In the Artemis Fowl series, Artemis uses a PowerBook throughout the series. (A PowerBook is a type of Mac) Yet, when The Last Guardian was published in 2012, PowerBooks were old and antiquated. Why did Eoin Colfer still make Artemis Fowl use a PowerBook?
For the first few novels, a PowerBook seems perfectly reasonable, as it was fairly common back then. But, he built the C Cube withing a few years of discovering fairy tech. After having it fall into the hands of Jon Spiro, his memory is erased, so he goes back to using his PowerBook. But if his memory was later restored, why keep using a PowerBook? Artemis was most likely haunted by his memories of almost blowing open fairy civilization. Rather than create something from their tech which could fall into the wrong hands, why not just use good old-fashioned human tech?
If you've never had the chance to use a PowerBook from the late 90s, then you should know that it still runs brilliantly. It's a tough piece of machinery that, with some technical know-how and a bit of money, can be upgraded to be a reliable machine in the modern day, capable of doing anything from playing Minesweeper to cracking a fairy code. Most importantly, though, it's 100% human-made. If it gets in the wrong hands, the only thing that'd be of any use would be behind layers of encryption, and as Artemis has proven, cracking his encryptions is essentially impossible.
Your observation is totally correct. For the kind of nerd prodigy that Artemis Fowl was, a notebook running
BSD would have been surely more apt. He had several patents registered to his name at the age of 12, so learning how to operate a geeky operating system would have been a piece of cake. Now unfortunately, authors aren't technologists or programmers, they know a little bit of all fields. Though, I'm pretty sure that if Eoin Colfer had created Artemis in 2011 instead of 2001, he'd have made him use something like Linux. It would have also opened a whole lot of plot options. For example, he could have used open source linux tools like
metasploit against Foaly and the fairy network's constant surveillance on him.
But despite power books, I still think that Eoin Colfer did make a much better and detailed use of technology in fiction than say J.K. Rowling (though he wasn't as commercially successful in scale).