Today in My History

2001:  How the Other Half Lives
Addicts vs. "Civilians"
It's a Sorrowful Day in the Neighborhood
My Heart Bleeds for You
Get a Life, Part 2
2006:  Who Ordered the Cardboard?
2007: Cast Off Day

Renaissance Man

Books Read in 2008
Updated: 2/26
"Schuyler's Monster"
"Inside Inside"
"Water for Elephants"



You Tube

Mefeedia Video Archive

My Favorite Video Blogs
Desert Nut
(for others, see Links page)

Look at these videos!
Rinde Eckert (Slow Fire)
The Dog, the Cat & the Rat
The Dim-Wit Barber of Mayberry
Yes, We Can
Ennio Marchetto

Family Stories Vlog
(updated 10/2/07)

New on My flickr_logo.gif (801 bytes)

Cousins Day, December 2007


28 February 2008

I hope you really like the "Big Round Thing" video 'cause it's the last new one you're likely to see for two more weeks.

I got a call from my computer guru who is working on the desktop for free. I don't understand it exactly, but the computer will download, but not install "critical updates." He went on at great length explaining why it's necessary to install critical updates, the upshot of which is essentially that I would be emboldening the terrorists (or some such thing) if I left my computer open to attack.

Right now he's all involved with trying to get the Food Bank up and running and I couldn't really insist that he give me priority over the food bank, especially since he's doing my work at no charge.

In a few days, my friend Mary is coming from Wisconsin for a 4-day visit and the day after she leaves, Walt and I go back to Santa Barbara for a couples' shower, so I told the guru that he could keep my computer until the 12th.

Fortunately, this laptop is more or less set up to match the desktop, but not entirely--and where it's not quite the same is with respect to video. I don't have the right programs to work with video, so it will take two weeks before I can start processing video. (By then I will have even more video to process, probably).

I had hoped to attach the desktop keyboard and monitor to the laptop, but the keyboard is not a USB connection and there is no way to attach it, so I'll just muddle along with the laptop. The main problem is that there is no place to put it that is convenient. It's now on my auxiliary desk, which means I sit in front of a bunch of drawers.

But it's a small inconvenience. At least I can still use it, and still have internet access.

And, with any luck, I'm not emboldening terrorists.

I decided that if you lose access to your computer often enough, you eventually get it down to a science.  Faced with two weeks without my desktop, I finally attached the external hard drive to the laptop.  On the external hard drive are the back up copies of all of my journal entries, so I am now writing this entry the way I normally do, in wysiwyg format rather than writing code.  It's a little thing, but it makes a big difference for me.

I had another rude awakening today.  Ever since we have had a DVR, I have periodically copied things off onto DVDs, to save for myself.  It's mostly nature stuff and episodes of "Inside the Actors' Studio" which I particularly like.

I also, from time to time, will burn DVDs for Peggy, since we generally like the same thing and it's nice to share things with her that I know she can't get in Australia.

Recently there were two programs on Celine Dion, whom Peggy likes.  Biography did a program on her, and they showed one of her concerts.  I saved both and was surprised when I went to copy them that I got a message saying that they could not be copied.  I figured that it was something special the Dion had insisted on, and was disappointed, but figured that Peggy hadn't known about the shows anyway, so no problem.

But today, I decided, on the heels of reading James Lipton's book, that I would copy off the 3 "Actors Studio" shows that I hadn't watched yet to save for myself.

What's this?  I can't copy those either?

Then I tried a Nature special.  I copy Nature specials all the time, but I now can't copy that.  And I have previously recorded "The L Word" for Shelly and Ellen, who don't have cable, so they could watch it.  I've taped all of the shows this season up to the two that are currently on the DVR and -- guess what -- I can't copy those either.

So I guess the golden age of being able to save TV shows, at least by Comcast subscribers, has come to an end.  Yeah, I know that probably technically it was always verboten, but people have been copying TV programs ever since VCRs were invented and I'm very disappointed that I can no longer do it.  (What's the point of having a DVD burner if you can't burn shows from TV?)

So this has been a rather disappointing day, technologically, for me.  The only bright side is that over the years I have learned how to make do without my primary computer so though my gerry-rigged set-up is not ideal, it's at least do-able.


R.I.P., Mr. F'buckley


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