Computers need to be like toasters

Thumbnail of toaster

Did either of these geezers need to cope with fan control in Linux on a 3 year old laptop and a wobbly combo drive on a brand new iBook?

Why can’t computers be like toasters – sealed units that just work™ until you need a new one (about every 10 years)?

Ubuntu runs really well on the Dell L400 but I can’t get the fans to switch on when the laptop begins to heat up. After about 90 minutes, the trip closes the computer down. With a default Ubuntu install, if I reboot while the computer is hot, the fans do switch on. It looks as if the temperature is being monitored only at boot time. I am now puggling deep into the relative merits of apm and acpi. Stephenson’s vision of taking control of the hardware becomes a reality big time.

The iBook combo drive has already been replaced once and the new one is playing up so paying serious money for a new computer does not guarantee performance either.

Computers really should be like toasters and televisions.

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