(In the words of the Faith No More song.)
The last few weeks I’ve been working full time-ish on my RPG system. Up until this week, anyway. Over the past couple of weeks, my laptop had been getting more and more annoying in the mornings. I would put on the previous day’s edition of PM (or The Week in Westminster on Mondays) and then prepare breakfast. Then, when I came back to check e-mails and stuff, the thing had pretty much frozen. The radio programme still played, windows would open and close, but nothing would load. The only solution short of waiting an indefinitely long time seemed to be to switch it off and on again (the age-old solution to most computer problems).
It did it again on Monday, and I got angry and delivered a short, sharp tap to the machine. Not a huge blow, but when I rebooted Windows wouldn’t start. And when I got my installation CD out to repair or reinstall, it didn’t go well, either.
It was a pretty stupid thing for me to do. Not just because of the results or potential results, but because of the lack of results. I was treating my computer like a sensible being (ie, one that is able to sense), one that would modify its behaviour in response to physical chastisement. But then again, the cause was also in large part because of a computer’s inscrutability, the lack of information or clue as to why machine froze like that. It wasn’t too long ago that I reformatted and reinstalled the operating system to stop such lack of performance.
Computers are pretty complicated devices, but it’s easy to take them and their unfailing efficacy for granted. Browsing the internet, running applications is what I have a computer for – why can’t it do what it’s supposed to? Who would drive a car if it crashed as often as a computer?
Another thing that makes me feel vaguely stupid and yet also vaguely proud of the incident is the sense that my computer deserved what it got.
Anyway, it all worked out fairly well in the end. I took my computer to Yongsan, to the large building behind the station but connected to it by a raised tunnel thingy, where the Fujitsu Service Centre is. I’d been there not too long ago to have the DVD-R drive replaced. This time they replaced the 110 GB hard drive with a 300 GB one for ₩110,000 (about £60) – and gave me the old one in a little plastic wallet. I got the memory upgraded from 1 GB to 2, from one of the many computer stalls/shops in the main I’Park mall while I was there.
Then over the next couple of days, I had the pleasure of downloading and installing all the main applications that I use, as well as copying over all of my information – which I’d previously backed up. The most tedious part of this was waiting for the Windows Update updates to update before I could install Vistalizator to change the language of my Korean Vista Home Premium to English. My suite of programs include OpenOffice.org, Google Chrome, Paint.net, Skype and μTorrent. A couple of changes I made to my line-up were exchanging AVG Anti-Virus and Zone Alarm for Comodo Internet Security and installing Synaptics Gesture Suite, which allows Mac-style two-finger scrolling and better-than-Mac-style spiral scrolling.
Things are running pretty smoothly for the time being. We’ll see how long it lasts before the digital red mist descends once more.
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