Saturday, June 30, 2007

I is smarter now?

In my lAst blog entry (ha! I'm evidently still having the "overreaching" A/caps lock issue, and am leaving in my little faux pas as a self-deprecating jab at how I'm picking up the hard stuff, but struggling with the eAsy stuff....)

Take 2:

In my last blog entry I said I hoped my next one will read more intelligently. Does it so far?

I'm a pretty quick learner when it comes to computer-ish things, and I'm beginning to get the hang of the way things work in mac-world. I am able to be much more specific in my pleas for help. Of course, I have yet to set up Windows on a VM and work with a dual OS, so we'll see how my panic progresses as the days pass.

Right now my main WTF issue is with the graphics/resolution stuff. I have an nvidiA (jeez) GeForce 8600M GT on this thing, and I can't seem to find out how to customize it at ALL. I can change the display resolution easily, but that's all done through the monitor settings in system preferences. Default is 1440 x 900, but I would like to switch down to 1280 x 800. When I get XP and the game installed, I think I'll need to be playing on 1024 x 678, if I'm remembering correctly. Right now, though, when I change the res, things get blurry. The way it is by default, things are crystal clear, but it's killing me trying to read such small print.

I KNOW I've been through this with all my other laptops. It's been a while, but I *think* all the advanced tweaking options only became available once I upgraded my graphics drivers to specialized omega drivers. I don't even have directx, yet (do I???). Right now I can change the res, and I can calibrate the color profile to my liking (pretty much), but that's it. Nothing about pixel shaders, direct 3d, open GL, refresh rates, rotation, overlay, anti-aliasing, anisotropic filtering, mipmap, vertical sync...NOTHING. That's the stuff I'm trying to get to. I can't find any control panel for nvidia anywhere.

I feel a little helpless squinting at my monitor like this. Damned if I do change the resolution (blurry!), damned if I don't (tiny!), and, although I can temporarily adjust the text size to a larger size (done), it's just a band-aid solution to what I'm really going for.

But it's so cool how the monitor adjusts its brightness as the ambient lighting changes. I'm sitting here in a dark room with my MBP and my pc notebook side by side. I open up the pc notebook, its monitor lights up, and this one dims. So, here I sit, unable to change my anti-aliasing options and barely able to read the screen even with my glasses on (new prescription, too!), but perfectly content (for the moment) opening and closing the pc notebook and watching the light change on my mac.


Okay, snapping out of my may be a while before I do any work with video. Or graphics, in general. HAve patience, children.


Friday, June 29, 2007


I have a mac, now. The one I've been eyeing Since last summer, probably. It has a lot of neat gadgetry, it's a real powerhouse, gonna be great for video-editing. I really truly love it. Now if only I knew how to USE it.

I still have my other laptop, but my dad will be taking over that one once I get everything installed on this one. And then it will be no more pc for me, except for the one I use at work.

This is completely mind-blowing to me. I'm pretty comfortable with computers. I know my way around. A pc, anyway. But today when my brother brought over the cool black box (like my Ipod Nano box, only huger!), everyone gathered around and oooohed and ahhhhed...I turned it on, got things set up, then had a little bit of trouble after I was done with the product registration. My brother helpfully explained "You close the window on the LEFT side, now." Ah. How embarrassing. So then I typed in my username on one of my accounts and messed up by hitting "caps lock" instead of "a". I can't be VAl. I just can't. I stAred blAnkly At the (bAcklit!) keyboard, And sAid "how do I go bAck and fix this???"

"The delete button", bro says. Of course. But what if I don't want to delete everything, I just want to go back and change a letter or two? You know, like the arrow keys did on my pc? I was nearly in teArs.

My brother pointed out that I use the arrow keys. Just like on my pc. It was the "home""page""end" stuff thAt threw me.

I still cAn't figure out if the cursor must be in FRONT of the letter(s) I want to delete, or if there's A wAy around thAt. Definitely going to tAke some getting used to.

I was trying to post on my forum, and I was using the built-in mouse. Somehow I kept pulling up the calculator, clock, and weather report. Noooo...don't need that at the moment, thank you. Just want to post. But it was kinda cool how it was all 3-D and stuff.

So, it's like I've never used a computer before in my life. I feel somewhat helpless at the moment. I'm learning, though. I have my bookmarks set up in Safari, and my passwords all saved, and I changed my desktop, the time zone...

I have no idea how to find the settings for the graphics card. I don't see "Nvidia" anything anywhere. I found how to change my display resolution, how to adjust the colors, but not how to tweak the graphics. Where's "computer management???" I'm losted! There's no "My Computer", no "My Documents", a whole new bunch of file extensions to figure out. "Shortcuts" are now "aliases".

I got a .wmv file to play in Quicktime by randomly clicking things until it opened. I had to download something. Or something. See how stoopid I sound? I have no idea what I'm doing! As much work as I do on a computer, I have to, at the very least, know how to minimize a window! It's a giant leap from there to video-editing. Oy.

But, hey, this thing hAs a remote control!!! How cool is thAt? And the power jAck is magnetic, so when I trip over the cord, the notebook doesn't come crashing to the floor. It's VAl-proof!!!

I hope my next blog entry reads a little more intelligently than this one does.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


I haven't updated since the porn fiasco. I decided I probably should, if for no other reason than to get that off the first page of my blog. Yet another shining moment in the life of a self-proclaimed goofball....

I don't have much of an update, so I'll just babylon a bit, if that's okay. Or, to use the term my forum members so lovingly coined, I shall "vabble".

I have, once again, resurrected the craptop from the dead. Yeah, it died, po thang. I brought it back to life by hooking it back up to the power cable. Admittedly, that was a "doh!" moment on my part. But, dammit, this thing has no battery! When a laptop shuts off and refuses to reboot, I ASSUME it's kaput. It died again, this time with the power cable in. No little puff of smoke, no sparks, no last words, no nothing, just buh-bye whatever was on my screen. Dejectedly, I moved to the *gasp* desktop PC. It's my mom's and she was visiting her sister out west, so I was okay for a few days. Had to sit in a chair at a friggin' desk, but I was okay. Had to share the room with the litterbox, but I was okay. Had to switch everything to the other side of the desk (mom is a lefty and insists on acting like one. She puts the mouse on the wrong side of the keyboard!!), but I was okay.

Just for kicks one day, I found the Thinkpad out in the woods where it landed when I hurled it out the window, plugged it in, and BEHOLD the sight of the bright blue typically-annoying-as-hell-but-now-much-welcomed disk check! One of my disks needed "to be checked for consistency" (which I am now chanting in my sleep, along with "Myspace is free, but you must be logged in to do that!") , but hey, it looked like it was trying to work! And it continues to chug along, though I am typing this blog entry in notepad and saving at every other word, just to be on the safe side. It still kicks off, randomly.

New laptop will be here in about a month. Very excited. I'd been drooling over it for months, but had no excuse to buy it since my "real" laptop was working fine. But "real" laptop got fried by lightning, so "doorstop/laptop" (lapstop?) is substituting in the interim. I'll be back to work in no time (okay, in about a month), possibly even doing some legit flicks that I can actually show people without dragging them back to some dark internet alley, first. I feel like your normal, average, everyday, friendly neighborhood divorced suburban mom who moonlights as a trenchcoat-wearing flasher. My dirty little secret. And you know I am STILL getting responses about the PM I sent out??? I'm thinking of writing this off as one hell of a publicity stunt. It's getting my name out there, though it's not exactly how I wanted to be known...But I'll take it.

So, that's about it. It's summer, I just had a birthday (getting "you're old hahahahaha" cards from your parents is a real bummer, let me tell you), and 40 is a mere 3 years away. I looked in the mirror that day and told myself (yes, yes, I really did!) "Val, don't be a goob. In ten years, when you're 47, you'll be kicking yourself remembering how you were kicking yourself at 37, for kicking yourself at 27. Remember when you were 22, just out of college, and suddenly felt soooooo old because you were working with 18-19 year olds and felt so removed from that age group? College kids were suddenly 'kids'. Highschoolers might as well have been wearing diapers. YOU THOUGHT YOU WERE OLD AT 22!!! You're screwed at any age, let's face it." My version of a self pep-talk. I wouldn't recommend it for everyone, but it works for me.

My divorce became final on June 5. I'm going back and forth about this. If I could remember how to be a single person, it would help. Right now, if someone were to ask me out, I'm afraid my response would be "Let me ask my husband, first". It's not quite hit me yet. Of course, I can't get asked out unless I start going out, but none of my female friends are single. They all want to go bowling. Not one wants to cruise sleazy pick-up joints with me. Dammit, all my friends and their "happy marriages"!!

*shakes fist at the sky

I'll get there. My nightstand is full of "Rebuilding after your divorce" books. They've been very helpful. I use them as coasters while I read my People magazines and play my sims game. Looking at my nightstand right now, I am doing a little self-analysis. I have two divorce books, both given as "gifts", and my glass of iced tea is sitting atop them. Those two books are on top of a couple of murder mysteries. Now that's interesting....There's an empty box of birthday chocolates (thanks, John!), a bottle of Gaviscon heartburn medication (extra strength! Thanks, John!), and a box of tissues. Oh yeah, and a quarter bag of weed.

Haha. Just kidding about the Gaviscon.