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laptop internet on the road

Tom DiMatteo

rookie still hanging around looking to get some good storm pics (didn't happen last year). So I have the camera stuff mostly figured out and I have a laptop with cingular broadband connect package (doesn't seem to work well up the 281 corridor as I found out today, but thats my bad for rushing out last minute)

Main reason I am posting aside from being pizzed about burning my saturday driving around all day with no AC... How can you guys see anything on these laptops when you are in your car? I can barely see the screen. I have a pretty new HP laptop with a 15" active matrix and other than maybe setting up shop in my trunk I don't know how the hell these things are any good at all. Am I being unrealistic, or am I missing something? I know there are some higher end tablets and some laptops available with "outdoor" screens but I didn't get the idea many folks were using these... Thanks for any feedback! :angry:
 
Its not always easy to see from glare, but I suspect some laptops are easier than others. My dell does alright as long as I can position it so the screen is facing me more directly. Not familiar with the screens on HP however.

You could try adjusting the screen brightness/contrast level (you probably already have though). I've seen some folks with a homemade hood like device around the screen to help fight glare. Other than that, not sure what to tell you.
 
Thanks Tim, I guess this HP (actually an HP-Compaq NC6120) is particularly bad (i did try some contrast/brightness adjustments) Some of this I realize is common sense when it comes to getting it out of the sun, but I guess expectations are the issue here. I knew it was kind of hard to see and I have not had much reason to use it outside other than this. I was hoping to also use it for GPS but I'm sure that would be even more frustrating... hence the reason for my post. Its a laptop through work so not the end of the world...

I was just mostly complaining about striking out and wondering if others had found this to be more than an annoyance, or if its just me, or maybe they moved on :lol:
 
Yeah, I know its irritating when the glare is just right(or wrong) on mine. Havig it on full brightness and aiming directly at me seems to make it workable though.

As I said before, you could try to rig some sort of hood around the monitor....there may even be a company that makes something like that. The one I saw, looked like a canvass type material that encased the screen cutting down on the glare. Maybe someone else knows where to buy these?

If all else fails, you can always tint your windows...lol Might create a new problem of cutting down visibility on the clouds then however heh


Take care!
 
Anyone just thought of riggin' up a CRT to the laptop? I'm sure your laptop stand would LOVE that, heh.

I saw a few 'hoods' today in some chaser vehicles. I would think some mild tint would be helpful. I find I end up rolling down the windows anyways (rain, hail, whatever) if there's something worth looking at, so I don't think tint would bother me. But I do drive a '91 with 180k miles, so I'm not too worried about the interior... especially after a Sonic car-hop dumped three large drinks on my floorboard.
 
Does anyone out there use one of these newer laptops with the "UltraBrite" super shiny, very birght, screen? I've seen them in store... and they seem to have a very bad direct glare problem... but may be less susceptible to the "washed out" glare of the typical satin-like LCD screens. Not sure if one is any better/worse than the other.

I may be in the market for laptop soon, so thought I'd ask.
 
Does anyone out there use one of these newer laptops with the "UltraBrite" super shiny, very birght, screen? I've seen them in store... and they seem to have a very bad direct glare problem... but may be less susceptible to the "washed out" glare of the typical satin-like LCD screens. Not sure if one is any better/worse than the other.
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Actually, the glare is better than on my previous laptops. I have a Sony Vaio A290 which I love--huge screen real estate. Mike--I'll be out in late May for two weeks. If we bump into each other you're welcome to play around with the laptop :)

Something that can help those of you with laptops that don't have great contrast, however, is to buy a "privacy filter"--I think 3M makes these. They act similarly to polarizers. Basically they have tons of tiny slits that limit people's views of your laptop screen. But, in the process, they also minimize lateral glare and can enhance your view in bright light.

For what it's also worth, a laptop does have a disadvantage in that it zaps your attention. Fine while you're alone on a country road, but highly dangerous near a city or chaser caravan. Be careful out there :). Want a nice safe season for everyone!

Hope this helps!

Jason
 
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