Monday, April 29, 2013

Just visiting

It was my mum's birthday on Friday, so the mob made the pilgrimage up there again this weekend.

Just me from this end but my sister had the Muttley with her. With my mum going in for brain surgery, the dog's been staying with my sister (and incidentally, been on a stricter regimen of diet and exercise - poor thing).

My mum's ok by the way, if you caught that BRAIN SURGERY thing. She's back to her old self, although bumping her head on Saturday morning can't have helped. It should be a really good thing, as the surgery was to correct a benign thingy that was disrupting short term memory and balance. We're a tough mob but our bones aren't great and that balance issue was leading to some nasty injuries.

Anyway ...

The gang's all back up there again, except my nan who we still miss.

Ended up doing techie spotting again :-) We all have our own laptops and other assorted computing devices. My mum & dad have them to keep their brains active as well. But my mum's been lacking a laptop lately, after the disaster which was an Asus Transformer pad. It was a bad buy for 2 reasons :

1st - it wasn't what they wanted. My mum & dad are well used to Windows and can interact with it. They're not that tech savvy though so switching to Android was too big a shift. Hell, switching from a Sky+ box to a Humax Freesat DVR was too big a shift. (oops! lol). But they got mis-sold this thing by a CURRYS salesperson and were not allowed to switch it for a Windows laptop.

2nd - it was unreliable, kept rebooting without cause. And the CURRYS people still would not honour their Sales of Goods Act obligations and replace the faulty kit.

Note the caps. I'm blacklisting PC World and Currys for a while (they're the same people), partly because I see no reason to shop there. They don't offer anything of benefit over the competition plus there's that whole sales of goods act thing. Comet were worse, look what happened to Comet.

Anyway .... (there's that word again for when I feel a rant coming on)

New laptop - Acer Aspire S3. It's actually quite Shiny. It's in the Ultrabook style, which means thin, light and fast. It fits all 3 of those, even though it's on the cheaper end of the range. It benefits from a Boost drive (20GB SSD) that retains what's used most often. SSD drives are lightning fast and it shows. It makes for a much smoother and more responsive machine.

Yep. Shiny. And it's got me thinking more of retiring my laptop (it's suffering as well from my skin condition) in favour of something newer and quicker. My laptop is good for web browsing, all the other general stuff and for streaming music continually across the network. However, try HD video and it'll soon overheat and slow itself down for protection.

I have my eye on the Acer Aspire V5-Touch. We've had a bunch of Acer laptops now and they've been consistently reliable and strong performance. Can't remember why we retired my dad's old one though (edit - yes I can, busted hard disc which prompted me to take notice of the signs mine was giving ...). I won't be buying yet though. There's no reason (outside of replacing broken stuff) to buy when there's no sales on.

Other new tech - printer.

They had a Kodak all in one which has been having issues ... We diagnosed it as a busted print head - no yellow came out of a new cartridge plus the other colours were bad. So we picked up an Epson printer.

Verdict - it gave a good output but the software is nasty. It sets up a few network drives, which is ok ... but it means that you get annoying pop up errors if you start the computer without the printer being accessible. That's unnecessary, the HP and Kodak software didn't need to annoy the user like that. The set up routine is also somewhat nasty although I figured it out in the end. You can lock the devices out of the network for up to ten minutes, with no "cancel" option to go back and abort when you realise you picked the wrong option.

Ah well.

So - techie business satisfied :-)

Not a bad weekend for me, the skin thing definitely seems to be improving although I hope I haven't set it back too much tonight by attacking it :-(. It's good, it's actually better than it's been for ages. This time last week, I'd written off me taking part in the first half of the cricket season. It's cleared a lot since then. I just need to stop "helping" it - lol.

In fact, it's improved enough that the dog wasn't too worried. He's a smart pooch and was giving a "what's wrong with your knees ?" sniffy investigation when I'd been there before. He wasn't too bothered this weekend, which another sign of progress :-).

In fact, I think subconsciously it's improved to the point where I want to get out and do stuff again. What's coming up ?

Star Trek Into Darkness - must see
Iron Man 3 - COME ON ! Shoulda gone to this already
Kit Car show at Stoneleigh - curious. That's next weekend
Bristol Motor Show - even if I wimp out of Stoneleigh, I'll go to this.

Right - I bought a bunch of new games (Total War series for 75%+20% off and Defense Grid) and they're calling ...

1 comment:

  1. Glad that your Mum's on the mend.

    Not seeing either Iron Man or Star Trek (as you know). No doubt you'll enjoy both of them though!!


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