I have the IT skills of an axolotyl high on vitamin c...or DO I?

by tosca on Saturday, September 27, 2008

This was meant to be an infodoodads 'Top 13' post but, yet again, something else has cropped up (other than a temporary secondment, an assignment, a cactus, a flag, ducks, a phone sex line AND a mountain of books to get through) that stops me from catching up. But this is me, and all y'all are used to that right? Right! I bet y'all are wondering how the cactus, flag, ducks and phone sex line come into this, huh? Glad you asked! Read on for more . . .

So, anyway, here goes: If I could spit invective I would - and quite loudly, too! The second hand mac I obtained recently has been a blessing (and a curse because I'm still getting used to a different set of shortcut keys, funny how pressing pc-shortcuts gets me absolutely nowhere). Then, Thursday just gone, the dratted thing froze. Indefinitely. So I tried to reboot it, heard the starting 'bong' (hey, not my term, that's how people in mac forums refer to it) and waited . . . and waited . . . for nada, zip, zero, zilch. The pinwheel spun for what seemed like forever, then the classic prohibited sign (once again, not my term - it's theirs) flashed up. Bad mojo! So, hunted around on various forums for info on how to fix it. Bad news is it ain't fixed LOL Although I did buy me a new hard drive and installed it all on my winsome lonesome (YAY ME!). And the disk does display...it just won't ruddy well recognise it *sigh* Anyway, I'm gonna get it if it kills me (only be just my luck if it does). Good news is I now know: how to install more RAM; that I am conversant in the difference between ATA and SATA and which is not compatible with my laptop; what is the maximum amount of RAM I can add; how to use TransMac and Disk Warrior; all of the various boot commands useable for a mac; that a 'kernel trap' is the mac equivalent of a pc-based 'blue screen of death' and what it means for me - found this fantastic forum title 'Who is Kernel Panic, and why is he in my Mac?' (and if you don't get that pun then you probably never will); about compatible internal hard drives. And all of this in one weekend! Never had so much fun in my life *insert sarcasm here*. I can't hurt it any more right? RIGHT!

I did find a couple of FUN-type things though: Edge Tech Corp have fantastic little help vids that are short and extremely easy to understand - so thank you, Drew, and by the way, I like your hair; that Apple Switcher has some fantastic Mac help & tips, but that what I really liked was their Mac Icons - in particular, their Mac OS X Legends of Hollywood icon set (with the Humphrey Bogart, James Cagney, Charlie Chaplin, James Dean, Edward G & Marilyn icons) and the Mac OS X Legends of Music icon set (with Count Basie, Hoagy Carmichael, Lady Day, Sphere, Pops & Robert Johnson icons). Clouds and silver lining :-) If yer a Mac user, or a nosey-Windows browser, you can view those icons here.

On another, much lighter note altogether: here are a few updates to the 'Smart Bitches, Trashy Books' site. They posted a YouTube clip last Friday for their 'Friday Video' post and it is truly transfixing! What is it? Sticky-notes. Yes, sticky-notes - no innuendo in there at all. You have to see it to believe it. Who knew you could do all of that with a sticky-note?!? The look on their faces at the end when the boss walks in is hilarious. And as for their 'Fun and Games on Friday' post - sheesh. Yet another hoot! Kimberly needs help naming her cactus - and yes, it really IS a cactus and yes, she really wants you to name it, and triple-yes there is an American flag posed beside it. Check out the suggested names - I was screaming with laughter. Caution: may cause happiness. Proceed at own risk. Then, going back a couple of weeks or so, there's another gem about the Fish and Wildlife Service who misprinted a phone number on the back of a duck stamp order form, right? So what should have been 1-800-STAMP24 has now become 1-800-TRAMP24! Oh, can you imagine what customers get? Duck stamps are a far cry from 'Intimate Connections'! According to 'Smart Bitches and Trashy Books' to reprint the cards will cost the organisation roughly $300,000, 'so, frisky ducks will flirt with the stamp collectors until next year when new cards are printed.'

It's been a week or two since my last post (probably longer, but most of you will know that due to a temporary secondment position I am now based elsewhere) so not many of you will know that I have been following the presidential campaign very closely. I've always been fascinated with how American politics work (or don't, depending on your view of the current Bush administration) and to keep up to date I subscribe to Huffington Post and Time updates (via my Bloglines account which I have kept - thank you Kelly). I have laughed myself silly over Saturday Night Live's skits of Sarah Palin: Hilary/Sarah, VP debate, Palin/Couric. I also watched SNL's spoof of the second presidential debate - what a hoot! And the bloggers - they are going CRAZY. For just a small idea check out my bloglines account (the Huffington Post and/or Time) folders and view what people are saying (both Republicans and Democrats). I have also been following the debates (such as they are with no follow up questions and mediators worried about conflicts of interest and time) and couldn't help the giggle when my newsletter from Michael Moore refferred to the Palin/Biden debate as the comedic event of the century. I've also been watching bits and pieces of ABC's 'The View' with Barbara Walters, Whoopi Goldberg et al. and whoa - when they argue get outta the way! I have to say this though, is it just me or does Elizabeth Hasselbeck's views, as espoused on the show, polarise the viewers? Or does it just polarise ME?!

In the way of book chit chat, my mother says I don't plug NZ books enough - the reason for that is simple, I don't identify with a lot of their stories. That's not to say that I think I identify with Ludlum's Jason Bourne who can speak umpteen languages fluently and break all the fingers in your hand just by blinking. Nor do I think I identify with Hamilton's Anita Blake with a slew of good-looking paranormal 'men' (I use that term loosely) who'll kick your butt if you even look at them sideways. Maybe it's more that I do identify with the NZ characters and that's why I won't read them as much - too close to home. There are a few NZ authors whose works I enjoy without reservation so here's my pom pom cheer for: Glen Colquhoun and the late Hone Tuwhare.

Since having completed our web 2.0 tutorial I'm more aware than ever before of how people are informed, and the rate at which they receive information, and bloglines totally blows my mind everyday when I use it. I leave it up all day and periodically check for updates (and yes, I get the latest Brangelina news straight to my account as it happens - SHAME on me). I participated in a customer service course recently and the facilitator talked about the immediacy of news. Her example was the 9/11 disaster - about 20 years ago we would have heard about it on the radio, 10 years ago it would have been on the 6 o'clock news, now we don't just expect our news to be instantaneous - we expect our reporters to be right there on the scene reporting live. Crap, as usual I've rattled on and on and on - catch you up next time (where maybe I'll write about another infodoodads gadget).

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