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A penny for your thoughts indeed. Around here that would be a raise.

What makes a good blog? I think thematic consistency, a little exhibitionism, and honest writing. I can promise you the last one.

Most of my posts seem to be about music or politics. Some of them are funny. But all of them would love to hear a comment from you.

Oh-- and please welcome God to the APW team. We're thrilled and humbled to serve as His earthly vessel.

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Location: NYC

I was born at a relatively young age. Growing up consumed the better part of my childhood. As a young man I chased a lot of girls. But they kept getting away. Then I got older and even slower, so I got married. I've lived in New York City almost since before I moved here. I summer in Manhattan, which is like New York City, but with more humidity.

Here's me, without baby, thinking big thoughts. (Actually, what I'm thinking is, "Hey, these aren't Pringles!") I think I look better with baby.

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Shoot Me Now. But First: Tech Advice!
Thursday, May 18, 2006
Maybe I’ve mentioned the work we’re doing in the apartment. New floors are down, built-ins have been torn down, walls have been plastered and painted, new track lights hung. We’re in a long swatch of down time now that involves waiting for the good people at Little Wolf to build the new cabinets. Many things still in cartons and a general air of disarray permeates all.

I promised the missus that I would do my damndest not to let all the chaos—I mean, missing plaster, holes in the wall, exposed brick!—get me down. Usually this kind of environmental change leaves me rolled up in a quivering ball, gently rocking, a shawl draped across my frail shoulders. But this time I was doing so well… until 2 weeks ago. At which point, the hard drive on my trusty Dell Dimension 8400 crashed.

(By the way: am I the only one who thinks Dell used to be great, and now they totally suck?)

Now, I know what you’re thinking. Josh, you’re a modern guy. You’re obviously smart enough to back up your data, right? And yes, you’d be right.

So the good people at Dell came by 2 days after the crash and installed a brand new replacement hard drive. (By the way: Dell support sucks.) Of course the Dell guy didn’t format the drive or anything; we had to put Windows on ourselves. OK, a lot of work, downloading drivers, finding CD-ROMs we haven’t seen in 2 years, like that. And fortunately my wife does this for me, because I’m really not what you’d call a patient man.

So I’m still realizing how much stuff I didn’t back up (like my email), but knowing that I had all my documents and software on that external drive made me feel kind of OK about all this. Smug, even. Almost 50 gigs of MP3s that I’ve put on my iPod; all my work stuff, photos… you know, my digital frigging life.

So then its time to mount the external hard drive... and… nothing. It isn’t there. The Dell doesn’t see it. Long story short, several support calls later to both Dell (who sold me the external hard drive) and Maxtor (who manufactured it), we conclude that, yes, the external back up hard drive has also crashed. At the same time as my internal hard drive.

At this point, I got my binkie and crawled into the corner. I’ve been there 2 weeks.

It was bad enough having my hard drive crash. It was bad enough that it crashed in the middle of household upheaval. But to have my back-up drive crash at the same damn time? What did I do to the universe to deserve this fate?

Turns out it probably wasn’t a coincidence. Most likely given the nature of the damage to the drives, I had a power surge. Both machines were plugged into the same power strip (or, as they are obviously mistakenly called, surge protectors); and both got fried at the same time.

So all this is why we’ve been scarce here at APW of late.

But I do have 2 pieces of good advice for you.

1. If you use an external hard drive for back-up, for God sake, UNPLUG the thing when not in use. Trust me on this.

2. The iPod cannot export its contents to a hard drive. This is a capability Apple had to restrict in order for the record companies to allow them to sell songs in iTunes; otherwise I could come to your house and offload 10,000 songs you didn’t pay for from my iPod. Which means, if say by some crazy freakish stroke, your hard drive and back-up hard drive crash at the same time, and it turns out the only place you have your MP3 library, which took you 3 years to rip from CD, is on the iPod-- well, if that should happen, you’re kind of screwed. Because you can’t get them off the iPod and back onto a computer.

Or can you? I was determined to find out. So thanks to Google (they don't suck) I found out that the good people at copypod make a piece of $20 software that lets you do just what I needed to do-- get all my music, including my playlists, from the iPod to the new squeaky-clean hard drive in a Windows machine (don't know if there's a Mac version.) So if you ever find yourself needing to get the contents of the iPod onto your hard drive, this is the ticket. Drop-dead easy to use, and at $20 a no-brainer. APW rating: 5 stars.

Have I mentioned the refrigerator is leaking?

Posted by: --josh-- @ 3:24 PM  

At 5/18/2006 7:08 PM, Anonymous Annie said...   

1) The fact that you are able to share this means that you're on the road to recovery. You might not like to hear the word "recovery" right now.

2) So, umm, what meds are you on right now?

3) Strangely, the hard drive on my laptop went bye-bye too.But that was because someone grabbed the thing and shook it upside-down like an etch-a-sketch.

4) What you really need is an external drive for your missus. Because if she ever crashes, you would be completely over.

At 5/19/2006 11:57 AM, Anonymous pia said...   

Feel so bad for you--especially the CD thing--have just begun doing that--was going to back it up and get rid of the CD's but my friends convinced me that my collection's too extensive--as my tapes were and as my records were

My Dell laptop--Inspirion series won't turn off completely--have to take the battery out

Really wish I had gotten MAC's--only use the Internet anyway

My datastick broke--yes, really. Never use one as a key chain--fortuantely have hard copied of everything important that's not on one of my computers

Don't trust GMail anymore--not the government stuff but it goes down so often. Since it's such an easy way of filing things and keeping things in order--used it as a main storage center. But am getting a new data stick--not to use as a key chain and will back everything up

At 4/06/2010 5:28 AM, Anonymous http://ghost.int-max.net/ said...   


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