notes from this week’s angel-food cake class:
he left the lecture notes back in his office, so he had to go back and get them. isn’t this what web-accessible directories are for — to save data so it can be retrieved from any location?
meanwhile, the guys behind me are reading about the tyson/lewis brawl. overhearing them got me reading about it … and all i can say is ‘wtf?’
okay, the instructor’s back. time to learn about memory and keyboards! zzzzzzz …
i glanced over at the next person’s screen … and discovered she’s the woman who wrote today’s above-the-fold story on judge george heid’s suicide in the journal and courier. freaky. i must attract reporters or something.
qwerty keyboard? dvorak keyboard? oh, i don’t care, just give me a damn keyboard.
it takes about 25 hours to learn the dvorak keyboard … but it significantly increases your typing speed. the downside? going back to a qwerty keyboard is pretty damn difficult.
now he’s explaining the intricacies of using the control key. he uses a ‘command hands thing’ to handle the control key. uh, i wasn’t aware there was a protocol for using the control key.
we’ve moved on to the alt key. ‘again, don’t sit there and think’ when using this key, he said.
the position control keys are: home, end, pgup & pgdn. i use these keys basically never and don’t see myself starting now. however, office uses them quite a bit. this could get ugly.
insert is a ‘dangerous’ key. ooooooh, i’m scared.
the delete key and the backspace thing do the same thing, but behave differently depending on the position of your cursor. ‘i’ve warned you. now you’ll learn it the hard way, like i did, and a few four-letter incantations inbetween.’
if you turn the numlock key off, the number keys turn into control keys. nifty!
computers can have many different ports. the major ones: serial, parallel, video, USB, firewire. we even get pictures of the various ports! how thoughtful.
my instructor has 4 power strips in his office, so all his various computer peripherals could get power. that’s a bit much.
ha ha, someone in the next row is checking out hampsterdance2.com … i don’t blame him. this material is so dry it needs moisturizer.
oh great, now he’s apple-bashing again. cut that out! so what if apple holds the firewire patent!
he recommends buying a computer with USB & firewire capabilities. well, duh.
we’re discussing power supplies. good lord, i can’t believe i paid money to be in this class.
‘i would buy nothing less than a 20G hard drive.’ he just mentioned ‘tetrabye’ drives again … and i still didn’t correct him.
he likes 19″ monitors, but would use a 21″ monitor if they weren’t so darned expensive. he quickly mentioned the pricedrops on LCD monitors, too. there’s that annoying gateway ad again!
he suggested buying a pair of glasses to use specifically when working with computers … crap, i knew i was forgetting to do something!
there was some more discussion of video and sound cards, but i was totally not paying attention.
printers! ‘jet ink is … very acceptable.’ 1000dpi is defined as ‘print quality.’ he also suggested that we buy printers where the paper lays flat in the tray, because ‘the other way’ is, uh, not good or something.
if buying a laser printer, watch out for the printer memory!
supplies — paper, cartridges, disks — ‘just eat you up like you wouldn’t believe.’ they don’t cut you up and take you high? what a letdown!
wisdom on mice: ‘if you get a wireless mouse, get a radio one. don’t get an infra-red … a track ball is, what i like to joke, ‘a dead mouse’ …’ why not infra-red mice? ‘it requires line of sight,’ plus there could be interference issues, blah blah blah.
neat-o, digital tablets! i’d love to play around with one of those.
he goes through mousepads and has to clean his mouse out every two months? geez, how dirty is his office?
i got distracted by ev’s yahoo groups thing, so i missed out on him recommending buying a cable modem instead of renting it.
more recommendations: a 24x CD-ROM, or a CD-RW drive. if it does DVD, all the better … huh? we’ve moved on to zip drives already? i need to stop surfing mefi in class. great, now i’m missing the scanner discussion. oh well.
very nice — he found a picture of a sony mavica digital camera with the floppy disk inserted backwards!
i don’t understand what this ‘video capture and converter’ slide means at all. gah, someone distracted him with a question about the distinction between digital camera and webcams! that’s not the answer i wanted.
blah blah PDAs blah blah palm has the most market share blah blah pocketPCs are also around blah. hey, he mentioned handspring’s origin as an ex-palm employee’s company! not bad.
i don’t believe people are actually taking notes about this stuff.
he just mentioned war driving without actually mentioning the words ‘war’ or ‘driving.’ tee-hee.
in the course of mentioning firewalls, he mentioned that his particular choice of firewall software, black ice, is massively conflicting with the novell server stuff he uses at work. wups.
finally, breaktime. time to check my web stats!
we’re back … and my instructor is [EVIL!] empire bashing? in explaining the word lab, he said that the office book assumes certain things about the way your computer is set up, and then breaks off with ‘you have to understand you’re working with PUCC’ when pointing out the location of the office suite on the lab computers. buh?
at least he pointed out the CD-RW drives in these gateways. i should get a CD-RW disk to use for file transfer purposes, not that i’ll remember or anything.
he’s explaining word. i shouldn’t be blatantly ignoring this, but i am.
right, now we’re moving on to the handout explaining the papers we’ll be writing. the topics are: a review of graphic software packages, a review of digital camera, a review of a ‘group of computers,’ and the infamous Paper 4, which ‘will be discusses in a separate handout.’ the PC magazine issue we’ll be using for the first two papers will be on reserve at, of all places, the math science library! i don’t even have to leave the death star to do the legwork! unbelieveable.
i wish i could show you the instruction sheet we received for these papers. he even specifies the fonts we’re to use. i’m flabbergasted at the level of detail.
he suggests setting up a default template for our papers, even giving us a name: ‘master paper.’ huh huh, he said ‘master paper.’ i’m so juvenile.
wow, we even got a sample paper, so we can copy its look-and-feel for our papers! i don’t think our hands are being held enough, personally.
the february 2002 computer shopper is on the newsstand now. bring it to next week’s class!
also, assignments 1-3 are due next week, so, uh, buy the MS office book for assignment 2?