fishing for words

(and tossing out random thoughts)

old dog, new (computer) tricks

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I pushed the abilities of the ol’ bean again. After an impromptu decision much thinking the wife and I opted to leave behind the unrefined masses Microsoft Windows to share one computer manufactured by a particular Cupertino, Calif.-based company.

I’ve always known that all computer systems, Apple OS- or Windows- or anything else-based, come with their own quirks, often the result of one person or a committee deciding they know the best method to accomplish a goal or reach an outcome. Switching from a WinPC to Apple’s iMac wasn’t something I took too lightly. But in the end, I didn’t assign this task enough weight.

Setting up the 24” iMac was easy enough, and it sure is nice to have a computer contained in a single unit. And it wasn’t too difficult to get it on the wireless network. Even moving mail from Outlook files to Apple Mail was relatively easy. The wife and I also found an easy way to share calendars.

Along the way we (or maybe just I) decided that it would be pretty cool efficient to place our combined iTunes libraries on an external drive and to hook that drive up to the new Apple Airport Extreme router. (Kudos to Apple for making the connection of WinPCs to an Apple network relatively painless.) After reading instructions on moving iTunes libraries, seemingly made more complex than necessary, everything was sync’d up.

Also got Windows XP running on the iMac via Parallels…software that allows the running of a “virtual machine,” on to which Windows is installed. Cool stuff!

Things were looking good.

Next step, change the TiVo settings to bring both units onto the new network. “Uh oh” or something like that came under my breath.

Both TiVos were using old-school 802.11b wireless connections…the Apple router was running 802.11g with a WPA2-encrypted password. I know y’all understand what that means. (Hint: The old TiVo adapters couldn’t handle WPA encryption.)

A week later, with two new wireless “G” adapters are playing nice with the TiVos, but a new concern claws around inside my head. Somewhere along the line I neglected to verify that the wife’s netbook had an up-to-date wireless connection. I try it. After ten minutes, it’s not connected. “Darn,” I think to myself, or something like that. Another try, this time leaving the Apple Airport software running and attempting to connect. Fifteen minutes later, it’s on the Apple network. Everyone’s happy. I do the white-boy, wiggle-your-butt dance.

Ends up the switch to an iMac is more like think-and-play than plug-and-play. But the fun has begun.


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