Making a Whackbook

I’ve had my old, white, cracked placstic MacBook 4,1 (Mid 2008) since mid 2008. It’s been a great little machine for me, but it’s way past its prime. It’s no longer able to run the latest version of OS X, and the latest applciations aren’t remotely capable of running on Snow Leopard, or whatever version of OS X that the hardware is capable of handling. Speaking of hardware, I maxed out the RAM, upgraded the HDD, and replaced the battery; this little laptop has some life in it, yet.

I have several other machines at my disposal, ranging from the higher powered laptop provided by work, to a handful of Windows laptops and desktops at home. I just can’t qutie bring myself to completely disregard the little MacBook. So I decided to keep the hardware and “upgrade” to a low-power-friendly operating system.

I chose LinuxMint and Cinnamon (well before the hacking and whatnot), and have been mostly happy with the results. I think what I really want to explore is mimicing a Chromebook, Google’s low-powered operating system that works very well for those who work mostly in the cloud. Most of the work I want to do is there, in the cloud. I do the usual web browsing, email checking, Facebook stalking, Twitter tweeting, etc. I do a bit of writing, which can be done in any manner of online tools, including Google Drive. This blog is a bit easier to administrate locally, but I can do quite a bit from even the web interface at GitHub.

I’ve setup LinuxMint with an extremely minimal interface, and installed the Chrome App Launcher extension, which places all of the Google Services (my most frequently used tools) in a launcher on the desktop. I’m going to play around with this for a few more weeks and see how it treats me.

The next option is to try something like CloudReady from Neverware, which installs an OS similar to ChromeOS, on a very large range of devices. They’ve been developing quite a bit, and dual booting is now an option. Could be a great way to get the streamlined experience I need for just checking my mail in a coffee shop, for example. We’ll have to see where this all ends up.