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Social networking means getting and staying in touch with others has never been easier. We pack pocket-sized electronic devices that should help. So you might expect the days of printed paper business cards to be numbered.

They are not. At least not yet.

My collection continues grows at the same steady rate it always did. I understand it is the same for others.

There are two reasons they will not disappear in the immediate future.

  • Paper is universal. You don’t need the right hardware or operating system to read business card data. The batteries won’t run flat and paper technology will never be updated to the point where old cards are no longer readable.
  • Business card etiquette has yet to transfer to the digital realm. Think of the polite bows and protocols that come in to play when exchanging business cards with the Japanese.

Business cards are a metaphor for other printed media.

Despite this, the technology surrounding business cards has changed in recent years. I scan cards and send the data to an electronic contact book. I’ve known others to use their phone cameras to shoot business cards and store the images. This makes it easier to find contacts later.

The netbook idea is sound: a small, low-cost computer with just enough grunt to browse the web, send mail and write simple documents yet highly portable with decent battery life.

As a working journalist, pretty much every model caters for most of my needs. However, I specifically would like to see the following features:

  • A robust keyboard. As near to full-size as possible. I learned to touch type on a manual typewriter and I get through keyboards faster than most people.
  • Enough solid state memory to store my entire history of documents. I’ve got word processor files that go back to the early 80s. Searching old stories is important.  Although I’ve written thousands of stories and, possibly millions of words, my entire portfolio is only 6GB.
  • A high-resolution screen with good backlighting. In truth, I don’t want to view porn – but the headline is genuine enough. The best netbook for smut would also be the best for my work. As a journalist I often need to look at photographs and XGA graphics don’t cut the mustard.
    I’ve seen some ultraportable notebooks screens with higher than normal pixel density. A high-resolution screen would also be good for browsing the web and reading text. I’ve also scanned thousands of documents as .pdfs that would be hard to read on a low resolution screen.
  • Wireless networking is a given, but something faster than standard wifi would help. I notice the 54 Mbps wifi in my PDA is painfully slow compared to the 108 Mbps I get with my Thinkpad.
  • A sensible operating system. I’m guessing that Vista is too resource hungry for a netbook, but I’ve seen some grotty versions of Linux out there in the wild. XP may do the job. Up-to-date versions of Ubuntu, Kubuntu or Fedora are likely candidates.

So, like the question asks, which netbook is the best for looking at porn?