View Full Version : Laptop Usage

27-11-2003, 01:07 PM
I've got a 6 hour trip coming up on public transport...
i thank god i have a laptop but they dont last more than 2 hours or so depending on what i play or what programs i use...
how can i extend that to 3-4 hours?....as the 6 hour trip includes a hour and a half in stopover times...so yeah....

if i cant extend battery life....what can i do? any ideas on what i can do for 3-4 maybe 5 hours on a bus? on my laptop that is...



Graham L
27-11-2003, 01:13 PM
Read a book?

You could carry a 20AHr gel battery and inverter ... but that's heavy and expensive. ;-)

27-11-2003, 01:13 PM
I can't think of any magical way of extending your laptop's battery life.

You could however spend quite a few $$$ and buy a new centrino powered laptop which should be good for 5-6 hours.

Or you could spend a little bit less and buy a few spare batteries.

Or you could invest in a diesel powered generator which would probably keep your laptop running for the entire trip. I don't think the public transport operator would agree with that one though.

Other than that, a good book maybe?

27-11-2003, 01:13 PM
<random weird idea>
Sit near the front of the bus, and ask if you can stick an inverter and long cable into the bus driver's cigarette lighter socket (if they exist in buses). Alternatively, haul a car battery and an inverter and the AC power supply for your laptop onto the bus, and see if that gives you any extra time.
</random weird idea>

Is it possible for you to borrow extra batteries from family/friends, or are the batteries in your laptop built in? Otherwise if your laptop has some kind of power saving feature to turn off unused components, then that might help.

Otherwise a mad-dash during your stopover time to find a plug somewhere to trickle-charge your laptop as much as you possibly can in the short period of time.

27-11-2003, 01:15 PM
A small wind-up hand powered generator?? (like the ones available for some cellphones)

27-11-2003, 01:17 PM
Another idea:

12 -> 240v Inverter, Solar panel. Stick the solar panel up on your window (provided you manage to get a window seat), and use that to power your inverter and then your laptop. It __might__ work.

27-11-2003, 01:18 PM
if i didnt get this laptop a month or so ago i would have gone up on ur idea of getting anew one but no..

batterys are built in, and yeah i was thinking of charging up at a few stop overs (taupo bus station and somewhere in "flat hills") but i think i would be unlucky...

nah reading books on bus is bad for me..i puke lol but i've done it with lappie and it doesnt harm me which is good (was only a 2hr trip that time)

27-11-2003, 01:19 PM
for the solar powers to work...i need the sun and these days it seems to be hibernating....

but yeah good ideas thou :)

Jen C
27-11-2003, 01:33 PM
Play Solitaire on the laptop ...... won't run the batteries down at all if you just lay the cards on top of the laptop case. For extra room, open up laptop and place cards over monitor area :D

Graham L
27-11-2003, 01:38 PM
And an "80 watt" panel (which gives about 50W) will cost you about $1000. (shouldn't need an inverter with that).

Gel battery + inverter will cost you about $250-300

27-11-2003, 01:41 PM
and its xmas...i think my money would be more appreciated elsewhere hehe
anyway, i think i mite just have to ask you guys...where are some good small dos or etc games i can download and would entertain me, without using too much memory, power or cpu usage...then when i go traveling i can play for a hour or so at a time and then give it a rest...am supposed to be resting my hands every hour for 30 mins or so anyway so yeah...

so yeah...any games anyone :)

Graham L
27-11-2003, 01:44 PM
Even if the CPU goes into low power mode, I think the screen will take a fair bit of power.

Look at the scenery.

Andrew B
27-11-2003, 01:45 PM
If your going to spend money to make your laptop go for longer, just for a one off trip, why not spend that money on an airfare and fly instead? 6 hours on a bus or probably less than one hour on a plane, and your laptop will last for all the trip.

27-11-2003, 01:48 PM
Don't they make you switch your laptops off in the plane? Or is that only with international flights (I remember seeing on the TV screen saying "Please turn off cellphones, pagers, laptop computers, and all electronic devices")

27-11-2003, 01:53 PM
dad travels internationally and he uses his laptop on some flights..
and even some flights provide internet connection to ur laptop at a considerble or stupid cost...

cellphones off yes...

i think it mite be only if u have wireless internet or something (like the mobilise with vodafone)

it costs $199 to travel by plane or $70 by bus so i chose the cheaper and longer mode of transport...hehe

Jen C
27-11-2003, 01:55 PM
> Don't they make you switch your laptops off in the
> plane? Or is that only with international flights (I
> remember seeing on the TV screen saying "Please turn
> off cellphones, pagers, laptop computers, and all
> electronic devices")

You only need to switch off electronic devices such as laptops for the first and last 20 minutes during take off and landing - don't want to interfer with the navigational devices do well :D

AFAIK, cellphones are still banned during the entire flight.

27-11-2003, 02:04 PM
Cellphones are banned from the time the plane door is shut before takeoff, until its opened again after landing. (Its best that shutting and opening is done in the right order)

Now the problem is, that some arrogant people believe its OK to use a new generation cellphone-PDA device in flight because they "only want to use the diary function". The fact that many can't be powered up separately from the phone is lost on them. One guy even stated "mine is fine, as I remove the antenna" when in fact such an action makes the phone radiate interference locally even more.

Chris, you could pretend the bus windows are multiple LCD screens, showing a virtual trip through wonderful NZ scenery?

27-11-2003, 02:09 PM
Take a pillow, and try to sleep for 3-4 hours of the journey. Then you an use your laptop for the remaining 2 hours.

Susan B
27-11-2003, 04:53 PM
Grab some seasickness tabs the night before travelling and you should then be able to read your book.

A bonus is that you might end up sleeping for most of the journey. Your trip will be over in no time then. :D

Susan B
27-11-2003, 04:55 PM
Umm.... anti-seasickness tabs I meant. :-)

27-11-2003, 05:30 PM
See if you can spot any worried looking cows, and anybody acting suspicious with a tree shredding machine....

27-11-2003, 05:49 PM
The said cows don't actually live at my place but that won't stop them looking worried.

My woodchipper is hiding in my shed!!! :-)

27-11-2003, 08:52 PM
thanks heapz for all ur replies...

what i think i mite do is stay up all night the night b4 i travel and then i;d be knackered on the bus and can sleep on and off...and save lappie for other times or something yeah

thanks anyway for ur comments, i honestly thjougt it woulkd be quite easy to conserve or expand battery usage...

thanks peeps