September 6, 2008

Update on Sundry Matters

Well... the old computer has been replaced, grudgingly, by a new one with Windows Vaster... uh, Vista. I am experiencing some of the expected quirks and quibbles, though not enough to keep me from working. Most importantly, I've been able to make use of some of my favorite antiquated software by applying Compatibility Settings from the dim ages of operating systems past. (If there is any reason for my reluctance to make the Mac switch, it is my fondness for these archaic but helpful utilities, which some day, if the switch becomes inevitable, I will find still run under a Windows Emulation of Some Sort.) Meanwhile, discovering things such as the disappearance of the Parallel Port (and the need to find a USB-to-Parallel adapter cable so I didn't have to buy a new printer as well) have kept things interesting. Much gleaning of the internet has led to being able to install software people said can't run under WinVista. I really do pity the less than computer savvy: I've been at this since the days of hexadecimal code and machine language, and am not terrified to go under the hood if need be; but I can see how this whole thing is a nightmare for anyone less adept at the mysteries.

I am still struggling with Facebook, and find it to be interminably slow if it loads into Firefox at all. I've checked with Firefox folks and they suggest a virus, but I don't think that's it, as I've used all the virus scanners on the market and they come up negative. I get notes from people via Facebook but am very frustrated not to be able to respond in my preferred browser. Facebook runs and runs faster on IE, which I don't like just on principle, and I begin to think it is something about Firefox, or Facebook, or the two together.

In the meantime, the good news is that I have been able finally to finish my manuscript (Reasonable and Holy) and deliver it to the Editor -- or rather, to her office, as she has had a bad fall and twisted an extremity; prayers for Suzie if you please! But it is a load off my mind and onto someone else's for the time being, though I expect to receive it back with the usual suggested emendations and corrections, as well as urgings t'wards transitions, expansions and contractions. But for the meantime I can turn my mind to other things, grateful that my old computer was sufficiently "backed-up" so that I literally only lost the sentence I was working on when the old thing went [blink] and disappeared into Computer Sheol. (No computers go to Heaven. A few very good ones might end up in Limbo, or an internet cafe just off the Elysian Fields, or perhaps in the Valhalla Public Library, but not heaven. That goes for Macs too.)

I'm packing now for a trip to California, to visit with the San Franciscan brethren and lead a retreat, and preach next Sunday at St John the Evangelist in that fair city. While there I hope to see a few of the sights (and sites) and a few other friends from church and/or blogosphere.

My last very brief post unleashed a cataract of comment, though I think it has slowed to a trickle at this point. I will have some access to Ye Olde Internet while in San Fran, but hope to spend my time there not glued to the phosphorescent or liquid-crystalline, but take part in the actual more than the virtual, so updates to this blog and to any comments will not happen with alacrity, and depending on the Daemons, if at all!

Finally, I commend to all the last article by the Rev Dr Richard Norris, appearing in the current issue of Anglican Theological Review (Summer 2008), on Homosexuality, Ethics and the Church. I was very honored back at the turn of the century to have worked with Dick Norris and others on a statement of Hermeneutical Principles commissioned by the Bishop of New York in response to Lambeth 1998; and even further flattered when Dick asked me to take a look at and offer comments on an early draft of what now appears at last in print. Sadly, it is unfinished, though there is much to think about in the essay as it stands, and the responses from various thoughtful contributors, in what amounts to a posthumous Festschrift. The volume as a whole is a very helpful ethical reflection. As Augustine heard the child sing, tolle lege.

Until my return, unless something truly momentous comes up, Hasta luego...

Tobias Haller BSG


Erika Baker said...

I hope you will have a well deserved and peaceful rest!

Your computer stories amused me. I am not quite as computer literate as you, my personal interest only having started with 386 machines, but have you come across cloud computing? Everything remains online and you can never lose anything. Unless the whole cyber system collapses, of course...

Well done you for saving everything except your last sentence! But I find computing so much more frustrating since the machine started to do everything for me and thereby stopped me from doing what I wanted it to do! It's the automotive equivalent of no longer being able to change a lightbulb but having to go to a garage to exchange the whole light unit instead!

Wow, you finished your book in record time! I can't wait for it to come out and hope we will find a way of getting a paid and signed copy to me to the UK!
(for Erika without a c, please? xx).

Have a good break!

Tobias Stanislas Haller BSG said...

Dear Erika,
Thanks .. and sorry about the errant "c"!

I agree entirely about the "helpfulness" of computers. I really like it when they do what I want, not what they think I want -- and the more "helpful" they are the less I like them.

I'm aware of the cloud model -- I have a friend who uses the google verion. My only problem is that I do a lot of my work on a laptop in places without internet connection; and, again, I'm such a diehard WordPerfect guy -- I've got hundreds of macros that I wouldn't know what to do without!

Right now I'm dreading that Ventura Publisher won't work as it should on Vista -- I installed it and it opens ok but I've not done any work in it. I love that program, and have generated whole books in it (when I was in the publishing trade) -- never liked Pagemaker. But the last version of Ventura is two generations of OS old...

Anyway, it was the wanting to do things my way that kept me away from the Mac, except for the very brief time I had to use one when I worked in the Diocesan office.

Well, must run, and get packed up. Hanna is here, and raining like the dickens.

Brian R said...

You mean I won't be able to have my Mac in Heaven, I think I will have to find another religion.

Jay Phillippi said...

Glad the change over is going smoothly. I'm resisting doing anything that will require me to move to Vista.

As for Facebook I use Firefox exclusively (except for Windows Updates which require IE) and have no trouble with Facebook at all.

Just another datum for consideration.


Anonymous said...

Tobias, I've been with Mac since the beginning in 1984 -- and I still have several 1988-9 applications on my 2004 Mac (as well as Windows when/if I want it). You can have it if you really want it.

Macs are already heavenly -- they don't have to wait till the Big Crash.

susan s. said...

St. John the Evangelist. A lovely church with great people.