Finally Enjoying the New Age
Sure its a little dirty, but then so am I.
The constant and evil hum of my best friend just stopped. Suddenly, silently, a silence so thick you could use it to warm up in a cold mountain’s night air, and this was not the kind of silence you want to hear, the kind of silence that is exactly what you hate, a silence filled with fear, loathing, and disgust, the silence of total collapse, usually only heard after a giant storm, a tornado, or perhaps a tsunami has passed. My main computer, my 6 year old little baby daughter brain, my home built gamers desktop, finally gave up the ghost, got to hot, and something inside snapped and will never work again. So old it uses 8gigs of 8oomhz ram, has a 9400 nVidia half gig video card, and barely plays anything anymore without a good bit of straining and heat, but has never the less functioned for 6 years, 24 hours a day as my entire world and communications device. I payed a total 454 dollars for the upgrade package 4 years ago, switching mobos, CPU’s, vid card, but keeping everything else, like my 200 gig drive, the power supply, and the dvd burner, and all told, my home build has cost me around a little under 1000 us in six years, and I have enjoyed the opening day on WoW with it, played Eve Online, tried numerous other horrible time wasters, but ultimately settling for a solid routine of League of Legends, SecondLife, and World of Tanks recently. I figure at the rate 166 US a year, it has been my most loved machine and my best built and most reliable device.
Over the years I have taught several people how to build their own desktops, hopefully saving folks thousands of dollars in unwanted, unused tech and finding joy at the behest of using their own hands to jump fully into the world of homebuilds. I have rallied against the unwanted marketing of Dell, Apple, HP, and countless others, always urging people to find out and demystify the world beneath the steel and plastic, that most folks just use and never think about. I come from a family that would build its own cars from parts and junk, and I think that was what made me so adaptable to homebuilt, it is very like a hot rod, having valuable technology that makes you greater than the other around you, but only you know the joy of having a 5 year old computer that outperforms most of the ones other people have sitting at home. I try not to let folks buy other homebuilts, but instead urge them to try on the mantle of geek for a day, and when done, have a working knowledge of operating systems and hard drive partitions, ram and optical drives. It is very much a philosophy of teach a man to fish, and he will always be able to eat.
Master of such technology, I have been very, very slow to adapt to the new age of social interaction, and consequently, today, as my old box sits in darkness, its led fans dead and quiet, its stickered and beloved case with its rare biomedical warning window dull and lifeless, I am thinking of what use will doing it again be. Don’t worry my friends, I am not giving its ghost up yet, I do not know if it is the power supply or the graphics card which is burnt, but its a less than 100 US repair, and it is still my main machine and best friend, but I know its days are limited. I am moving to Oz in less than a year, 9 months from the 15th of this month to be exact, but when I move, I intend to only take a hard drive with me, and perhaps this old clunker laptop I am using. It is the laptop that is making me think about this a lot, because right now I have only three things I really must do and keep on top of, and one is the internet, of course, I must have access for this blog, my emails, and the constant research and reading I do. I must secondly have my internet communications, my skype and yahoo, to stay in constant and loving touch with my fiance. Thirdly, I need a way to relax, to entertain myself, to read and watch, and all three things are easily being handled by a toss off laptop that never got its hard drives properly repaired. I am amazed actually, I run Puppy 5.3 (yay slackware version!) OS on this laptop, because no windows install will ever stay working, amazed at how easily I can plug in a cheap webcam, use a head set and mic, even use the laptop speakers and mic for all my needs. No, I can not play my games, but I will soon, and no I do not like this damn tiny keyboard, I have hands that resemble a pair of hams, but it is working for the most part, and I really miss my gamers optical mouse for precise maneuvering of the cursor, but all told, the hold backs are small.
My conclusion to this quandry, this confusion, is that, well, simply enough, I am finally enjoying the new age of computing. WordPress operates on a cloud memory for me, so the fact that I can access it through Seamonkey allows me to continue to publish to my blog as much as I like. Skype works on linux, and I actually like the interface better, it is like old skype, so I might just be using linux from now on, even on my main machine. Almost everything I do now is really accessed easily through the internet, and I will be putting all my hard files into the Google cloud of documents soon, since I cannot access them from this machine, and though I don’t really need them, I am thinking that if I lose this hard drive on the way out of the country, it will not actually matter, and it may be a good idea to just leave the damn thing in the case and give a needy friend an old and well loved machine to start their new tech journey with.