Losing My Bearings

Investing in technology used to be just that — an investment. If you bought the latest telly with the best picture and features, it was for ten years plus. Now it’s defunct before you’ve recycled the packaging.

The HD-ready telly we bought couple of years ago turned out to be nothing of the sort because it wouldn’t conect to the new Virgin+ box that replaced the one we’d only had for six months. And in any case, we should have bought a plasma screen so we could curse the expense while yearning for a 3-D screen.

The same is true for all the peripheral stuff which is why I’m stuck with a stack of audio and video cassettes that I can’t play and also why half a dozen perfectly good analogue radios have made way for digital.

I mention this to demonstrate that I’m more than happy to embrace new technology, but that I also expect the state-of-the-art tag to hold true for at least until the 90-day warranty has expired, if not a great deal longer.

My computer is a case in point. I still think of it as ‘new’ although it is at least five years old. It was impressively quick when I got it, but now plods along like a carthorse compared to the thoroughbreds coming off the consumer electronics production line in China and Taiwan.

I’ve tried to keep in shape. I’ve upgraded to a widescreen monitor, replaced the hard disk and graphics card, changed the keyboard and added a wireless mouse, installed as much RAM as I could and kept the operating system up to date. In fact, all that’s left of my ‘new’ PC is the housing and the processor.

All this change is proving too much for the old dear and it has started to make this annoying whining noise, fortunately not the hideous scratching that signals a hard disk about to go west.

I wondered if one of my triremes had fallen off the edge of my Civilization V game board and got stuck in the workings, but I’m told that it sounds like the bearings are going in one of the fans.

Like the everlasting yardbrush that has had three new heads and four replacement handles, I have to decide whether to buy yet another new bit for the PC or grit my teeth and get a new one entirely.

Nobody’s prefect. If you find any spelling mistakes or other errors in this post, please let me know by highlighting the text and pressing Ctrl+Enter.

1 comment… Add yours
  • Yorkshire Pudding 19th October 2010

    A point well made sir. It certainly rang plenty of bells in my head. Personally, I think producers of new technologies have learnt a lot from light bulb manufacturers – ensure you build in obsolescence in order to maximise profits. Grrrrrr! Gnnnash!

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