'If you make happiness your goal, then you're not going to get to it… The goal should be an interesting life."

Dorothy Rowe

Saturday 19 September 2015

Technology? The good, the bad and the ugly

It all started a couple of weeks ago when Big Mac starring ticking. Yes, ticking. A bit worrying, but I was fairly sure it hadn't turned into a bomb. Unplugging and restarting it led to the return of the tick, and a white screen with an image of a grey file, and a flashing question mark. Further access was denied.
Time for a spot of Googling. (Is it better to have two or more means of accessing information technology, so you can Google problems with one using the other, or to have none at all? Discuss.)
Google produced a number of ways to tackle the problem, all of which:
1. Were incomprehensible and/or scary
2. Involved being able to get beyond the white screen of death, which I couldn't
Further Googling suggested that it was almost certainly a dead hard drive.
I thought briefly of consulting the family techies, but decided that if the back was going to have to come off it, I preferred a professional. But my heart quailed at the thought of lugging a heavy screen come computer from the car park, up an escalator and across a shopping mall to my nearest Apple shop. 
Was there an alternative! Back to Google...
Hurrah! An Apple repair company called Stormfront had a more accessible branch. Double hurrah, when we got there, there was a parking space right outside. Triple hurrah, their service was excellent. To cut a long story short, I knew before I left the shop that the hard drive was not dead, merely sleeping, that they would wake it up rebuild it, (don't ask me what this means, -  and even more, please don't tell me) and that it would cost me all of £25. And they messaged me about 4 hours later to say it was ready. I've got it home and it's working!
Unfortunately the printer isn't.
This is not the A3 Canon I bought recently, fortunately, but the cheap as chips HP all in one, which has probably lasted as long as the other cheap as chips HP all in ones we've had. I.e. not long. They both decided only to print when they felt like it (’Oh, I don't like that paper! It's too thick, too thin, too shiny, not HP paper, not the right colour...'). This one has decided that it doesn't want to print at all, refusing to recognise any of our computers or tablets, either wireless or plugged in. (It's not the cable, I checked.) It will still copy, which is nice of it, but of limited use. 
Unfortunately the Canon is not an all in one, and I think that repairing a £40+ machine is unlikely to be an economic prospect - so hey ho, hey ho, all in one shopping we will go.
All of this meant that the morning I meant to spend pouring runny plaster over a sample glove - as you do - turned into a morning of swearing and hair tearing. I got plastered this afternoon instead.
On the up side, I haven't had any problems downloading IOS9 - yet.

Sunday 6 September 2015

One of those weeks

It's been a week which has been mundane, exhausting, hectic, nerve wracking, peaceful and frustrating in almost equal parts. Mundane because the little guys went back to school, but nerve wracking, for adults at least, because, hard as I find it to believe, they have both moved on a stage: the VHC is started big school, his big sister the Juniors. Both seem to have coped with the change, but there have been a few hiccups, and they have been very tired.
Hectic and exhausting because we had the little guys here for a sleepover, followed by babysitting for them at their house the following night. It might have been easier to have a two night sleepover, but mum and dad wanted to see them in the interim, which meant we got a brief break.
Peaceful when I found time to sit down and not only finish my August Advent bough decorations (the ones I cut out a month ago) but all to make September's as well. You will note that if you choose untraditional colours for your decorations, you end up with blue mistletoe.

And I spent a morning gossiping with my friend N, who had some very positive and helpful things to suggest about my uni work, followed by an afternoon at the hairdressers.
And frustrating, because having received an assurance from the charity shop that someone would contact me about the bags of books - no-one did. Foolishly I didn't check they had the right phone number, so I will have to chase them up again.
And finally - Wensleydale just went down to the bottle bank with an embarrassing number of bottles, to find the whole area roped off for cycling proficiency testing. So now we have bags of books in the hall, and boxes of bottles in the kitchen.
Tomorrow granny goes back to school, and that is definitely nerve-wracking.