I am male, therefore I am excited about owning a new toy that plugs into the wall. My PowerBook could not be rescued. I have yet to find out if they’ve managed to recover all my data, although it was sounding hopeful when I lasted called the computer A&E on a South London industrial estate. However, knowing my old laptop had perished, on Friday, I bought one of these, a MacBook, in black. Naturally, I am in love with it. It’s a whole lot faster, as my old PowerBook was starting to reach its memory limit anyway, and there’s a stupid Photo Book application which takes a picture of you with the laptop, except the resulting photo is a mirror image. What use is that, really? (Sorry, I’m starting to sound like David Mitchell.)
The good news is: when I presciently backed up all my documents at the end of April onto a brand new portable hard drive, it turns out I also backed up all of my photos, which was a massive bonus when I plugged it into this little fella on Friday evening and copied across. I’m currently going through the laborious process of re-bookmarking all my favourite websites and re-inputting all my bloody passwords and usernames. (I’ve already had to call up the 123-Reg helpline to recover one lot that I couldn’t remember, but this is par for the course, and I had to re-sign in to Flickr using a password I originally invented for a Yahoo account about seven years ago!) I have learned never again to trust anything to a piece of metal – or at least not to one piece of metal – and to back up daily. It’s nice to have 15 years’ worth of writing back. I think I might copy this archive – which goes back to the very first satirical items I wrote with Stuart Maconie for Mark Goodier’s show in 1992 – onto a variety of different hard drives and hide them at different locations around the country. (Excuse any typos – I’m learning to cope with a slightly different keyboard.)
Anyway, I went to see Die Hard 4.0 at the weekend and of course it’s about what happens when evil hackers bring the Eastern Seaboard to its knees by mucking about with some files. A very apt subject. I really enjoyed the film, by the way. Clearly it’s not a patch on Die Hard, Die Hard 2 or even Die Hard With A Vengeance, but it could have been a whole lot worse. Preposterous, but isn’t that the point?
Must go, as I’m precisely one week behind on the final script for series two of Not Going Out. Thank you for your patience and your computer-empathy.
(By the way: main advantage of working on a Mac – there are only really two laptops to choose from in the shop, whereas if you want a PC there are about 20. It certainly cuts down the time spent in PC World, who, it turns out, offer £15-a-month insurance that includes free back-up and recovery, but not, if you read the small print, for Macs! What second class citizens we are.)
I hope nobody was really flooded, by the way. What did for me was a leaky roof one floor above my office, but that’s hardly being trapped in Tewkesbury with no drinking water is it?