Skip to main content

My computer is ageing

My computer is ageing.

Within days of buying the computer, the catch and hold mechanism of the card reader broke. Since I could not give my computer to the service centre for an extended period of time to replace the motherboard, I let it be.

Then my computer entered adolescence. This was a stage marked by extreme instability, irrational temper, and uncontrollable heat. Getting my computer to behave the way I wanted was getting more and more difficult. These were the days when I had to battle with OS crashes and more, and spent a lot of time reformatting my hard drive.

Then came the middle age. For six months, I had hardly any complaints to make about the machine that sits on my desk or on my lap. These days were characterized by a mutual understanding and respect. I never asked my computer to perform unearthly tasks, and my computer never expected me to wait for an hour before it booted up.

Right now, my computer is ageing. My DVD drive has stopped working. Hard drive performance is at an all time low. My computer has more memories in the shadow copies and backup than in the primary hard drive. The computer can be away from a power outlet for not more than an hour. Transfer rates from my camera to my hard drive do not exceed 500kbps.

In computer time, my laptop has remained with me for eons. In human time, it has not been three years.

Contrast this with my desktop, which has been serving me for a little less than five years.

As speeds go up and costs go down, our computers are lasting for far less time. As a result, computer graveyards are filling up faster than ever. If the trend continues, maybe we should be happy to have computers that last us for over a year.


Popular posts from this blog

Progressive Snapshot: Is it worth it?

I turned 25 last year, which in the highly mathematical and calculating eyes of the US insurance industry meant that I had suddenly matured into a much more responsible driver than I was at 24 years and 364 days of age. As a result, I expected my insurance rates to go down. Imagine my surprise when my insurance renewal notice from GEICO actually quoted a $50 increase in my insurance rates. To me, this was a clear signal that it was time to switch companies.Typically, I score really high on brand loyalty. I tend to stick with a brand for as long as possible, unless they really mess up. This qualified as a major mess up. As a result, I started shopping for insurance quotes.Two companies that quoted me significantly lower rates (30%–40% lower) were Progressive and Allstate. Both had an optional programme that could give me further discounts based on my consenting to the companies tracking my driving habits. Now, I am a careful driver – I hardly ever accelerate hard. I hate using the brak…

Build those noise cancelling headphones

So, here's another DIYLet me start by putting the cart before the horse. I shall start with the credits. This project was done while I was working on my Electronics Design Lab, along with my friends, Srujan M and Indrasen Bhattacharya. The work would not have been possible without the generous help received from the staff at Wadhwani Electronics Laboratory, who ensured that the only thing we did right was to leave the lab on time. This project would also not have been possible without the guidance of our dear and learned professors. It would probably have just about become additional dead weight on the head.Enough with the credits, now, I need to dive right into noise cancellation and how it works.The essence of sound is a pressure wave. The pressure wave, when incident on the eardrum sets into motion the complex mechanisms inside the ear, and after a long path, rather like the Cog advertisement, ends up making some nerves vibrate. The nerves send electrical signals to the brain, …

The joy of receiving a handwritten letter...

I receive around 20 emails a day. I hit delete for most.While studying letter writing in school, I often used to wonder, is letter writing relevant any more? I mean, who sends snail mail? Isn't it much more convenient to write an email?Fast forward to a few days ago... I received a note, not really a letter, from a friend, whom I had the pleasure to know for over three months. The pleasure of reading the note really changed my perception about the composition exercise learnt in school.So, what is it that a handwritten letter has which email lacks? Maybe it is the personal touch, the realization that a person has written the letter, and that it has not been written by a computer. Handwriting just happens to add a personal touch which the cold hard sans-serif font of email just cannot capture.I also think that handwritten letters take time and effort into composition. This means that they generally have a better content than email, which is often written casually, in a hurry with l…