think of the beachy-suntanned quips and pearls of advice she has to offer.

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