Why anything would work properly, I suppose, is beyond me…

I like to think of myself as pretty tech-savvy. Out of experience, I’m a pro at manipulating Windows (at least, before that funky Windows 8 came out – I’ll complain about that later), and, in the past four months, I’ve developed a pretty good understanding of the Mac’s OS X system. The bottom line is, if something’s not working, I’ll figure out how to fix it, one way or another.

Well, that was before my external hard drive, with all of my Time Machine back-ups, decided to go kaput on me. Honestly, I don’t know of a worst thing that could happen, beyond the internal hard drive of my Mac burning out. The lack of security is driving me bonkers – I’ve tried just about everything I could possibly imagine, and nothing is working. Format, verify, repair, reformat, verify, repair, reformat…there just comes a point where I want to throw in the figurative towel and declare “That’s it! YOU’RE being replaced!!”

I really hate buying technological things. I’m always paranoid that I’ll buy something new, and the next month, there’ll be some major update to it that makes the one I have seem completely boring. That’s what happened when I purchased my iPod Nano – not a month after, the next generation came out. With a camera. Frustration upon frustration, that was what that was. But it’s this built in, “just wait, something better will come” thing that today’s technology gives us that I find it almost impossible to actually settle on getting something. As in the case of my Macbook Pro, the only reason I finally got it was because I walked into a Best Buy and the salesman succeeded in talking me into it. I was for it, sure, but I wasn’t a hundred percent sold. I need that little bit of a nudge before going at something. (For those of you who have seen my phone, I think that testifies this – I’m completely content with its limitations, as long as it keeps up the good work.)

At the same time, I’m a poor college kid. I don’t want to dump hundreds of dollars into something that will eventually break anyways (such is the way with computers – so sad). And yes, I found the cheapest way to go – buy an eSATA USB station for an internal hard drive, turning it into a makeshift external. It’s cheaper than the typical external, plus there’s longer warranties.

I’m still holding on to that glimmer of hope that I can make my old hard drive keep pushing through. Heck, I’ll deal with Western Digital’s SmartWare software over Time Machine, if that’s what it takes to get my stuff saved down. But I have come to be so much more relieved with a Time Machine back-up, which is my entire computer’s hard drive copied, than just having my music and pictures and videos backed up.

Onto Windows 8 – I have never come across something more pointless in my life. The thing about operating systems is that, although they can definitely have changes from year to year (I’m still in love with Windows 7, a little bit), you don’t go and make all of your computers into tablets. The Windows 8 start-screen pretty much scares the crap out of me, only because I can’t figure out what I’m suppose to be doing. My roommate’s W8 is set up as close to W7 as is possible, and that’s okay with me, but DON’T make it all crazy!! W8 almost asks for a touch screen – one of my friends has such a computer, and the touch screen definitely makes it easier.

I realize that a lot of my dislike of W8 is due to being unfamiliar with it. After all, when I first had the opportunity to work on Macs, I didn’t exactly flock to it. Because I actually have a Mac now, everything it does is so intuitive, and I barely have to think about getting to anything on my Mac. It’s like an extension of myself, and I know just how to work it right. Windows, on the other hand, always involved some thinking – click Start, click All Programs, highlight what you want, click the application…you had to actively search for all of these things. Mac makes it so much easier – one hand motion, and there are your applications. I love it to death.

Speaking of Macs, I have a friend who is strongly against them – he calls them overpriced computers, and claims that you can buy a PC with better specs than by just getting a Mac. If you count the new Macbook Pros that were recently announced, causing all of them to be extremely expensive due to the no-way-out Retina Display screens, then yes, you can get a PC cheaper. I remember some teacher of mine telling my class once that, when you buy something, you’re buying the brand, not the product. The brand, in this case, is OS X versus Windows, Apple versus Dell/Gateway/HP/Lenovo/whatever else. The thing that Apple does right is eliminating all of these little differences between specs – no, they say “this is a home computer, this is for you rocket scientists that need to run extensive software”. True, you don’t get much in the custom-build say, but they keep it no frills. Could I have found a PC laptop that was cheaper with the same innards? I probably could have. It really comes down to personal preference and what you need it for. I was advised to get a Macbook Pro by one of the Music Business admissions officers. After all, there has to be a reason that Apple is so big in the music industry, right?

One of the most ironic things I see around campus is the number of Macs. I’d say that over 75% of the Belmont population owns a Mac of some form or another (mostly Macbook Pros). I’d also say that over 75% of the Belmont population is here for music business, so maybe that says something. The actual ironic thing here is that Macs only make up about 10% of all of the laptops in the United States. Maybe that 10% is at Belmont. Ha.

I definitely have developed major brand loyalty to Apple. Maybe it’s because I fell so in love with MacLion (originally it was Applion, then Mapplion. Neither really stuck. And, hey, hats off to Shakespeare!), but I would find it hard to look at tablets/computers without going to Apple first. I am happy to acknowledge that there are other things out there besides Apple (hey, I’m getting a Kindle Paperwhite for Christmas. And I love it already), I just have a special place in my heart for the famous Fruit.

I could probably go another hour on how much I want all of Apple’s products, but I still haven’t done that chemistry paper yet. So, prioritize. I got this out of my system, so…I have a good twenty-five minutes worth of hard work before I have to leave to go to CRU. Maybe I’ll talk about that sometime in the future.

TTFN, ta-ta for now.


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