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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

New computer blues

Painted Buntings...outside my bedroom window.
I know writers that say they can’t write unless they put pen/pencil to paper (perhaps it’s the eye-hand coordination effect on the brain).  No matter, eventually, all writers’ words end up in a computer program in order to get published. That makes us incredibly dependent on hardware and software. We are set adrift (I tend to run amok) when something crashes, or some virus makes a breakthrough, or some manufacturer decides it’s simply time to make a change.

Right now, I’m suffering from Microsoft’s decision to cut the security/support cord for their XP platform. My desktop computer was too old to handle an upgrade to Windows 7 or 8 or 8.1, so I was forced to buy a new computer.

I would have LOVED a plug-and-play Apple but I had already disposed of all my disposable income for the month so I settled for another PC. I am now in my second week of trying to get the thing set up. The manufacturer had loaded stuff on the laptop that was incompatible with my IP provider who hadn’t yet upgraded their own system. Ergo, I could not get into my eMail. I contacted the provider twice and was talked through two different resolutions that didn’t work. (Sigh.) The manufacturer also loaded on a lot of “click on it and you may have to buy it” software that I had to uninstall. Unfortunately, it took only a few deletions to reach the point where I didn’t recognize what I could get rid of for fear of causing the whole computer to crash.

The upshot is I had to call a friendly computer expert. In less than an hour, Mr. Expert had fixed everything that the IP people couldn’t, had deleted all the bloatware, and he did it remotely. My next task will be to transfer everything from the old computer to the new one, and then reconnect with Mr. Expert to set up automatic backups to a 1 terabyte AND a 500 gig external hard-drive

Ain’t technology grand?

I just need to get my sprained fingers (another story) to heal so I can type with two hands, THEN I’ll get back to work on my stories.

In the meantime, you-all guys keep on keeping on, and I’ll try to do the same.

NOTE: The painted buntings are so colorful they don't look real . . . but they are. They were migrating through Mobile and stopped for a bite to eat one morning. Jeff says he's still working on getting a good unicorn shot.

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