Destruct that ship, General!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Crash.

Hey gang.

So the original plan was to launch the podcast in late September or early October. For a variety of reasons, this was pushed back to early January. My intent was to record lots of content in advance, so I’d never miss deadlines and therefore always get a weekly show out. After many delays (some of them admittedly my fault), my plan was to spend most of December banging out episodes for a three-day multi-episode January 2nd launch. Emphasis on was.

Long-time followers of my blog may remember that my laptop died a couple of years ago, a traumatic loss that threatened my ability to continue the blog. Workflow adjustments and the sprucing up of my old desktop PC resolved those issues. I’ve never replaced the laptop, mostly because I can’t afford to, but also because I haven’t really needed to: my tablet/Bluetooth keyboard combo works well enough for most of my usual laptop tasks, save for three: image editing (Photoshop), video editing (Adobe Premiere) and multi-track recording/editing (Adobe Audition). These processor-intensive applications were relegated to the aforementioned spruced-up desktop PC which handled the tasks (and more) effectively and reliably. Her name was MainBrain. Emphasis on was.

Three nights ago she basically imploded. I don’t know how else to put it. I pretty religiously use antivirus and anti-malware tools, so I don’t think anything nefarious happened… the old girl was just… well, old. I’ve had her for 10 years, and she was heavily used for most of that time (she became the general-purpose family PC when I switched to the laptop). That’s not a bad run for an electronic device in an age in which things aren’t designed to last. I was actually hoping to replace her in the next year or so, but I didn’t think she’d die on me before I got the chance.

It may sound silly, but that computer meant a great deal to me. I got her when we finished building my home office in 2005. I launched my blog with her. I edited hours and hours of videos of my kids with her. I captured countless screenshots and created countless memes with her. When I refurbished her in 2013, it was like being reunited with an old friend. Laugh if you want, but losing her hurts. A lot. I feel like I’ve lost a limb.

But… she’s just a thing, right? A tool. And broken tools can be replaced, right? Of course they can. I’ll have another computer, newer and faster and more powerful, at some point when money isn’t so tight (it’s Christmastime, after all, plus we’ve had some unexpected expenses come up that will affect us for the next several months). So I know this isn’t a permanent setback… but it’s most definitely a setback. I don’t have a computer now, which means I have no way to record and edit the podcast.
Like I said, I can’t afford a new computer, nor can I afford to have MainBrain fixed (and given her age and relatively modest specs by 2015 standards, that money would probably be better spent on a replacement anyway). This means that the early January launch isn’t happening, and right now I have no idea whatsoever when it will.

I tried to figure out a way to pull it off using other equipment in my arsenal. The aforementioned tablet seemed like the best possibility, but I haven’t found an app that does what I need it to do. My MainBrain setup could produce near-studio quality audio, and quality is something that’s really important to me (I refuse to put out a subpar podcast). It’s ironic--- bitterly so--- that I have all this great recording equipment thanks to the Kickstarter campaign… but it’s all useless without a computer at the center.

Ugh. Just ugh. I’m at a loss as I write this. I had such high hopes for this project, and despite the various setbacks I’ve experienced, I was still determined to get this thing launched….but it appears the universe has other ideas.


-CraB

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