Those of you with laptops ought to read this CNN article about some of the hazards of traveling with your laptop.
The biggest risk, of course, is damage. I have probably seen at least a
half dozen laptops fall out of overhead compartments over the years.
Then theft — Lenovo says that about 10% of all laptops get stolen or
lost, most while traveling. Then there are absent minded people like me
who leave them on the planes, trains, and (worse) taxis. (Last time I
left one in a taxi, the driver found my name and called me a half hour
later with an offer to make a special trip back with my laptop for a
mere $500. He must have been about two blocks away because he got there
in a couple of minutes. That's New York.) The CNN article also mentions
the possibility of virus infections and malware courtesy of the public
WiFi networks. I hadn't thought about this threat, but I guess it's yet
The author doesn't really appreciate what a great
solution online backup is for laptop owners. It's so much better than
local backups. You don't have to lug around external hard drives or
other equipment. When you are connected to the Internet, Carbonite just
goes to work wherever you are. I know that the times I've lost laptops,
at least I knew that I was backed up almost to the minute.