The Week That Will Be

This week begins my last semester. Technically this is the third time it’s been my last semester, but for one reason or another there’s always been some requirement I’ve suddenly been lacking. At this point if I actually finish some time before I’m forty I’ll be ever so pleased.

I also have an eye doctor’s appointment. I desperately need a new pair of glasses as the ones I got last year have been pinching my nose to the point they are rubbing it raw. I’ve had them adjusted no less than four times and they still do it; I don’t know what the issue is.

Now that my (literally) shiny new computer is in the works, I’m looking at replacing my printers, which have both ceased to function within about a week of one another. I think I’m going to get a color laser-jet and I am strongly leaning towards this multifunction one.

My goal is to get the living room back in order so I can start cleaning out and organizing my office. Eventually I want to get a new desk, but I absolutely need a new desk chair and the sooner the better. Or so says my back, which has been protesting quite a lot lately and I suspect a good part of that is the colder temperatures. If nothing else, I am very stiff.

And aside from work, the only other notable thing is that Thursday is my mother’s birthday.

Making the Switch?

I’m computer (window) shopping tomorrow. My PC has been on a slow path to impending doom for awhile now and hopefully admitting that will not send it hurtling into the great beyond. I’m not having the best luck with technology the last few weeks, especially printers.

Anyway, I’ve been thinking long and hard over the last several months about taking the leap over to a Mac. I’ve heard all the pros and cons more times than I care to admit, but one major sticking point for me has always been the lack of accessibility that a Mac presents . . . Except that’s totally not an issue anymore because VoiceOver is pretty darn awesome!

Thing is, I do actually need to have a PC since I’m in the rehab field and, well, I anticipate it’s easier to teach other people how to use adaptive software like JAWS if I still have access to it myself. So, it’s not like I’m abandoning ship because I hate PCs.

It’s that my main desktop is a piece of crap and upgrading it while maintaining full accessibility for my needs is actually more expensive than a 27″ iMac. The Mac will probably be more compatible with some work stuff I’ll be doing. And it takes up a ton less real estate. I want to get a new desk and redo my home office anyway, but more actual desk space is always a plus, especially since I have my monitor so close to my face. Not to mention I already use a bunch of Apple products, so things will actually talk better with one another.

However, I would also like to have the portability of a laptop, so I’m conflicted about spending a bit more on a MacBook Pro and a Thunderbolt display for that simple luxury. I’d have the same screen size as the iMac, but my history with laptops is, um, none too great. (I drop things.) So, I just don’t know how wise a decision it is to have my main computer be something that may likely get stepped on when I try and locate it after knocking it off the coffee table.

Of course, I could just wait on the MacBook altogether and get it as a secondary computer later on. (More on this another time, I think.)

Anyway, not making any decisions this second because I want to check things out in person at an Apple Store and see what set up works best for me. I don’t think there’s going to be much difference between them that it will matter, but I’d rather know well before I place my order online and have a computer shipped to my front door.

I also have to buy a new printer. Bah.

Grr

On a good day, when things actually do what they’re supposed to and I don’t have to fiddle with things, I enjoy the comfort that technology brings me. I like using my computer, though I don’t necessarily enjoy the work that has to be done on it. Once I understand how to use the options I want, I am generally quite attached to both my cell phone and camera.

Today was not a good day. Today nothing wanted to work right. First, the new external hard drive I got was doing something or other that was making my computer run like ass. This is not good when you have no less than 50 million things you need to do on your computer. It would be frustrating even if I only had 5 things to do! If that wasn’t annoying enough, it seems my CD tray isn’t functioning. It doesn’t seem to want to open half the time. No, half the time would have been a week ago, now it’s more like 99.9% of the time. I could get it replaced, but I am loathe to put money into a computer that is going to be replaced shortly.1

And then, of course, there’s my wacky cell phone which in ongoing quirky issues it has today decided that all the dates in my calendar were from 1970. Awesome. No, wait, it’s that other thing…

I managed to fix that problem after spending a very lengthy amount of my day working on it. I think part of the reason it is having trouble with maintaining the imported data is that it’s not importing it fully — or rather it imported it just fine but it isn’t updating things as it should. It should be backing things up to iCloud while syncing with Google, but instead it seems to only do one or the other. I don’t know why. I’m too aggravated to figure it out, but I duplicated all the information from Google and manually imported it to iCloud which seems to have fixed things and oddly now everything is syncing and backing up without a hitch. Again, no idea why. But I’m not complaining. I do have like 400 backups of my contacts and calendar and whatnot, though, so if the phone decides to blow up at least I’m safe. ;-)

Anyway, it’s been a frustrating day and I’m happy to stop typing this and be done with computer things for the day. I apologize if this is filled with typos and terrible grammar, but I’m not even bothering to look it over for fear something else might go wrong and I’ll be stuck here for even more time trying in vain to fix things and not just chuck shit at the wall.

  1. Read: when I have the money or a new computer drops out of the sky, whichever comes first.

Short and Dichotomous

The good: Not only has the crate move worked to get Uschi back onto a normal eating schedule — and thank the gods for that — but she’s more herself in other respects than she has been since that whole thing at FoF. For the longest while she was really not playful. I could tell she was interested in the idea, but she wouldn’t really play and when she did it was for the shortest time imaginable. And then she would run off to one of her beds or her crate like the entire idea of playing was some intricate form of leave it. Fetch, for instance, seems to be more “go after the thrown toy and then go lie down without the toy.” That is when she isn’t completely ignoring the fact I threw it in the first place. She did finally get back into chewing her bones and that was a relief, but yesterday was the first day that I caught her actively playing without any prompting. I didn’t try playing fetch with her yet, but it was nice to see her attacking her giant fleece squeaky bone and zooming around the house.

The bad: My house is currently undergoing an electronic form of the Plague. First the external harddrive went kaput. Then my camera decided its working days were no more. And yesterday my laptop joined the ranks of the nonfunctional. I really don’t know what’s up with the laptop since I was using it earlier in the day. When I went to turn it on last night it was completely dead and isn’t registering that its plugged in. The power cord might be the issue, but it’s lit up noting that it is indeed sucking electric. I don’t know if the plug in the computer is broken or if the entire computer just up and died. Such is my luck it’s probably both.

Hurray!

I can now check off another major item on the to-do list thanks to the most awesome Zach: got my printer working again!

New Year’s Eve was mostly spent fighting the urge to toss my computer through a nearby window. After Googling different solutions for an error with the spooler subsystem app, I spent roughly five hours trying various fixes requiring much waiting and restarting. And the error would just pop up again. And again. And again! Reading through more and more of the solutions — especially the comments — was not filling me with much hope that I would ever get my printer to work again because it seemed that while one fix would work for some people there was always another who would say that it didn’t. And that they’d tried the other 20 things I’d already done.

More and more it was starting to seem that the only option left to me would be a complete hard drive reformat. Procrastinating on the problem had to end and so I’d decided today was the day. I wasn’t looking forward to it, though, and said as much this morning to Zach. Can’t say that I was surprised when he reacted to this idea of reformatting simply because my printer wasn’t cooperating.

Needless to say, we ran through the solutions I’d tried and expressed much hate for this error, especially since I’d determined that the printer was working just fine. Then, wonder of wonders finally found one that I hadn’t gone through: deleting the printing queue via command prompt.

Honestly, I’m not sure what exactly fixed the spooler problem because the command prompt also gave me an error about it. But we do think that having that one print job stuck there was hindering any of the fixes I had tried on my own. Suffice it to say, I’m very glad to have this all squared away without having to reformat and then reinstall. Now I can actually print the to-do list!

Well, that is, once I write it. ;-)