16 October 2008

Oh, It DOES Keep Getting Better…
OK, so we’ve sort of got the computer problem licked…sort of.
I say that because although we DO have the ability to reenter the Internet using our FiOS hookup, allowing us to speed our journey along the way, we have had to do some “compromising” as we went.
We have an ASUS NETBOOK that works damn well (new technology), and that will now be our “backup” unit should something go awry with the tower desktop CPU.
The netbook has wireless capabilities (wow), so I’m not on a “leash” with it…(yep, more new technology).
Now the primary “new” CPU is a Gateway system (rolls eyes).
And I suppose that *if* we’re going to be sauntering through the ENTIRE alphabet in our attempt to find some type of computer that is a lot more “bulletproof”, we SHOULD have started with the letter *A*, but beggers can’t be choosers.
Anyway, Wifey gets this thing home, and after I looked at the box and saw the words (cue Bachs Toccata and Fugue in D minor)... WINDOWS VISTA…I knew it was going to be another night of popping MAX STRENGTH EXCEDRINS like M&Ms.
I sure wasn’t disappointed…!
Now, I”m a Windows 3.0/Win98 kinda guy. I like my computers the way I like my pets; stupidly loyal. And with those (now) ancient Operating Systems, I was doing OK.
Now with Windows XT, I had to Unlearn to Relearn. Not good to do at MY age, trust me on this.
But, I hunkered down and started to get done what I needed to get done.
And it wasn’t TOO painful a process.
So here comes VISTA (still more technology), and after some of the horror stories I heard about it, (as well as this being October - Hallowe’en looming), I sure as hell wasn’t looking forward to UN-unlearning in order to RE-relearn more crap that I would have to RE-UN-learn in the near future…AGAIN.
And if all that has YOU confused...join "my club" (here's some Excedrin)...LOL!
To me, VISTA is nothing but “Bells & Whistles”…kinda like a Bill Clinton plan for most anything. And along with the bells & whistles are the obligatory SMOKE AND MIRRORS.
Take our printer. It's less than ONE year old, and for some reason known ONLY to the "team" at MS, the software for VISTA will not recognize the driver from the CD, due tocompatibility issues (even more INEPT technology).
Seems we traded ONE paperweight for another. And with THREE Lexmark cartridges staring me in the face, BRAND NEW, I am not about to let it all go bye-bye.
But VISTA is supposed to be SO much better.
Sorry…not seeing it all that much.
It does make a good case for keeping ALL data that you want (or might need) to access on some EXTERNAL SOURCE…just to play it safe.
((Note to self: Buy MORE FLASH DRIVES))
That’s right…run your PC with bare minimums…don’t take a chance that your information might become “trapped” on a system that might start pushing up daisies with the NEXT stroke of the keyboard.
There's irony there...one stroke possible leading to ANOTHER...!
So where exactly does the Bobby G. household stand as far as being able to have ONE, complete operational system at our disposal?
Let’s take a quick inventory, shall we?
1) We have one brand new NETBOOK that works fine so far.
2) We STILL have that 10+ year old “dog” system running Win98 (w/no CD ROM drive, BUT has an A drive in it, and MAY be able to use the Lexmark printer with a lot of file moving on a zip drive). Marvelous.
3) We also have the system bought at STONE COMPUTER (the one that failed after getting fixed ONE month ago). The Lexmark printer DOES work with this system (Windows XT)…BUT the system itself is DOWN.
4) We have the new Gateway system (running VISTA) that doesn’t like our relatively new printer or the data on the CD (ergo, no printer capabilities with the current hardware).
5) We also have an H/P tower that will not boot, but I believe CAN be brought from the dead. And that is an XT system which will ALSO work w/ the Lexmark printer.
6) We still have an old Compaq 486PC and a VERY old 386 PC that will probably not work with anything for any reason, but we keep them around because we like “antiques”.
((**Editor's note: As of 1100 hours today, the brand new Gateway system for SOME strange reason connot "find" the CD-ROM drive...like it suddenly went MIA or something.
How about THEM APPLES?
Now I ALSO CANNOT use that drive AS WELL AS NOT BEING ABLE TO PRINT ANYTHING. It does get better every hour!
Not too bad for blowing a few hundred dollars.
Funny, I TOLD the missus to take the OLD system in to get THAT fixed (yeah, I had a hunch this newbie wasn't going to be "bug-free") . BUT...I managed to restore the system and get the damn CD drive working again. For how long is anyone's guess.
Cripes, I could have bought some SERIOUS RANGE TIME with all the money tossed about this weekANd got a new pistol......AND had plenty of "targets" to SHOOT AT as well...!

Lord KNOWS that to be true.))
So there you have it…a cornucopia of computer confusion mixed with a concoction of conundrums, complications, and conniptions.
Whatever happened to “one size fits all”, or "we DO make things that last for more than a DAY" anyway?
Used to be a time when you could pretty much match ANY PC with ANY monitor and ANY printer with ANY set of external speakers, and call it DONE.
I long for the days of being able to "Butch & Bastard" together a system you KNEW would function.
When did all THAT go away?
I must have missed that meeting.
I sure as hell never got any MEMO about it.
Be nice to revisit THOSE days again…especially NOW.
Now…what the hell do we HAVE to buy NEXT, and WHO the hell has it ON SALE, hmm???
Like I say:
Gotta LOVE Technology, eh?

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