In February of this year, we taught our first-ever live training event in Houston.
One challenge of putting on an event like this is technology … making sure everyone has an adequate laptop to work on – heck, just getting everyone connected to WiFi – we wanted to keep things as simple as possible for ourselves as well as for our attendees.
To make sure everyone was on the same page, we decided to build the cost of a Chromebook into our course. A Chromebook is essentially a Chrome browser in a laptop shell. They’re super simple machines, and they’re priced accordingly. Chromebooks are perfect for running JobTracker and CounterGo, since all you need is a web browser.
We looked at several different devices and found one that met our budget and was a snappy performer: this Lenovo (the price varies a bit, but it’s less than $150 on Amazon as I write this). It has 4GB of RAM, which is impressive for this price point, and it has a solid keyboard and touchpad. It even has a swiveling camera, so you could use it to take before and after pictures to upload into JobTracker or CounterGo. However, you’ll have to connect it to your cellphone’s WiFi sharing or to a dedicated device from your cellular provider if you want to use it in the field (I’ve never seen an LTE-connected Chromebook).
Class participants really liked these machines – in fact, I was surprised at just how much they liked them. When I mentioned that to Kathleen, she came up with a theory: many people hate choosing computers, so having one chosen for them feels good … I think she has a point!
As a gadget geek, I happen to enjoy shopping for computer stuff, but many people don’t. Once in a while, I’ll highlight a machine that’s a good fit for our customers. It’s tricky, since new devices come on the market every day, and in general, today’s machine is better than yesterday’s. Also, we can’t support hardware, so you should still check with a local IT professional if you have any questions about what computers are the right fit for your situation.
But if you just want a cheap, small device that can connect to WiFi and let you run JobTracker and CounterGo, this one could be a good fit 🙂 Enjoy!