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Replacing a Thinkpad? 902

Posted by kdawson
from the swimming-against-the-race-to-the-bottom dept.
An anonymous reader writes "As a very happy Thinkpad T20 user (still working after 7 years), I always planned on replacing it with another Thinkpad T-series. However, Thinkpads are now produced by Lenovo, a Chinese company, and I can't quite bear to buy Chinese while the Burmese military are shooting at monks with the Chinese Government as their biggest backer. Maybe this is silly, as whatever I buy is likely to be made (at least in part) in China... but still, what are my options for something as well built as the Thinkpad T-series?"
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Replacing a Thinkpad?

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  • by Corporate Troll (537873) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:36AM (#20781829) Homepage Journal
    Where exactly do you think the other laptop manufacturers make their gear? A hint: "Designed in California, Made in China", and that is just one of the favourites around here on slashdot.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by smtrembl (1073492)
      Well, yes, but ALL the money, at least in this case, goes to china. IBM also sold their designs, wich where very good, but I doubt lenovo keeps them for long, or know how to make them evolve like IBM did!
      • by 1u3hr (530656) on Friday September 28, 2007 @12:30PM (#20783787)
        Well, yes, but ALL the money, at least in this case, goes to china

        Of course not. Unless you mail order it from Beijing. Where are you going to buy it? In the US. At least half the money will stay in the US. From Wikipedia

        Its executive headquarters are located in Raleigh, North Carolina, USA, the home of IBM's former ThinkPad group, and in Beijing, China. It is incorporated in Hong Kong. As of May 31, 2007, 39.6% of Lenovo is owned by public shareholders, 42.4% by Legend Holdings Limited, 7.9% by IBM and 10.1% by Texas Pacific Group, General Atlantic LLC and Newbridge Capital LLC. Because the Chinese Academy of Sciences, a Chinese government agency, owns 65% of Legend Holdings, effectively the Chinese government owns about 27.5% of Lenovo and is the largest shareholder.
        Buy a second-hand Thinkpad in the US, then 100% of your cash will stay here.
    • by p0tat03 (985078) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:44AM (#20781979)
      Standing up for one's moral convictions is now silly? How far we've fallen...
      • by Corporate Troll (537873) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:48AM (#20782051) Homepage Journal

        Do not misunderstand me... I find it great that he does that. However, I fear, he's going to have to stick to his current laptop. There is no was to get a computer that isn't manufactured at least partially in China.

        • by p0tat03 (985078) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:02AM (#20782335)

          True, though he can certainly minimize the dollar count going to China. Buying Lenovo would be giving every single dollar of the purchase to a Chinese company (though how they are directly related to the atrocities there... I'd never know), whereas buying, say, Dell, would only be giving manufacturing costs, while R&D remains here.

          As a Chinese-Canadian I'm glad there are people who, at the very least, are willing to think along this guy's lines. There are awful, horrifying things going on in that country and it's nice to see some people who aren't so American-centric they can't point out China on a map, much less the atrocities being committed there.

          As a side note... From my experience, more Americans know about these atrocities than Chinese. It's depressing, really. It's also depressing the number of new Chinese immigrants who are totally blown away by Canada's democratic government, since they thought (or were taught) that they had democracy all along.

          • by king-manic (409855) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:41AM (#20782953)
            As a side note... From my experience, more Americans know about these atrocities than Chinese. It's depressing, really. It's also depressing the number of new Chinese immigrants who are totally blown away by Canada's democratic government, since they thought (or were taught) that they had democracy all along.

            Depends on where your from, my relatives in Xin Hua and Guangzhou are acutely aware of the deficiencies with their government. They are aware of the bad things that go on but persist to live a quiet live to avoid that trouble. But they're in a different socio economic class then the rest of China. They're owners of factories, doctors, accountants, the upper middle class of china. Their proximity to HK might be part of it too.

            They have had brushes with some of it. My uncle was offered a promotion to Dean of one of the medical schools in the region. He had been a professor for a long time and was about to retire. He smelled a fish and took early retirement instead. Turns out they were attempting to find a scape goat for some embezzlement that happened. The person they did promote was arrested for embezzlement.
            • by p0tat03 (985078) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:56AM (#20783211)

              One the truly puzzling things about most Chinese that I meet is there bottomless capacity to defend the snake of a government they have - even the ones that have already immigrated away. I find that the upper-middle class tends to be the worst - the ridiculously rich are too educated to fall for the government's lies, while the poorest suffer too much to believe anything the government says. It's the people who fall down the middle that actually believe the things the government teaches them.

              I've known many Chinese who admit their government's deficiencies, and admit that officials are almost always corrupt and self-serving. But for some reason they still declare their allegiance to the government, claiming that as a Chinese by blood they cannot possibly turn away from the Chinese government. This puzzles me greatly, since I've long ago refused to consider myself a supporter of anything BUT a Western democracy - if the government is shooting your kind by the hundreds, is corrupt, etc etc, what kind of loyalty do you owe to them? It seems very ego-driven, and amounts to stubborn refusal to admit that perhaps the West has a better sociopolitical system.

              In a sick way, it's like Stockholm syndrome... a whole race of people who are culturally conditioned to remain loyal to their government, despite the innumerable atrocities that are committed against them in front of their own eyes.

              As another side note... it's depressing the "history" they learn in their schools...

              • by king-manic (409855) on Friday September 28, 2007 @12:22PM (#20783625)


                One the truly puzzling things about most Chinese that I meet is there bottomless capacity to defend the snake of a government they have - even the ones that have already immigrated away. I find that the upper-middle class tends to be the worst - the ridiculously rich are too educated to fall for the government's lies, while the poorest suffer too much to believe anything the government says. It's the people who fall down the middle that actually believe the things the government teaches them.

                I've known many Chinese who admit their government's deficiencies, and admit that officials are almost always corrupt and self-serving. But for some reason they still declare their allegiance to the government, claiming that as a Chinese by blood they cannot possibly turn away from the Chinese government. This puzzles me greatly, since I've long ago refused to consider myself a supporter of anything BUT a Western democracy - if the government is shooting your kind by the hundreds, is corrupt, etc etc, what kind of loyalty do you owe to them? It seems very ego-driven, and amounts to stubborn refusal to admit that perhaps the West has a better sociopolitical system.

                In a sick way, it's like Stockholm syndrome... a whole race of people who are culturally conditioned to remain loyal to their government, despite the innumerable atrocities that are committed against them in front of their own eyes.

                As another side note... it's depressing the "history" they learn in their schools...


                It's not just a Chinese thing. Everybody will carry some portion of the place they grew up with them. It's part of who they are and they are part of that too. So when you attack someones homeland it's partially an attack on them (or so they perceive). Unless the party that is being attacked hurt them directly they will usually try to defend or justify it.

                It's not just countries but any affiliation. The foaming at the mouth republicans and democrats who defend their side against all logic. The Reform, NDP, Bloc, Liberal supporters here in Canada who will rationalize everything about their party. It's not the nature of just Chinese people. It's people as a whole will defend what ever they have some investment in. China does horrible things but the odds of you getting caught up in one of those things are small. Just as Canada and the US have done some pretty bad things but by and large most people been a part of that. Forced sterilization, internment camps, gitmo, Arar, Chinese head tax, residential schools, successful native American genocide, etc.. The difference is after the fact we can talk about it while in china talking about it too publically will often get you in toruble.

                Thus Chinese aren't unique in lamenting that they don't really have a democracy but will say it isn't that bad. Which for a large majority of Chinese is true. The current Gov is better then any china has ever had. But the bar isn't as high as the West.
              • by alienw (585907) <alienw@slashdot.gmail@com> on Friday September 28, 2007 @01:15PM (#20784539)
                If you have so much trouble understanding this stuff, then just look at the US. How many people voted to re-elect Bush, even after seeing how incompetent he was? You don't think it's the same phenomenon?
          • Besides Lenovo being partially "state-owned" and thereby directly funding the one-party dictatorship of China, the non-state Chinese owners are also generally deeply entangled in supporting the Party machinery. If guangxi ("connections" ie. corruption) was a huge problem under communism, it has really blossomed under the new and improved fascist system.

            Most of the Taiwanese OEMs have practically all of their manufacturing facilities in China, but at least they aren't directly involved in feeding the Part

      • by Applekid (993327)

        Standing up for one's moral convictions is now silly? How far we've fallen...
        The point was: what's the alternative? Really, I hope the "how far we've fallen" applies to the western world simply allowing a manufacturing mono-culture to exist in China of all places.

        Which, I suppose, was the point of ask.slashdot.org, to ask knowledgeable folks and find an alternative morally compatible laptop to the Thinkpad.
      • by bwalling (195998) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:29AM (#20782771) Homepage
        Do you think the factory workers, or even the management at Lenovo have anything to do with China's military decisions? The US has a behavioral problem as well, do you think that world consumers should punish the people of the US economically because of it? When you boycott an entire country, keep in mind that the employees of the companies are people just like you who are working for a living. "China" is not some collection of a billion evil people shooting at monks - it's a country full of good people working to feed themselves and take care of their families.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Knara (9377)

          ++ this

          Not buying a laptop from a country doesn't hurt the people whose actions you object to, but rather the people who make the laptop (who, by and large, have a way better standard of living working in assembly plants than they did in rural, dirt-poor farms).

          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by Un pobre guey (593801)
            What?!! You're thinking logically and taking actual facts into account? What are you, nuts? You're crazy! If we all get together and paint a mural with happy things like flowers and butterflies, everything will be whole again. It will be healed. Democracy will sprout. People will be liberated.

            Just imagine how beautiful the world would be if people stopped buying laptops made in China! Their repressive regime would magically vanish! It would inspire the feudal quasi-dictatorships of the rest of Asia, Latin

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by xappax (876447)
              Yeah, facts and reason, and also logic! For example, logically why should we care about those people when they're way over in some other country and don't even speak American? And what's reasonable about withholding funding from institutions who rely on funding to do unethical things? If people just looked at facts more, they'd see that all the facts say I should buy whatever I want from China, supplying their government with tax money to build up their oppressive military and propaganda efforts! Factua
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by tloh (451585)
        Taking a stand should always be applauded as an act of courage. However, I think brandishing one's wallet in this case is a hollow gesture that is far from the impact a real nerd can make on these events. Money comes and goes but knowledge and information moves the spirit and changes regimes. I think it would be far more effective for those of us with the technical know-how to exercise our convictions by aiding those inside Burma to get the word out(and in) by circumventing the censorship that has been p
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Kohath (38547)
        Standing up for one's moral convictions is now silly?

        - If they're silly morals, then yes.
        - If "standing up" means doing something that makes you feel good, hurts people who weren't involved, and has no affect on the people who were involved, then yes.
        - If you need to announce on a web site how virtuous you are for your so-called morals, then yes.
        - If you don't care when people do bad things, but you pretend to care when the news media tells you to care, then yes.

        In other words, it seems like you have "stand
  • the t series (Score:5, Informative)

    by bakamaki (1148765) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:36AM (#20781833)
    I've repaired and issued a lot of laptops in my day and I'm not aware of a true competitor to the T series in terms of chassis design. The current T lineup is really nice, but expensive. I'm starting to think I'll get myself a Dell 1420n with Ubuntu for my next box. Granted it's not a rugged laptop but I don't really need that kind of durability. You could consider the Toughbooks, but I really don't have any practical knowledge of them.
    • Re: (Score:2, Flamebait)

      by PlatyPaul (690601)
      Here's a thought: an OLPC [laptop.org] laptop. Decent (if low-end) specs, supports charity, and durable.

      As was brought up recently [slashdot.org], you can buy one starting Nov. 11 [xogiving.org] if you live in the U.S.
    • by MarkGriz (520778) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:50AM (#20782087)
      I'd go with the T-1000 [wikipedia.org]. Those things are rugged as hell.
      • by eln (21727) * on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:56AM (#20782195) Homepage
        I considered that option, but I work in a steel mill, so it wouldn't work for me.
        • Re:the t series (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Eponymous Bastard (1143615) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:26AM (#20782723)
          I too work in a steel mill, and I have to recommend the Toughbooks. We've had a couple of them survive being dropped into vats of molten metal. The hard part was removing them from the steel slab afterwards as the oxy-fuel cutting torch set a bit of the magnesium casing on fire on one of them.

          Boy, was that a strange meeting with the fire dept...

          • by melstav (174456) on Friday September 28, 2007 @12:12PM (#20783445)
            While the Toughbooks may survive a drop into a vat of molten metal, I have on good authority that they don't take well to being dropped into a spinning dynamometer.

            Buddy of mine who works for one of the "Big Three" had the Toughbook on the hood of a car on one of the dynos. Walked away from the laptop and the testing tech gunned the engine. Computer vibrated off the hood and went into the dyno's rollers.

            My friend picked up all the pieces, put 'em in a box, went back to his desk, and called the HelpDesk and said: "There's something wrong with my laptop. It won't boot. It booted up fine this morning. I think you need to send someone out to take a look at it."

            The look on the HelpDesk technician's face when he looked into the box is said to have been priceless.
          • ...is there no one left on Slashdot who grasps the concept of sarcasm?
      • by PlatyPaul (690601) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:27AM (#20782735) Homepage Journal
        I'd rather go with the T-X [wikipedia.org] for its... erhm... features.
    • by fymidos (512362)
      What do you mean expensive? You can buy a thinkpad for $1500 - this is *cheap* for a T.
      In the good old days, T600 used to cost more than $3000 ...
       
    • Fujitsu (Score:3, Informative)

      by James Jazz (1030778)
      First off go to notebookreview.com to see which Laptop suits your needs. In your case, I would seriously look at a Fujitsu Lifebook. They are excellent machines, an E series or S series would be the perfect thin and light for you. But they are assembled in Osaka, Japan and NOT in Third Word mainland China. Checkout Panasonic Toughbooks although they are somewhat pricey. I believe Dell Latitude are assembled in Malayasia. HP Compaq are made in China. I think Samsungs are put together in Korea (although loads
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by samkass (174571)
      The toughbooks have the mindshare, but the Mercedes of rugged laptops is IMHO the Itronix GoBook XR-1 [gd-itronix.com]. (disclaimer: I work for General Dynamics.) But unless you're planning on taking this aboard a bouncing Stryker in desert heat or into a swamp in combat situations, any "MIL-STD 810F"-ruggedized laptop is almost certainly overkill.

      For an office environment, the consumer/business laptops are all basically made by the same people at the same facilities out of the same parts these days. Get whichever one ha
  • Ummmm (Score:5, Informative)

    by tgd (2822) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:37AM (#20781843)
    You do realize Lenovo is selling the Thinkpads now because... *drumroll* they were the company that made them all along?
    • Re:Ummmm (Score:5, Funny)

      by anthonyclark (17109) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:39AM (#20781899)

      You do realize Lenovo is selling the Thinkpads now because... *drumroll* they were the company that made them all along?
      Lenovowned!
    • Re:Ummmm (Score:5, Informative)

      by OS24Ever (245667) * <trekkie@nomorestars.com> on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:47AM (#20782027) Homepage Journal
      How do you define 'make'?

      Reason I ask is the same building where Lenovo computers are 'made' (IE Physically Assembled) is also the same building Apple, Dell, HP, Acer, and many others are made. The company is contracted out to make just about everyones laptop.

      China has taken over the manufacturing of *so* many products that we use day to day in the United States (and every other country) that it would be downright impossible to function by 'boycotting' anything Made in China.

      I started to look into it after the tenth toy of my kids was recalled. My son's wooden trains, my daughters dolls. Fun stuff. Not that my kids chew on them or anything but still, figured I'd send em in.

      So I started wondering what I could get as far as a toy without Made in China on it.

      in Short, you can't easily. A specialty store sometimes you can find things made in maybe Europe somewhere, but US made things are hard to find and anything non-chinese is pretty hard as well. Forget about shopping at Wal-Mart. That's the retail arm of China now.

      In this current global environment it's impossible for a company to be cost competitive because as a consumer we've been trained to throw out everything and focus on price. If this toothpaste is $0.50 cheaper than that toothpaste, I'm gonna buy it. Never mind that one keeps a family in the US employed and has strict laws about what can go in it vs. the other guy putting antifreeze in his mixture in china.

      What's a person to do? It can be done, but it's not something that is easy.
      • Re:Ummmm (Score:5, Interesting)

        by jaweekes (938376) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:55AM (#20782171)
        NPR did an interview [npr.org] with the author of "A Year Without "Made in China": One Family's True Life Adventure in the Global Economy" and they admitted that it was almost impossible to avoid goods from China. It's a very good interview if you want to reduce your purchases from "Made in China".
        • Re:Ummmm (Score:5, Interesting)

          by smooth wombat (796938) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:12AM (#20782505) Homepage Journal
          it was almost impossible to avoid goods from China. It's a very good interview if you want to reduce your purchases from "Made in China"


          While I will admit it is tough to not buy products made in China, I have found that with the exception of sunglasses and most electronics, I can buy the products I need which aren't made in China.

          Granted, I'm the exception to most Americans in that I don't want or need a ton of stuff so I'm probably not a representative sample, but if one were to take the time and not buy products which are made in China, it can be done.

          It's almost comical when I and my parents are out somewhere because both my dad and I look at where products are made. In fact, my dad refers to WalMart as "The China store". I'm sure some day someone in a store will ask what we're doing as we look at the labels on products. When that day occurs, I'll be happy to tell them why we're looking at the labels.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Trailer Trash (60756)

        Never mind that one keeps a family in the US employed

        Is there really someone left in the US who believes that people are unemployed because of production moving overseas? We are at full employment; people aren't starving here, just doing non-manufacturing jobs. It's okay.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by mr_mischief (456295)
      At one time, they were making them as a contractor for IBM. IBM designed them, and paid people to do that. IBM sold them, and kept the markup. Now the money is going all to Lenovo. Yes, they got part of it before, but part is not all.

      When IBM was selling them and having Lenovo make them, the story about Burmese police shooting at monks hadn't really broken yet, which is part of the OP's problem with supporting Chinese companies. Their tax yuan go to support this kind of stuff.

      Many laptops are actually made
  • by that logic... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by onemorehour (162028) * on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:37AM (#20781847)
    avoid Dell, too, since the American government is doing such horrible things around the world. Yes, it's flawed logic. Move on.
    • by GeckoX (259575)
      Are dell's made in the US?
      (I highly suspect not, but I really don't know)
      • by s4m7 (519684) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:51AM (#20782115) Homepage

        FYI: An article in the New York Times on December 19, 2004 said that Dell laptops are made in Malaysia. In contrast, full size Dell computers are made in the U.S.A. (at least those sold in the USA are made here). Other Dell products, such as PDAs, printers and music players are made by "third party manufacturers" primarily outside of the USA.

        (found here [computergripes.com])

        So, maybe, maybe not, depending on model. But GP is being rather extreme comparing the horrible things the US is doing and the horrible things china is doing. We're not imprisoning dissidents and journalists yet, and the country we're occupying is at least still free to practice their religion, short of the call to drive the infidels out of the holy land. Contrast with tibet.

        I'm not saying we're not bad, but we're no China

    • Re:by that logic... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by operagost (62405) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:45AM (#20781987) Homepage Journal
      I'm certainly not buying American until the government allows freedom of speech, assembly, and religion. Oh wait... they do!
      Ascribing moral equality between the governments of China and the USA is an insult to the innocent people executed and imprisoned by the vile, corrupt government of China.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:58AM (#20782227)
        Right, the US would never hold people without a trial [wikipedia.org], spy on its citizens [wikipedia.org], or deport people to be tortured [www.cbc.ca]
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by djbckr (673156)
        Agreed. I was a guest of China for a couple of weeks (adopting a girl). My translators (who shall remain nameless) told me how bad/corrupt things are. It was very dangerous for them to even tell me and my wife, but they wanted to make sure as many people as possible knew how bad it was. I fear for their lives.
    • by Liquidrage (640463) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:46AM (#20782017)
      Sure because every degree above absolute zero is same the temperature.

      Think what you will of America and it's policies. But to even compare it with China is absurd in that regard. American government has, for the majority of the time, been a boon to the world as a whole. Yes, there are conflicts where wonderful leaders like Saddam are overthrown and it makes people unhappy. And no, I'm not justifying Iraq with that sarcastic statement. But I am pointing out that no matter what side of the fence you're on, Iraq was an issue that should have been delt with. It wasn't Atlantis being invaded. American foreign policy is enormous. The most influential country in the world. While it easy to find examples of harm in there, there is more good then harm in the case of American foreign policy. Where as my biggest gripe with China is how the entire world stands by and let's a country like that into open markets so easily considering how disgraceful that country's government is.
    • The point I was trying to make, for those who missed it, was not that America is the same as China, but that Lenovo and Dell are not responsible for governmental policy.
    • by DaveCar (189300)
      Well, at least they don't shoot demonstrators [wikipedia.org] in the US.
  • Check ebay for a used thinkpad. IBM still made them in 2005, though they were made in a Chinese factory.
    • by crush (19364)
      But watch out and make sure it's not one of the models that has the crappy ATI video chip which is mounted by a Ball Grid Array that tends to break loose even if you treat the laptop like your firstborn.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by korbin_dallas (783372)
      I got my T-40 from this place.
      http://www.usedpc.com/ [usedpc.com]
      It was flawless, and I buy used laptops exclusively.

      I was not aware the the new Lenovos were like the 'T' series, more like the old 'R' series, am I wrong?

  • I call BS (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:38AM (#20781871)
    >> Thinkpads are now produced by Lenovo, a Chinese company

    If that was your problem, you should never have bought a Thinkpad ever. They were always manufactured by Lenovo which has always been a Chinese comopany, the country which it belongs to has always been the same. Can I call this a sudden attack of morality?

    Aside from the obvious hypocrisy mentioned above, I am sure you will get a lot of suggestions from the cult of Mac, but believe me - its hard to find a replacement for Thinkpad. No matter how slick other notebooks may look, in terms of fineness, usability and sheer joy of typing (yes, thats critical factor for me at least), nothing comes near.
  • Buy it anyway (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ispeters (621097) <ispeters AT alumni DOT uwaterloo DOT ca> on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:38AM (#20781873)

    This is cynical of me, but your private little boycott is not going to do the monks any good. If you buy a new Thinkpad now, it'll outlast the problem in Burma. Just buy another one. Lenovo has always produced Thinkpads, it's just that IBM doesn't support them directly anymore. Thinkpads are still the most reliable laptops in the market.

    Ian

  • by Myrrh (53301) * <matthew.mcclearyconsulting@net> on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:38AM (#20781875)
    Buy a newer, but still-made-by-IBM-not-Lenovo Thinkpad off eBay?
  • Way of life (Score:2, Funny)

    by packetmon (977047)
    and I can't quite bear to buy Chinese while the Burmese military are shooting at monks with the Chinese Government as their biggest backer. You're right. By the way didn't I just see you leave Walmart?
  • by supersnail (106701)
    I certainly wouldnt want to by anything from the USA while children are dying of cholera in Iraq because the USA backed regime has blocked imports of Chlorene.
    • Flamebait? How? It is rigt on target showing the hypocrisy on the part of the person who asked the original question. Never mind - I see /. is an american website.
  • SE Asia is the haven for most OEM's to purchase their laptops. For instance, old alienware laptops were actually Prostar laptops with a different logo (a Taiwanese manufacturer). Its going to be hard for you to find something that will allow you to divorce yourself from hardware without Chinese connections.
  • MPC (Score:2, Informative)

    by Askjeffro (787652)
    Expensive, but well built and assembled mostly in the US to my knowledge. I recommend doing more research and not just taking my word for it. :) Good luck.
    http://www.mpccorp.com/ [mpccorp.com]
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MPC_Corporation [wikipedia.org]
  • Why upgrade? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by MilesNaismith (951682)
    What is wrong with your T20?

    I have an X23 that I refurbished. Maxed out the RAM and put in a new hard-drive. I can't see any reason to replace until it dies.

    Eventually I will replace the spinning hard-drive with a flash-drive. I'd love to find a way to replace the CCFL backlight with LED were that possible, to make it even more long-lived.

    The American fascination with tossing perfectly adequate technology into a landfill is apalling.

  • I've always liked Compaqs. I had one with a busted LCD that I actually full-on stomped on. It kept ticking, after a badblocks. It was a much older model, a 486 with 16 megs running 2.0 kernels, but I managed uptimes of over a year (I wrote a kernel module to patch the ptrace vulnerability on the fly, and some firewall rules took care of most of the rest :-)).

    I currently have a Toshiba Satellite (for some reason) and a pre-Lenovo Thinkpad A20m, and my girlfriend has a Compaq. The Thinkpad and the Compaq
  • Good luck (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bullfish (858648) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:44AM (#20781973)
    After Tiananmen Square I stopped buying Chinese. In the last few years it has been almost impossible. If the main thing isn't made in China, components are, and that goes for almost everything. I am sure my shoes are made from the finest Falun Gong hides. In terms of a laptop, I don't any that would have most of the parts made in China. Not much has changed in terms of Chinese regard for human rights, but no one seems to care much as long as they can get what they want cheap, regardless of the treatment of the labour that produces them and the regime that allows it.

    We used to liberate people, now we liberate markets.
    • Re:Good luck (Score:4, Interesting)

      by king-manic (409855) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:29AM (#20782765)
      I am sure my shoes are made from the finest Falun Gong hides

      I am from canada, I have never had a positive non creepy encounter with a Falun Gong practitioner. China is severely over stepping the bounds of what is right or just but I get the same vibe from Falun Gong people that I do from Scientology's. A sort of creepy vibe, sort of like the person in front of me is just a shell of a real human being.
  • I've used Macs for years, especially the Powerbook line, and they are long lasting & durable. Plus, you'll be able to run 3 different OS's with Bootcamp.
    • by DrDitto (962751)
      Macs lack a TrackPoint. Its a show-stopper for me. Dell Latitude and Thinkpads have them.
  • You're aware? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Colin Smith (2679) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:45AM (#20781995)
    That reducing the wealth of people in an area makes them more subservient and dependent on the wealthy? In this case, the state... Sanctions ironically simply cement the power of the powerful.

    You make people more independent by making them wealthy.

     
  • by cerelib (903469) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:45AM (#20781997)
    Most companies, even Lenovo, use ODM companies to make laptops. Some of these companies are Chinese, but Taiwan is also a major competitor. Look for names like Quanta, Compal, or ASUS if you want to go with a Taiwanese company instead of a Chinese company. The ODM relationships are not advertised, so you will have to do some digging. Join forums like notebookreview.com and ask people to tell you where their laptops label says it was manufactured if you want to be sure.
  • by zymurgyboy (532799) <zymurgyboy@ y a hoo.com> on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:46AM (#20782009)
    and I've replaced it with this [apple.com] and this [vmware.com] and couldn't be happier. If you're looking for something with a similar lifespan, look no further.

    I carried my little white 2001 iBook in a gym bag back and forth to the office for 4 years, before retiring it for it's final year to home only as a couch computer. It finally gave up the ghost after 5.5 years, and two drops to the linoleum covered floor in my living room -- once from 2 feet, once from three and a half. I wish Apple still used the bullet proof glass for iBook cases. That iBook sure took a beatin' before it belly-uped .

  • I would happily buy a MacBook if it had the pointing_stick/nipple/TrackPoint/etc (the thing that sits between the G and H keys to move the mouse pointer).

    I can't stand the Trackpad.
  • I would answer your question but I have a feeling you won't read it, since this comment is also made in China!
  • by Bin_jammin (684517) <Binjammin@gmail.com> on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:49AM (#20782073)
    an abacus. They're great for math, unless you've developed something against the ancient Babylonians while living under your rock. The fact is that you're looking at Chinese mad goods no matter what you buy, you said it yourself. You're either going to buy an OLPC when they're available (at only slightly less power than you've already got) or buying Chinese. Don't like it? Who do you think made that T20 for IBM before?
  • by REBloomfield (550182) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:51AM (#20782117)
    The last lot of Lenovo desktops we brought were made in Hungary. Get one of them instead...
  • That's a tough one. (Score:5, Informative)

    by ErichTheRed (39327) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:54AM (#20782147)
    Very little compares to the durability of the ThinkPads, at least in the non-rugged category. You pay dearly for them, but they last forever compared to other notebooks.

    Even Dell's Lattitude business line still feels like a toy. Dell really improved their notebooks over the last iteration, and they're still crap. HP's business line (not the consumer junk with the blinky blue lights and 17" monitors) is the only one IMO that comes close to IBM/Lenovo's case design and construction.

    If you really want rugged or semi-rugged, you probably need to look at the Panasonic Toughbooks. They're solid, but they're 20% heavier than they should be and you compromise on case design for durability. (Side note, if you buy the true rugged Toughbook, it's assembled in the US (probably for military contract requirements.) You pay accordingly too...list on some of the rugged models is in the $2000-$3000 range.

    Your other choice might be a MacBook Pro, but those aluminum cases don't look like they can take a beating the way the old ThinkPads can.

    (By the way, everything's made in China now. If it wasn't, you wouldn't be paying the cheap prices you get for hardware now.)
  • Singapore, not China (Score:3, Informative)

    by qw0ntum (831414) on Friday September 28, 2007 @10:57AM (#20782219) Journal
    For what it's worth, I just looked at the bottom of my T60 and it's from Lenovo Singapore. Granted, it's made in China, but you'd be hard-pressed to find a laptop these days that isn't.

    I love my T60, too, by the way. Runs great with Ubuntu as well.

  • Possibly Asus? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Entropius (188861) on Friday September 28, 2007 @11:44AM (#20782993)
    You could get an Asus laptop. Owned by the Taiwanese, and made in Taiwan (or at least that's what's stamped on the bottom of mine).

    Why just buy from not-China when you can buy from their enemies?

Organic chemistry is the chemistry of carbon compounds. Biochemistry is the study of carbon compounds that crawl. -- Mike Adams

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