Robert McLaws: Windows Edition

Blogging about Windows since before Vista became a bad word

31 Days of the Dragon: Our Contest Begins Today!
UPDATE2: I've extended the contest to 10pm EST, to give some additional time for more entries. Good luck!
UPDATE: I've posted additional comments here. Good luck!

The giveaway of the decade is here! HP and Buzz Corps have teamed up to give you, my dear readers, 31 chances to win the beefiest notebook out there, the HP HDX "Dragon" Entertainment Notebook PC (don't you dare call it a laptop).

The Notebook:

  • Display: 20.1″ diagonal WUXGA High-Definition HP Ultra Brightview Widescreen (1920×1200)
  • Operating system: Windows Vista Ultimate (64-bit)
  • Processor: Intel Core2 Extreme Processor X9000 (2.80GHz, 6MB L2 Cache, 800MHz FSB)
  • Memory: 4GB DDR2 System Memory (2 Dimm)
  • Graphics Card: 512MB NVIDIA GeForce 8800M GTS
  • Personalization: HP Imprint Finish (Dragon) + Fingerprint Reader + Webcam + Microphone
  • Networking: Intel(R) PRO/Wireless 4965AGN Network Connection and Bluetooth(TM)
  • Hard Drive: 500GB 5400RPM SATA Dual Hard Drive (250GB x 2)
  • Optical: Blu-Ray ROM with SuperMulti DVD+/-R/RW Double Layer
  • TV & Entertainment Experience: Integrated HP HDTV Hybrid TV Tuner and 4 Altec Lansing speakers + the HP Triple Bass Reflex subwoofer
  • Primary Battery: 9 Cell Lithium Ion Battery
  • Productivity Applications: Microsoft Office 2007, Corel PaintShop Pro Photo X2, Corel Painter 4, Ulead VideoStudio 11.5 Plus
  • Games: Viva Pinata, Microsoft Flight Simulator X, Microsoft Flight Simulator X Acceleration Expansion Pack, Gear of War
  • Blu-Ray movies: The Pirates of the Caribbean Trilogy – The Curse of the Black Pearl, Dead Man's Chest, At World's End.
  • UPDATED: Beta Invites: An official Beta invite to the next version of Windows Media Center, codename "Fiji".


The Websites:

Website Contest starts Winner Announced May 2 May 9
Ars Technica May 3 May 10 May 4 May 11 May 5 May 12
DigitalMediaPhile May 6 May 13 May 7 May 14 May 8 May 15 May 9 May 16 May 10 May 17 May 11 May 18 May 12 May 19 May 13 May 20 May 14 May 21 May 15 May 22
Last 100 May 16 May 23
Digital Inspiration May 17 May 24 May 18 May 25 May 19 May 26 May 20 May 27 May 21 May 28 May 22 May 29
Planet May 23 May 30 May 24 May 31 May 25 June 1 May 26 June 2 May 27 June 3 May 28 June 4 May 29 June 5 May 30 June 6 May 31 June 7 June 1 June 8

The Contest:
Here's how our contest is going to work. Lately, there have been a lot of people in the press talking about how horrible Windows Vista is. It's driving me completely mad. So I have to give this notebook away, and I want you to help fight the negative press about Vista.

So I want to see what people are doing with Windows Vista. If you want this notebook, you need to send me a video, no longer than 5 minutes, showing off the cool things you're doing with Windows Vista. Maybe you use Windows Vista to edit together your old home movies and turn them into DVDs with Windows Movie Maker and Windows DVD Maker. Maybe you use Photoshop on Windows Vista to illustrate digital comic books. I don't know. But I want to see how creative you can be, and how Vista makes your computer life better.

But I don't just want a monologue in front of your computer. Make it creative. You could do a skit. You could animate it. You could involve your whole family. You could use puppets. Whatever. Just make it funny.


  • Winner must sign an agreement stating that the laptop will not be sold for one year from date of receipt. If you plan to win it just to sell it, this contest is not for you.
  • HDX winners from other sites in the promotion cannot win this contest.
  • No nudity or profanity. I don't care what gender you are, it won't get you anywhere. Keep it PG, folks.

What I'm Looking For:

  • Innovative Use of Windows Vista: Don't just show yourself playing Solitaire, show us something interesting or unusual.
  • Presentation Creativity: I want to see something that totally blows my mind. An example would be Derek Hunter's winning entry from the contest. BTW, I LOVE special effects, so show me what you're got!
  • Effort: It should go without saying, but the more effort you put into it, the more likely you are to win.
  • Making a Difference: Special consideration will be given to people who use Vista to make the world a better place.

How To Enter:

  • Step 1: Subscribe to the WindowsNow channel on YouTube
  • Step 2: Upload your video to your YouTube account and leave a link in the WindowsNow channel's comments.

How The Winner Will Be Picked:
Once you post a link to your entry, I'll move it to my playlist in the Channel. As my readers, you all will be asked to vote on which video you think is the best. While the votes will not in and of themselves determine the winner, they will be a factor in my decision. Yes, that's right. I'm ultimately picking the winner. No, bribery will not help.

Alright folks, get to it! Please please PLEASE show me the WOW!