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Posts Tagged ‘technology’

I have a difficult time with computer reformatting–that is a fact.  Over the past few years, I’ve had to reformat several computers and deal with the loss of nearly all of my data.  Over and over and over again.  I used to bitch about it a lot in my diary since it was such a yearly thing back in high school, and I had counted myself as lucky for lasting this long with my laptop.

But, all things come to an end, don’t they?

One very malicious virus from one not so official site.  I keep thinking, “If I hadn’t gone onto that website, if I hadn’t clicked on the allow button for what I thought was my virus-protection, if I had backed up all of my things beforehand…”  But there’s only so much you can do with ‘what if’s.  After a while, they stop mattering, and you have to see if you learned something from the situation.

I was reading about astronomy.  Astronomy! When the website forced a pop up that was suddenly taken down by an ‘Allow Disallow’ kind of prompt.  Seeing the pop up as Vista Total Security, I thought that it was the virus protection automatically installed on my computer and pressed allow.  What a stupid thing to do.  Vista Total Security, my friends, is actually a malware virus.  At first, it tricks you into believing it’s automatic virus protection, but after a few hours of constant warnings and pop ups from it telling you that your computer is infected, you begin to wonder if maybe Vista Total Security is the virus.  Well, it was.  And I immediately started backing up my files on my new external hard-drive.  Good thing I did, too, since my entire computer wasn’t working after five hours.

I called Marshall for some help with it, and he ended up recommending that I reformat the system by installing Windows 7, which I had happened to keep up here in case I wanted to switch over.  So, for several hours last night, I made the switch and then uploaded all of my previous information back onto my laptop.

Except some of it was missing.

Most of it being music.

Three fifths of my music.

Now, I’m the type of girl who collects music and takes it pretty damn seriously.  I organise it into wonderful playlists and care deeply about my connection to certain music.  So, seeing that 3000 of my songs were missing was a bit of a shock this morning.  I just stood there in front of my computer wondering how my iTunes could only have saved what was uploaded by CD rather than both CD and flash-drive.  I felt foolish for not checking beforehand that everything had been saved.  And I felt betrayed.  It should have copied, and even if I had known when I was transferring everything, there wouldn’t have been enough time to save everything before the virus took over.  It all came down to electronic betrayal, and I couldn’t help but feel frazzled.

But not too terribly upset.

Sure, the what-if’s have been soaring, and I certainly wish that I hadn’t lost so much, but I know that I can get much of it back.  I have so many CDs in my truck from my previous computers, so that’s a start.  My friends have offered me up their classical music to replace my Chopin, Vivaldi, and Tchaikovsky, and I’m confident that things can be right.

I realised today at lunch that, had this happened back in high school, I probably would have cried.  Actually, I know that I would have cried for at least a day because, when I did originally lose all of my music (even though it was only 400 songs at the time), I cried for days.  But I keep thinking about the situation now and how it really doesn’t matter.  I’ll get it back.  Everything I actually cared about will be back in my music library, and the world will move on, and I’m still alive, and my photos are all intact, and things are actually pretty damn okay.

Being positive in light of miniature disasters mean the difference between being able to handle the stress and completely shutting down, and I’m willing to start taking the stress on as direct challenges.  You delete my music?  I get it back.  Easy as that.

So, here begins the epic repairing of my music library.

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I’m on hold right now with OfficeMax, Simon & Garfunkel lilting by.  Today has been the day of Simon & Garfunkel, whether while driving to Iowa on a spur of the moment road trip after visiting the hardware store or while waiting to find out if I can get a new camera.  Or, you know, a camera at all.  Imagine it, there you are, opening the box to a brand new camera.  You remove the cords.  The battery charger, the manual, the…  Ripped piece of plastic?

Oh yeah, the ripped piece of plastic that was supposed to be holding the camera.

It would seem that, given my luck (or lack thereof), I purchased the display camera’s box, which means that my camera is sitting out for other people to touch and oogle over.  Ew.  So after a conversation with the manager of OfficeMax, who was actually quite understanding and kind about the situation, I have been guaranteed the actual camera and a new box since it was an accident on their part that the empty box was given to me to buy.

All fixed.  Problem solved.  But what have we learned?  Check the contents of the box before you buy, not after.  It’s just like how, when I got Chinese three weeks ago, I should have checked the vegetable fried rice before getting back to the dorm.  Why?  Because, even though the box was labelled with a V does not mean that it won’t be chicken fried rice.  Luckily, that one was taken care of in time for dinner.

But I laughed when I heard the Simon and Garfunkel playing in the background while on hold.  It’s what I had listened to on my mini-road trip to Iowa.  Kirksville is rather tiny, only around 17,000 people, but it’s the beacon light to all other northern Missouri towns–the “Northern Star”.  Once you pass Kville and head up north, you reach a whole lot of nothing aside from horse-drawn carriages and towns that boast their population of 437.

I passed at least eight Mennanites in their carriages, making me smile every time.  Small town.  Small town.  Small town.  Gas station and closed diner and Welcome sign.  Deer running up hills and into valleys and across highways.  A brilliant, pink and orange sunset blinding me over the hills that crept out from nowhere.  It was a place that looked more pleasant in its death than it would have in its full-bloom or spring or summer.  You could see so far in the crisp air, see the snow still sticking to the shaded grass and the ice patches on the ponds.  A simply beautiful drive.

And I listened to Simon and Garfunkel’s greatest hits, bobbing my head to Mrs. Robinson and humming to myself as I stopped for gas in an ugly little town inside of Iowa (I had missed the Welcome sign to Iowa, leaving me driving an extra twenty miles until I came upon the first town that was larger than an outpost).  It was the type of trip that made me really, really yearn for my camera, and I was kicking myself for not having opened it sooner.  Which is probably why I immediately opened it upon returning home to Kirksville and starting this whole circle of Simon and Garfunkel.

“Hello Darkness my old friend,
I’ve come to talk with you again.”
Sound of Silence,  Simon & Garfunkel

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