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Annual lists of bestselling laptop and desktop computer models?

I'm looking to gather data on the top selling laptop and desktop models for each year (preferably over the past 20 years and with total units sold each year in U.S. and in world). Does anyone know of a source or would be able to point me in the direction of one? Is there an industry newsletter? Ideally, I want something like "2003's Top 10 Bestselling Laptops: 1) Gateway 450: X million sold; 2) Dell Inspiron 8500: x million sold" etc, but I'm not too picky, any leads would be better than what I got now.
posted by jng on Oct 25, 2013 - 4 answers

Question about Bluetooth security and speakers.

I am about to buy some bluetooth speakers to be used in conjunction with a Windows computer and Itunes. I have heard vague rumblings to the effect that bluetooth has security issues that regular wifi devices do not. Ordinarily, I would buy wifi speakers but the few I can find are awfully damned pricey. Would I be putting myself at risk of compromising my computer's security if I set up a pair or two of bluetooth speakers in my apartment? In general, are there any bluetooth security issues I should be aware of, as a new user of this technology? Many thanks for your time.
posted by jason's_planet on Oct 24, 2013 - 2 answers

Flickering Monitor

I have my Macbook hooked up to a monitor, and within a few minutes of connecting the two, the monitor starts flickering more and more. Help! [more inside]
posted by nanook on Oct 22, 2013 - 4 answers

How are these tricked out Thinkpads selling so cheaply on Ebay?

I'm thinking of getting a Lenovo Thinkpad x230 to replace my aging laptop and noticed that Ebay had sellers with seemingly good ratings offering machines with higher specs than you can get in the Lenovo store for much cheaper. Is this too good to be true? [more inside]
posted by col_pogo on Oct 18, 2013 - 7 answers

Help my computer take me beyond the blue start-up screen

I have a HP Elitebook 8530p and recently after I have logged on it just sits there with a blue, slightly floral but otherwise blank screen and nothing else happens. I am able to start in safe mode, which is what I'm in now and I've done a system recovery which worked once, but I don't want to have to do that every single time I start the computer. So what do I try next?
posted by lazy robot on Oct 15, 2013 - 2 answers

Heavy Excel user ISO work-from-home setup

I'm looking for recommendations on a home-office setup that will eliminate the need for going into the office on weekends. [more inside]
posted by undercoverhuwaaah on Oct 12, 2013 - 6 answers

How do you help people have an epiphany about difficult concepts?

How do you describe the basic concepts of a difficult subject you know a lot about that makes it "click" for a beginner? [more inside]
posted by reenum on Oct 11, 2013 - 18 answers

how do i get this ghost out of my computer?

My conputer has its own ideas about what I should be typing. For the love of sanity, please help. [more inside]
posted by windykites on Oct 10, 2013 - 9 answers

Process launchers

What are the go-to systems these days for launching and managing a whole bunch of processes? [more inside]
posted by spbmp on Oct 9, 2013 - 6 answers

Crooked mobo ports

Three ports on my computer's motherboard are crooked. Is this easily fixable? [more inside]
posted by Zelos on Oct 8, 2013 - 4 answers

MP3 jukebox?

I have like 500gb worth of MP3s on my computer. My computer is about 6 years old. I just bought a replacement and I don't want to transfer all my music. I want to have my music in my living room, but I don't want a computer set up in there. Instead, I was wondering if there was some kind of high capacity storage device that I could plug into, say, my TV, and control with a remote. Does such a thing exist? How much is it? Where can I get one?
posted by to sir with millipedes on Oct 5, 2013 - 11 answers

What's the verdict on bluetooth multicasting using Windows 7?

Mrs. Van and I enjoy watching movies at night using XMBC on our HTPC (which runs Windows 7)... But in a Manhattan apartment with two kids under the age of 2, we're usually stuck watching foreign subtitled films, using bulky headphones with a splitter, or turning the volume up and down constantly on a Hollywood blockbuster. I bought a couple of bluetooth headphones and an adapter a while back. I got one of the headsets to pair, and while that works beautifully, I don't think there's a way (using the normal Broadcom drivers) to pair two at the same time. Is there a software product or workaround that would allow us to pair *multiple* bluetooth headsets, allowing both of us to listen to audio coming from the computer? Thanks.
posted by BobbyVan on Oct 1, 2013 - 13 answers

How does DailyLit split up books into bits?

How do sites like DailyLit split up large text files into smaller files and then email them? [more inside]
posted by reenum on Sep 30, 2013 - 4 answers

How to prevent vision deterioration from excessive computer use

I use the computer for 16-18 hours a day becasue I have a online business and I have noticed my vision worsening since doing this. I really don't want glasses and have seen a eye doctor who said I don't absolutely need glasses my vision is 20/25 I think he said. I used to have better vision before I spent so much time on the computer. I'm wondering if there any any "techniques" used by OSHA or anything to prevent eyestrain or vision deterioration from excessive computer use .
posted by john123357 on Sep 30, 2013 - 19 answers

My Magic Mouse went for a swim...

I forgot that my Apple Magic Mouse was in my front jeans pocket, and it went through the washing machine. Strangely, it still works fine, even with the same batteries. I admit I'm impressed. BUT... [more inside]
posted by rensar on Sep 24, 2013 - 5 answers

Help me find a desktop PC on a budget

My 4-year-old laptop is dying and I want to replace it with a desktop. What is the least computer I could buy now that would still be upgradeable enough that I could keep it and upgrade it for several years? [more inside]
posted by matcha action on Sep 13, 2013 - 19 answers

Help, I think I've installed a virus

Setting up a new computer for my mother and stepfather I've accidentally installed a virus. After three hours of slogging through getting a new computer set up for them (why would we write down any of our passwords, the old now dead computer had them all saved) I tired and not paying attention downloaded Firefox for them. Problem: It wasn't from Mozilla, didn't realize until afterward that it was from something called ez-download. Internet says this is a Trojan. I've turned off the wifi and have windows defender running a scan. There is nothing on this computer from a software standpoint that needs to be saved. Computer didn't come with a windows8 disc but rather a partioned drive. If I run a reset to factory will that be easiest? Will it work? Halp!
posted by dismitree on Sep 9, 2013 - 13 answers

Do I need a new computer power supply, or can I fix this one?

I have a 650W power supply in my computer that I installed myself back when I asked this question (scroll through the answers on that for most system specs). This morning, the fan on the power supply started making noise. Do I need to replace the supply entirely, or is this something I can fix on my own? [more inside]
posted by LionIndex on Sep 6, 2013 - 10 answers

Microsoft Security Essentials

Microsoft Security Essentials Missing From System Tray. [more inside]
posted by dbirchum on Sep 2, 2013 - 35 answers

New games are crashing my computer

My computer started crashing to a black screen a few minutes into any new game. I just got payday 2, and 4-5 minutes into the introductory map my computer would crash to a black screen, I thought it was the game, so then I tried the other new game I just gotten, Saints Row IV, same thing, it let me play for like 10 minutes then the same crash to black screen. [more inside]
posted by Iax on Sep 1, 2013 - 12 answers

Specs dammit! I need specs!

My current computer (a Dell desktop from 2008 or so) has served me well, but is about to shuffle off of its mortal coil. I'm looking to get a new laptop that will support some pretty resource intensive work, specifically Pro Tools/audio work and perhaps like, Sony Vegas/Final Cut Pro/Aftereffects video stuff. I'm wondering if you guys could help me spec out a new computer based on these needs - both the best Mac and the best PC I could potentially get, given my needs. Budget = $2500
posted by to sir with millipedes on Aug 31, 2013 - 8 answers

Why won't my Windows 8 laptop 'talk' to my Canon Pixma printer?!?

I have a new Samsung Ultrabook running Windows 8, and a Canon Pixma iP4600 inkjet printer. The interwebz tell me that I should just be able to connect the two, and print away. I can't. Now what?? [more inside]
posted by Salamander on Aug 28, 2013 - 8 answers

Why do all VPN's give me the BSOD?

I have tried several VPN's on two different PC's running windows 7 and they all crash both my computers with a BSOD. How can this be? [more inside]
posted by gnossos on Aug 28, 2013 - 9 answers

More than one tab would be just great

Laptop freezing semi-regularly with internet use, need suggestions. [more inside]
posted by carnivoregiraffe on Aug 20, 2013 - 9 answers

Gaming the System

We're building a new PC. We're also an avid gamers. What OS do we want (and/or monitor and mouse/trackpad combo)? [more inside]
posted by Diagonalize on Aug 14, 2013 - 20 answers

Cheap, great laptop recommendations?

I really need a cheap, new-ish laptop to make my Youtube cartoons. I have very little to spend, so I'm hoping you smart folks on the TG Comics board have some suggestions. [more inside]
posted by Ursula Hitler on Aug 12, 2013 - 8 answers

To R or not to R

My office has recently had some funds open up and we are looking into investing in some statistical software to make our lives easier. We do a lot of work with distribution fitting, Monte Carlo analysis, and regression analysis with data sets that may contain left or right censored data. Unfortunately, we only have a few days to identify the best software package for our buck. Alternatively, the idea has been floated to download the free R software and spend the money on some training to get over the steep learning curve. What program or approach would be the best use of our money?
posted by C'est la D.C. on Aug 12, 2013 - 23 answers

Sliding (mac) windows

I have a monitor attached to my iMac, which is running 10.8.4. I use the dock to switch between open windows and programs. Until this morning this was never a problem -- I could leave a pdf open on one screen to refer to, and open Mail on the other screen. This meant I could look at what I was writing about. [more inside]
posted by bwonder2 on Aug 12, 2013 - 4 answers

Micro computers

I have a fascination for micro computers such as the Raspbery Pi, the wide array of micro Android PCs, and low-power wall plug computers. [more inside]
posted by jsturgill on Aug 9, 2013 - 15 answers

I don't know about processors, but I know what I want?

I will need a new laptop soon, and the one thing I can't stand is lagging programs. So I know what to look for, explain processors to me like I'm a small child. I know enough to know that I don't know what I'm doing. For example, I know that the ability to not jitter, lag, and occasionally freeze isn't down to one factor, but is (I think?) a combination of RAM, processor speed, and some other things. Cores, maybe? Info on my current problems and what I need inside... [more inside]
posted by sarahkeebs on Aug 9, 2013 - 14 answers

Computer-fixer-type-people in Philadelphia? Halp?

PhillyPhilter: I need the services of folks in Philadelphia who might be able to fix or at least diagnose a busted laptop on short notice. Seemingly randomly, my high-end Clevo-style PC laptop started to show random visual artifacts when in Windows... and then even when booting up the BIOS... and then freezing horribly. I have no idea what is going on, and I have two academic manuscripts that are coming up to being due. However onerous, I could go to the university library to work on this, as I have all of my work backed up. Unfortunately, I have the misfortune that I am going to be traveling out of my area starting this weekend, for almost a full week. So I need help fast if at all possible, and I would prefer not to mail this damn thing to Michigan where it came from if I can avoid it. Where can I turn to in Philadelphia for this kind of PC laptop fixing service?
posted by Keter on Aug 7, 2013 - 3 answers

Computer locks up at nine every night?

My computer locks up at nine every night. Well, sometimes as early as 8:30. The mouse acts as though it's very nearly out of batteries, (i.e. sits still for minutes on end, doesn't register clicks) and the keyboard doesn't record any keystrokes for long stretches, then types out doubles of every letter. However, if a video is playing, it continues flawlessly, and no processes show 100% utilization. Nor do the performance tab or network tab on the Task Manager show any spikes. [more inside]
posted by notsnot on Aug 7, 2013 - 20 answers

Viable Mac setup?

What I want to do is get a Macbook Air, partition one of my externals for Windows and at least 1 Linux distro so that I can play with all three systems. However, my only concern is that I'm not forseeing some possible issues with getting a mostly basic level 13 in Air. Before you ask, I don't want a Pro since my current laptop is a beast, portability really is a concern for me for several months out of the year, and I want to experience the opposite end of the weight and ready-to-go spectrum. [more inside]
posted by DisreputableDog on Aug 7, 2013 - 10 answers

Recommend a laptop for a grad student who knows nothing

I finished my first year of grad school, passed my comps (so they're not getting rid of me!), and spent the summer using a computer lab to work on campus. I'm sick of it and want to buy a laptop but haven't bought one in awhile and I'm not sure what to get or the best way to go about it, so I thought I'd beg y'all for advice. Details inside. [more inside]
posted by dismas on Aug 2, 2013 - 14 answers

Computer service/repair in Milwaukee?

I need recommendations for a person or service that can have a look at my mom's computer, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I would like for Geek Squad to be an absolute last resort. I live on the west coast, alas, and have already done what troubleshooting I can do remotely.
posted by sandettie light vessel automatic on Aug 1, 2013 - 4 answers

Changing Careers Back (or The Once and Future Techie)

I made a career change (technology to law) a few years ago, and now I'd like to change back, as I had a decent career before and have a pretty foul one now. How do I do this? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jul 31, 2013 - 9 answers

Why does my computer keep freezing?

Why does my computer keep freezing during video games and HDTV playback? [more inside]
posted by soy_renfield on Jul 28, 2013 - 10 answers

Saving a hard drive/Windows install that is freezing up.

Our desktop computer is locking up in scary ways, and I'm looking for advice on how to save the contents of the hard drive, and/or just get it up and running again. [more inside]
posted by jbickers on Jul 20, 2013 - 15 answers

Ergonomic keyboard with 6 on right side?

Are there any reasonably-priced split keyboards that put 6 on the right side? [more inside]
posted by at home in my head on Jul 20, 2013 - 6 answers

Do latest-generation external hard drives work seamlessly?

I am considering buying a new Macbook Pro with a solid-state drive, but the drives built into the laptop do not offer enough storage for me. If I buy an external Thunderbolt hard drive, will the laptop be able to seamlessly play music and video from files stored on the hard drive, or is there likely to be an annoying lag? Apart from portability, are there any technical issues with relying on an external hard drive for primary storage and everyday use? I am a fairly ordinary but media-heavy user.
posted by eugenen on Jul 17, 2013 - 10 answers

I just want to scroll down!

Yesterday evening the down arrow key on my laptop computer started behaving strangely. [more inside]
posted by JuliaJellicoe on Jul 16, 2013 - 5 answers

Best hard drive solution for mobile audio recording

Trying to decide what to get, here. I've got an interal 750gb 5400 rm drive in the MBP that very occasionally throws up the dreaded "drive too slow" dialog in Logic at only 6 or 8 tracks of 24 bit 44.1 kHz. [more inside]
posted by Devils Rancher on Jul 12, 2013 - 16 answers

How do I scope a dynamic webpage thingy?

I'm pretty dim, but I've been told to write a scope of work for a dynamic webpage. Can you help me with the lingo? [more inside]
posted by Banish Misfortune on Jul 11, 2013 - 5 answers

FPS issues in one specific game

The boyfriend's having FPS and sluggish gameplay issues in one specific game -- "World of Warcraft." His computer is more than powerful enough to, in theory, run it without any problem, and it used to. What gives? [more inside]
posted by sailoreagle on Jul 2, 2013 - 10 answers

Limiting a single OSX Application's use?

Does an OSX app exist which will limit the use of a single application? Nothing in the parental controls seems to be able to limit time spent in a given application. [more inside]
posted by neilkod on Jun 23, 2013 - 4 answers

Router needed but...

Wife has trouble getting wi fi on cell in bedroom and router/modem downstairs...Router is pretty old and not I think a good one. Would like one that I simply take the two wires from old and put into new, strong one. No messing with it beyond that...is this possible and what should I get ? [more inside]
posted by Postroad on Jun 20, 2013 - 13 answers

Dell Vostro 1400: Battery not being recognized. Possible culprits?

Is it even possible to replace the component that will allow my battery to be recognized again? [more inside]
posted by lizarrd on Jun 17, 2013 - 2 answers

Is a smart display a smart choice as an external monitor?

I currently have an Asus Netbook that serves as my primary computer (although I tend to travel with my iPad on short trips and leave the netbook at home). I'm a PhD student and know I'll need to upgrade within the next year before I start the heavy dissertation writing. However, right now I'm thinking of getting an external monitor to use at home for more screen real estate (useful for reading articles and taking notes). Should I get a smart display or a regular monitor? [more inside]
posted by MultiFaceted on Jun 15, 2013 - 4 answers

Is there a low-power, low-cost computer with a PCI-e 2.0 x8 slot?

I would like to build a new router for my home network. It won't generally need to do a lot of work, but I do need it to have a PCI-e 2.0 x8 (or higher) slot to accommodate a QDR InfiniBand adapter. Beyond this requirement, my next-highest-priority goal is that this machine not consume a lot of electricity when idle or mostly idle. A low purchase price would be nice, too. I plan to build this machine from parts (motherboard, CPU, etc), although if the cost is low enough, a pre-manufactured system would be fine too. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance!
posted by Juffo-Wup on Jun 7, 2013 - 8 answers

Cheapest sensible laptop for photography

I'm beginning to take photographs again, and my apartment has no real easy space to set up my currently-decommissioned desktop PC. My present laptop is super low-end and it's a horrible drag trying to do anything with photos on it. Please recommend a minimum spec replacement - a few more details after the cut. [more inside]
posted by ominous_paws on Jun 6, 2013 - 5 answers

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