I did some quick research and have decided to get a little netbook computer. Consumer Reports recommended something that costs only $329--an Acer Aspire One AOD150-1165. (Asus netbooks are even smaller and cheaper.) The battery life on the Acer is 9 hours vs. 6.5 and 5.5 for two Asuses that Consumer Reports reviewed. (That would be an important consideration for me.) One of my co-workers just bought a Dell netbook and paid extra for longer battery life. She said she spent around $500 for everything, including a mouse, etc. (I would also get a mouse for it, since I read that the built-in thing is almost useless.)
Here are some reviews of an Asus at Best Buy.
There are also some reviews of the Acer at Consumer Reports online, but you need to be a subscriber there.
The Asuses measure 8.5" wide vs. 10.1" for the Acer. It would be easier to type on the Acer.
Anyway, Radio Shack sells the Acer model at the above price, so I got off the bus on my way home from work to check it out. The clerk said they'd been selling briskly and couldn't find one in stock (and they'd had one stolen today). So they'll get one for me from another store and have it ready for me to pick up at the same time tomorrow. (She took my phone number also.)
BTW, the plumbing inspector lied to Home Depot about coming here on Tuesday and not being able to reach me or anyone else. I talked to the City today and they said there had been a problem with the inspector getting around that day on account of the rain, and that, as a result, he just failed the inspection. He's coming on Monday morning.