Linked by fran on Tue 11th Sep 2012 19:26 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems "Bill Moggridge, the London-born industrial designer credited with creating the first laptop computer,died on Saturday aged 69 after a battle with cancer. Moggridge is best known as the creator of the GRiD Compass, a device which introduced many of the design traits used in modern laptops, including the hinged case, the flat display and the low-profile keyboard. Moggridge said that when he tested the device prototype in 1981, it was the first time he had used a computer."
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Whoah..
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Tue 11th Sep 2012 20:24 UTC
Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

I should keep hanging on to the Grid I have in my parents basement. I had no idea it had that kind of heritage.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Wed 12th Sep 2012 06:10 UTC
MOS6510
Member since:
2011-05-12

It is a bit sad that millions of people use laptops daily, but no one has heard of this person.

If a manufacturer had style 'n' class they should honor his name either on the case or in the BIOS screen. It would also give the user the feeling he or she's holding the product of invention, hard work and evolution in their hands, not some mass produced luxury consumer good.

Reply Score: 8

Not a laptop or at least not the first
by puenktchen on Wed 12th Sep 2012 08:59 UTC
puenktchen
Member since:
2007-07-27

The first laptop was the Epson HX-20, introduced in 1981. The Grid Compass was only introduced in 1982, and more important, it didn't run on batteries, why it doesn't qualify as laptop.

Reply Score: 1

henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

I think the point being made is that the Epson, and Dynabook concept - which predates the Epson by 20 odd years, don't *look* like a modern laptop. They are more like slabs with a keyboard. The GRiD Compass actually *looks* a lot like a modern Laptop design.

I'm sitting here with my laptop plugged in to the mains sans battery (as keeping a Lithium-Ion battery connected to the mains constantly at full charge will kill it dead, dead, dead before too long unless the inbuilt charging circuit is very, very good.) Does that mean I don't have a laptop? It's effectively a desktop, and gets used 90% of its like at a desk. Ponder that :-)

Reply Score: 2

smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

as keeping a Lithium-Ion battery connected to the mains constantly at full charge will kill it dead, dead, dead before too long unless the inbuilt charging circuit is very, very good.


nowadays every midrange laptop should have no problem with this

except if it's form apple
those bastards even had the nerve to celebrate balanced battery-packs as something completely new

Reply Score: 4

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

nowadays every midrange laptop should have no problem with this

except if it's form apple
those bastards even had the nerve to celebrate balanced battery-packs as something completely new

My sense of hardware history is failing me. Is this sarcasm or does every mid-range laptop actually have this feature nowadays ?

Reply Score: 1

smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

haven't heard of a laptop that still is destroying it's batterie
on my thinkpad i can even set the threshold for charging myselfe

Reply Score: 2

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

The more I hear about Thinkpads, the more they sound interesting... I would probably make the switch for my next laptop if only they came packed with a bit more number-crunching power for the price.

Reply Score: 1

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

I crunch numbers by beating them with my new T430s.
Can you spell "light tank"?

Reply Score: 2

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

In sense of indestructible yet relatively easy to carry around ?

Reply Score: 1

henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

nowadays every midrange laptop should have no problem with this


Wrong. It's the biggest issue with any portable device. If you leave your laptop plugged in all day, you will *harm* you battery. Fact. Lithium ion batteries are prone to damage when two factors are reached:

1) being kept at 100% charge for prolonged periods without discharge (usual method for desktop use, plugged in to the charger all day.)
2) charge going below a specific threshold, usually somewhere between 1% and 6% of actual battery capacity (not necessarily what your OS reports as the current charge level.)

A good charge circuit will not keep the battery at 100%, but will allow it to slightly discharge within a threshold. Though this will still damage the battery if used for prolonged periods, but the risk is mitigated if the user simply charges the batter and then forgets to take it off charge when complete for a couple of hours. Lithium ion batteries just don't deal with being kept at full charge for prolonged periods as it screws with the electrolytes in the composition, causing oxidation and causing the capacity to diminish. (edit: this happens anyway, it just accelerates the issue..)

Lithium polymer are slightly different, but the general rules still apply. Lithium Polymer are slightly more hardy due to the lack of an organic electrolyte compound. Lithium Polymer are more just explosive ;-)

None of this is anecdotal. If you want anecdotes though, I have seen enough Laptops with dead batteries through prolonged desk use in my career to make me a believer.

Edited 2012-09-13 11:57 UTC

Reply Score: 1

smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

I think you are mixing up some things

a good charger in a laptop starts charging only when the battery is below a certain threshold and cuts the power to the battery after it has been charged an ballanced

and thats all you can do for the battery

everything else is normal ageing of the battery

sure cheap cells degrade faster than high-quality ones, but that still has nothing to do with the charger

Reply Score: 3

henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

I think you are mixing up some things


No I didn't.

a good charger in a laptop starts charging only when the battery is below a certain threshold and cuts the power to the battery after it has been charged an ballanced


Now, you are confused. A charger doesn't have any intelligence. The charge circuit in the laptop/battery do.

Edit: in fact, what you are saying looks like you lifted it from "Battery University" and did not understand what they were saying. In the case of the laptop, a "charger" is the section of the circuitry that "charges" the battery. The PSU, aka colloquially as the "charger", is nothing more than a participant in this process.


and thats all you can do for the battery

everything else is normal ageing of the battery


You can extend the life of your battery by years if you don't continuously charge it. Especially on cheaper hardware with poorer electrical engineering.


sure cheap cells degrade faster than high-quality ones, but that still has nothing to do with the charger


Well more anecdotes: both my iPod video (circa Jan 2007) still has the original battery and it holds a good 8 hours of playback. My Black MacBook circa Jan 2008 still has the original battery and it holds a good 2.5 - 3 hour charge (and this was after maxing the RAM and replacing the drive with a 7500rpm model.) The reason isn't some kind of miricle. I just charge carefully and don't leave them charging for excessive time. yet, in contrast, all of the latops my company purchased in a similar timeframe (2007) have batteries that either last minutes or no more than an hour. All were abused and left to charge for days. Make of that what you will.

Edited 2012-09-14 16:28 UTC

Reply Score: 2