Sunday, June 7, 2009

Children and Electronics

Gee, I go two weeks between posts and a plane falls from the sky, David Carradine hangs himself, North Korea tests a nuke and lobs missiles, GM goes belly-up.....apparently I owe it to civilization to get here more often.Of course, it would be nice if I had something worth typing, but my life has been pretty uneventful, and my limited internet access has made it difficult to crib from - er, be inspired by other people.

Grandbaby is continuing to generate Cuteness and Chaos, discovering the entertainment value of getting Mom excited, wearing out her aunt (her preferred partner for learning to walk) by insisting on repeated strolls through the house, and learning that it is in fact possible to aggravate Grandma, usually by attempting to examine our seemingly indestructible house plant, which has so far survived curiosity as it survived previous neglect. This has been especially eye-opening for my daughter, the aforementioned aunt who hasn't been around babies that much but who has now been pressed into babysitting duties. She has caught on quickly, aided by Grandbaby's naturally sunny and uncomplaining disposition, although diaper changing continues to be a bit adventurous and the level of alertness required to constantly account for a curious baby with rapidly improving mobility has been a bit startling to her. She has asked "Was I like that?" quite a few times. (Mom has asked Grandma the same question. I believe this is called Grandparent's Revenge,and it is fairly sweet.) I said that all babies are like that, and that Grandbaby is actually a pretty well-behaved one,as was she.

I recently had to kill some time at Wal-Mart while a prescription was being filled, so I wandered back to the electronics section. It's good to see prices for digital TVs coming steadily down, although that was bound to happen as manufacturers got better at making them. I'm intrigued by the tiny laptop computers; one of those could at least partially relieve my internet blockage. What is actually purchased and when will be determined by a variety of factors,of course, but it's nice to keep informed. The 500-gigabyte hard drives in some of the computers amaze me, since my current desktop has a 40G which is roughly 1/3 filled. Of course I'm not heavily into games or video, so I don't need much storage space. I think back to my time working at ComputerLand in Rapid City in the mid 1980s when we sold a lot of 10- and 20-meg hard drives in IBM PCs. I once went to a customer's house to pick up of the first computers they sold to be brought in for repair. It took two people to safely carry the 5-meg hard drive, which was a separate unit from the rest of the computer. Hmmm....I had thought I was on a completely different topic, but those last few sentences definitely have a Grandpa feel.


Dale said...

I have one of those teensy weensy laptops (Acer zg5) -- it cost all of $300 and has more than earned that. There's something to said for a no-frills laptop that began as, literally, a small investment.

The size limitations are between manageable and non-existent -- you get used to the video, and I always use an external mouse & keyboard, which can be had for a song (if you even need to buy one at all).

And of course there are big advantages to the smallness -- it weighs almost nothing. I have books that are larger and heavier.

This comment was not paid for by Acer. ;-)

Mike said...

Thanks Dale. I was going to do research on them just as soon, ironically, as I could get online to do it. I have extra mice and keyboards,and old computers,for that matter. Can I interest you in one with a cracked motherboard, pentium 75 processor and 333 meg hard drive? No?

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