Saturday morning I woke very early. The prior day's road trip had made a long night's sleep difficult. At 7:40, I drove to the dealership at which I bought my car. I spoke to my sister on the phone as I drove.
I had simple things to solve at the car dealership: a minor recall on an oil-level sensor, tire rotation, and oil change and an inspection. I sat in the dealership waiting room, fired up a podcast, and put on my headphones. I fell asleep sitting up, to the background tune of the podcast playing. When I awoke in an hour, my car was still not ready. After a further half an hour, the service technician advised me that that car had failed inspection. A few emissions tests had come out negative. He told me it would be another hour for the environmental specialists to check out the issue, at an additional cost.Fortunately, he showed up 10 minutes later. Unfortunately, the recall work had caused the reading issue on the inspection.He advised me to drive 70 or 80 miles and come back Monday.I paid for what they did do (and, sadly, probably for what they did not do--I may need to address it with them later). Then I drove to Bob Woodruff Park.
Bob Woodruff Park has a nice sidewalk walking trail through a mix of field and wood. When I first began walking, I saw a red-shouldered hawk perching on a bare tree. Then I saw bluebirds flitting around in a tree. I saw a cavity in one tree that got lots of bird interest. My theory is that the tree was emitting sap, but perhaps there were insects inside. A bluebird and several cedar waxwings investigated the matter.
I walked for an hour,crossing into Oak Point Park. Fresh small pecans were on the ground. I ate one. I saw some folks gathering pecans. I thought to myself that mass gathering as opposed to incidental gathering was not fair and probably against the rules. I was mistaken, though--a sign did not ban the practice, but only banned the practice of climbing or shaking the trees for pecans.
I drove through Oak Point Park,and took a picture of a female kestrel. Then I drove to WhichWhich and had a turkey and provolone sandwich. Then I walked in Limestone Quarry Park for half an hour.
I headed back to the house, and took Beatrice on a walk in the park. The weather was perfectly lovely.
During the afternoon, I worked on cleaning up my spare room. A little progress was made, but I had much to do still. I need to find new homes for lots of accumulated items.
Saturday evening we had sandwiches in. My wife went to do some post-holiday shopping. I stayed home and worked on my computers. On my laptop, I am replacing the DVD drive. I only made partial progress, as I must locate my tiny Phillips screwdriver to remove a casing.
On my desktop, I worked to remove Firefox, since a recent upgrade seems to have impaired it.
I did not yet succeed in reinstalling it,but I also run Chrome, so it will be fine until
I get it re-installed.
My desktop computer is now 4 1/2 years old. It is in that phase in which it still has some years of life, but it is no longer the best computer for me. I have been scanning the ads to see about a new desktop. My computing needs are fairly modest. My CPU-taxing work is music-making. A professional music software rig is in theory system-taxing. That is less so for me. Most of my audio work is with fairly lightweight software, as audio goes. I will probably go this time for a system that is both highly economical and yet multi-core with a decent amount of CPU and memory.
It would be good for me to build the computer. I have an advantage because both my brother and my nephew are knowledgeable in such builds. Yet it is more probable that I will either
have one built for me,or customize one from an established eBay vendor. I may even get a refubished one, as I have had really good luck with refurbished computers lately. I got great deals and good results from the laptop I use the most now, two laptops I re-configured for friends, and a little 45 dollar mini-desktop I am going to make into a media center computer. I got all of them inexpensively on eBay, installed a Linux operating system, and made good use of them.
I did see a neat-looking new linux build by a small on-line vendor which hits a reasonable price point by using a chip more usually for servers, but it comes with Xubuntu rather than Fedora. It's easy to install Fedora, but it would be great if someone pre-loaded Fedora at a reasonable price. The company ZaReason does pre-load Fedora, but I can beat their prices by just configuring a similar computer at another vendor and installing Fedora myself.
During my walk today,I listened to the Linux Voice podcast. This is becoming my favorite podcast about Linux. The Linux Outlaws guys are likable enough, but wander around a lot before really talking about substance.The Linux Action Show guys are pretty good and have lots of substance, but the ads and the show in general can run a bit long. The Linux Voice guys keep the content relevant and the shows do not feel over-long.
I went to sleep last night at 8:30 p.m. The Friday driving, the Saturday morning insomnia,and the Saturday extensive exercise took their toll. I slept until 4:30 a.m.,and then woke up.
This morning I have been watching videos about choosing computer components.
I did not appreciate until recently what a huge difference exists between the computers gamers use and the computers suitable for general use. I knew, of course, that some gaming computers cost thousands of dollars. I did not realize,though, the sheer number of technological adjustments involved, like using water systems to cool the system, or graphics cards of incredible complexity.
I find a bit puzzling all the work to achieve a life-like versimilitude in one's graphic experience. I think that often imitation of life-like is going in the wrong direction. Life is already life-like enough.
In other news, I like sea dragons, gingerbread men, and those little wafer-thin sandwich breads.