Archive for December, 2009

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Hey Microsoft, I’m really sick of the parents-and-two-kids family…

December 27, 2009

Are you even listening, Microsoft? Seriously, it’s making me sick. _Everything_ in the Windows Home Server product is geared towards the mom, pa, 2 kids, and a dog “American Dream” family. Windows Live is even worse, blowing it all up in your face how “FAMILY!” the product is.

Pardon my spanish, but FUCK the family image. God, I am so sick of the family bullshit commercials, images, and “Features” that make it easy for the nuclear family to share photos of their vacation to the Bahamas with family in the other room. Not everyone’s part of the perfect family. Some people HAVE no family and it’s just a dark reminder of what’s not there. And more often than not, the “Family” bullshit features get in the way, like “Photo Sharing” in Messenger. Let me send them the fucking file, I don’t want to have it sit there and clog up the chat screen with a barely-functional “viewer”. At least OPEN IT IN A NEW FUCKING WINDOW! And who’s going to sit there and “share photos” anyway? Oh, look at this one! Daww! Well, you can’t even see what the other person is saying, because the PHOTO FRAME IS BLOCKING THE CHAT AREA. I just want to send them a picture (or, more often than not, paste a screenshot), and this is nothing more than another reason Messenger fails hard. All in the name of Family!

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I feel so damn dirty with a tablet.

December 6, 2009

So, on Thursday, I got the part needed to complete this awesome new gift that was given to me (by a kickass Air Force vet, I may add). A busted-as-hell convertible tablet PC – an HP Compaq (isn’t… that… uh) tc4400.

Extensa 4420 and Compaq tc4400

My previous computer, the Acer Extensa 4420, well… let’s say I put enough attention into that thing, that it may very well have changed model numbers under my nose with all the changes I’ve made to it. It gets a _lot_ of attention. I’d take it everywhere – to work, then to school, to restaurants, to a friend’s place, to the living room… I went, and it went.

However, for the first time Friday, I left home without it. I only took the tc4400 with me. I’d only had it for a day – I fixed it up and installed Windows on it on Thursday. It’s Sunday now and I’ve found myself only using my “old” Acer in order to get data off it.

A little backstory. A friend gave me this broken-old tablet that evidently was in a bag that fell off his motorcycle while doing 80. Scratched the ever-loving shit out of the top cover, right down to, but not quite into, the display cable. Trashed the hard drive. Cracked the LCD. And, evidently, shorted the power adapter as well. A short trip to eBay and about $11 later, I’ve got a new, questionably-working-but-not-cracked complete display assembly on its way, Another $13 and I’ve got a power adapter. Drop in a new hard drive I had laying around, and an extra stick of RAM (it only had 1x512mb DDR2), and… holy crap, everything worked.

From the moment it turned on and I saw the HP logo gracing the crackling-to-life screen, I loved the thing. It was literally a dream come true. I’d always wanted a tablet PC so I could do paper-like things – like writing and drawing (or at least, trying to) – without paper. Wacom tablets had always intrigued me, but the price tag made me gag. Now, I actually have one built into the screen! A real Wacom tablet (yes, multi-button pen, position-sensing, and it doesn’t detect finger presses). It’s as close to drawing on real paper as it can get, only the paper is backlit.

But the problem is, now my poor Acer is sitting there going “Wtf, mate?”. I’ve all but left it behind with my shiny new tablet. With the only defining difference between the two being that the Acer has an optical drive and Bluetooth (the tablet has neither), and an extra gig of RAM (the tablet has 1gb RAM, the Acer has 2gb), I find myself struggling to find a reason to keep it around! =\

I can’t bring myself to part with it. It’s the first computer I bought brand new, and I’ve put so much time and money into upgrading it – in fact, I’m still in the process of adding a webcam to it, as I find the parts. I’m also fairly certain that if I do sell it, I will sorely regret it in the near future when I tire of the tablet (for anything except its tablet functions, I’m sure). But I don’t see a purpose for it anymore. The tablet fits my work life perfectly, and it’s a godsent for school. It’s light, and it has a pen. What to do with the Acer?!