I had a not-so-good week last week.Lot’s of stuff too private for blog sharing, but let’s just say it was a cascade of dark and bad times that nobody should have to go through. One of the bits of bad luck was that the LCD on my laptop broke. Normally, this wouldn’t be so bad. Most of the time (i.e. unless I’m traveling), I log into my laptop via terminal server, so a broken screen has no impact. This is my “work” laptop, and it’s overdue for an upgrade, so normally, everything would line up well.
This is not a normal week. I leave for Amsterdam to speak at Euro STAR on Sunday, and there’s no way to get a replacement laptop through work on time. I looked into getting the screen replaced, but at $500, I didn’t feel like it was cost effective – I thought the same of renting a computer for $120 for the week. I have a strong network at MS, and pinged some of my colleagues on the Windows team for spare hardware, but that well was dry too. I begged admins, IT, and anyone I could find to let me use a laptop for the week, but everything fell through.
So, I figured it was time to buck up and buy a personal laptop. Microsoft is giving me (and every employee) a Surface RT, but we won’t get those until January. I looked around a bit, and felt a little strange paying (at least) $700 for a laptop that I probably wouldn’t use much after this trip (have you figured out yet that I hate spending money?).
In the end, I decided to go all in – to jump on the Windows Surface bandwagon and buy a Surface RT (yes – the same device I’ll get for from MS in a few months). If I like it, it will be nice to have two (if I love it, I’ll give one away!) The challenge I’ve given myself is to see how productive I can be using the Surface on the plane and in my hotel room – and using the Surface as my powerpoint source for my keynote at the conference. It’s going to be a fun few days, and I expect I’ll blog a bit about how it’s going along the way. I only hope that if my experience goes south that the Windows bigwigs aren’t going to get mad.
We’ll see what happens.