Posts Tagged 'Hardware'

Everyone is Entitled to an Opinion

We had our weekly visit from our neighbor this morning. He comes over most Saturdays to survey the progress on our renovation. He’s not shy about voicing his opinions (when you reach 93 you are pretty much allowed to say what you want). On the one hand he is effusive with praise for our architectural decisions and product choices. On the other hand he argues with our decisions and choices. 🙂 Things he loves: the new doorway, the appliances, the cabinets, the floor, the pocket door, how we’ve made small rooms feel open and spacious, and, new this week, the cabinet hardware (last time he informed me that my choice was too ornate and over-done for a kitchen. 🙂 ). IMG_9165Things he dislikes (or at least this week): our bay window seat in the breakfast room (“it’s horrendous – get rid of it”), my (brand-new) white blinds in the kitchen bay window (“they’re horrible, no one uses blinds anymore, get rid of them”), self-closing cabinet doors/drawers (“wait til they break”), our ceiling fan (he only saw the picture but didn’t like it), our bistro table (only saw the picture but doesn’t like it – too dark, won’t go), our chestnut wood trim (“it’s too dark”), and something on which we can agree: “how will you ever reach the top shelves of the cabinets?”.

He also has some great insights, things that we had not considered. It was his idea to look into using the counter material on the bay window seat. That won’t be happening, but he got me thinking of other options for that seat. Today he had ideas on what we should investigate with the cabinets – to use either stops mounted very high and very low to keep the doors from hitting walls or to see if the contractors can limit the swing of the doors so they cannot open far enough to hit the walls. IMG_9166Those are great ideas. I hadn’t thought much beyond putting felt on the walls to protect them from the cabinet knobs. His ideas are better. 🙂

Trying to explain our plans for the broom closet this morning was, however, an epic fail. I don’t think he’s going to appreciate what we plan until he sees it executed. *laughing* One of his suggestions was for us to cut down the broom and mop handles. Once he finally seemed to get the idea of the cutout on the shelf to fit the handles, he started telling me not to divide the bottom of the cabinet because I’d need a wide space for buckets, etc. *smile* It doesn’t matter that I said I don’t keep things like that with the brooms – that’s what I NEED to do. *grin*

He’s our neighbor, our friend, my husband’s BFF, and we should only be as sharp and as healthy as he is when we reach his age. At least his parting words are always “you’re doing a fantastic job, I can’t wait to see it next week”.

Advertisements

Kudos to Rafael!!!

I use this blog and my twitter account to complain when my Alienware computer fails, and I feel Dell isn’t listening. So I must use it to tell you that Rafael of Alienware Tech Support positively ROCKS!!!!!! I was VERY bitter Tuesday evening when my “repaired” M17x came back and promptly failed in SL again. Armed with a glass of wine and a few unscheduled evening hours, I called Alienware support on Wednesday evening.

Rafael took my call. Yes, I DO know his last name and I’d be thrilled to tell all of you and even more thrilled to tell his management. But I did not get his permission to publish his name, so this will have to do. Rafael – you are THE BEST!!! He was upbeat, positive, and determined to fix my machine. We were on the phone for at least 90 minutes, probably more. In that time he ran a test or two, but mostly he LISTENED to me and he READ the account log. What a concept. Listening to the client. We talked about the problem, we both agreed it was the driver. I had 2 new graphics cards but the same old drivers. The error message had been saying “driver” all along.

Rafael researched, searched and downloaded the latest drivers for my cards. It was my very good luck that nVidia had just published new drivers the week before. Getting that driver installed, however, proved to be a bit trickier. Suffice it to say that Rafael stayed the course, double-checking with his peers, and working diligently to get the drivers updated. He came inworld with me to watch me push the SL settings to the max and begin throwing continually changing video information at the machine. We encountered my good friend Greg at the Fogbound. Greg chatted with me and Rafael. I felt VERY good about that because not only was Greg knowledgeable and articulate, but he was backing up everything I’d said to Rafael earlier and all of Rafael’s own conclusions.

So – Rafael is a STAR!!!! My beloved Alienware M17x is in working condition yet again. I have my full pixel count – 1920×1200. Things are rezzing quickly and beautifully. I have shadows, reflections and depth. Yay Rafael! Yay Alienware Tech Support! Okay – I’ll even give a shout-out to Dell – that’s how happy I am to have my Alienware M17x back and running. *HUGS* to all!

Red Hardware Blues

I’ve stated many times that I love Friday evenings in SL. I love winding down the week with good friends and good music late at night at TriBeCa, with Calli spinning an eclectic mix for us. THIS Friday was going to be even more fun. The 1st Question was going to be on FRIDAY this week. *grin* I never did ask why, but my assumption was that some sporting event or other was interfering with the usual Sunday night time slot. Pooky Asterdam always finds the wittiest, smartest, most pleasant folks to be contestants on the show. This week the guests were StupidFun Will, Widget Whiteberry and Alem Theas. Oh? You don’t recognize them? Perhaps you know them better in a different life. Will is Will Wright, creator of The Sims and new member of the Linden Lab board. Widget is the co-producer of Virtually Speaking, conversations on politics, media, economics, science and more, hosted before live audiences in SL. Alem is Grady Booch, known internationally for his ground-breaking work in software architecture and engineering, and collaborative development environments. You can see why I was eager to catch this edition!

I’ve mentioned my love for red. I’ve mentioned my love for beautiful wonderful red Alienware M17x (all the lights glow red). I may have mentioned that my beautiful red laptop has been having a few difficulties with the video card. We’re not exactly sure why, but I will say support has been wonderful. The tech was due Friday morning to replace the cards and the fans and a cable. A very pleasant young man showed up, opened up my beloved machine, took out nearly every part, cleaned them, put in new ones, closed it up. He plugs in the cord and ….. nothing. My heart stops. He unplugs the cord, replugs. Nothing. It’s 1:30 on Friday afternoon. My gaming computer is….. omg….. It’s dead, Jim. You might have thought that I’d kill the tech, since my machine WAS working before he touched it. As badly as I felt – that poor child was ashen. Besides, I had no time to lose in hysterics or anger. I HAD to get a working computer. FAST.

My Thinkpad T61p has not been able to handle virtual worlds in over 8 months. My husband needed his gaming computer (oh sure, ‘needed’ it. as if…) When we upgrade, we don’t discard. There was my old Dell Latitude somewhere in the house (the one that I used 4 years ago when I first came to SL), my husband’s old Dell Inspiron, and my sister’s laptop that I used at her house. There IS hope. I grabbed the Inspiron (please understand that poor tech was still at the table working on my Alienware, on the phone with HIS support crew). It is so out of date I have to hardwire to our network because the wireless isn’t working. I stare at the unfamiliar setup. The tech looks over and I kind of wail: where do I START??? He points out that in the lower corner of the screen is the auto-update icon. Oh. Good idea. Well, it ended up taking about 2 hours, and 78 updates, and a new video driver but whoo-eee, that Inspiron was up and running. Doing a fairly decent job. I downloaded V3.2.8, the development viewer. Then I headed inworld to try it out. I started at home, went to Fogbound to check music and motion, visited Honour and her horses. So far, so good.

That Inspiron is the little-laptop-that-could. It isn’t my Alienware. And yeah, I crashed right before The 1st Question – some media plugin failure because I was trying to take pictures. I was pushing the machine too – I’d set the graphics to High. It was a very ugly crash – the kind where you have to power down the machine to get yourself back. I got back just in time to hear my friend Jessica saying “I think Ahuva crashed”. *grin* Oh so true. I didn’t dare take any more pics, so I can’t show you the adorable skit beforehand from the Tinies. But I did make it. The show was GREAT! Another fantastic job by Pooky, her co-host Hydra Shaftoe and the incredible crew, including the unflappable Petlove Petshop. There was an over-flow crowd, and folks participating via the chat bridge from the streaming url. The audience is as much a part of the show as the hosts and panelists. As always, I am astounded at how SMART these people are and how FAST. As always I said to myself – why am I not here EVERY week???? Afterwards Pooky and I were talking and she mentioned a championship round. Oh wow. Can you imagine? Pooky and I talked about how many smart people are in SL, how many people all love the science, the tech talk. We agreed that we all have a bit of a geek side. Which led me to suggest a new slogan for SL: Second Life – Let Your Inner Geek Out. *grin*

After the show, I headed over to Fogbound to relax a bit before Tribeca-Time. Evanrude Anton was DJ’ing, and lots of friends were there dancing. Gregg Torgeson was behind the bar. He’d been there earlier on my trial run and he asked how the machine was doing. That led into a discussion of hardware, plugin failures, graphics cards, mac vs pc, asus, alienware and more. Which is when Kalanite Bluestar uttered the phrase that needs to be printed on tee-shirts for the “Fogettes”: Hardware Chicks of the Fogbound. *grin*

The little-laptop-that-could was still going strong, so it was off to TriBeCa where we enjoyed LOTS of new Leonard Cohen.

Yet again, another wonderful evening spent with friends: smart, witty, talented, musical.


Stat Counter

wordpress analytics
Advertisements