Pop quiz. When was the first laptop created? Here’s a hint – Jimmy Carter was president. Thats right. The first laptop was the Epson HX-20, invented in 1980 and priced at $795 upon release. Its tiny black-and-white screen could display 80 characters at a time. That seemed acceptable then, but its less than a tweet today.

Laptops have evolved and diversified since the days yore, which is wonderful until you try to shop for one.

Digital savant Omar Gallaga of the Austin American-Statesman’s 512 Tech says the way to think about choosing a laptop is to start with how you plan to use it, and to understand the three classes of portable computers available.

“You can’t have everything in a laptop,” Gallaga says. “You can’t have light, and powerful and energy efficient, and long battery life. There have to be some compromises.”

What you’ll hear in this segment:

– How a Chromebook can meet basic computing needs

– What stepping up to a mid-level Windows portable offers

– Why gaming laptops are having a resurgence

– How long you should wait to buy an Apple laptop

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