Tech Lolz: Laptops - Freaks Of Nature!

Why are people still amazed, concerned or even scared of laptops and of using them? This is the real question for today. Why would one person buy a laptop but use it just as a desktop? I wasn't really aware of the fact that laptops are so UFO-ish for many people. So, for today, I was thinking about turning laptops into something that anyone can understand. Let yourself indulge into the benefits of having a laptop and be amazed of the possibilities it harnesses. Let's just bust this myth right here and now.

Laptops - best friends for life?

I feel weird having to explain this, but here goes nothing. Just a Laptops 101 article.

Laptops can be your best friend. Well, actually tablets can be your best friend but laptops come in next. Let's take a look at what inspired today's article - the user goldpseudo had the following situation:

"I got into an argument with a friend of mine on how to handle a laptop while it's in use.
While it was running, I lifted it about 45 degrees off-horizontal to check out the ports on the side, and then again on the other side. He panicked and said using a laptop in anything but pure horizontal is a good way to destroy the hard drives.
I countered with the idea that since laptops are made to be portable, some tilting without excessive jostling would be well within the normal parameters of any decent design.
Long story short, I'm not allowed to touch his Toughbook anymore.
So now the question stands: What are the basic rules that should be respected in regards to using a laptop in order to avoid damaging it?"

You might think that laptops are like the princess Aurora in Sleeping Beauty - very pretty, fragile and can "break" for a long time due to an unfortunate, minor accident. That's not the case. If you want to compare laptops to a Disney princess it might as well be Mulan.

They are real warriors and capable of much more than just sitting there and looking pretty. You are totally underestimating them. Well, at least goldpseudo's friend is.

How can you say that a laptop needs to be used purely horizontally? How are you carrying it anywhere? On your head? I'm sorry but this affirmation is completely wrong and I will not tolerate this in my class! :) Plus, doesn't the name "Toughbook" ring any bells? Like, I don't know, it's designed to be tough?

In addition, laptops are all about being portable. And by portable I don't mean like flying from A to B. They do travel, preferably in a specially designed bag, vertically, carried by their owners. And by specially designed bags I don't mean Dolce & Gabbana bags or Gucci Bags, but bags designed in such a way to protect the laptop during the transport. Don't just put it in any bag that happens to suit what you are wearing. It might make you look good, but put you in the hole once that hard-drive is shaken a bit too much.

Let's see what the Internet has to say about this. The user phoshi put things a bit in perspective for us:

"Tell him how his toughbook could probably survive a small nuke, and tilting it won't seem to dangerous anymore"

Thank you phoshi! Couldn't have said it better myself.

William Hilsum mentiones the following:

"He had a Toughbook and wants to only use it flat? He does know they can be pretty much used under water (tested it once!) or in a sauna?
Anyway... If you have ever taken an old music cd player and jogged, you would hear jumps as it lost its place... Earlier hard drives did have this sort of problem but I haven't seen it for many years - many of them are rated to a certain G-Force rating and as long as you don't excessively shake them, they should not have a problem
However, now, most advanced laptop hard drives even automatically park the head when they reach a certain G-Force (I think the Seagate ones that end in AS).
Basically, I sometimes move mine in between 45 degrees and flat... Never had a problem."

Dear Goldpseudo's friend, you thought that components were just put there and God have mercy?
That's not how this works! That's not how any of this works!

I hate logic. I hate that it exists for the simple fact that only a few of us tend to go by it. It's just like in those Logic classes. If all foxes are orange and all foxes are animals, then all animals are orange?

Will Eddins teaches us that:

"There is nothing to worry about. Hard drives can operate in any direction nowadays, and the only thing to worry about are sharp jolts and freefalls.
To prevent damage in the latter case, many laptops contain some kind of accelerometer built-in to halt the heads of the hard drive in case of free fall and quick movement."

I would like to disagree. There is nothing wrong with the free-falling part that should make you be concerned about it. It's just the sudden stop when reaching the ground that might cause problems but apart from that, I see no problems with free-falling.

Back on track

So, what I would like to actually point out on a serious note is that laptops are more sturdy than they look. I know I have dropped mine a lot of times and the little thing keeps working. Actually, my cat dragged it several times while in the midst of its running frenzy, so I am not to blame.

In addition, before my first tablet I used to always take the laptop with me wherever I went, so keeping it on the go was a normal thing. And that didn't damage it. If you knew me better, you would know that me saying so is really true.

However, nowadays, I just use the tablet everywhere I go just for the fact that it is more portable than the laptop. However, for now, I still use it for when I need more processing power than the tablet is able to provide me with.

So, I would say that getting stuff done fast on the road is exactly what laptops are for.

Thinking of buying a new computer but don't know what type, use the test below to figure it out.

  • What do I need it for?
  1. Portability, since I move a lot
  2. I don't intend to take it out of the house but would like it stylish, since I would rather pay more for gloss and glamour than function

If you have chosen 1), then you need a laptop/tablet; if you have chosen 2) then you might consider an All-In-One computer and if you have chosen 3).... XBox/PS4/desktop PC or whatever you want.


I wish everything was easy-peasy but if everyone out there had been proficient in computing, I would have had neither a job, nor a hobby so I would like to thank you for this. I know that my ways are not… the best but they have proven to be very efficient. If you need testimonials, ask my parents who know now how to play Solitaire without any help on my side.

What's your dirty secret? What is that thing that you simply don't understand and which is yet so simple? And now it's just too late to ask so you would rather just continue not knowing. Here's your chance. No one here is judging anyone. Well, except me, but I'm sure you'll be able to live with that. Please use the comment section below wisely and find out what you didn't have the chance to ask before about computers.