Friday, October 22, 2004

I am such a geek

I must admit that I swore a couple of years ago that I would never do something that I have recently done. I laughed at people who did it and called them geeks. And while I may work in the computer software field I have never ever considered myself a geek. That is, never until 2 weeks ago.

I awoke one Sunday morning to find that my computer would no longer boot. I am a cheap bastard. I haven’t upgraded my hardware, other than adding memory and hard drive space, since November of 2000. Therefore, I am well past the average lifespan of a PC in today’s computing environment.

My 1.4 Ghz system wasn’t booting, and on top of that the motherboard was so old that it wouldn’t support the full size of my 160 Gb hard drive and would only support 1.0 Ghz of the 1.4Ghz chip. I decided it was time for NEW HARDWARE!!!!!!!!!

As previously mentioned, I am a cheap bastard and my local Fry’s store is always selling motherboard processor combos at good prices. If you’ve never been to Fry’s, it is like being addicted to drugs and having a cocaine superstore down the street. As the Eagles song “Hotel California says, “You can check in but you can never leave”. It is crazy, filled with high-tech computer gadget, console video game, High-Def TV plasma wide-screen, high end audiophile, video camera, DVD, software junk that will overdose a geek junkie in very short order. And if the geek happens to be married, they sell appliances, toys, books, music, and movies as well. I can’t get enough of the place. But I digress…

So there I am in Fry’s purchasing a motherboard/processor combo for a reasonable price that is three times the speed of my old machine. I spend a few bucks more and got one of the fastest systems they had but I didn’t see going cheap here. The plan was to re-use all of my old equipment other than motherboard, processor, and memory and just purchase these pieces. This is where geekdom starts.

I needed an extra hard drive controller for all of my old hard drives. I had forgotten to pick this up at Fry’s and went to a closer store for this part. At the store they were selling PC cases with lighted fans for the side and top panels and cold cathode ray tubes on the front. In addition, the case had USB ports on the front whereas my old case had none. This, along with the fact that it had a multitude of fans which keeps the system cool (both temperature and wow factor) was my excuse to buy a case with lots of lights and fans. After putting it all together, I added some neon light tubes to the clear acrylic side panel for more light as well as fans with flashing lights and neon lights later on. Now with all of the lights off at night, I can read a book 10 feet away like I was sitting next to a lamp. I guess my middle-age crisis bypassed the Porsche and went to my PC.

Now my kid wants one with an aquarium built into the side. It will never end.

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