August 17, 2007

Ode To My Computer

I just had a couple of interesting days where my computer is concerned. Earlier in the week, I had a trackback from a site called “Federal Government” something, and clicked on the URL link to see what the site was about, and… BAM!… my security system regalled me with a small, red-bordered banner proclaiming that I’d just opened the door for a virus about which it could do nothing.

The next 48 hours saw everything deteriorating; I could rarely send any emails, pages took as long as 5 minutes to load and drifted, looking as though they were underwater, or simply shot up or down at will. I could hardly ever get into my music library, and when I did it froze up before I could play anything.

Control-Alt-Delete indicated a false CPU usage of 100%. I tried running a security scan — it lasted 5 hours (3+ hours longer than usual), found no discrepancies and then didn’t even show up under the “last scan” date and time.

This is my first notebook, I’ve had it for about 27 months and it’s been not only my home & office computer, but also my travelling companion. I was getting desperate, concerned that the powerful virus had doomed it, and actually considered buying a new laptop. For me, that would have been the equivalent of trading in a beloved brother or sister for a new model. Had I been one to panic, I would have panicked.


Trend Micro 2007, forever searching the Web for new viruses, trojan horses and types of spyware, etc, and downloading updates as they find them, must have run across the virus elsewhere and figured out what to do about it, because it suddenly ceased to be…Mr. Inspiron was abruptly back to normal. My automatically scheduled Friday scan was the usual and exposed no unwelcome entities of any kind. Yay!

The pox on Internet vandals!

Unfortunately, this has left me with a long list of emails to answer and a lot of reading to catch up on, as well as some catch-up on a work project I couldn’t continue while the accursed virus was munching away in my computer. And I do mean munching, as things were indeed deteriorating from hour to hour.

The only silver lining, as regards my work project, was the time I had to do some supplemental research in the Protection Of Assets Manual, a four tome, binder-format mini-library that is pretty much the bible of the Security biz. $800.00 + (well spent, covers about everything). While the bulk of my Protection Industry (security) library currently resides in my storage locker in Charlotte (I am, after all, semi-retired), the above mentioned manual travels with me, though as a priority, it, like all my other possessions, plays second fiddle to my trusty Dell Inspiron 600m.

This is one of those “who would have believed, X years ago…?” things. Throughout the 1990s and long after Alfonse Aloysius Gore, III had invented the Internet, I was one of those people who sneeringly said that I would never become entangled in the World Wide Web. Even in 2000, after voting for Dubya Dubya Dubya, I had no interest in anything WWW. I had no email address, no computer and no intention of ever owning one. I knew how to access programmed, statistical information on an offline computer from previous employment, and that was that.

In late 2001, I was pressured by a lifelong love with whom I had been reunited to at least get an email address. I grudgingly opened free accounts at Yahoo! and Hotmail. We got WebTV and I got hooked almost immediately to surfing, contacting and conversing with friends who were online and, later, we bought an E-Machine desktop computer.

In 2002, a friend of mine who had just returned from Hong Kong turned me on to a blog (the first I’d ever seen) called Gweilo Diaries, a great site out of HK run by an American expatriot who called himself Conrad. His blogroll led me to the Blogosphere and suddenly I was reading and commenting at several conservative blogs — it was awesome, there they were, a whole bunch of sites espousing political opinion that coincided with mine rather than the usual lefty crap that the MSM was spewing!

Flashing ahead to the spring of 2005, living alone again (I belong alone where domesticity is concerned, it never seems to work for very long when I share a domicile with anyone else), I bought this notebook and began using it for work purposes — I found that using the computer reduces project time significantly and eliminates quite a bit of work — and that summer I started blogging. We (my Inspiron and I) have been all over the country together, as well as to Mexico and the Caribbean.

I can’t help wondering if there aren’t a lot of other people whose relationships with their computers are as intense as mine…

by @ 8:20 pm. Filed under Uncategorized
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4 Responses to “Ode To My Computer”

  1. Kat Says:

    *I* do! My baby is rarely even 5 feet away from me, I’m constantly checking e-mail and surfing blogs and other sites… But then, you knew that already! ;-)

    Are you still enjoying snuggling in your quilt, luv? I’m sorry I haven’t been around; I swear, this past year has just been craZy busy, and this summer has been NON STOP! *sigh* “Pause the world, I want to get off…” LOL

    Anyway, I’m delighted that your laptop conquered its virus. Give it some pats for me, but I’m sending HUGZ to you!

    – Kat

  2. Seth Says:

    Wow, Kat!

    I haven’t heard from you (but to be fair, you haven’t heard from me, either, LOL) in some time. Love to the munchkin and major salutations to your other half.

    The awesome quilt is still with me and will be forever, even if I become homeless in Reykjavic, blind in one eye and with a shattered leg, or captured by pirates in the South Sandwich Islands. :-)

    That durn virus had me really worried, but luckily Trend Micro came through in the clinch, as always.

  3. The Gray Monk Says:

    I have to hold my hand up. I am a self taught and not very efficient user of computers, but I now couldn’t work without one. And the web and e-mail are essentials!

  4. Seth Says:

    Gray Monk –

    And who would’ve thought, 20 years ago, right? :-)