Tag Archives: Technology

The Blue Screen of Death

18 Apr

On Monday, I went into my office; took my laptop out of its carrier; turned it on; and saw a big blue screen. I poked and prodded the machine until I realized that it was not going to do anything else. That is when I called my nephew, who we all go to in our time of technological need and asked him what was up.

He said that I had come upon the Blue Screen of Death. That was fantastic news. I called my wife, and she suggested a computer guy who could take a look at it. I called him, and we had a clandestine meeting on the side of the road. With our vehicles parked close, I slipped the package to him.

He had it for a few days before coming up with a diagnosis. The computer was filled with viruses. He could clean it up but saw no reason for that. My laptop is obsolete. Cleaning it of the bugs would cost more than it is worth. It kind of reminds me of those death committees that people think the government is going to crank up. No longer a productive citizen? You do not need that hip replacement.

With that in mind, I went laptop shopping with my nephew. We went to the Apple store and got one of those newfangled Macs. This post is my first foray into this thing. There are some differences, but I think I will get the hang of it. I would include a cool picture, but I am not sure where it would go if I saved it.

Speaking of pictures. My old laptop is filled with pictures, documents and assorted materials. Hopefully, the computer guy can get that stuff moved over here.

For the past week, I have been without a laptop and have been amazed at how lost I have been without one. Now, I am almost complete.

My iPod Has Issues – Part 3

9 Mar

It has been a while since we delved into the inner sanctum of my iPod. In Part 1 of this ongoing series, I explained why hardly anyone understood how any self-respecting iPod would allow itself to be filled with the music I chose and provided an example of 20 selections from the list. With Part 2, I found myself short on time and needing a post. So, I took the easy way out and made another list of 20 songs.

Tonight, I find myself in similar circumstances but with a few additions. It is late, and I have a few things to do before retiring to bed. However, I feel the need to publish a post and explain a few things in the process. Since the last iPod episode, I have been exposed to some new music. Some of came from my continued attempt to download all 500 of the greatest songs as chosen by Rolling Stone. Others came from Justified, my favorite television show. More came from my fellow blogger, the Snob. And, a little came from my girlfriend and her daughter. Although, I must admit that I still have to alter my taste somewhat to fully appreciate their stuff.

With that being said, here is another list of 20 songs from my iPod. To get this, I hit random and record the first 20 entries that pop up.

“Jack & Coke” by Lynda Kay

“It’s Only Rock n’ Roll” by The Rolling Stones

“Sailin’ the Wind” by Loggins & Messina

“For a Few Dollars More” by Ennio Morricone

“Heaven is a Place on Earth” by Belinda Carlisle

“Soldier of Love” by Arthur Alexander

“John Hardy” by Jim Greer & The Mac-O-Chee Valley Folks

“Sewee Nation” by Peter Buffet

“Do It Again” by Steely Dan

“You Mean to Say” by Jessi Colter

“Maybe” by The Chantels

“I Feel Love” by Donna Summer

“Cleaning Windows” by Van Morrison

“Do You Feel Me” by Anthony Hamilton

“Can’t Find My Way Home” by Blind Faith

“Flash’s Theme” by Queen

“The Sound of Silence” by Simon & Garfunkel

“Polaroid Millenium” by Superior

“Inner City Blues” by Marvin Gaye

“Slow an’ Easy” by White Snake

What do you think, dear readers? Do any of those tickle your fancy?

My iPod Has Issues – Part 2

15 Jan

I have had a blog post idea running through my mind all day. But, it late on Saturday night, and I just got in from a night on the town. I am tired and a little buzzed but still feel the need to post. Does that mean I am addicted to blogging now? I reckon there are worse things to be addicted to. At any rate, I am going to put my posting idea on hold and take the lazy blogger’s way out by building on an older post.

A while back, I wrote about how everyone hates my iPod. They think the music is weird and old and don’t understand how I could listen to it all of the time. A common question is, “How do you know what the new music is if you keep listening to this crap?” And, I understand the question. I used to think the very same thing about my parents. How could they listen to that crap all of the time?

I must admit that my girlfriend and her daughter have introduced me to some cool stuff. There is a lot of great music being created these days. But, I still don’t think it compares to my random playlist. In the earlier post, I put my iPod on random and listed the first twenty that popped up. Let’s see what pops up this time and see if you like the list or think my iPod has issues.

1. “Heart of Gold” by Neil Young

2. “Gloria” by Them

3. “Dang Me” by Roger Miller

4. “Happy Anniversary” by Little River Band

5. “Edge of Seventeen” by Stevie Nicks

6. “I Love” by Tom T. Hall

7. “Principles of Lust” by Enigma

8. “Boom Boom” by John Lee Hooker

9. “Good Times” by INXS and Jimmy Barnes

10. “I’m Waiting for the Man” by The Velvet Underground

11. “Voodoo Child” by Jimi Hendrix

12. “Walk This Way” by Run DMC

13. “Who Made Who” by AC/DC

14. “Popcorn” by Hot Butter

15. “19th Nervous Breakdown” by The Rolling Stones

16. “Betty Lou’s Got A New Pair Of Shoes” by John Cafferty and The Beaver Brown Band

17. “Cross the Brazos at Waco” by Billy Walker

18. “You Go to My Head” by Mary Stallings

19. “In Bloom” by Nirvana

20. “Good Time in London” by Big Mama Thornton

Is that weird or what?


10 Nov

I used to have a cell phone. You remember those things don’t you? I could make and answer calls. I could also text if I had a quick message for someone. I used that cell phone while people around me began to gobble up iPhones. My ex-girlfriend changed her service from Verizon to AT+T because the latter was going to get the iPhone first. As I watched her use it constantly, she kept saying that I should get one. I would love it. That’s exactly why I didn’t get one.

The iPhone is not a cell phone. It is the technological form of crack, meth and any other addictive substance you can think of. My ex stayed on hers constantly and so did her kids. I reckon that they continue to play with them at all times. A few days ago, as I was teaching, I looked over to see one of my students playing with her iPhone. Now, you have to understand that this pisses off teachers more than anything. On the first day of class, I established the rule that iPhones were not to be touched while class is in session. I even explained how I could see them trying to hide the thing in their laps while they fiddled with it. I’m not sure why their hands are under the table and moving around their crotch, but it’s something they should not be doing in class. Despite that, this student has her iPhone ON THE TABLE while sitting ON THE FRONT ROW. After yelling during class, I met with her after class and explained that this is probably the reason she has failed it twice before.

What can explain the behavior of my ex, her kids and the student other than iAddiction?

You can see it yourself. Look around a restaurant and see how many people have their face shining from the glow of the iPhone. Check out the people relaxing with their iPhone at Starbucks. Ride down the interstate and see how many people are looking at the iPhone instead of the road. Watch the news and notice how many Occupy protestors have iPhones. They are protesting the unfairness of our economic system while playing with an expensive technological innovation. How about paying your debts instead of buying an iAnything? Perhaps, then you would not need other people to pay your debts for you.

I did not get an iPhone because I knew that I would get addicted too. Just like everyone else. Then, I went to Santa Fe, and my cell phone crashed. I headed to the Verizon store and said that I wanted the phone closest to the one that crashed. However, the salesman was crafty. Just like a dealer on the corner, he could make me a deal on addiction. You know, sell it cheap, and the addict will come back for more. I had to have a phone and gave in to the pitch.

I am an iPhone-aholic.

Just as I feared, I can’t put it down.  I am constantly adding apps and messing with the phone day and night. I go to sleep using it and grab it as soon as I wake up. I use it riding in the car. I use it while talking to people. I use it while watching (hold on, while listening to) tv. It’s hard to watch tv and look at the iPhone at the same time. Naturally, I call and text, but that’s not what an iPhone is for. It’s for us to buy apps and feed our addiction.

So, what am I addicted to?

1. Slingo Supreme – a game that combines slot machines and bingo. My high score is 984,323,800. Has to be close to a record, right? Wrong. The top high score is 94,154,960,842. That’s not the national debt. That is somebody’s addiction.

2. Yahtzee Adventures – four variations of the classic game. My favorite is Duplicate, but I play them all over and over. When I reach 1,000 games I look at my winning %. I can’t stop until I hit 70%.

3. Moxie – the original version. It throws up letter tiles, and you rack up points by making words. Just don’t Twaddle.

4, Soundhound – an app that listens to songs and tells you the title and artist. It’s designed to pick up songs in restaurants or on commercials. I use it on my iPod to see if it can find obscure songs that I already have. Sick isn’t it?

5. Post Secret – people publish their deepest, darkest secrets anonymously. They are cool to read and cool to post. It’s amazing what secrets lie in my little town.

Those are my top five, but there are numerous others. Some were downloaded for information. Others were downloaded because they look cool on my iPhone. Whatever the case, I can’t get away from them.

A lot of people have iPhones,  and a lot of people are addicted. Steve Jobs passed away recently and has been hailed for his contributions to the world, his iStuff. I disagree. Like a good pusher, he got us addicted, and his company continues to produce better iThings for us to buy and get addicted to. Addicts can’t get high on the same thing forever. They have to keep using stronger stuff to get that kick. Apple is more than happy to supply them.