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Sony Releases Smallest VAIO Yet

CowboyNeal posted about 12 years ago | from the potent-portables dept.

Hardware 201

ephidryn writes "Sony Corporation has released their new VAIO laptop in Japan. The PCG-U1 is even smaller than their previous sub-notebook the C1 PictureBook. Measuring in at 7.3" x 5.5" x 1.4" and weighing a mere 1.8lbs the 6.4 inch XGA screen does 1024x768. The laptop uses a Transmetta Crusoe TM5800 processor and can house up to 384 megs of RAM." As a Picturebook owner, I can't imagine how a keyboard any smaller can still be usable, but this little guy offsets that with thumb controls to make input easier.

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Palmtop? (4, Interesting)

Defender2000 (177459) | about 12 years ago | (#4476604)

That's small. Really small. I'd call it more of a palmtop than a laptop. Looks like they've sucessfully breed a palmpilot/laptop hybrid.

Re:Palmtop? (0, Redundant)

btornado (612847) | about 12 years ago | (#4476611)

Man that is awesome. *Drools*

Re:Palmtop? (1)

H310iSe (249662) | about 12 years ago | (#4476773)

No way, it's the same problem as Final Fantasy - it's too close to something really small so it looks like it fails (to be small enough) rather than succeeds (to be smaller than other laptops). I want a dick tracy watch damnit and I won't be impressed until I see one.

Re:Palmtop? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476648)

Reminds me a lot of the Geofox, and Psion Series 7/NetBook... ...and, of course, the PC110 x86 palmtop of the same era.

Re:Palmtop? (4, Funny)

mbogosian (537034) | about 12 years ago | (#4477046)

Looks like they've sucessfully breed a palmpilot/laptop hybrid.

Until they breed the price, I'm going to have to hesitate in calling it a success.

It looks cool, though.

But it's still.. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476607)

not as small as CowboyNeil's penis!

I want small and cheap (4, Interesting)

CMU_Nort (73700) | about 12 years ago | (#4476608)

What I'd really like to see is a PC laptop in an iBook form factor. Where are all the cheap smaller laptops? This is fina and small, but it'll probably cost like $2000, which isn't cheap.

Re:I want small and cheap (5, Insightful)

Bishop923 (109840) | about 12 years ago | (#4476763)

Classic Case of Cheaper, Smaller, Faster: Pick Any two.

Unfortunately the big PC companies are Driven by the fact that the Masses think "more Ghz == Better!" so Faster is required. So you now get to pick between an expensive, but small and fast notebook, or cheap and fast, but large laptop.

Re:I want small and cheap (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476882)

Try the Compaq N200 (evo) 700mhz/1q92ram/20 gig and has a 10.2inch screen

Re:I want small and cheap (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476886)

Check out the Fujitsu S Series. The picture puts it to shame, but in the real world, it looks like the pc equivalent of an ibook. Beautiful. Cheaper model runs 1499$ straight from Fujitsu and of course can be beat elseware. se

Re:I want small and cheap (2)

mbogosian (537034) | about 12 years ago | (#4477029)

Price: $1700.00

I don't know how true this will be, but it's certainly on par with previous picturebook models (the MSRP of which ranges between $2,100 to $2,400 which translates to about $1,800 on the street).

Now if you told me it had a micro-thin DVD player in it, I'd own one tomorrow, but it doesn't.

Re:I want small and cheap (1)

hrafn42 (227947) | about 12 years ago | (#4477053)

You might want to look at the Fujitsu P-1000 series then. They're about the same size, but considerably cheaper (as little as US$1100).

first post (-1, Offtopic)

browser_war_pow (100778) | about 12 years ago | (#4476609)

Oh yeah!

It's too big/small (3, Insightful)

TheSHAD0W (258774) | about 12 years ago | (#4476612)

I suppose some people would like it, but I don't usually carry around a briefcase. So for me, this PC is too big to carry in my pocket, but too small to fit the features I want in a main machine. Sorry Sony, I'll stick with the full-sized Vaio I bought last year. :-)

doopdoopdoopiedoop (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476614)

eph pee

beowulf cluster (0, Funny)

trelanexiph (605826) | about 12 years ago | (#4476616)

this has become a prerequisite of such a story but here goes. IMAGINE A BEOWULF CLUSTER OF THESE! now that it's done and over, please no more beowulf posts :)

OLD news (5, Informative)

neuroking (204934) | about 12 years ago | (#4476618)

This has been out for MONTHS (I have one I got 2 months ago).

Check out the NEW version, the U3, here:

Wow, that was teh most out of date story I've seen on /. ever...

Re:OLD news (5, Funny)

KNicolson (147698) | about 12 years ago | (#4476663)

Wow, that was teh most out of date story I've seen on /. ever...

You've not been here long, have you?

Re:OLD news (5, Funny)

BoBaBrain (215786) | about 12 years ago | (#4476782)

Wow, that was teh most out of date story I've seen on /. ever...

Typical newbies. They copy the site's style perfectly, but miss the overall philosophy entirely, or as we say 'round here:
TN. Thay cp teh sites stile pfcly, but miss teh overal fillosofy. All your base are belong to us.

Re:OLD news (0, Offtopic)

neuroking (204934) | about 12 years ago | (#4476895)

Silence Mortal! I am the King of Teh!!! I banish ye from my kingdom!

*blink blink*

Okay okay, too LOTR, I know.

Re:OLD news (1)

neuroking (204934) | about 12 years ago | (#4476887)

Hehe, just about 4 years. I remember looking at the U1 at least a year and a half ago (maybe it was a preview). I've seen some old stuff here, but it's usually just rehash of some odd link that was 136 comments deep, and somehow everyone knew it was there.

"OMG! Everyone knows this! I was in that message Re:Re:Re:monsters eat monkeys was:where is my underwear (Re: A beowolf cluster of naked Natalie Portmans) - grits in my pants" With the link some random letter in the middle.

Re:OLD news (1)

The Bungi (221687) | about 12 years ago | (#4476680)

That's an interesting page... it said something about horse mackerel and a guy in a palomino jacket?

Re:OLD news (1)

Zarbuck (590310) | about 12 years ago | (#4476710)

Yes this is old I know that it has been out for like 6 months...

Re:OLD news (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476734)

Nah, it's not out of date until the *next* time the story is posted.

Platoon wins academy award. (-1)

Mighty-Troll (549627) | about 12 years ago | (#4476867)

You all take a good look at this lump of shit, remember what it looks like. You fuck up in a firefight and I goddamned guarantee you a trip out of the bush - in a body bag! Out here, assholes, you keep the shit wired tight at all times. And that goes for you, shit-for-brains. You don't sleep on no fucking ambush. And the next son'bitch I catch coppin Z's in the bush, I personally am gonna take an interest in seeing them suffer. I shit you not. Doc, tag 'em and bag 'em

Sony (1)

molywi (136881) | about 12 years ago | (#4476621)

Sony has always made really cool electronics. No other company in the world has such talented designers and engineers. Their products are not only top of the line, but also beautiful.
I wish I had enough money to make my house strictly Sony.

Re:Sony (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476670)

must... resist.. blind... sony.. worship! arrrgh!

Re:Sony (5, Insightful)

Sandcastle (563801) | about 12 years ago | (#4476871)

I used to think like this. Lately they've let their game go IMO. They are certainly often on the upper end of the scale compared to other mass market / generic brands. You know, the ones that do everything. However they really aren't the best at anything anymore either. At least they have started to realise that their strength is often in just relatively cheaply producing others good designs (the Sony/Ericsson partnership?). Don't even get me started on the memory-stick nonsense! Why push a proprietary standard so hard when it has no (read few) benefits compared to what's already available? The last thing I want is to be locked into a Sony Digital Camera, just so the memory stick slot in my laptop will finally be useful! That coupled with the whole refusal to play CD-R's in most of their home hi-fi/DVD or car CD players has tipped me from your point of few (I wish I had a Sony everything!) to my current view - If someone does it any better, or even as well but without this vendor lock-in non-sense, then I'll avoid Sony when I can.

Re:Sony quality has slipped badly of late (4, Interesting)

NewtonsLaw (409638) | about 12 years ago | (#4476993)

Sony used to make some of the best consumer electronics around. The Sony TV, video and audio gear I bought 10 years ago was superb.

Unfortunately, the Sony TVs, VCRs and audio gear I've bought in the last two or three years has been absolutely awful!

They seem to have exchanged quality and performance for features and gadgets.

My 1990-model Sony VCR gave a markedly better picture than the 2000 models I bought to replace it just three years ago. The difference was so marked that I actually took the first unit back thinking it was faulty.

Not only that but the VCR bought in 1991 gave almost 10 years of perfect service -- one of the units I bought in 2000 has already died and isn't worth fixing. And I'm not talking the cheapest machine in the range - I'm talking about the more expensive units.

Likewise the Sony TV I bought back in 1991 is still chugging away and delivering a great picture. The one I bought three years ago now has an inferior picture with poor geometry and what appears to be the sound subcarrier affecting the picture on some lowband channels (again I returned the first one I bought unit thinking it was faulty). What's more, it has just developed an intermittent fault.

When I asked the Sony service techs they admitted that the consumer electronics (TVs, VCRs, audio) that Sony sellings today simply isn't engineered to the same quality standards as it was a decade ago.

Up until recently all my consumer electronics were Sony but I've decided that it's simply not worth paying a premium price for quality that's no longer there. The DVD player I bought a couple of months ago is a no-name Chinese unit that works superbly and was just half the price of the cheapest Sony equivalent. Even if it breaks in 18 months it will still have a lower total cost of ownership than Sony's gear (based on recent experience).

It strikes me that Sony have started resting on their laurels. This, plus their atttiudes to things such as DRM have made me an ex-Sony advocate.

As ye sow, so shall ye reap!

Re:Sony quality has slipped badly of late (2)

MarsDude (74832) | about 12 years ago | (#4477085)

If they were so superb 10 years ago ? Why did you need to buy new ones in the past 2-3 years ? ;-)

hmm this reminds me of something very similar (5, Informative)

QuaZar666 (164830) | about 12 years ago | (#4476623)

if memory serves me correctly this was discused some time ago PCG-U1 []

Well, (3, Insightful) (555899) | about 12 years ago | (#4476624)

When you get that small, you might as well go for a PDA. I'm sure the battery would last longer (where do they PUT it in that thing?!) and those small devices have evolved to be the most convienent for their size. That thing looks like it's running a regular version of windows, and no matter how high that screen resolution goes (doesn't look big) everything is still going to be way to small to make big use of.

My god (1, Funny)

nugneant (553683) | about 12 years ago | (#4476627)

Sooner or later, the computers will have to occupy inverse space in order to keep up with progress. And then how can the geeks build them in stuffed animals and desks and corpses and stuff? Since, obviously, stuffed animals, desks, human bodies, et al., are inferior technology and not able to be easily miniaturized.

External monitor. (5, Interesting)

CMU_Nort (73700) | about 12 years ago | (#4476630)

What's nice is that while the built in screen is limited to 1024x768, it has the ability to pump out 1600x1200 to an external monitor.

Re:External monitor. (3, Funny)

Bishop923 (109840) | about 12 years ago | (#4476792)

Of course what they fail to mention is that in order to accomodate the additional bandwidth, you can only display at 1600x1200 in Monochrome.:-)

amazing (-1, Troll)

squarefish (561836) | about 12 years ago | (#4476631)

it's smaller than my girlfriend's diaphragm, well not quite, but close...

Re:amazing (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476890)

oddly enough, it's also smaller than my penis.

Re:amazing (4, Funny)

fmaxwell (249001) | about 12 years ago | (#4476965)

oddly enough, it's also smaller than my penis.

And it's probably been handled by fewer Asian men.

Imagine a beowluf cluster (-1)

perthstyle (567666) | about 12 years ago | (#4476632)

of huge cunts.

Yes, but, (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476633)

can we make a Beowulf cluster out of them? :))

mouse (4, Interesting)

lovebyte (81275) | about 12 years ago | (#4476636)

It seems the mouse and buttons are above the keyboard which is strange but could be practical.
I used to have a picturebook in my previous job and I loved it. I have small fingers so it the keyboard size was not problem and I also have very good view so the size of the screen was not a problem either. And linux runs perfectely well on the old crusoe-based sony picturebook! (Not like on my current dell C400)

turning point (4, Insightful)

Absoluttt (618527) | about 12 years ago | (#4476640)

we're definitely at a turning point as far as miniturization vs. usability.. our toys / technology can only get so small before it becomes impractical to use. It will be interesting to see what is innovated on besides speed once this hurdle is passed. Per John Carmack we're almost at a similar point in video cards functionality wise.

is it laptop week on slashdot? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476645)

i didn't get the memo.

Available? (1, Redundant)

dirvish (574948) | about 12 years ago | (#4476646)

Is it possible to get one here in the US? Usually Japan uses its own population as a test before selling anything to the US. Also there isn't nearly the market for really small stuff in the US.

Re:Available? (2, Insightful)

tgrigsby (164308) | about 12 years ago | (#4476718)

>> Also there isn't nearly the market for really
>> small stuff in the US.

Son, put down the crack pipe and step away...

I cite cell phones that store over a 100 phone numbers, play video games, act as a pager and a walkie talkie, allow you to browse the 'net and send/receive emails, and fit in your shirt pocket as proof that, in the U.S., smaller is better when you're talking about electronics.

Heck, my birthday is coming up and I wouldn't refuse one as a gift...

Re:Available? (4, Informative)

Zarbuck (590310) | about 12 years ago | (#4476724)

Yes go to []

Yeah, small is great (2, Interesting)

Drunken Coward (574991) | about 12 years ago | (#4476649)

But every VAIO I've used/seen has felt like a cheap hunk of plastic. A friend of mine bought one about a year ago, and within 3 months it had to be sent in for various parts breaking twice. I think they should focus on making these tiny suckers durable, I mean, with something that small, it's bound to find itself in undesirable situations.

My VAIO feels very solid. (2)

Chuck Chunder (21021) | about 12 years ago | (#4476767)

But then again it's one of the big ones so there's probably a bit more room for a solid structure than in these tiny beasties.

The picturebook is solid (2, Informative)

forii (49445) | about 12 years ago | (#4476967)

My vaio picturebook (the small one) has been extremely durable. I've taken it all around the world in my backpack, opened it up to upgrade the hard drive (30 GB now), and left it all around the house to be bumped, skidded, and generally treated it about one notch less harshly than my cell phone, and all it has to show for it is some scrapes on the magnesium alloy case.

This is new? (2, Funny)

kimba (12893) | about 12 years ago | (#4476655)

I was in Japan in July for the IETF meeting there, and this was for sale then. I was very close to buying one until I realised my fingers were too big for the keys...

test the battery before you buy (5, Informative)

0WaitState (231806) | about 12 years ago | (#4476660)

I made the mistake of buying a vaio assuming that the battery would be at least ballpark useable (eg. sales literature says 1-2 hours, I figure at least 1.25 hours doing text entry). Wrong--the wonderful BP1-A half-empty battery could barely keep the screen lit for 40 minutes.

I ended up having to buy a decent battery (BP-71A) on ebay for $200 extra.

Not a happy camper when people say Vaio.

Re:test the battery before you buy (2, Funny)

|<amikaze (155975) | about 12 years ago | (#4477028)

I figure at least 1.25 hours doing text entry


A half-empty battery could barely keep the screen lit for 40 minutes.

hmmm 40min x 2 = 80 min = 1 hr 20 min = 1.33 hr

Where's the problem?

Re:test the battery before you buy (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4477032)

hmm, my SRX41P (eu model) gives me a comfortable 3-3.5 hours while working, I've been over 4 when just wathcing Divx's. Without an external monitor plugged in that is.

Great.. (5, Funny)

euxneks (516538) | about 12 years ago | (#4476673)

Sdo now my fgat finfgers.. Will ptress even more ketys tjhan they needf to.

Re:Great.. (2)

Cryptnotic (154382) | about 12 years ago | (#4476795)

You wouldn't have that problem if you were typing the beginnings of phrases in Japanese and using that little wheel thing to select the Japanese words/phrases you want.

U-Port? (5, Funny)

chrysalis (50680) | about 12 years ago | (#4476678)

The description includes :

"1x Biology U-Port"

What kind of beast is that?

Re:U-Port? (4, Funny)

Lord Kenja (45995) | about 12 years ago | (#4476881)

Yeah. I was wondering that too. What the hell do you connect to a 'Biology U Port'? (I could speculate but that would quickly get out of hand ;)

Re:U-Port? (2, Interesting)

Jage (164751) | about 12 years ago | (#4476950)

The description includes :

"1x Biology U-Port"

What kind of beast is that?

Probably it's mistranslated bluetooth-port. :)

Old news (2, Informative)

ctar (211926) | about 12 years ago | (#4476684)

My colleague here in Japan has had one of these for months...

It's small, allright.. (1)

DrunkenPenguin (553473) | about 12 years ago | (#4476688)

It is a really small device and at first I wondered if it's too small to be usable for serious work.

..But then I remembered Nokia Communicator [] and I realized that even small devices can be very powerful tools.

Hmm. (4, Informative)

Arcaeris (311424) | about 12 years ago | (#4476702)

I know I read Japanese very poorly, but what I gather from this is:

a) This came out April 1, 2002?
b) Has shortcuts for use with the thumbs, called Thumbphrase.
c) Has a Standby button to prolong battery life. At one touch, even.
d) A zoom in button? I didn't get much of that section. I think you can change from 1024x768 to 800x600 with one push.
e) It supports some wireless card from some company, 'cause I guess it has a PCMCIA slot. Well, they call it 'PC card slot.'
f) It can have 802.11b compatibility with a Sony card.
g) Connectivity between itself and a desktop through a port. I think ethernet. You can drag and drop file copy really easily. (Flying Pointer)
h) Adobe Acrobat ebook crap.

I hope that helps. And just asking... is there a Sony site in English that I just don't see?

Re:Hmm. (2, Interesting)

scottme (584888) | about 12 years ago | (#4476791)

You may find it more enlightening and certainly more amusing to read machine-translated Japanese, via Babelfish [] .

Re:Hmm. (1)

elodan (601886) | about 12 years ago | (#4476908)

Well, they call it 'PC card slot.'
Isn't "PC Card" the new name for these devices?
I seem to recall that there was a changeover in the industry about three years ago - for a while at least they were often called PC Cards.

And there's more info about the U1 on TransMetaZone []

Fujitsu P2000 is very competitive (4, Interesting)

Centinel (594459) | about 12 years ago | (#4476708)

The Fujitsu P2000 [] has one major advantage over Sony's PCG-U1: a built-in DVD/CD-RW Combo drive

20GB, XP Home

867MHz Crusoe(TM) TM5800 processor with LongRun(TM)
Power Management
10.6" wide-format SXGA TFT
256MB memory
20GB hard drive
DVD/CD-RW Combo drive
External USB 3.5" floppy drive
Built-in multinational 56K4 V.90 modem
Built-in 10/100 Ethernet
Quickpoint pointing device with scroll button
Microsoft® Windows® XP Home
Model P2110, FPCM20091


Re:Fujitsu P2000 is very competitive (3, Informative)

Centinel (594459) | about 12 years ago | (#4476749)

...oh and unlike the PCG-U1, this little Fujitsu is available in the US [] already!

Re:Fujitsu P2000 is very competitive (1)

Voltronalpha (244088) | about 12 years ago | (#4476931)

Egads and it's cheaper, though you have to realize it almost a full 3 inches bigger, and in terms of weight it's more than a pound heavier.

*BSD is dying (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476719)

It is official; Netcraft now confirms: *BSD is dying

Yet one more crippling bombshell hit the already beleaguered *BSD community when IDC confirmed that *BSD market share has dropped yet again, now down to less than a fraction of 1 percent of all servers. Coming close on the heels of a recent Netcraft survey which plainly states that *BSD has lost more market share, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. *BSD is collapsing in complete disarray, as fittingly exemplified by failing dead last [] in the recent Sys Admin comprehensive networking test.

You don't need to be a Kreskin [] to predict *BSD's future. The hand writing is on the wall: *BSD faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for *BSD because *BSD is dying. Things are looking very bad for *BSD. As many of us are already aware, *BSD continues to lose market share. Red ink flows like a river of blood.

FreeBSD is the most endangered of them all, having lost 93% of its core developers. The sudden and unpleasant departures of long time FreeBSD developers Jordan Hubbard and Mike Smith only serve to underscore the point more clearly. There can no longer be any doubt: FreeBSD is dying.

Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

OpenBSD leader Theo states that there are 7000 users of OpenBSD. How many users of NetBSD are there? Let's see. The number of OpenBSD versus NetBSD posts on Usenet is roughly in ratio of 5 to 1. Therefore there are about 7000/5 = 1400 NetBSD users. BSD/OS posts on Usenet are about half of the volume of NetBSD posts. Therefore there are about 700 users of BSD/OS. A recent article put FreeBSD at about 80 percent of the *BSD market. Therefore there are (7000+1400+700)*4 = 36400 FreeBSD users. This is consistent with the number of FreeBSD Usenet posts.

Due to the troubles of Walnut Creek, abysmal sales and so on, FreeBSD went out of business and was taken over by BSDI who sell another troubled OS. Now BSDI is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house.

All major surveys show that *BSD has steadily declined in market share. *BSD is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If *BSD is to survive at all it will be among OS dilettante dabblers. *BSD continues to decay. Nothing short of a miracle could save it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, *BSD is dead.

Fact: *BSD is dying

Re:*BSD is dying (0, Offtopic)

Centinel (594459) | about 12 years ago | (#4476738)

sheesh the *BSD trolls are trolling to non-BSD threads now

Re:*BSD is dying (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476758)


I wish you would stop posting this crap and just move on with your life. I'm sorry that things worked out the way they did, but you gave us no choice. As it was, I spent a lot of time convincing Jon and Bill not to have you brought up on criminal charges. I even managed to get you a week's severence.

Instead of being grateful that they gave you a break, you have become obsessed with trying to sabotage their business -- but your *BSD is dying posts are just childish and silly. We move more product now than when you left. No one is cancelling orders because of your anonymous messages on Slashdot.

I think that you could still have a bright future, but if this keeps up, Jon and Bill are going to get pissed off and have you brought up on criminal charges. Is that what you want? How many jobs will you get when potential employers see a criminal record that includes the theft of company computer equipment? Jon still has the laptop that he bought back from the pawn shop along with the company's original purchase records for it. He still has printouts of the ads you put up on ebay for the DLT auto-loader and the RAID array. There are records showing that your badge was used to gain entrance to the building at 2:13AM on the day that the equipment was stolen. On top of the thefts, we also have logs showing your attempts to break into the servers using your ID the evening after you were let go.

Do you want to end up being some guy's bitch in prison? That's what may happen if you keep this up. If you think that your shopping mall karate classes are going to do you any good there, you are in for a shock.


P.S. Please don't bother with denying this, who you are, and so forth. This started practically the day after you were let go. The writing style and the Kreskin reference leaves no doubt as to who's posting this. (Like someone else is going to go to that much trouble to discredit BSD and then not sign their name! Get real.)

Re:*BSD is dying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476989)

TWIMC (to whom it may concern)

I'm not sure if you're a troll or for real, but keep those replies up, don't take dude to court, court sucks and the only ppl that win there are the lawers.

Re:*BSD is dying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4477018)

If it goes to court, it will not be my choice. If the managers he worked for get wind of just how many posts like this he's made, they'll take him to court. That's why I keep replying. I keep hoping that he'll read the reply and take it to heart.

the question is..... (0, Redundant)

AresTheImpaler (570208) | about 12 years ago | (#4476740)

can you run linux in one of this things?

Keyboard too small for fat-fingered Linux gurus? (5, Funny)

Linux Freak (18608) | about 12 years ago | (#4476741)

Top ten ways Linux (and OSS) hackers can adapt to this keyboard:

10. Cut down on those Starbucks Venti Moccha Frappucinos
9. Make like a yakuza and chop-chop-chop your way to smaller fingers
8. Develop appropriate mouse-gestures for your favorite language keywords
7. Finger train to slim fingers with other than hjkl keys
6. Stop hacking with this keyboard. You're violating the DMCA anyway
5. Keyboard? Who needs a @#$(*&'s an Apache server!
4. Don't buy it. Sony's the enemy this month. Er, I think.
3. ... Profit!!
2. Ssh in from your desktop via your XBox Linux via your Sony PS2 Linux box

and the number one way Linux (and OSS) hackers can adapt to this keyboard:
1. Take your fat ass out for a walk instead of that debugging session

Dynamism has had thse listed for awhile: (2)

Rinikusu (28164) | about 12 years ago | (#4476760)

To get them now, in the US: dynamism []

Japan has such the coolest shit. :P Personally, I want the Panasonic they've (dynamism) got, as it has the cook hira/katakana keys. :)

Re:Dynamism has had thse listed for awhile: (2)

Rinikusu (28164) | about 12 years ago | (#4476765)

dammit.. preview.. dammit.. they have the COOL keys.
Maybe I can be a /. editor now.

thumb controls (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476771)

When you have sytems designed as well as this one [] , thumb control isn't even an issue.

Uhhh, what for? (5, Interesting)

beowulf_26 (512332) | about 12 years ago | (#4476776)

Forgive me for being cynical, but I can't see many uses for something of that size. It seems to me to have all the functionality of a PC, while having all the UI woes of a handheld.

Now, I can think of things like being a portable place to dump picture files, and *maybe* to take notes on if you have small enough fingers. Other than that, I can think of nothing. Would someone mind enlightening me as to why this uber-expensive gadget is useful?

Not so cool (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476780)

Notice it has no built-in wireless. You need to plug-in a PCMCIA wireless card with an external antena, which increases the footprint considerably. Personally, I hate external antennas, as they break very easily. IMHO, without wireless, the usability of one of these will be close to nil in about a year.

Re:Not so cool (2)

Linux Freak (18608) | about 12 years ago | (#4476801)

That so-called "wireless adapter with external antenna" is actually a device to connect you via a cellular telephone service. Ie. take your hot chick to a hot spring in Hakone while you are technically on-call from work and can access your servers from anywhere in Japan.

"only" 8 MB video memory, X? (3, Interesting)

jukal (523582) | about 12 years ago | (#4476794)

Does anyone have experience on what refresh rate / colors can you have achieve with the ATI Mobility Radeon-M 8MB in X? At quick glance this seems as the only possible big weak point of the device - atleast for me who is used to having too many terminals open and don't utililize the virtual desktops a lot :)

Re:"only" 8 MB video memory, X? (2)

jukal (523582) | about 12 years ago | (#4476798)

Ohh, and I ofcourse mean the external 1600x1200 resolution :)

Beowolf Cluster (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476806)

Wow, a Beowolf cluster of these would be cool.

Slashdot Poll (5, Funny)

Frac (27516) | about 12 years ago | (#4476808)

Why is this story reposted [] 5 months later?

1. This submission's been stuck at the submission queue for a long, long time.
2. dude, this is Slashdot. There's no reason for reposting old stories, they simply do.
3. An experiment to test /. reader's long term memory. If no one notices, they'll start posting reviews of Redhat 5.2 on the next slow news day.
4. Go pick up a newspaper tomorrow morning, it should say May 9th 2002. Congrats, the Beowulf cluster inside your Delorean finally did something.
5. Michael's been the one making the Cowboyneal entries for the poll, and Cowboyneal unchecked Michael's name for stories (hey look a Cowboyneal reference that's actually a legit option!)

Temperature of laptop base - material science (1)

krazyninja (447747) | about 12 years ago | (#4476840)

As the size of laptops become so small, how are we going to withstand the rising temperature of the processor boards, which are more and more sitting directly onto the base? The Sony Vaio models I have used, at full performance, literally burn your lap when kept for a long time. Is there no way out?
Has anyone tried this yet?

Re:Temperature of laptop base - material science (2, Informative)

vsync64 (155958) | about 12 years ago | (#4477045)

Why do you think this machine uses a Crusoe processor? IIRC, this sort of application was what the chip was designed for: low power, low heat, long battery life.

Geez (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476842)

They might as well just call this a deluxe PDA

The only thing I wanna know ... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4476848)

.. is will it play EverQuest ? :)

Hmm (2)

Graspee_Leemoor (302316) | about 12 years ago | (#4476852)

I go to Japan twice a year. When I went in late April the PCG-U1 was out and I *so* wanted one, but it was about 150,000 yen and I didn't have the money.

I swore when I went back (which was last week) that I would take enough money to buy a U1. However, I figured, since the U3 would be coming out about a week and a half after I left that the U1 would have got cheaper- not so- it was still 150,000 yen. They had 2nd hand ones in Sofmap (A big computer hardware shop), but they were like 120,000 which was a bit pricey for 2nd hand I thought.

In the end I couldn't really afford one so I ended up buying a shitload of anime products, manga, a DVD burner (1/2 the price it would have been in the UK) and an expensive Go board instead.

My brother has got a job in Japan starting next week though, so I will be able to get constant news from him about new Vaios and their prices.

Sigh. Oh well.


Nothing is smaller than CmdrTaco's penis (-1)

The BOFH Troll (549884) | about 12 years ago | (#4476853)

Even his fiance knows that!

A more usable keyboard (3, Interesting)

iamdrscience (541136) | about 12 years ago | (#4476860)

I just had a flashback, there used to be some type of laptop where when you opened it up the keyboard would expand past the sides of the notebook to give you a larger more usable keyboard. Was it the old thinkpads? I forget. Anyways, I think that this Vaio could do with doing something like that because that keyboard is just rediculously small. I mean, if you're getting something that small you might as well give up and make it use a stylus like a PDA or one of those Fujitsu tablet computers because that would make it way more useful. The only problem I see with the expanding keyboard idea is that it would increase thickness and the whole vaio notebook line prides themselves on how thin they are and with this super small vaio that would matter the most. I think it's stupid really, you end up paying twice as much for that thing as you would for a larger, but faster, more flexible and really more USABLE regular sized laptop and the only advantage you get is that it's small (not even *that* small, most pants pockets couldn't fit it so you'll need a bag for it anyways!

Re:A more usable keyboard (2, Informative)

heideggier (548677) | about 12 years ago | (#4476954)

Yes it was a think pad, I think that the problem is that IBM would have patented the design. Pity really.

Oh, but that's nothing! (0)

citizenkeller (584425) | about 12 years ago | (#4476869)

You haven't seen anything yet... I've got this experimental beast here, that measures less than 0.2'' x 0.1'' x 0.05'', is so light that it can stay afloat on a sea of troubles, and has this wonderful, 1600x1450 smoke screen.

Now, if only I could find the damn thing again...

Loose weight (5, Funny)

blixel (158224) | about 12 years ago | (#4476958)

s a Picturebook owner, I can't imagine how a keyboard any smaller can still be usable

Easy CowboyNeal. Loose a couple hundred pounds.

Re:Loose weight (2)

blixel (158224) | about 12 years ago | (#4477050)

I correct myself. It's "lose" not "loose".

Fish to the rescue. (3, Informative)

vidnet (580068) | about 12 years ago | (#4476977)

From the babelfish [] :

The " bio U " and it was coAs for " bio U ", body size of approximately width 184.5× height 30.6 *1 x depth 139mm. Even in a state where the battery of attachment is installed approximately 820g. In the Windows XP Home Edition on-board type worldwide smallest * the *2 which actualizes most light weight . The compact, the stamina drive *3 of maximum approximately 4 hours is possible with the battery of attachment.

*1 As for battery applied part 46.1mm.
*2 As of April 1st of 2002, the SONY investigation.
*3 Battery drive time differs depending upon usage condition and the like.

While it had with the both hands you adopt the Mobile grip * style which can be operated lightly. You adhered to the arrangement of the button which it is easy to operate. In order to be able to operate the pointer smoothly, it turns, the ??????? which * you push and with the wide stick which attaches the dent, being can do operation with respect to the right arrangement. It arranges the left button and the right button which can do click operation with respect to the left. In addition, the software " ThumbPhrase which has input estimate conversion function (the sum phrase) " it can start it equips " the ThumbPhrase " button to direct. With " the ThumbPhrase " corresponding key and operation of the ???????, like the portable telephone speedy letter input is possible.

" ThumbPhrase " corresponding key

Stand-by button
It equips the stand-by button which with one push becomes stand-by mode. If you use briskly, it can hold down the consumption of the battery. In addition, starting immediately from stand-by mode, it can use.

In perusal of home page and when et cetera checking the mail, with ZOOM IN button picture enlargement * . You saw to be, information and small letter is indicated easyly to see. It can reset to also original size with the one button.

* Resolution of liquid crystal display is set to the 1024×768 dot usually. When it expands indicates, resolution becomes the 800×600 dot. It indicates in all the picture territories with smoothing processing.

" The AirH (AH-G10) " " of the DDI pocket it corresponds. Installing in the PC card slot of the substance, if you use, high-speed data communication of the 128kbps is possible. Because it corresponds to packet transmission, it is connected to the broadband pleasure easily without designating connection and cutting as the air.

* Regarding " the AirH the inquiry
* Proposal * area of utilization / tip of inquiry of service 0077-775 (free call) Acceptance time: Weekday / 9:00 - 18:00 earth / 9:00 - 17:00

* Regarding data communication the tip of the inquiry 0077-7-157 (free call) Acceptance time: Weekday / 9:00 - 17:30 earth * day * holiday / 9:00 - 17:00 *
Home page: Http: //

It conforms to the standard IEEE802.11b system of the wireless LAN, the 2.4gHz wireless LAN PC card " of the Wi-Fi " certification being completed (the PCWA-C150S and selling separately) corresponds. Being the cable unnecessary, it actualizes the high-speed communication of the largest 11mbps, of the ADSL and the cable television circuit et cetera connection is possible to broadband. Installing the wireless LAN PC card, ahead going out if, wireless LAN access point such as coffee and hotel and station (the IEEE802.11b) the facility which is installed (the hot spot) with, it can enjoy the perusal of mail transmission and the home page. In addition, if the wireless LAN access point of selling separately (PCWA-A200) it installs in the home, from the place where we like in the house in Internet connected possibility. Other things bio * with using the network inside home, also it can exchange the data and it can share the printer.

* Wireless LAN functional on-board biology or the biology which installs the wireless LAN PC card. nnected with the or the ethernet, bio * with with, the SONY original software " FlyingPointer which the file can be transmitted easily (the flying pointer)" attachment. When " the FlyingPointer " is started, way the file which we would like to send the picture is penetrated, the drug. The feather it grew, when the pointer " of the FlyingPointer ", appears in the desktop of the partner side, drop does the file is copied automatically. For example, from the main machine, copying the file to the " bio U ", when liking to bring up easily and the like, it is convenient.

* To from the CD-ROM which belongs the " bio U ", it is necessary to install " the FlyingPointer ". The Windows XP Professional, the Windows XP Home Edition, it corresponds to the type which loads the Windows 2000 Professional, but as for use please go on customer himself responsibility.

" The Adobe Acrobat eBook Reader (??? acrobatic * I - the book leader)", quality of the book and the high accuracy which reproduces design faithfully the software which can read the electronic book. In little time ahead going out, cartoon and the novel and the picture book et cetera can be enjoyed with the bio U. In addition, the page the ? also it is possible with the ??????? to come. " The bio U " original electronic book trial contents 8 types it has belonged.

* It is possible to purchase the electronic book of eBook Reader correspondence with the book store sight on Internet.

I remember halloween! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4477001)

This night, anything goes! Bruning bodies hanging from poles! Halloweeeeen!


      Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted!
      Reason: Don't use so many caps. It's like YELLING.

I must do this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4477038)

Imagine a B...

"If You'd like to make a call please hang up and dial aga.......

what I want: small, cheap & emacs (2)

Bazzargh (39195) | about 12 years ago | (#4477068)

While I like my Pilot and think these things are cool, they miss the point for me. I want something portable I can type stuff into. I don't care about portable multimedia (there are far less expensive devices for that) - I care about battery life and the ability to run emacs.

If I could get something like the Psion7/Linux [] cheap, and it could boot into a 'real' emacs (ie anything that can do cc-mode, not just something with the same keystrokes) I'd be happy.

Besides, on a keyboard that small, I reckon I could finally hold down escape-meta-alt-control-shift-windows-clover with one hand. :)

Tosh is smaller (1)

Zanzadar (415855) | about 12 years ago | (#4477081)

I have one of the first librettos(30) (20 was actually the first but not widley made available outside of japan). I admit that it is a lowly spec these days, but it is the same size as a VHS tape when the lid is shut. It also has the BEST laptop mouse pointer device I have ever used. The battery was pretty poor tho, it even runs down in 24 hours with the power OFF! (if you pull the battery it lasts much longer than this)

Think very carefully before buying one (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 12 years ago | (#4477083)

If you really want to try a tiny Linux or FreeBSD notebook, get a used Libretto first - to be had for around $300 on eBay these days. These tiny palmtops are just cute as hell, they fit in your pocket, they even attract girls -- but they are very difficult to work with, even after you're used to the keyboard. Don't plan on getting much work done very quickly with one of these.

On the other hand, if you're after a Because I Can toy, don't let ME stop you :-0
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