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thursday, june 21, 2001
little monsters


computers are little monster, usually with voracious appetites and demands for attention. if you are lucky, you get a good little monster, one that operates well with the proper care and feeding for sometime before it needs things to help it grow. if you are not so lucky, you end up with a bad little monster that needs first aid and hospitalization frequently, perhaps even surgery after surgery. and, of course, none of this comes cheap, especially if you are a new parent to one and have no idea what you are doing or how much things cost. if you are the most unlucky, some virus or other sickness turns your monster, good or bad, into a useless piece of metal that no amount of cpr will revive. worse, you may not be able to afford a new monster to replace it and may also be totally addicted to its charms. monster withdrawal can be a very ugly thing.

i swear they plan it that way.

my first monster, bought primarily for uni a good 4 years ago, was a horrible creature. it crashed repeatedly and needed reformatting as often as every 3 weeks and always within 4 months for the entire time i used it. the hospital it had to go to blamed software. not that i had anything unusual mind you, but they didn't want to give me a new machine or reimburse me $2100 either. we still have that particular monster. it is now relegated to a word processor for the girls.

my current monster was purchased when i decided to make a serious foray into web design. it is over a year old and is still a wonderful little monster, although it has had its moment. we had to replace the modem earlier this year. today we replaced the zip drive (the surgeon was an hour late but it was a wonderfully quick operation). the click of death is a scary thing and should be treated as soon as it is heard. preferably before losing 6 zips like i have. lately the monster is getting a few of those little annoying errors that see, to plague little monsters as they get older, nothing major or serious but things that may bring me to finally reformat it. my monster is so wonderful it hasn't needed such doctoring in the entire time i have owned it, for which i am thankful. my old monster has made me hate the entire process, so it is nice to have one that requires little in the way of energy. it will need some growing stuff soon; we'll be acquiring a cd rom r/w, and it needs a ram boost. she's been very well behaved and i am very happy with her.

i have a smaller monster too: my laptop. although winME makes it very slow, it is fairly well behaved for what i need done. and the price just couldn't be beat, so i am happy.

my husband's new monster (also a dell, btw) as been a problem child from day one. this weekend we are reformatting as all the monster's hardware checked out on a thorough test that took 2 days. the monster locks, eats things, disconnects from the net, hates psp, hates all browsers, really hates all messaging services, and is s l o w. it has as much hd space as mine, the same amount of ram. the only huge differences are that his monster has a celleron (mine is a p3) and he has winME instead of 98se. this weekend it gets 98se. this is cheaper than the major surgery of a new processor. saxy probably should have returned it, but he didn't so now we are stuck with it. with 3 people using it, it has got to behave better than the temperamental little beast it has been, and hopefully 98se will beat it into submission.

please don't report me for abuse. some monsters just have to be told who's boss.

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