New Technology and Old Minds

I have received the new 128 GB Google Pixelbook and am going through the process of understanding how to work in a Chrome environment.

Most people that move to Panama only use a computer for email, to watch videos and surf the Internet. For that, a Chromebook fills the bill and is much more secure than an Apple or Microsoft PC. Chromebooks can be picked up from around $150 to $1,650 for the top Google Pixelbook. The difference in price is for memory, internal storage and processor capability.

You really don’t need a lot of memory because your main storage medium will be the cloud. Obviously, that does mean that you need WiFi connectivity to the Internet.

I always felt that the Chrome environment would be beneficial to those living in Panama because of its built-in security and secure environment design. While the Chrome environment is more secure from viruses, trojans, and malware, it does not eliminate the need for good passwords.

If you use the internet to enter your bank account, view Facebook, read email, etc, and use the same password for all sites, then you are asking for trouble and no system will protect you. I recommend a unique password for all sites and use the LastPass password manager.  With it, I only need to remember one password and LastPass remembers the rest. I also use two-factor authentication to protect access to the LastPass account. For that, I use AUTHY.

Let me tell you a little about the Pixelbook that I bought. I found a new 128GB Pixelbook for close to 20% off retail price on eBay. I also picked up a Google Pen at a 40% discount as well.

I considered buying a cheaper Chromebook. Those with 64 GB are about 1/2 the price of the new Pixelbook and only a couple hundred dollars less than my purchase.

I felt the build quality, extra memory and Pixelbook features justified the extra expense. Besides, I have never regretted buying the best and have regretted accepting inferior several times.

I can say that the build quality of the Pixelbook is top notch. It could be mistaken for an Apple product. That is not to say that Apple is the only company that builds quality products, but it is recognized for unique and distinctive styling. The Pixelbook is that in spades.

I remember when I moved from the Microsoft environment to the Apple environment. It took a short period of time to adjust to the new environment. Scrolling with the mouse was different, the close screen indicator was on the opposite side of the screen, fille management was different, etc.

After spending the first day working with Chrome I realized that it is going to take several more days until I feel completely comfortable with the Chrome operating system and the Pixelbook. However, I like the device and the time will be well worth the effort.

I am sure my grandson, Carson, would adapt much quicker. He is the one that sent me links and reviews of the Pixelbook and asked me if I had seen the Pixelbook. I think he was hoping it would magically appear under his Christmas tree. Didn’t happen.

If you have used a Chrome browser and have used the Chrome Apps (Docs, Sheets, Gmail, Calendar, Keep…), then you will have a good idea about what using a Chromebook/Pixelbook will be like. A Google Drive account provides 15 GB of cloud memory. By buying a new Pixelbook, I also received an extra 100 GB of Google Drive memory bringing me to 115GB. More can be purchased.

In preparing to use the Pixelbook, I decided to backup my MacBook Pro on Google Drive (only my Documents folder). In trying to understand Google Drive, I accidentally deleted some important files from both the Google Drive and from my MacBook. Panic time.

Luckily, I had been using multiple backups for the MacBook and all missing files are now restored. I give credit to subscribing to iDrive, which I had subscribed to prior to moving from Panama.

And so the Chrome OS adventure begins. If my experiences are of interest, let me know and I will post future experiences. I am planning on posting all future Chiriqui Chatter posts using the Pixelbook. My Apple MacBook will be relegated to a backup mode.

As of this moment, I have been using the Pixelbook for 2 days. There is nothing like having new technology to exercise the old mind’s brain cells. Can’t afford to let it atrophy.

2 thoughts on “New Technology and Old Minds

  1. Looked down here (we live in in Volcan, but do most of our shopping in David), but I couldn’t find just what I was looking for. If I was more fluent in Spanish, I must say that it would’ve been considerably easier. Anyway, I bought an HP Spectre laptop on my last trip to Cali and I’ve been quite pleased with it so far. David P.

  2. I was needing a password manager. I will try out the one indicated in your blog post. A few years back, I started using a password generator and passwords have multiplied. I also started using iDrive a little over a year ago. It’s a comforting service. A few months back, I installed an SSD on my Win7 laptop. I liked it so much (huge speed increase) that I bought 2 for my boys for their laptops. They were impressed.

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