So for the past year my laptop was giving me trouble and my battery wouldn’t charge, so I had to carry my charging cord with me everywhere.  It added an extra pound to my baggage and was annoying, but I lived with it.

Then, a little over a month ago, my computer started really acting up – it would restart when I was working on a paper, or black screen in the middle of surfing the internet, but weirdly seemed/appeared to still be on (fan blowing, music still playing, indicator lights on).  In those cases I had to reboot and got this really ugly and unwelcome screen prompting me to “Start Windows 7 normally?” which I always did.  Once, believe it or not, my computer even showed a green screen.  What??  Technology can be crazy sometimes.

At the time I didn’t have the time to research what the problem was, so I kept on living like this for a few more weeks.  When there was a lull in my work I decided I needed to do something about it.  I didn’t want my computer to restart improperly one too many times and possibly run the risk of losing all of my data.  So I gave it into the bookstore’s Computer Repair Shop and prepared to be without my own laptop for a week or two.

Lucky for me, even though I was going to be Toshiba-less, I didn’t also have to be laptop-less.  The University offers an AWESOME laptop loaning program through their Learning Environments Computer Labs.

The rules:

  • You can loan Macbook Pros (with a charger and carry case) for FREE with your USCID.
  • You have the laptop for four hours, and you can bring it with you anywhere! (yes, that includes anywhere off campus.  If you want to bring it to a cafe in Little Tokyo [which I totally did], then you totally can!!).
  • You can renew it once (for another four hours) by calling in, so you can essentially have it out for a total of 8 hours.
  • If you want it for longer than 8 hours, all you have to do is come back into the computer lab and physically return it and check it out again.

I basically have lived this way for the past 3 weeks, and feel like quite the laptop-nomad.  Unfortunately I received some bad news from the computer repair shop, and it turns out that my motherboard is totally messed up so I need to buy a new laptop.  I’ll continue loan USC’s Macbooks until I have the time to fully research the best laptop for me.  I have my eyes set on a few pretty special ones, but I have to be sure that they will be good quality laptops that won’t fail on me like my old Toshiba did after 2 years!

I’m so thankful for this program that completely saved me so many times in the past few weeks!