No, I didn't go on any fancy vacation like Stephen, I just stopped writing columns for a while. I just decided to do other stuff.
When you work and have little girl and a toddler, you really have to choose what your gonna do with your time.
On my kid-free time, I decided to fancy-up my computer system. So to some of you, you'll know exactly what I'm talking about, others may read the next few paragraphs as complete gibberish.
I took a couple of used computers I bought from work some time ago and put two 40 GB hard drives into a hp that is actually older than the second hand IBM's, but since it was made to be upgraded and the video card is way-better, I put the hard drives in that one.
Then I trippled the RAM drive that came with the hp computer (replaced thre 128MB stick with three 256MB RAM sticks). Doin' all this for free, since I've had this stuff sittin' around for a couple of years.
I wanted the hard drives to work like new, so I erased all data with 35 swipes of zero's and one's using a "window-washer" utility. I loaded my old copy of windows 2000, then upgraded to Windows Vista (also sitting in the basement for a couple of years)...now I have my "Super-Computer", which actually equivalent to most you would buy on the market today...only mine was made of old parts and didn't cost nuthin'.
Why two drives you may ask?
A couple of years ago I conducted an experiment. I put a Windows operating system in one partition, and put all data in a different partion (same physical drive). I figured if most problems are within the windows operating system itself, then the best way to protect your personal data is to separate it from the less-than-perfect windows OP. I'm not IT trained nor do I have any formal computer education, so this is all guessing.
The windows partition was plagued with the usual windows problems, and had to be maintained on a regular basis, but the formated partition with just data remained intact and in perfect condition for several years.
So now I'm running two hard drives in my hp-super-computer, one "C:" drive to run the Windows Vista program, and a "D:" drive to hold all our precious documents and digital pictures. This way, when Windows has its registry problems and runs sluggish and the only way to get things running smooth is to wipe out all the memory in the drive and reinstall windows, I can do this with no worry about my personal data.
My next project is to have a smaller back-up computer automatically run a "cron-job" that will back up all my stuff in a separate computer.
Pretty neat huh?
Speaking of eighties big-hair bands...
This weekend I was playin' in the yard with the kids when my neighbor drives up in his fancy 90s convertable with his beefed up stereo blarring full-blast like a teenager.
A teenager who loves 80's big-hair music.
The sad part is, this guys kids are teenagers. So he pulls up in his driveway with the top down and just sits there and listens to super-loud bump-bump-bump base, because he would never dream of interupting Sammy Hagar in the middle of a song. So we all get to enjoy!
I guess he represents what I deliberately tried to avoid. That WAS me in the 80s and into part of the 90s. Then I realized if I didn't settle down, I would be a 50 year old, uneducated, unemployed, stoner who sits at the bar alone jammin' to 25 year old rock tunes on the juke-box, or whatever they call 'em these days.
Or even worse, a 40 year old, who looks forty, but wants to live like he's still twenty...it's sad but I dare not say anything because he could kick my ass with just a sneeze.
Well, I'm not really complaining...it just brought back memories of me deciding to stop living to party, and to start living.
COMING NEXT: My favorite Star Trek episode!!!