Words I Hate-“Planned Obsolesence”

So, I’m in the process of upgrading my computer. And, for a number of reasons (including a certain amount of fatigue), I bought about six years ago a Dell XPS computer, because it did everything I wanted. Got it through Costco (so I still have access to some tech support) and with the exception of a few hiccups, it’s been a good buy.

One of my goals is to upgrade this computer into something better, because there are a few games that I want to play, and the video card can’t handle it. Of course not, it’s nearly seven years old at this point.

But, to get the computer able power the video card, I need to install a new power supply. It’s not that complicated, but it does require a few steps. Which is why before I’ve even opened up the case, I have a plan and I’m ready to get going.

How do I change the power supply? I start by pulling all of the cables from what they’re connected to on the computer to the current power supply-and inserting the new cables into where they went after I clean up around the area. There’s a lot of dust and a lot of other crap, so there’s that.

Now, I’m putting in the power supply…and Dell has made sure that you can’t install a non-proprietary power supply without some serious shoehorning. Okay, I can do that. I can do plumbing, this is easy.

…there’s a single, four-pin power supply on the motherboard that I don’t have a replacement cable for.

Not a problem, go to the local computer store and buy a cable.

Local computer store looks like it’s been out of business for at least a month. No signage that it’s dead, but it’s got that “patina of dust” on places.

Go to Staples and Office Depot. They suggest Amazon.

Go to Best Buy. They suggest Amazon.

This leads me to come home, frustrated and angry, and put the old power supply back in. Order a new cable from Amazon.

It’ll be here on Monday.

…whelp. I did get some writing done, mostly out of frustration. So…progress?

Anyways, I suspect the next time I decide to get a new computer, I’m just going to build it from scratch. By that time, the economy will be coming back just enough that computer parts makers will be keeping their prices low to build up their customer base.

It most certainly won’t be a Dell. Or the vanity brands they produce.

On Resisting Temptations

Everybody has the things that make it hard for them to leave the store, the market, or the various other places.

I wonder, seriously, if one of the biggest signs of old age is that you aren’t tempted anymore. You start to see the liabilities and the issues of these things.

Or maybe just my own particular kind of cranky nature. Worried that any momentary joy is going to make my life worse.

Maybe both. Or a third thing I don’t know about.

So, when Great Aunt Sarah goes on the Internet and finds this…well, I have to take a look at it, don’t I?

What “this is” is the reMarkable 2, which is one of those e-paper tablets that have handwriting recognition and uploads to the cloud and Google Drive compatibility and long lifespan and…

I don’t need it, I should be taking more notes on my writing and I should use paper.

It’s got a massive lifespan, like nearly a day or so of constant use on the battery.

I’d have to buy a folio cover and the price is based around a monthly subscription and…

But, it’s simple, it’s clean, and you can do stuff easily with it and not live off your iPad mini…

Folks, temptation might win, two falls out of three. I’m still wrestling with it. But, if I do…

And, today’s blog share is of course Great Aunt Sarah, aka Sarah A Hoyt-science fiction writer, political commentator, and unofficial Great Aunt (she’s Portuguese, I’m Portuguese on my father’s side and there’s some suspicion that the family tree has some very narrow forks not that many generations back). She’s in the process of a new move to a new place to live, writing more stories, and needing to discover the joys of a really good work chair for when she writes.

So, yes, go to Amazon and buy as many of her books as you can, please. Her confused “why am I suddenly getting a lot of sales” numbers will make me smile.

You Would Be Amazed

You would be amazed, and terrified, on how many legacy systems run things. And, the stories that I can tell of some people’s upcoming fear of when Windows 95/98 systems are no longer usable for any number of reasons. How many pieces of medical equipment run on embedded Windows-based OS systems based on Windows 95. Oh, how many of those self-checkout systems run on Windows OS systems…

This would actually make for an interesting story. I know there are people that are pulling down six figure consulting contracts because they know COBOL. Because most large industrial systems, most State and Federal systems, still use COBOL. And, the cost to handle the switchover is going to be very, very painful when it happens.

It’ll be fun when a lot of these things have to be fixed. Just make sure to keep paper backups of everything.