As I wrote/recorded this I hadnt been podcasting for a while,
for several very good reasons and a few not so good reasons. Im
sort of easing back into it now. The big hold up was THE BOOK! With
70 odd podcasts out there with transcripts I found that turning it all
into a self-published book, learning Adobe InDesign, putting it all
up on Lulu.com and getting the printed copies, then finding there were
lots and lots of typos, was hard work and it took time. I printed a
2nd edition and found there were more undiscovered typos. I dont
know where these darn things come from.
In Stage 3 now and working at it bit by bit but its not the enormous
task of putting it all together. On the other hard Im starting
another book, based on my mothers memoirs and family photographs.
Sooner than putting it together in InDesign and all that, Im going
to try authoring a CD. That way I can put all the pictures on it and
they can look at it as a slideshow. My family can then view it any way
they wish, with a bit of this and a bit of that, like roaming about
on the web. One thing reminds you of another, so you look and you pull
that in. This is how we read and look nowadays. Speaking for myself,
its become difficult for me to just sit down and read a book because
Im so used to multi-tasking. This is partly from my former job
with the government, where we were always putting out fires and jumping
from one thing to another. I can do something for maybe half an hour,
then I have to switch to something else. I have to! However, thats
another story. Bottom line is Ive been too busy darting around
to focus on podcasting.
On the other hand I have become quite involved in learning graphics,
first in Photoshop and now I have become embroiled in learning Paint
Shop Pro. My friend, Joan, in England got involved in a ridiculous email
program called Incredimail, which was discontinued in 2020. With Incredimail
you could add all kinds of doodads graphics and sound and animations
and what have you. Interested in learning how people could get involved
in creating this graphical mish mash. I found a nice group on Yahoo
and I started to learn Paint Shop Pro, which is a very clever program.
Incredimail stationery tends to emphasize nubile maidens,
artfully misted, and ensconced in flowers with fancy frames and fancy
effects and masks and what not. Its also big on cute animals and
cartoons. While all these plugins and effects make it very glamorous,
its not top tier stuff as far as the underlying graphic material
Learning these manipulations, Im starting to cross over into
Photoshop to find how the same effect is created there. I guess Im
a masochist. Its been interesting. As I wrote this, I was on Lesson
82 of 100 Paint Shop Pro lessons. My teacher sends me a tutorial with
masks and plugins that are needed and a picture to start out with. You
do the tutorial and are graded on it as a pass or a fail.. Most of mine
have been passes. Ive had a couple of fails. Its like having
a lovely puzzle to do every day. I would get greedy and try to send
them in as fast as I could, so I got have more puzzles, more puzzles.
I liked the puzzle part.
The other thing that happened Oh Lord have mercy on us poor
sinners was a double hard drive crash. First of all I had a flaky
little C: drive. It wasnt very big and it was gobbling material
from someplace and I would have a Gig less space every morning. My gradually
disappearing C:\ drive was a problem. I decided it just wasnt
big enough so my solution was to go overboard.
I bought a Seagate Barracuda one Terabyte drive. Unfortunately, a small
run of these one terabyte drives had a problem. The drive would fail
suddenly. The files were still there on it but the system couldnt
read the drive. I had installed Windows on the one terabyte drive and
wiped it off the little drive which had been eating its own young, by
which I mean the disappearing space problem. Windows ran fine on the
Seagate Barracuda one terabyte drive until one day it just failed. It
Fortunately, I keep my one generation back computer in
pretty good condition. All I have to do is switch my cable modem on
to it and Im in business with a smaller monitor and somewhat older
software, but Im still truckin. I worked in that way for
a while as I thought about the problem. A friend had warned me about
the Seagate drive problem so I knew why the big drive had failed.
I had a nice fellow come by who had helped me before and he took way
the terabyte drive. He installed a 250 gigabyte drive in addition to
my existing little drive which was wiped. We put C:\ back on the little
drive, which seemed to be o.k. now. I think it had been a software thing
that caused the original space-eating behavior. All my files had been
backed up on two external USB drives. I decided to take a friends
advice to use the C:\ drive only for the Windows system and, whenever
possible, I installed program files on the new 250 gig drive. So, now
I have Windows on the little drive and programs on the 250 gig drive
plus my USB drives and I sort of didnt even need or want the one
terabyte drive back as I was scared of having more trouble. Seagate
had come up with a firmware patch. My favourite dealer applied the firmware
update and my man came an reinstalled the one terabyte drive which I
determined to use just for backup storage.
I had, therefore, a little system drive, the 250 gig drive where all
my programs were, two pretty large USB drives and, off in the distance,
my then enormous one terabyte. No matter how much stuff I put on it
this enormous drive seems to be saying Feed me! Theres
always more space because its so huge. (this was back in 2009).
Im starting to get together an idea of how to proceed, not in
case there is another crash, but with the certainty that there will
be, at some point in time, another crash. Im going to build several
CDs called essentials. All the things that I absolutely have to have
like my Snagit program that captures graphics for me and my password
program and my extended clipboard program. My Palm Pilot software was
too old and I had to go online to their site to get newer software and
futz about until I could load all my stuff back in from backups. There
were over 400 entries in there and I used it mainly on the desktop because
my little Palm Pilot eats batteries even when turned off. I needed but
could not find a program that converts the palm ABA file into a plain
DBF file that I can port straight into a database, so that if everything
goes Bang! again, Im not stuck.
A friend suggested getting a couple of flash or thumb drives for the
core essential stuff and Im doing that too.
Ive been busy but Im starting to see daylight again.