Archive for ‘Mac’

December 31, 2011

What a year it was. Google’s 2011 Zeitgeist

What an incredible bit of video editing and also a reminder of how much  my knowledge has expanded because of my wonderful friends on G+ these past few months. This is not my New Year’s message but this video is a great opportunity to pause and reflect on what a remarkable year of  triumph, tragedy and  a celebration of the human spirit 2011 was.

September 8, 2008

The ultimate melting pot.


Though my intention is to write a bit about the Caribbean as a region I must say today was not a shining example of what most people would expect from us in terms of sun, sand and rum punches. It was a work day so that pretty well puts paid to the alcoholic beverages and being at the office pretty well eliminated the sand thing though my office desk was feeling a tad  gritty. 


It is my custom to walk straight to one of my Macs upon waking to check my newsfeeds and check the weather satellite images at the lovely NHC site. Today I was faced with an inadequate level of info about Turks and Caicos and how they fared and with what appeared to be an ugly red weather system about to descend on Trinidad. By the time I rounded the Queen’s Park Savannah on the way to the office I could see ugly black clouds emerging over the tips of the Northern Range. While disturbing it was also possessed of a terrible beauty that almost led me to crash the Mondeo ( well, that and some interesting human sights on the savannah). I phoned Mookish the cameraman as I was about 30 seconds from work and told him to catch the clouds as they would make useful archive shots for any storm coverage we might want to do. As I parked I met up with him and we managed to capture some great shots including lightning bolts in action. 


It turned out that that was just the beginning of a day of extreme weather for us. It poured to the point that much of Port of Spain was underwater  and our offices turned into an island of sorts as flood waters reached all the way up our driveway. After that it poured some more and didn’t stop pouring for several hours. Apparently we had the lead story for today and, as it turned out, we got off easy as roofs blew off houses in some parts of the country. I must say our crew got some amazing shots of submerged cars, flooded streets and, yes, our shots of black clouds sneaking over the Northern Range complete with lightning. It was still a pretty hectic day and I only got the news script finished four minutes before I had to run into studio to read. Thank heavens for Wong who can view a tape and write a story faster than most people can deny having viewed porn in their browser.


I came home looking forward to a quiet evening of quality Food Network programming only to discover that Alton Brown has a new programme called Feasting on Waves. It is an interesting programme for several reasons not the least of which is that Alton Brown, for all his annoying foibles and smugness, has an amazing knowledge of food. The programme has him and his crew sailing the Caribbean ( at least it seems to be based on our region) and investigating the foods of each island. It was fascinating to see him investigating the foods we take for granted such as soursop, lemongrass, dasheen and salted cod. His first programme was set primarily in St. Kitts which is an interesting island that manages to bridge the dominant influence of Jamaica with the rest of the Caribbean …just hearing their accent was a treat. There is something remarkably pleasurable about watching a food expert like Alton drinking something as Caribbean as bush tea made from lemongrass ( also called vetiver or fever grass here) and enjoying it. I love being reminded that the things we take for granted are considered exotic by much of the rest of the world.


Alton said an interesting thing. He described the history of our region and the various races and ethnicities that make up the wondrous pastiche we call home and he noted that we are probably the first part of the world that understood and embraced fusion cuisine. I don’t necessarily agree as I am pretty sure Southern Europe beat us to the punch but he has a point. The food of our region is spectacularly diverse. We think nothing of dining on a mixture of African, Asian and European cuisines. Many a time I find myself ordering lunch at a nearby fast food establishment and having a container full of curry, creole root vegetables and macaroni pie. To be honest, one of the reasons I moved back here was that I missed the food and the amazing ingredients.  One of my greatest joys is turning classic French or Italian cuisine on its head by substituting local ingredients. I draw the line at screwing with some dishes such as cassoulet but many other things are fair game.


I am happy to hear now that Turks and Caicos did not suffer as badly as they might have and I am hoping that Cuba ( despite my normal distaste for the Latin world) escapes with minimal damage. I have to say that floods, hurricanes and corrupt politicians notwithstanding we are still an incredible part of the world and I am happy I live here.


Now when will Anthony Bourdain deign to come here and make my life complete?

July 14, 2008

It had to be



Some of you may be wondering how you got here. I say this because normally directs to my site hosted on Apple’s .Mac servers and built using the IWeb application ( brimming with beach ball goodness) but I have been forced to redirect that domain here. Why? Well a while back I expressed my abject horror that Apple was transitioning from to the icky and silly sounding service. This was all in order to appeal to the hordes of iPhone owners who needed the latest buzz term called “cloud computing”. Fine…though in my mind there was nothing wrong with the domain. That transition started last week Thursday and, not to put too fine a point on it, has been an experience comparable to the launch of the Titanic. Actually, at least the Titanic had the courtesy to put people out of their misery fairly quickly, so scratch that comparison.

The 4 hour transition has turned into a days long screwup with many parts such as the web site hosting still not working properly. The whole mobileme site was not working properly until the weekend and even then only sporadically but the web sites were fine. Now, it seems the sites are not showing up properly and my blog seems to have vanished although it still seems to be working via RSS. This wouldn’t be so bad except that I pay for the service that provides me with email, web hosting and my online idisk. 

Thankfully, when .Mac was being difficult a few months ago I cleverly decided to mirror it here on wordpress a decision that reveals i had the wisdom of Solomon for at least a few minutes. Had I not made that decision I would be sitting here frustrated that my blog  and almost a year of writing might be lost and I would have great difficulty reposting close to 300 entries using cut and paste. It also turns out that people read the wordpress version more by a factor of 10 so I guess if anything the .Mac site is now  the mirror. If it ever comes back up I may redirect back to it or you can add it at  

Other than that trauma the PNM Convention happened this past weekend and the PM announced that he will be pushing for constitutional reform. He noted that the changes ( when finalized) would require a special majority of parliament to pass and that he was sure the opposition would not support it. In that eventuality, he blustered to the throng of admiring fans, he will “go directly to the people”. As soon as someone explains to me how that makes sense in the context of a parliamentary democracy I will be a much happier person.

July 9, 2008

The robot that broke my heart

I finally gave in to my urge to see Pixar’s latest film – WALL·E. Having already said that Pixar seldom puts a foot wrong when it comes to film I was still a bit worried that their latest effort would not match up to all the critical hype. I am happy to report i was wrong. I will not fall into the trap of saying it is one of the best movies of the year as the year is only half done but I can safely say it is one of the best  animated films I have seen in the last decade and I see a lot of films.

I am not going to spoil the fun by giving the whole plot away but I should at least give a quick summary in ( oh yay…haven’t done this in a while) point form.

  1. Humans have left the earth after rampant consumerism has left it as a huge garbage heap.

  2. WALL·E is a lonely little trash compactor robot left behind that someone forgot to turn off.

  3. He spends his days compacting trash and his nights watching a tape of Hello Dolly with a cockroach for a friend.

  4. He has also developed a personality somehow and collects a vast array of trinkets that keep him amused including a small plant that has emerged from the garbage.

  5. A robot probe called EVE arrives from the human space outpost looking for signs of life.

  6. WALL·E falls in love with EVE.

It is basically that simple and yet so much more complex. I will ignore the space trip they take and their interaction with humans who have become fat and lazy and unable to walk as they depend on computers for everything. That message is important and key to the plot but ultimately this is a love story and a truly effective one at that. Amazingly, Pixar carries the story elegantly and perfectly with hardly any dialogue and with only WALL·E’s binocular eyes to convey emotion. How they did this is anyone’s guess but i was pulled in and completely forgot I was watching an animated film. I also failed to notice there was no dialogue other than beeps for the first 30 minutes. What I experienced was the sort of magic Chaplain used in the silent era..where a simple movement could convey a universe of meaning.

Pixar has set a new benchmark for animation. Frankly, the early scenes on earth were so realistically rendered ( imperfections and all) that i was convinced I was watching either the best stop motion I had ever seen or an actual robot. Even more cleverly the humans are rendered much less realistically making the world of the machines more real than our own. It takes a special touch to make me cry when two robots hold hands.

In one of the early dialogue free scenes we see WALL·E bringing home some of the special items he has collected and carefully putting them away using his filing system. He pulls out a ubiquitous spork – that awful invention of the modern age – and looks at his shelf that contains a cup of forks and a cup of spoons. His eyes move between the two puzzled and eventually he places the item between the two cups. That sort of humour shows what Pixar is all about and what makes them rise high above most other companies making films. It is all in the details and details are what Pixar understands only too well.

This is most definitely not a kids movie ( though they may well enjoy it) it is , quite simply, a great movie. Funny that it takes a little lonely robot with a huge heart to help us understand what it truly means to be human.

P.S. Did I mention that when WALL*E boots up he plays a Mac startup chime? Now that is cool.

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June 3, 2008

Happy Mac


And a little addendum to my previous entry on older technology still having a place in my life. I love music and films and my favourites reside on one or the other of my iPods so I can enjoy them at will. Yesterday, the external firewire drive that holds my music and video library decided to go wonky resulting in music not being able to be transferred to my iPod and a rather unpleasant error message. After some fiddling around trying to fix the problem and thinking my 80gig iPod Classic had malfunctioned I ended up with both a naughty firewire drive and an empty iPod. Losing my music and treasured films was the equivalent of the average mother having her baby stolen by a dingo with not even the consolation of film rights. I tried dragging the files off the external drive to my desktop only to have OS X give me some silly message that the drive could not be read or written to. I launched Diskwarrior that heroic rescuer of endangered Mac drives and it could find no problem with the drive. It was a bleak moment in the life of Vern. As I sat reconciling myself to having to listen to BBC World Service radio and bad music from my friends for the rest of my life I suddenly looked at Sybil ( my dear Power Mac dual processor) sitting next to me as I fretted over the iMac and remembered my previous blog ode to OS 9. Would my staunch defence of the virtues o fthe last true Mac operating system make the Mac Gods smile at me? Could I even hope for such a miracle?


I cranked up the old girl and, after hearing the familiar “bong” of OS 9 starting up and seeing the Happy Mac icon, her 5 drives mounted on the lovely clean OS 9 desktop followed by the demonic firewire drive. So far so good…at least the firewire drive was showing up. I opened the finder and dragged the movie and music folders onto one of Sybil’s drives. Was I greeted with an admonishing and curt warning about being unreadable? Nope. OS 9 , eschewing the fussiness of OS X/UNIX’s concern about file corruption, happily started the process of copying the folders. All my music and film is now safe and my iPod has been refilled with days of listening and viewing goodness. As they say in Trinidad “ a good working old ting better than a new ting” and OS 9’s Happy Mac face has now brought a big smile to mine. Cheers to the Apple programmers of the late 1990s for actually choosing to  “think different”.



Here’s to the crazy ones.

  The misfits.

    The rebels.

      The troublemakers.

        The round pegs in the square holes.


The ones who see things differently.

They’re not fond of rules.

     And they have no respect for the status quo.


You can praise them, disagree with them, quote them,

     disbelieve them, glorify or vilify them.

About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them.

      Because they change things.


They invent.    They imagine.    They heal.

  They explore.    They create.    They inspire.

    They push the human race forward.


Maybe they have to be crazy.

How else can you stare at an empty canvas and see a work of art?
Or sit in silence and hear a song that’s never been written?
Or gaze at a red planet and see a laboratory on wheels?

We make tools for these kinds of people.


While some see them as the crazy ones,
   we see genius.

Because the people who are crazy enough to think
they can change the world, are the ones who do.


Think Different – Apple Computer ( TBWA/Chiat/Day) 1997


May 21, 2008

Back to the future

I am the first to admit that when it comes to technology I am about as addicted as they come. When i am not plugged into my iPods I am tinkering with something and spending hours trying to get the most arcane little system preference just right. I am also typically human and I find that I sometimes get nostalgic for an old movie or, quite often, an older piece of technology. This explains my pleasure in getting Sybil ( the resuscitated dual processor Power Mac I am using to type this entry) to feel as loved and useful in the world of 2008 as she was in 2001 when she was born. She is running OS X Tiger at a speed that is not discernibly different to my G5 machine or my Powerbook ( both running Leopard) and though my benchmarks indicate she is lagging far behind both of them in a technical sense I cannot tell the difference in real world use. Having proven she can run PhotoShop and web surf like a trooper I felt that twinge of nostalgia that led me think back to my many happy days in the original Mac OS before the advent of pretty  UNIX pretending to be a bona fide Mac operating system.

Now I know that my handful of readers are most likely not computer ( much less Mac) inclined but I think there is a bigger picture here. Let me explain. Before the introduction of Apple’s current operating system ( the thing you see when you turn on your computer…not the desktop picture of your cat..the general thing with icons etc.) us Mac users were a blissfully happy lot plodding away on the old system called OS 9 in its last iteration. We did everything one would want to do on a computer, running all the usual programmes and wasting time on the internet, and we were quite fond of our unique machines which we touted ( as we still do) as the best computers on the planet. Sure we had some less than honest moments when we lied to our Windows friends that our systems never crashed – even though they froze more regularly than plumbing in Antarctica – but such  is the job of the evangelist. Then Moses ( aka Steve Jobs) came unto us and gave us OS X ( really OS 10 following on the heels of OS 9) which was based on UNIX which is a serious industrial operating system. It was prettied up ,had bouncy things,useful things like column view and even buttons that  Steve described as “lickable”. To most younger people and Mac owners after 2003 this new crash-proof and pretty thing is what constitutes a Mac.

I have stubbornly refused to get one of the brand new Macs with Intel chips in them precisely because to me a true Macintosh is one that has a different processor namely a RISC processor ( we shall avoid that explanation this time around)  but in the back of my mind I missed our old operating system with all its quirks knowing that it was that OS along with the different internals that truly made using a Mac a unique experience. Now that I have this older machine that can still startup in OS 9 ( as well as OS X) I have spent many an hour getting her to run it perfectly. For the past few days i have been reveling in the joy of using my old OS and I am still amazed by how perfect it was in many ways. It takes up hardly any drive space and uses hardly any memory to the point where I have been unable to get the computer to use even 20% of the available memory when running 10 programmes simultaneously. To be sure she has frozen once in the last two days and OS X has only frozen once on me in 5 years but i found myself sighing in nostalgic joy watching her freeze.  Other than that I have been able to write, surf the net, send instant messages, check email, run Photoshop 6, listen to music and even watch movies. In short, I have not noticed any major difference in my computing life using an operating system that was introduced in 1999 which is an eternity in the technology world. In fact, I can say with 100% certainty that many of the older programmes that were designed to run on machines with far slower specs than mine are faster than their equivalent OS X versions running on my newer machines.

In our endless quest to get the latest and greatest technology we sometimes forget that there was nothing wrong with the old technology we were using. Sure the newer one may be prettier and glossier and even better in some ways but does it make it more useful? I am left to wonder with my latest experience. Were it not for the  fact that I cannot use iWeb to write my blog on the older system and that the older internet browsers have not kept pace with the requirements of modern browsing I don’t think I would have a problem going back to using OS 9 at all.

Perhaps there is a life lesson in my experiment that we should not dismiss the effectiveness of the tried and true or perhaps the true lesson is that you never forget your first love.

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May 15, 2008

In the mouth of madness



It was the best of times, it was the worst of time. Now that I have that out of my system I can proceed with the rest of this entry. I am typing this on my newest Mac…now known as Sybil because she has more than one processor. Funny how the thrill of typing on iWeb on a different keyboard and screen and overlooked by the gimlet eye of Ophelia the iMac can give me such a thrill. I feel like I am cheating but the excitement is undeniable and the repercussions will undoubtedly be far less messy than if she were an actual person.


Today I had Conrad Enill, Minister of Energy and Energy Industries on the programme. He is also Leader of Government Business in the Senate and so i was able to ask him questions about the recent decision to stop televising the hearings of the JSCs live. He says the broadcasts were in violation of the standing orders but swears the government has no problem with the concept of airing them and is looking at changing the legislation. I am not sure if I believe that line but he said it earnestly so who am I to doubt…just a mere taxpaying citizen. He also discussed the situation with development in the country and for our energy security in the future all of which was most interesting. He is one of the few Ministers that I could happily enjoy talking to for hours off the air as he is conversant with a number of things relevant to the energy and financial sectors. I actually told him I find him far more straightforward than most politicians and any Minister…best to be honest ahead of time.


I also discussed a few documentaries I plan to do with Tony who was most accommodating and eager to get them off the ground. I love news but sometimes creativity is best served by adding some other challenges. My first attempt will be to look at the Lapeyrouse Cemetery in the heart of Port of Spain which I think provides a tremendous insight into the history of Trinidad & Tobago.


As much as I am concerned about the perils of climate change and saving the planet I have noticed that , while not exactly an energy pig, I am hardly a good example of living a life of carbon neutrality. Generally speaking I am not really neutral on anything ( except possibly a fondness for ecru) but I have come to realize  I have something of a Sasquatch footprint when it comes to carbon. Despite living alone my fondness for electric appliances, air conditioning and several power hungry Macs means my average power bill is about double that of an average family. My Mondeo, god bless her, is a good size and comfy but at 5 km to the litre she is not exactly sipping gasoline as I realize when I pump 25 litres to fill a quarter tank every week or so. The latter situation is destined to get worse as I have decided I will indulge a childhood dream by planning to import a 1973 Lincoln Continental Mark IV into the country within a year. the 22 foot long beast ( pictured at the top of this entry), weighs 6,000lbs and ( apparently) gets 5.5 mpg or about 1.5 km per litre. Still, the thought of this car makes my heart skip a beat and I am not going to live forever so why not own the road-yacht of my dreams? I know such slaps to the face of Mother Nature will hardly be counteracted by my feeble attempts to turn off lights I am not using and recycling plastic bags but then, as Ralph Waldo Emerson said, a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.


Off to sleep to dream of 7.5L V8s.

May 12, 2008

Tender is the night

The funny thing with blogging, or at least my version, is that I sometimes take longer thinking up an entry title than I do actually writing the entry itself. I realise, given the quality of some of my entries, that this might not come as a surprise to most readers but I still find it interesting. Why I chose to use the name of one of my favourite F. Scott Fitzgerald novels is anyone’s guess but I just sort of liked the sound of it. I love reading but there are few book titles that really capture my attention – Tender is the Night is one of them, as is The Beautiful Room is Empty by Edmund White ( though I am not as crazy about the content of that one). Speaking of blog entries ( and I was) I got an interesting comment from ( apparently) Nawab Ibrahim Ali Khan Shish Mahal related to my previous entry entitled Days Go By. I am very glad he took the time to post a comment and when I have time I will certainly respond to his invitation to gather more information about he intrigue surrounding the real claimants to that particular title.

It was a pretty normal day at work today and I confess I spent much of it tinkering with my newly adopted Power Macintosh G4 533 Dual Processor that Richard passed on to me so as to give it a happy home. I really don’t need another Macintosh in my place but with me and Macs need always takes a back seat to want. I got the old girl working this afternoon and I will buy a couple of extra hard drives and a new monitor for her during the week to get her fully up and running. I must say for a 7 year old machine she seems to be able to hold her own in terms of speed with my newer and ostensibly faster Macs. I really must stop anthropomorphising Apple products it is turning into a money pit for me and results in me being surrounded by more bits of technology than I could conceivably ever find good use for. I might donate her to an orphanage or seniors home once she is fully kitted out.

I was very happy to learn this morning that Philippa Talma was finally released by her captors after 9 days in captivity and the trauma of her kidnap ordeal. We have been told she is in good shape but I am sure that if she managed to escape physical harm the mental anguish will not be any easy matter to deal with. I understand that money may have been paid to the kidnappers ( we were told it amounts to $60,000 ) but nothing close to the $3 million demanded. It is all well and good for the authorities to say that the family should not give in to the demands of kidnappers and I understand the concept of what they are saying but if it were my family member I would do anything to get them back. I don’t know what her family situation is like but I hope she and her kids pack their bags and get out of this country as soon as possible. I don’t say this because I believe we should throw our hands in the air and give up but I truly feel it may be better for the recovery process if they deal with the aftermath in a totally different environment.  Speaking of which, there were three more murders overnight bringing our count for the year to just under 170. Has the government immediately expressed their horror at the current state of affairs? Nope. They will continue to build countless tall buildings no doubt under the assumption that if we keep looking up we, like the PM, will not be troubled by whatever dirty business is going on at ground level.

Off to bed now as I actually went out with Alvin, Binky et al last night and ended up crawling into bed after 4am abuzz with diet cokes. There’s much to be said for alcohol as opposed to aspartame. Still, I had a good time and caught up with some old friends while meeting a couple of interesting new acquaintances. .

April 29, 2008

Technology to the rescue

I am just here thinking what a truly amazing world we live in where technology allows us to communicate across thousands of miles with just the click of a button. More amazingly it is completely free provided both sides have internet access, a computer and Skype ( or any of a number of other programmes). Not so many years ago such things would have involved booking a satellite and spending untold thousands of dollars for a few minutes. I am a complete technology junkie but when I had to speak to my friend Karissa and her husband in Dubai a short while ago the reality of what I was doing struck me in the middle of our short conversation. It is rather amazing that as a species we become so used to technology that we just tend to take it for granted . It would do us all a world of good to sit back sometimes and think of the ingenuity and scientific interaction that had to take place to make any of these things possible. That little icon click on my part was the end result of countless years of work by networking minds, a brainwave on the part of Tim Berners Lee, sneaky attempts by a couple of people trying to make pirating software ( which led to them developing Skype) and  decades of work developing chips, software and even the UNIX underpinnings of my operating system. All of this allowing me to take for granted the fact I can help a friend in Dubai get some information in a real time video conference.

The modern world and computers allow us to multitask like never before though I am pretty sure we are pushing the limits of our brains already. As someone who can frequently be seen driving while smoking and texting I know that our ability to pursue multiple tasks is already pushing us into a zone where we are frequently endangering life and limb. The art of concentration which has given us pretty well all of our great works of art and literature is heading for extinction as we wrestle with so many things trying to grab our attention. Like many writers I often find myself trying to concentrate on getting a sentence down while simultaneously monitoring my RSS feeds, MSN, YAHOO, AIM, my email inbox and that half-finished game of X-Words icon I see lurking on my desktop.

It is a very human urge to stay on top of things and communicate but with modern operating systems and unlimited RAM allowing dozens of programmes to be open at the same time it becomes a major problem when something urgent requires our undivided attention. Sure you can just open one programme and do the work needed but that desktop with all its goodies is still visible as are the clickable dock items ( or the start menu I guess for the Windows inclined) that are all screaming for our mouse to drift their way. Faced with this problem , and given my alarming lack of self-discipline, my only choice in dealing with this perplexing dilemma was to consider looking on ebay for a c. 1984 MacIntosh Classic. I remember those wonderful days of facing that 8” monochrome screen, wondering if opening the calculator application would crash my writing programme with my university essay on it, and erring on the side of caution. What to do? Happily, technology and human ingenuity have stepped in to save the day.

In one of my aimless internet jaunts I came across a blog by Kayembi and a  lovely programme he developed called Scrivener that was created by a writer for writers. It has many great features all in one place such as an outliner, a virtual corkboard to post your random thoughts while writing and even templates for everything from screenplays to comics. This is all delightful and one never knows when the urge to delve into the world of comics will suddenly happen. These many and varied benefits were not the selling point for me though. Tucked away in the list of features was something called “full screen view” . I downloaded the programme demo, made a few tweaks to my preferences, hit the “Full Screen” button and suddenly I was back in the 1980’s typing in green sans serif letters on a totally black computer screen. There was no desktop visible, no icons, no Dock nothing but the words I was typing. I must admit I fought back a few tears as I realized I could now replicate the distraction-free days of my semi-youth and even fantasize that I was back on my beloved Apple IIc with its green monochrome screen. Sure, if I want to do complicated things I can just press the escape key and go back to the main programme and all of the other things lurking on the Mac but for as long as I want I can just bask in green words on a black screen. I don’t know who this Kayembi character is but his blog is interesting ( )and his programme is a gift from heaven. I happily sent him my $39.95 and I hope he gets a couple of lattes with it.

As a mixed blessing for blog readers now that I am using Scrivener to type this entry I notice the lack of distraction has led me to write more than I normally would. Sadly, I must now exit full screen and  cut and paste the entry into iWeb and WordPress. Still, I am fascinated  that technology can help free us from itself.

February 23, 2008

Heart of Darkness

Melissa Williams is back from Guyana and was able to shed some light on events there. There are now three people detained over the matter though it seems two of them are being held for assisting the killers get to Bartica. Interestingly enough, a police officer who is part if the special elite squad investigating the two massacres was arrested on drug charges. Strange goings on in Guyana. President Jagdeo has still not held a press conference to discuss the event and has been laying low for some reason.

Other than that I came close to boarding a plane and heading to Seattle to give Bill Gates a good tongue lashing. I do not like Windows in any way shape or form but we use it in the office and thus I hold my nose and deal with it. I usually have my Apple Powerbook on my desk as well and while it plays well with the network it cannot talk to the ancient news printer so i work in MS Word. Today, while building the news script the programme decided to crash taking with it several stories, the headlines and the script. After relaunching the wretched thing it defaulted to the Oct. 2007 news folder and I realized that autosave was another cruel MS joke…rather like everything about MS. I cursed like a trooper eliciting stares from everyone in the newsroom. I am pretty sure I mentioned the body parts of everyone in Bill’s family going back at least 3 generations.

Recovering from that fiasco and making sure i clicked “save’ after every word I typed I managed to get the script done and send it to the prompter. Great…I printed the hard copies and headed into the studio to read the 6:30 news. The theme starts and then I press the bar to activate the prompter roll…nothing..nada…the wretched thing was frozen. I switch to the script and read what i have to read…then reboot the system during a news story…still zilch..the script will not load. During the commercial break I run to my desk to discover that the script has vanished. The name is there and I can open it..but it is a blank page. I curse Bill and his family again and run back to the studio to finish reading from the script.

Had I been using a Mac with Pages or Appleworks ( RIP) or NeoOffice I can assure all involved this would not have happened. All I can say is that if Mr. Gates ever finds himself wandering the halls of ieTV I will have to be tied down to prevent a violent incident…possibly involving a flying PeeCee.