Sunday, April 27, 2008


Nothing particularly bad has happened - my uncharacteristic absence was more the result of not having much to discuss.

"We are fascinating," Friend said yesterday and I laughed very hard in response. We were seated side by side on her couch, both our laptops open with our respective boxes of Leopard (software, not the cat. I don't think you can buy leopards, honestly.) lying about. I had decided to check the DVD before performing the erase and install while Friend has skipped the consistency process.

"But it didn't work before," I protested of the free DVD she obtained from campus. "What if something goes wrong again?"

"Seeing as the free DVD already erased my hard drive," she explained, "what more could happen?" I nodded thoughtfully and we sat, both of us watching little bars on laptop screens slowly fill with blue as progress was made.

"I think something cool will happen when it's finished," I noted smugly of my willingness to wait for the quality check.

"I think that little bar will go away and the bigger bar at the bottom will start to slowly turn blue," she predicted. When I looked at her moments later, crestfallen, she nodded and smiled, looking a bit smug herself. I shrugged and began to watch the bigger bar turn blue as my hard drive was erased and the new operating system was installed.

"I'm pleased that the Mac people thought you were cool," I told her and she nodded. I'd been on her couch most of the day, exhibiting rather tireless insanity as I coaxed Nick (my laptop) to check the free DVD 3 times. She worked at the table across the room, removing the cover of her MacBook, exclaiming over all the cat hair inside, and installing a new DVD drive. Apart from a couple of exclamations ("It's taped together!" she cried at one point, horrified. "Look at all this tape! Everything's sort of placed in the correct place, then they put some sticky stuff on it and hope for the best?!" I walked over to look - there's lots of yellow tape. She's right about that.) ("Oh, great," she said a couple of times. "Use plastic for that. Fine.") she finished fairly quickly. The new drive works quite well and she even took her keyboard off, showed me how flexible it was, and blew canned air and plucked cat hair between the keys to see if it would work better.

"I probably could work there," she mused of the owner's offer after he took our credit cards for the software. "I mean, I might break stuff sometimes, but my guesses are usually good and I can fix a lot of stuff." I nodded.

I beamed when Nick made it through the install. I'm not convinced there isn't a hardware issue, but the erase may have helped him out. I'll have to wait and see. In the meantime, I've started to fix the appearance and download software and organize everything that had become hopelessly messy before. It's great fun!

"I can't stand it," I finally said to Friend, giving up on whatever I was looking for online and glaring at the fox picture in my dock. "Firefox is supposed to be a sheep! Where are my barnyard icons? And I need to get Office installed so Word, PowerPoint and Excel can be Elephant, Tiger, Dinosaur again!"

"You realize your icons have nothing to do with the actual application," Friend noted. "It seems that would decrease productivity."

"I know what they mean," I replied. And I do. Is a sheep not friendlier than a fox? And elephant, tiger, dinosaur are the right colors so I always remember which Office application they open. I use a mailbox for Mail (which is already set up, but I keep my lists and notes on iGoogle. So those upgrades don't impress me.). It all works out. (And you can see in the screen capture I included that the icons are all friendly and cute again.)

I do like that there's a downloads folder. I'm trying to adjust to the stacks feature - I don't know if I can get on board. I love Cover Flow in Finder. I didn't expect to fall so completely and quickly in love, but I did. And when I woke this morning, I smiled at the thought of playing more with the computer (who has 33GB of free space rather than the 1 I gave it only a few weeks ago) and am now coughing (yes, still.) and clicking in the living room. Matlab copied over beautifully, sparing me the installation pain of the past. I have other software to compile. I was going to just skip it and use programs at work but Friend looked at me with shock that I wasn't going to at least try. I'm currently installing the developer tools so I can compile things myself. I hope she's prepared for some serious muttering and whining later today.

"You know," I said to Friend yesterday after another long silence (we did a lot of waiting for files to copy and install or computers to restart), "it's telling of how much I like your company that this has been a rather pleasant day." Because it doesn't sound fun - the scowling and beaming in turn when things fail or succeed. Waiting and recreating a system that used to be mostly functional before I messed it all up. But it was a very nice day overall.

I glanced at her to see her nod in response. Pleased, I then tried to decide how my folders should look, and which dinosaurs should be assigned to work folders. I went with orange and green.


Amanda said...

Adorable! I had no idea that I could get Euphoria to do different icons for different programs!

post-doc said...

Candybar is the easiest way to change everything (free demo for 2 weeks!). But you can also click on the individual folders and/or applications, Apple-I for the info. Then you Apple-I whatever icon you like then click on the little icon in the upper left corner of the info window. Copy it, then click over to the application/folder info window and click on its icon, paste, and you're all set! I spend lots of time doing that. :)

PhysioProf said...

You two sure are fucking smug.

post-doc said...

It is a bit smuggy. But since we generally take turns, it's not so bad.

PhysioProf said...

Try double-smugging!

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