the multicolored death of my first powerbook

Spooky had seen better days.

The fan ran more often than not, the damned thing sounded like it was wheezing. Probably not technically possible, but I figured the hard drive (its second) was going to generate enough heat to melt something.

But it was an unplanned and sudden drop to floor that finally put an end to its long and useful life.

Sure, I spent more time with the new model PowerBook from last April. (And if I’m being honest, with the ThinkPad from work.) But this machine was my first laptop, so I’ll always have a soft spot for it.

Goodbye, first generation titanium PowerBook.

Software Experiments

Lisa is working on a geek cheer for me, something that will be the equivalent of the Roll Tide! I give her when she is following Alabama women’s gymnastics meets. It is my way of showing — well, not interest exactly — but understanding that something important that I don’t really understand is going on.

This afternoon, I turned on Apache (it comes with on OS X), enabled PHP, installed MySQL, loaded ImageMagick, and set up MediaWiki on my laptop. Mostly because I wondered if I could. Turns out it isn’t difficult to do. [Insert to-be-determined geek cheer here.]

I also figured the wiki will be fun to play around with, to see what it can do as my own private sandbox. One thing I am interested in is seeing if using a wiki instead of a collection of text files as a brain dump helps me to better map out my thinking. If it gets really useful, I will deploy it to the new web host.

Why do I think a wiki might work for this?

Considering that Spotlight is supposed to find anything so spooky-fast Apple is promoting it as a step ahead of “the archaic file folder metaphor”, some might think it doesn’t matter how many text files I create, because I won’t really have to keep track of them. (Once I upgrade; I don’t have Tiger yet.) Gmail doesn’t have folders, instead preferring search-friendly labels. But I think my brain learns (and remembers) things by making connections, connections that extend beyond a collection of search results. So I wanted a software tool that will make it easy to make connections on the fly — and that is what I think a wiki will be good for.

I also downloaded and installed NeoOffice/J, a port of OpenOffice.org that doesn’t need the X11 windowing system — meaning it behaves and looks like any other Mac app. Cause some times you really do need a spreadsheet. And those times should not require forking over big bucks or opening windows more Spartanlike than the original Trek crew quarters.