Seven 9s and 10s

I’m reblogging this again because I imagine a lot of this will happen over the course of the next week, and Michele really nailed it.

inthefade:

My boyfriend “works with computers.” Maybe you have a spouse/partner who “works with computers.” Maybe you “work with computers.” It doesn’t matter what exactly you do with the computers. For instance, my boyfriend is an engineer. Maybe yours is in IT. Maybe you are a programmer. Maybe your wife manages a help desk. Someone close to them - a friend or family member - will know only that they “work with computers” and therefore, they are available to work on their computer. For free.

They’ll just call during the week, on the weekends, at work, at night, on a holiday. They’ll corner the computer person at a party. At 7-11. At a funeral.

“Can you look at my computer? It’s not working right.”

“I’m having trouble connecting to the internet.”

“I think I have a virus.”

“Can you hook up our new computer?”

And what can they say? It’s a mother in law, an uncle, a close friend, his father’s boss. And he “works with computers” so he can definitely fix that problem. For free.

He goes to their house. It takes two, three hours because the person who wants their computer fixed is hovering over him, watching his ever move, throwing out phrases he heard someone say so it seems like he sort of knows what’s going on.

“Yea, I thought it had something to do with motherload. Errr. Motherboard. Yea, that’s it. I knew it.”

“Why are you doing that? What’s that wire for? Why is that one green?”

After three hours of this, the person says thanks and shakes his hand and sort of laughs as he says “I’ll call you when I have trouble with this again. hahahha.”

And he does call again. Because the “computer person” will patiently explain to you how this program works or what you have to do when this happens the next time but the person is not really listening because, hey, he’ll just call when it happens again. Because this guy who “works with computers” is a really nice guy and he won’t mind if you call again. And again.

And really, most of the time he doesn’t mind. He likes you. He wants to help you. Then you call and say “Gee, I really want to get this fixed right away. Can’t you come over on your way home from work?” and he just spent all day in front of a computer and all he wants to do is go home and eat dinner and NOT sit in front of the computer. But he does it anyhow. He does it on a Saturday when we should be kicking back. He does it on a holiday when everyone is in your backyard enjoying a barbecue and you dragged him into the house to show him how your AOL doesn’t load up.

On behalf of my boyfriend, and all other people who “work with computers” and get asked day after day to fix things for free, here’s a few guidelines.

Be thankful. If he spent three hours at your house fixing something you fucked up that would have cost you $200 to get fixed by the Geek Squad, show your appreciation. Offer him a 50. Offer him dinner. Send him a damn thank you card or something. Don’t just say thanks and promise to call him again next time something screws up.

Be considerate of his time. Don’t get pissy if he can’t attend to your problems immediately. Ask him when it’s good for him to come over.

If he tries to explain what your computer’s problem is, listen. If he is teaching you how to use a program, listen. Don’t blow him off just because you think you can call him every time you are using that program so he can explain it to you again.

Don’t treat him like he’s at your beck and call. What do you do for a living? What if he asked you to drop what you’re doing on a Friday night to come over and do his taxes for free?

I’m sure computer people aren’t the only ones who go through this. I’m betting mechanics get their fair share of “Hey, can you look at my engine?”  so apply this liberally.

High-res Gone Daddy Gone (by steelopus)
I attempted to recover thousands of precious photos from an Alaska vacation for a friend. Upon opening the drive I found one platter fatally scratched.
Ugh. So sad.
Remember to always back up your data folks. One drive is not enough.
Use a network/cloud based service for truly important things, as they have redundancy built-in and data protection guarantees.

Gone Daddy Gone (by steelopus)

I attempted to recover thousands of precious photos from an Alaska vacation for a friend. Upon opening the drive I found one platter fatally scratched.

Ugh. So sad.

Remember to always back up your data folks. One drive is not enough.

Use a network/cloud based service for truly important things, as they have redundancy built-in and data protection guarantees.

Neven Mrgan's tumbl: iMac or Mac Pro?

Marco compares his Mac Pro with his wife’s iMac:

So having said this morning that I’m an iMac man, let me tell you my story. See, I have a three-year old 24” iMac. And my wife, Christa, has a three-year old Mac Pro….

I’ve owned and used a Dual 2.5Ghz PowerMac G5 tower as my primary machine since January of 2005, well beyond 5 years, until last month when I couldn’t wait any longer and purchased a refurb 27” i7-Quad iMac.  It was an agonizing decision, perpetually waiting for the upgrade that I knew was just around the corner, but I finally reached a point where the G5 tower simply wasn’t performing well enough to justify waiting for what might be coming down the pipe.  Long before I made my purchase, I had made up my mind to switch into an iMac.  The MacWorld review made it clear that the performance of the new iMac was as good as, and in some cases better than, that of the Mac Pro.

So, one month into my first iMac, what do I feel like I’ve lost by switching away from the tower?  So far, nothing.

  • I had installed two PCI-X USB cards into the tower bringing me to a whopping total of eleven USB ports to feed my external storage addiction (both internal drive bays were also filled).  Now I’ve been forced to be conservative with my paltry four built-in USB ports. I’ve added a USB hub and so far, so good.
  • My external Time Machine disk is now plugged into my Airport Extreme.
  • My desk is still a mess, but that’s only because I’m currently running both systems simultaneously while slowly doing the data dance as I shuffle bytes across my armada of disks, trying to compress and downsize into as few drives as possible.

Honestly, I’m happier than I thought I’d be. It’s hard to walk away from 2TB of internal storage and 8GB of RAM, but this iMac runs circles around the PowerMac.  Everyday tasks, even something as menial as scrolling through hours of Tumblr, are exponentially faster, and I can finally edit photos with Aperture without having to wait seemingly endless seconds for each adjustment to process and display.  And don’t get me started on the SD card slot.  It’s my favorite feature of this computer.

Do I wish I had waited until todays upgrades? Not particularly. The CPU bumps were minimal and the GPU bumps were excellent but I don’t play games and I have a hard time believing I’ll want more power from my current spec.  The SSD option is the only thing that really makes me salivate and feel any regret.  I imagine sometime next year, as SSD prices continue to drop, I’ll realize that I’ve used my Superdrive less than a dozen times, at which point I’ll head over to iFixit, build up the guts, and pop open my iMac to replace the Superdrive with an SSD.  If USB3.0 had been included in todays updates, then I would be crying right now (and posting this iMac on Craigslist, and preordering a new model).

So anyway, that’s the perspective of a lifelong tower user whom has just happily switched to iMac.

Hide YouTube Comments

The comments on that “ZOMG Double Rainbow!” video finally pushed me over the edge and made me remember this Tekzilla Daily video from a few weeks ago.

Simply install this Greasemonkey script (you’ll need to install Greasemonkey first) and then anytime you visit YouTube, the comments will automagially disappear.  It’s fantastic!

High-res I’ve had this new iMac for just about 2 weeks.  How many times do you think I’ve accidentally shoved my SD card into the optical drive slot and subsequently had to use an unfolded paperclip to surgically remove it before it fell inside forever?
If you guessed 7: you’re right.
I’m convinced this is the worst design choice Apple has ever made.  I can’t be the only person who’s having this problem.  If they had spaced them out, even a few more inches, it wouldn’t be a problem, but as it is with them right next to each other, it’s just begging for this mistake.

I’ve had this new iMac for just about 2 weeks.  How many times do you think I’ve accidentally shoved my SD card into the optical drive slot and subsequently had to use an unfolded paperclip to surgically remove it before it fell inside forever?

If you guessed 7: you’re right.

I’m convinced this is the worst design choice Apple has ever made.  I can’t be the only person who’s having this problem.  If they had spaced them out, even a few more inches, it wouldn’t be a problem, but as it is with them right next to each other, it’s just begging for this mistake.

High-res SimpleDesktops.com is absolutely fantastic.
Almost every day they offer new simple, elegant, and beautiful computer desktop/wallpaper designs.  I recommend subscribing to the RSS so you don’t miss any of them.  I’ve made a Desktop Images folder that I save them all into and let my Mac cycle through them on my external display every minute. It’s a slideshow of great design.
Seriously.  Go check them out!  There are hundreds of great designs!

SimpleDesktops.com is absolutely fantastic.

Almost every day they offer new simple, elegant, and beautiful computer desktop/wallpaper designs.  I recommend subscribing to the RSS so you don’t miss any of them.  I’ve made a Desktop Images folder that I save them all into and let my Mac cycle through them on my external display every minute. It’s a slideshow of great design.

Seriously.  Go check them out!  There are hundreds of great designs!