1232Views25Replies

Author Options:

What design features could be considered to make the laptop sit better on your legs, or that increases airflow when on a desk? Answered

Asus, a sponsor of Instructables, has put together WePC where they are asking for input on their next generation laptops. As part of their sponsorship, they've asked my opinion on various aspects of laptops. Most recently What design features could be considered to make the laptop sit better on your legs (curved bottom), or that increases airflow when on a desk?

In the next couple of weeks, I will be asking for your input on the final set of features for their community designed netbook. This is pretty exciting because feedback from users on Instructables will be directly incorporated in a consumer product that is scheduled to hit the shelves at the end of this year.

For now, laptop stands:

Instructables is full of laptop stands, and so I thought that the best way to answer this question would be to check out what lead users are already doing.

A PVC laptop stand is one of the basic types, and it only requires cutting the PVC. The parts are held together with friction, and easily disassembled if necessary.
PVC Laptop Stand
https://www.instructables.com/id/PVC-Laptop-Stand/

An even more minimalist laptop stand can be fashioned from a metal coat hanger. Perhaps the Netbook should have flip-out legs to let users do this without an additional accessory?
Ergonomic Laptop Stand Made From a Coat Hanger
https://www.instructables.com/id/Ergonomic_Laptop_Stand_Made_From_a_Coat_Hanger/

If you want to use your laptop in bed, the stand's legs needs to straddle you, like this laptop stand for bed.
A better laptop stand for bed
https://www.instructables.com/id/A-better-laptop-stand-for-bed/

Since a laptop is essentially a monitor with a computer attached to it, an adjustable monitor arm can act as a laptop stand.
Adjustable Vesa Arm Laptop Stand
https://www.instructables.com/id/Adjustable_Vesa_Arm_Laptop_Stand/

Construction materials aren't only for insulating houses!
Insulating Laptop Pad
https://www.instructables.com/id/Insulating-Laptop-Pad/

Need to use your laptop outside? Try a tripod.
Laptop Desk From Old Camera Tripod
https://www.instructables.com/id/LAPTOP_DESK_FROM_OLD_CAMERA_TRIPOD/

With the exception of the stands that are simple shelves, all of these stands have some sort of positive attachment point to the laptop in common. Like cameras, laptops should get a standardized bolt pattern allowing users to easily mount them in a variety of different ways. For more laptop stand ideas, see our Laptop Stands Guide
https://www.instructables.com/id/Laptop_Stands/

Discussions

0
None
MairseyDotes

10 years ago

Flat legs. No, your legs, not the laptop's!

0
None
thermoelectric

10 years ago

Maybe something that when you are using the laptop on your legs, The air intake fan isn't underneath so you don't suffocate the laptop......

0
None
Kitemanthermoelectric

Reply 10 years ago

Maybe a "built in" tray? Have pop-up legs, but they lift the whole bottom panel of the laptop away from the laptop, leaving a half-inch gap all the way round the edge and underneath?

0
None
ZorinkKiteman

Reply 10 years ago

I wonder if you could attach a folding heatsink to that? Attach something like window shutters that fold flat, but turn into heat fins when folded out.

0
None
countableZorink

Reply 10 years ago

It wouldnt be as effective as a regular heatsink, since at the join of the block and the fin you would be losing heat transfer efficiency since its a hinge as opposed to a solid metal connection.

0
None
NachoMahmaKiteman

Reply 10 years ago

. I like that. It would also provide some insulation between your lap and the computer. . Would a 1¼ cm gap work as well as ½ in? heehee When did you start thinking in inches?

0
None
KitemanNachoMahma

Reply 10 years ago

I use inches for "rule of thumb", and centimetres when I want to do stuff properly.

It's the joy of growing up when a nation switches currencies and unit systems.

(Yes, I used to get shillings in my pocket money, and sixpences in my plum pudding.)

0
None
ZorinkNachoMahma

Reply 10 years ago

I think 1.27 centimeters might work better

0
None
BeanGolemKiteman

Reply 10 years ago

In a sense you're creating more of a collapsible computer than a laptop, which is just fine. I've found that I'm only really concerned about the size/profile of my laptop while it's shut and in a bag. Otherwise, it can be as big as it wants. Pushing the bottom surface away from the internal components is better than feet for actual lap usage (if not for desktop as well) as it is nice to distribute the weight as evenly as possible. This would be great for air flow, unlike adding any sort of insulation between your legs and the computer. They may want to make some sort of provision for debris protection if pursuing this concept.

0
None
lukkbox

10 years ago

1. pop out sturdy feet at the rear for desk use 2. no moving parts (even nintendo did it 20+ years ago) lets face it, disks are dead and were a bad idea in the first place 3. screens that can flex 4. more than 5 hrs battery life and spare batterys that dont cost the earth 5. windows or a functional OS should come on a memory stick/card, not a disk 6. layer of tinfoil or something in the base to protect your family jewels from microwave radiation (currently the choice is between wifi or a family) 7. pcmcia/cf/express card slots that arent hindered/tethered slowed down to useless by software drivers

0
None
Joe Martin

10 years ago

The manufactures should all learn something from apple, No ruddy vents on the base of the laptop!

They do get a bit hot of you lap, but at least your not blocking anything.

=D

0
None
DerinJoe Martin

Reply 10 years ago

The manufacturers should learn something from the R31 ThinkPad.Mostly side vents,easier-to-use TrackBall,built in keyboard light,easy to open RAM and HD covers,blah blah blah.

0
None
DerinDerin

Reply 10 years ago

Oops.The cover which I thought was the HD was an expansion slot for things like internal WiFi.

0
None
n8man

10 years ago

Definitely on my lap, I rarely use it on some sort of stand or table unless I am multitasking. The vents need to point more upward to keep my legs from burning or as Kiteman said something to raise the laptop up.

0
None
guyfrom7up

10 years ago

make it more heavy near the trackpad and less heavy near the screen

0
None
NachoMahmaLabot2001

Reply 10 years ago

. When open, the screen makes them top heavy and "back heavy" such that they want to tip over. Some weight toward the front would help balance it.

0
None
robbtoberfest

10 years ago

I personally like to lay on the couch while using a laptop; if there were a way to hang it from bent knees so I can type near my abs, that would be cool.

0
None
NachoMahma

10 years ago

. As far as increasing airflow when on a desk, how about something like the fold-up legs on a keyboard?

0
None
BeanGolemNachoMahma

Reply 10 years ago

I agree with this. The new MacBook(pro) has a similarly designed lever/hatch thing to open the battery cover. If you just throw one of these at each corner, you'd have a pretty decent stand for a desk.

0
None
lemonie

10 years ago

The original question is of the order "we've identified problems with laptops: how can we make them better?" Can you add some more clarity to this, I'm not too sure what you want from us. Laptops tend not to be used on peoples' laps and we know how to cool 'em -don't we? L

0
None
gmjhowe

10 years ago

based off your last statement, and my instructable. I suggest adding some VESA mount screws to the bottom, this is already a standard fixture, so can easily be adapted to work with all sorts of stands. Also, if to holes were placed slightly more to the rear, one could actually get a simple low profile rail, that screws into the back two screw, and adds a 10mm of clearance.