Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Laptop saga

It's back, finally. The laptop went off to the insurer's preferred fixer and came back ten days later (with a new screen, shiny!) only to frustrate me for 24 hours of attempting to reload all the things I had taken off it. It said it was attached to my wireless network, but was taking about ten minutes to access a webpage. And I made several attempts to get Migration Manager working to transfer between imac and macair.
I resisted booting equipment around the room. I mean kicking. I rebooted quite a lot.
In the end I phoned the insurer who agreed I could take the laptop to the place I had wanted to take it to in the first place - Western Computer near Temple Meads in Bristol. There, they diagnosed that whoever had fitted the new screen had damaged one of the two aerials, so it needed a new screen. And now I have my laptop back and it's working. Migration Manager took about three hours but everything seems to be there, and I have no excuse for not writing. Apart from the fact that I am meant to be tidying up for Xmas visitors.

Friday, 23 November 2012

updates and backups

I have spent most of this week backing up the contents of my laptop to as many places as I can think of before sending it off to be fixed. It was one of those random laptop-screen-meets-perfume-bottle incidents, where I stupidly didn't react in time to stop them colliding as they slid to the floor one after the other. I wasn't even using the perfume, just hadn't put it away.
So, I have used Time Machine (which comes with the mac) to back the macair laptop up on my iMac, and copied all documents, photos and videos onto a small (in size not capacity) WD hard drive, and just to be sure I am now uploading as much as possible to my Virgin Media account - that is the frustrating one because it is very slow over our wireless network.
I had a conversation on facebook about best back up plans - a couple of people suggested CCC: Carbon Copy Cloner, which apparently is really good as it copies everything to a hard drive and you can just reinstall it to your machine when you need to. I'm not sure what difference there is between CCC and Time Machine, but have decided that the main thing that I care about are files so am not too bothered if Time Machine doesn't reinstall everything. I could see it as a way of clearing out the laptop a little.
I can remember most of my passwords - I took a screen shot of all the web login names and passwords that I will delete. I also need to copy and delete the saved passwords for email accounts etc. And the emails?
Now I have to decide how much other stuff to delete from my laptop before it is collected to be assessed by the insurer-nominated fixers.
I will probably delete all my documents and images and downloads, and passwords, just to be on the safe side. Then curse when all they do is replace the screen and send the laptop back intact.
This is what the screen looked like at first, with the little black hole:
And now it's more of a strange dangling spider of an ink-blot that takes over too much of the screen:
So, heart in mouth, surrendering laptop to the courier on Monday.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Granny's Dancing on the Table

Not 'just' about grannies, but they play a big role, Granny's Dancing on the Table looks like a lovely narrative film project that invites involvement in couple of easy ways: Check out the video on their kick-starter site that explains the story and how they plan to share the film on a Creative Commons licence and create a related game. Then you can donate as little as $1 to get things going. 
You can also get your own granny involved by adding photos and stories to their collection at The Granny Invasion
The script for the film has already won a prize at Cannes, and the short snippets look really engaging. Take a look, help make it happen.