We happened to be out shopping last weekend and I ran into a sweet deal (half price, I mean, you don’t pass that up) on the exact model of computer I’ve been wanting. I’d had my old one for 5 years or so and it wasn’t new when I bought it, so I figured it was about time and pulled the trigger. Woohoo. It’s a good thing, right?
I swore I would go home, do my writing for the day and then pop that puppy out of the box and give it a test run. That lasted all of two minutes because that’s about how fast I ripped into the box once we carried it inside. Forgot Windows 10 would probably require an extensive number of updates. Whoosh, there go a couple hours. It’s a good thing, right?
By the time that was done, it was after supper, so I figured I might as well just keep going. Fast forward to 2:00 am when I’m still loading programs and pulling personal files off the extension drive where I keep them. How did I amass this many files? Okay, well, one day of writing lost. Not so bad, I can make that up easy. It’s a good thing, right?
And then…I noticed the colors looked a bit washed out. More than a bit, actually. The graphics card is way better than the one in my last computer…heck, it’s High Def capable, everything should look better than on my dinosaur. Cue hours of fiddling with the graphics settings and monitor calibration and the search for a hidden tickbox that amped up the ability to produce true blacks. Hours? No, days actually. But hey, it’s a new computer, once I get all the settings right, I’ll love it. It’s a good thing, right?
A week later, I’ve made up the lost day of work and managed to get back on track, finally polished up the color settings, and fired up Photoshop to whip up a new Facebook header. Uh oh. Photoshop is running slooooow. How much RAM does this thing have? A couple Gs less than my old computer because I’d added a bunch to that one. The new RAM comes tomorrow, it shouldn’t take me long to install it. It’s a good thing, right?
In the end, it is a good thing. I do love the new computer and look forward to writing many books on it. The whites are nice and bright, the blacks are deep and dark. All the colors in between are vibrant and true, but it taught me a lesson still. All the time I was trying to figure out whether I could make things look like what I was used to, I kept thinking about how flimsy a thing perception actually is.
What if what I was seeing now was better and all those years, the colors of my world had been just a little skewed…slightly off center? How was I supposed to know which was right? New vs. old. What needed adjusting the most? The computer (or world as I see it) or my eyes? It’s these kinds of questions that keep a person up at night. It’s a good thing, right? And hey, since I’m up anyway, I might as well write.