Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Even astronomers get the blues

Okay, I'll admit it. The day-to-day life of the astronomer is not always exciting. Most of the time, it is just plain normal. And sometimes we have bad days.

Yesterday was one of those here. My work computer slowed way down when one of the processors overheated. I have four processors in the computer, and software to assign jobs to different processors. Somehow yesterday, my software assigned two very intensive programs to the same processor, which proceeded to melt down. So, I had to let my machine cool off for a half hour before rebooting it, and now I am being careful to only run one intensive program at a time.

My home computer also decided to die yesterday. The power supply (a box inside the computer case that provides electricity to the different circuit boards and disk drives) was failing, and it managed to corrupt my Windoze programs. So, I had to buy a new power supply and install it. When I went to reinstall Windoze, it told me that because I did not have an earlier version of Windoze installed, it couldn't install (I have the XP upgrade version, which requires you to have Windows already). Only the computer had just gotten finished saying that I had a previous version installed that would get overwritten!

After a few attemts (and digging up the CD for some ancient version of Windows), I was finally able to reinstall Windows. But, of course, now I need to re-install every single program I run on that machine, even though they are still on the hard disk. Bill Gates, if you are reading this, I am switching to a different operating system in the future.


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