Blessing and Curse


Setting up a new computer is an agony-ecstasy kind of thing. On the one hand, getting a new computer is exciting and fun, a new gadget, and a thrill of Christmas-y proportions. On the other hand, it’s a lot of PITA kind of stuff.

For one thing, you have to port over all your settings, programs, bookmarks, look and feel, etc. You’ve spent time making the computer comfortable for yourself and getting everything just so. Now, you’re going to have to do that all over again, because no matter how good the operating system is, it won’t successfully do that for you. Not perfectly, anyway.

You have to decide what to bring over and what to leave off. What did you actually use? What did you want but never get around to? So many questions to answer and a million little decisions to make and then all those decisions will require tweaks, probably. Yikes. It can be overwhelming.

So, it was with some trepidation I decided I’d reward myself with a new computer. I work hard. I bought a bottom-of-the-barrel, shop-by-price computer last time, just because I needed something. True, it was the best computer I’d ever owned, no two ways about it, but it was so because I’d not bought a new computer for five years. My wife and I had one set back after another stop us from being able to upgrade our hardware, and we had to sit tight and suffer along until hers finally died. Two years later, so did mine. Just in time, though; we gathered our means and could replace them. But you all know this.

So I decided I wanted an all-in-one computer, because my computer desk isn’t very big, and is nothing more than a table. No drawers, shelving, keyboard slide, nothing. It’s just a flat surface. I wanted that…I thought. Fine, whatever, it was a mistake in retrospect. But I’m stuck with it – kinda – for now. I have to work with it. So an all-in-one computer will allow me to have a bigger monitor and still not crowd the desktop with a mini-tower and the printer, along with all the other BS I have (pencils, pens, desktop toys, yada yada).

I decided maybe a touch screen would be fun. How cool, how every CSI: Los Angeles-esque, n’est pas? Just use your finger instead of the mouse in a lot of applications. So that’s what I did, for both the cool factor and the form factor.

Got it home, and spent the next three nights setting it up. Moving files, reinstalling everything, tweaking, bookmark-testing and all that crap. The LOML helps soooo much with this, does a lot for me when I’m at work. Uninstalling stuff we don’t want/need, installing and downloading and configuring and UGH.

Finally, it’s up and running, and you know what I find?

It doesn’t work like I want. It’s not a performance machine. To get the performance to a point of being even close to what I want, I have to spend a lot more money. A LOT more. Oh, and at the end of the FIRST DAY of using that touch screen, I knew – beyond a shadow of a doubt knew – I’d HATE that touch screen. HATE it like poison. And have to clean it every day. Every f**king day, yo.

Three days later, I’m headed back to the store to get something else. So now it’s reformat (which I initially forgot to do and put it back in the box without doing so), repack, and haul it back to the store. Let them test it. When I finally get the money back on my card, it’s time to decide on another computer.

Here I am, Sunday afternoon as I type this, and I haven’t been able to do any work on my nonfiction project. Nothing. None. It takes forever to get a new computer going. I figure about three days for me and my loving spouse. Your mileage may vary, of course.

But I’ve got a nice, strong computer now, with many more options. I can use my big monitor, my fast, fast processor is doing what I want now, I’m streaming while I’m typing while I’m calculating while I’m installing, and it’s running fast and smooth. More RAM, better processor, but a bit smaller in the storage area. It’s all right, I’m secure in my storage. Size does matter, but not that much; it’s more how you use it. I’m willing to make that trade.

But I’m behind the eight-ball on this book right now. And my desire to work on it, despite having the means, hasn’t changed at all. AT. ALL.

Anyway… that’s how I spent my weekend. How was yours?

-JDT-

Copyright 2011 DarcKnyt, All rights reserved

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9 thoughts on “Blessing and Curse

  1. Nowadays, when I get a new computer or reformat and start fresh, I don’t install anything on it until I actually need to use it. Otherwise I end up installing a ton of stuff that I only think I need.

    That’s a really good idea. I think I should try that. So far, that’s sort of what I’m doing, but being in the middle of a research-heavy project involving lots of screen shots, I’ve had to clutter a bit already. 😦

    I’m saving up my pennies to buy one of those shiny new iMacs. It’s going to take a while…

    Hm. Haven’t seen the new iMac yet. Not a big Apple fan though. But yes, it will require many, many pennies.

  2. It’s unpleasant when things don’t work out like we thought they would. Plus it seemed pretty cool, in theory anyway, so that’s a double blow. Sorry man.

    Yeah, the cool factor was a big draw, but MAN! Whatta nightmare. So not worth it! I’m happy now, though. I have just the set-up I think I wanted…for now. 😉 Love ya hon!

  3. Wow, that’s a long stream of perfect chaos. Commiserations… I hate upgrade time, though in a way I also love it. My computer’s embarrassingly important to my daily life, and seeing as I’m a filthy video gamer too, it’s pretty vital to have a reasonably up-to-date one. Delicious has become one of my best, best friends; it scared the life out of me when they threatened to close it down.

    Ooh, filthy video gamer too, eh? Niiiice. I love it when girls talk filthy. 😉

    Hopefully you can now sit back and look forward to it being at least a few years before you’ll need to go through all this mess again!

    Well… pending my decision on the wireless keyboard and mouse. I haven’t made up my mind on those yet.

  4. I was drooling over a 22″ touch screen computer the other day… they so purdy… but sound like a lot more effort than I could imagine putting into it.

    Well, if you have enough money to burn you can do it. I could’ve forced down about $1400US and gotten a higher performance one, but that’s a LOT of money not to be able to sit on my couch and surf if I want. I can do that with my laptop.

    “Wow!” factor can be a serious trap sometimes.

    And I fall for it a LOT.

  5. I haven’t had a new computer in at least four years. But I can’t complain. MacBook Pro still runs like she did on the first day (well, maybe the first year, haha), though it’s been taken away by the husband as a Photoshop/work computer for his photography. So now I have his dinky HP, and it sucks. Vista is the spawn of Satan, and it likes to laugh as you curse its name.

    Ah, Vista. The Windows ME of this generation. Microsoft’s second greatest OS mistake ever. But fear not! You can’t stay in college forever, and then there will be a job and with THAT, will come MONEY. And then?… you still won’t be able to afford a new MacBook. HA!

    • So true. Oh well, at least my MacBook loves me and looks spiffy.

      And that’s what’s important, even if I AM evil. 😉

      It really talks to me all the time, and I pet it and love it and… what? That’s perfectly normal right?

      Right?

      *Backs away slowly…*

      ;P

  6. Congrats on your new computer! I got my new laptop a few months ago, and remember it took some getting used to 🙂

    Actually, the keyboard (wireless and cheap, probably have to exchange it for a more ergonomic one) is what takes getting used to. This laptop performs like a desktop. No adjustment period necessary. 🙂 Thanks!

  7. Installing two new computers in a row? That sure is a pain! Blech. I remember when I worked in I.T. and all I did all day was install PC’s. Boy did I ever hate that job.

    UGH. I’m still in technology, but not installing PCs anymore. I won’t miss it if I ever get to leave it all behind. I don’t even know how to keep up with it anymore.

    I’m glad that you’re pleased with your new toy on the second try. Better late than never!

    I am, thanks Spark! 🙂

  8. Glad you got a computer that you like and are comfortable with.

    Oh, yeah, I love it. It performs like a desktop. Really awesome.

    Weekend was good. Went to KC and saw the grand baby who is now 18 months old. Man, she changes so much between each visit!

    They grow so quick, don’t they? Mine change right in front of my eyes, too, and I see them every day! Thanks for coming by Delaney!

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