Sunday, August 31, 2008

"Gig" is up and running!!!

Backstory - in college, I bought a laptop. This was not some big, shiny, expensive thing, this was a dinosaur. I purposefully bought what was one of the first ever laptops made. It made me learn DOS, get creative with external drives (anyone else remember what a zip drive was?), and peruse the internet for drivers. In my circle of friends (our idea of a party was a bottle of wine and a Star Trek marathon), it was very retro-geek cool. The CS majors delighted in finding programs that could run on it, and my fellow History majors appreciated that this thing was OLD.
Its name was Meg. It had one (1) megabyte of memory. I hadn't used her since college - I had fallen prey to the siren call of a desktop that didn't get dangerously hot on my legs, and ran wonderful, wonderful Windows. I still have Meg, and I look forward to having an operational decades old laptop for Kittyboy to play with, but as far as daily usage, she just didn't work out. She made a lot of good memories, though, and with the husband's desktop, you don't quite get the same thrill of the hunt for a specific program or driver, the challenge of an unfamiliar operating system, and you don't have to be creative. It just... works. Sometimes, I do long for the days...
Then for Christmas last year, my husband bought me the perfect Christmas present - a modern-day Meg! Its name is Gig. Again, it has one (1) gigabyte of memory. It is an OLPC laptop, the XO. It's the first edition of the XO, the one they were selling before Christmas last year, where you bought two and one was sent to you and one to a child in a Second or Third World country. Once again, I had to learn a new operating system (Linux), and it took a lot of searching online to come up with a browser that would do Yahoo mail and such. Just like the old days!
Except, I couldn't actually do internet. For that, we needed a wireless router for our main computer.
Well, it took the husband eight (8) long months, but we now have a wireless router, and Gig can finally go online, instead of me typing documents on her and then transferring via flash drive (do they even still MAKE zipdrives?).
In fact, I am typing on Gig now. In the comfort of my bed. This is so cool. It's like Christmas all over again!


donald423 said...

The first computer my family got when I was a kid was a Timex-Sinclair 1000. It had one thousand bytes of memory. It was the size of an adding machine. My dad had it hooked up to an old black-n-white TV in the basement. We learned BASIC on it. That's the extent of the programming knowledge I ever acquired. But I did have a heavy, $500 used, laptop in college. I think it had like 500K of memory.

It astounds me nowadays that you can have a tiny chip with a gigabyte on it, that's like Star Trek technology to me.

Caeseria said...

Aw sweet, I want one of THOSE!!!! I know NOTHING of BASIC, just DOS. To me, it's Star Trek technology that you can buy an SD memory card that would hold this entire computer's hard drive. It puts into perspective all the drives with so many GIGAbytes of memory, just to run all this extra STUFF that people expect a computer to run nowadays, when 1 G can indeed run an entire computer all by itself for the basic computer stuff. Kind of redefines what you actually need in a computer.