New computer

Finally got trapped into getting a new computer. My old Mac was just fine and all we needed but the internet kept shutting doors by demanding newer and newer access software. We decided on a laptop for a variety of reasons but the driving issue was that living out of the woods means a dial up connection or big bucks. It made it impossible to keep updated software without tearing the machine down and carrying it to Tommy’s for an annual software tuneup. With the laptop we figured we could just carry it off to a place with WiFi and do all the high speed things we needed then. The other thing that was motivating me towards a laptop was a particular program – Streets and Trips – which I thought would be a big help on long road trips – to fill in where the GPS was over it’s head. My big concern about a laptop was the smallish screen and the keyboard with scratchpad instead of a manly mouse. Tom and the guy at the Apple store demonstrated how we could attach a big monitor, keyboard, and mouse to the laptop. So we pulled the plug and bought a new MacBook – and a 24” monitor from Costco. Since the new mac engine will support both the mac operating system and Microsoft, I would be able to operate 100% in the familiar Mac environment and still run Streets and Trips.

I felt fairly confident that the transition would be easy. My confidence was in Tom’s ability to pull it off flawlessly, not my own. And it went smoothly with a couple of exceptions. One of my necessary conditions was to transfer a program that was no longer supported. I had a big time investment in several databases on Appleworks and the replacement program didn’t incorporate a database program. Tom had a workaround with a new program but I really hated to start down that path again. After two tries, Tom broke the code on that and Appleworks now works on the new computer. The other glitch was that we forgot to download a printer driver for a new printer that came with the computer. I knew we had not downloaded it but since there was a disk in the printer box, I assumed it was the driver. It was, but for PC’s not Mac’s. So we carried it back to Tom’s to get the proper driver loaded. So we are back up with the new machine, the big screen, and a real people size keyboard and mouse. Couldn’t be happier.

Last night we decided to see if this WiFi thing would really work. I knew it worked technically because it worked at Tommy’s house but was it really practical for us. I didn’t see me sitting for hours at Wendy’s soaking up megabits. So Nancy and I headed for Deland and slowly prowled the neighborhoods looking for open WiFi’s. Success!!! We found a good one in DeLeon Springs, just 6 miles from the house, and good ones in downtown Deland and at Gator’s landing. We sat in the parking lots and did our high speed stuff. I plan to do the same in Pierson which is only 3 miles away but am already secure with what we found. Personally I’m 98% ok with dial up but Tom put Nancy on Facebook and that is destined to consume her. So this way I just pack her lunch and her laptop and send her off to Facebook her little heart out. And we lived happily ever after. I f this passes the time test, I can see her getting one of those little netbooks and leaving the big, heavy laptop home with me.

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