The Joys and Pains of Computer Shopping

The last week has been quite an experience, let me tell you. For someone who spends most of every day on the computer, having only limited computer cpabilities for a week is a nightmare. It is not an experience I want to go through again any time soon.

My original intention was to buy myslef a nice big, in terms of power, laptop – one that would be able to run all the productivity software I use as well as my favorite RPG games, World of Warcraft and Neverwinter Nights 2. I found exactly what I wanted at the local Staples and they even set it up for me as a Windows Vista computer. Iplanned on making it a double  boot system – it would boot in either Windows or Ubuntu Linux. Trouble with doing that is that all new PCs come with Windows Vista and there are some major hurdles for the average computer user in setting up a double boot system with Vista. But there is a new version of Ubuntu due out in November that will hoperfully resolve that issue

Qnyway, I bought this really awesome  HP laptop and tried it out for a few days. It handled all my games and software beautifully. There was only one problem. It uses a wide screen format and even at the smallest screen resolution, things were too hard for me to read on my gmes where Ihave no control over fonts. I beed a 1024 x 768 screen resolution to be able to read the fonrs on my games but that resolution distorts the graphics on a wide screen format. So, I kept the lap top for my daughter and bought myelf a new HPtower to run with my 19 imch flatscreen monitor. Continue reading The Joys and Pains of Computer Shopping


Role Playing Games Are Good For You

Back in the early 1970s when I was in my twenties, I got hooked on role-playing fantasy characters based in the Middle Earth universe created by J.R.R. Tolkien. I got hooked on Dungeons and Dragons. A group of six of us got together every weekend and had marathon sessions that lasted from Friday evening until Sunday evening. Back in those days we played using paper and pencil.

After about ten years, when I went back to college to get my BA, I started moving in a different circle of friends who did not play D & D, but the community college where I worked as a tutor had a computer lab and there was an online version that I got to play in my spare time.

Then in the mid 1980s I stopped playing all together until about a year ago, when my kids discovered Warcraft and Neverwinter Nights. My kids started playing World of Warcraft and have been badgering me to come play online with them but I resisted for reasons that are not relevant here. Two weeks ago I broke down and started playing a little on each of the two accounts we have with WoW. That way I can take turns playing with my daughter and my younger son, both of whom take role playing very seriously, as do I. [For an introduction to the WoW unverse, click here.] Continue reading Role Playing Games Are Good For You