Share content with your friends and fans!

Thursday, July 7, 2016

TechnoGrannyShow, 7 Considerations When Buying Computer or Laptop

Listen to #podcast here

Bob James has been doing business as Concerto Networks – a now defunct franchise based out of San Diego, CA - in the Pittsburgh area since 2004.  Now
Robert James, Concerto Networks
that the franchise contract period is over, he is in the process of re-branding his company using the underlying corporate name – IT Directors On Call, Inc.  This name describes the mission of his company – to provide that part-time IT support and management needed by most small businesses today.  For more than 12 years, he has been helping small business and individuals with computer hardware, software and networking installation, purchasing, and troubleshooting.

Bob had his introduction to home computing in the mid-70s when, seeing advertisements for the new TRS-80 computers, he wondered “why would anyone spend $600 for a glorified calculator?”  He found his answer a few years later while serving in the US Army in Germany.  After spending an all night session exploring and playing with  a home computer, he obtained his first computer by swapping a reel-to-reel tape deck for a TRS-80 Model 1 computer.  During the remainder of his 12 year Army career, he continued to build his expertise through self-study and experimentation with the various computer and network systems he encountered.  Many times he would teach himself a new computer system so he could turn around and teach others how to use it.  He found he had a knack and a passion for working with computers and working with people with their computers.

After leaving the Army in 1992, Bob continued his trajectory of increasingly responsible positions in Computer Networking and Computer and Network Security with Computerland, Mellon Bank, Carnegie-Mellon University, KPMG, Pitt, and Children’s Hospital.  In 2003, Bob decided to shift his focus from the corporate world to a segment which has been and still is greatly underserved – the small business.

Bob can be contacted at:

Bob James
IT Directors On Call, Inc.

7 Considerations when buying a new computer

  1. Know the primary purpose of the computer.  While any computer can be used for many purposes, it’s important that the primary purpose is considered when deciding what type of computer is purchased.  In general, the primary purpose can be:  “traditional” business, entertainment/communications, or “creative” business.  This can drive the decision to purchase a PC, MAC, or even a tablet.

  1. Knowing where and how you will use the new computer is an important consideration.  The “road warrior” who always carries the computer with him/her will have different needs than the “desk jockey” who works primarily at his/her desk.
Are you a PC or laptop fan?

Invest in legacy sotware and hardware
  1. Legacy software and hardware can mean the difference between purchasing a new computer that is relatively easy on the wallet and purchasing a new system that breaks the bank.  It can also remove many options.  You should always consider whether it makes sense to keep some of the peripherals and/or software used on the old computer for use with the new one – or to start fresh and buy everything new.  Also, be sure to determine whether you have specialized software or hardware which may require specific types of computers or operating systems.

  1. Central to any computer is the operating system.  The operating system translates what the user does – using the mouse, keyboard, or any peripheral device – into instructions that tell the computer how to accomplish the wishes of the user.  Since you will be using and interacting with the operating system every day of the computers “life”, selecting the correct one for you is vital to your happiness with that computer.

  1. Two items which always seem to be a source of confusion is memory (RAM) and storage (hard drive size).  The confusion is understandable, since both memory and storage is measured in “bytes” – either megabytes, gigabytes, or now terabytes.  Unfortunately, this confusions will many times lead a typical computer user to take the wrong actions when the computer starts to slow down.
    Choose your ram and memory carefully (photo WDNet Studio)

  1. While the operating system is the central piece of software in the computer, the processor (or central processing unit – CPU) is the central piece of hardware.  Literally nothing can happen without the processor – it runs everything.  There are a number of things to consider to make sure the processor in your new computer is in the proper “family”.

  1. Okay.  You’ve done the research, made your selections, considered the trade-offs, and you have the money in your hand.  Now what?  Do you run down to “Jim’s Feed Store and Computer Emporium” to buy the new computer?  Maybe – or that may not be the best place to go.  Chances are that wherever you buy the computer, you will not find the one that exactly matches your specifications at the price you want to pay.  Once again, there are factors you may want to consider in where you look for the computer.

Choose where you buy your computer wisely.
(photo by Emmanuelle Bresciani)

Listen to #podcast here

Techno Granny Show Hosted By:

Joanne Quinn-Smith is the Creative Energy Officer of Dreamweaver Marketing Associates in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and an expert on Web 2.0 Branding, 2009 National SBA Small Business Journalist of the Year, Author "Folly of Marketing Plan in Your Head, 101 Compelling Reasons to Write One." Available at:

This blog post can be reproduced in its entirety with the following information:
© Joanne Quinn-Smith, Techno Granny Show™ 2007-2016  All rights reserved.
Dreamweaver Marketing Associates  |  (412) 444-5197
Listen at: OR on its unique radio channel at:
Additional blog posts at:

No comments: