Thursday, July 28, 2011

Oh Technology, Why Must You Torment Me So?!

Tell you what, it has not been my month for tech related stuff. I dragged my overheated behind to the computer and made a blog post, oh, two or so days ago. Then, I heard my blog was down, so I came to check it out and sure enough, all I got was a big white page with an error. Not cool. So, I got my domain host on the chat support and while I was talking to them realized that my blog's admin screen was telling me to update the database. I clicked the little update button and... poof, my blog was back!

Of course, it wasn't completely in tact. I asked the tech guy why and he didn't seem to know, something about errors and the domain database being down when I updated my blog database. Worthless, sometimes, those people. He was basically trying to tell me there was no correlation between my blog being down and WordPress telling me my database needed updating, which it never, ever does. Sure buddy, whatever. So, I set about looking for the update post I'd made, but it's gone forever. My sidebar was also quite messed up, as my thesis tracker bar was missing, and some widgets I'd taken away were back. I suppose I should be grateful that July is a lazy month for me, otherwise, I'd have lost a lot more than one measly little post--which wasn't so little, or measly, I might add.

Okay, so I got that fixed, but I was so disheartened, that I didn't bother to try to recreate what had been lost. Who can remember what they rambled on and on about for six or so paragraphs, anyway? I mean, there's a time to remember what you're writing and a time when it's just conversation, and gone as quickly. I know generally what I said, but it wasn't worth trying to recreate, so I let it go. Bummed, but I'm over it... mostly.

Then, because yeah, that's not all, I got up the next morning to find our net was having serious DNS issues and couldn't connect to most sites. Awesome. I put up with it for a while, but since I pay for DSL, I want DSL, so I called CenturyLink only to find that they were having an outage in our area. Like my web host, the woman at Century Link was nice but also tried to feed me a load of bull about cached websites. She said the sites I could access were cached, that's why I could see them and not the others. I told her no, that not only was I actually getting new emails, but also that I had cleared my browser history, including the cache and cookies. So, that couldn't be it. She was nice, but tried to insist, so I told her that if it was still acting up I'd be calling the the next morning. which she agreed I should do. Okay, another problem somewhat solved.

There is, however, a silver lining. While I was on the phone with Century Link I realized that while I believed I had the highest speed net, I was wrong. They have one twice the speed I've got, so I ordered it. Thanks to bundling, I was able to get a speed upgrade and unlimited long distance for about $20 a month less than I'm currently paying. Awesome! Then, when they learned that I have DirecTV, they checked and it turns out I'm eligible for a $5 discount per month on my DirecTV bill because I'm a Century Link customer. Which is fantastic, I must say!

Now, everything seems to be up and running again, thank goodness, and by Friday I'll have both unlimited long distance calling and 10 Mbps connection speeds. I'm feeling much better!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Brain Spill: (Mostly) Thesis Edition

Matt and I had a really nice Fourth of July this year. We spent the day hanging out in Stephenville. I made rib tips, corn on the cob, and apple pie, and we played D&D all day. Geeky, yes, but we had a good time, anyway. I just got a new set of dice, so I've been particularly eager to use them. Anyway, when the evening came, we headed over to the park and caught the fireworks show--we ran into Melanie & Joey, and watched the show with them. The whole day was much more chill than it would have been had we gone to Waco, where the crowds are insane and so is parking. There're crowds here, too, but they're manageable.

Anyway, thanks to the holiday falling on a Monday and our having spent the whole day doing nothing, rather than working and reading (for my thesis), we're behind this week. I've spent the whole week reading The Mysteries of Udolpho, mostly aloud to Matt because I find that I read this particular book quicker when I'm reading it aloud. Most of the time, it's the other way around, but this book is very, very dense and the beautifully written prose tend to make the mind wander. A wandering mind is not conducive to getting the thing read so I can move on to the other books I also have to read. So, aloud it is. The book is 693 pages and after reading all week, I'm only on 475! If I read today and tomorrow, I should be able to finish it, and then it's onto Clermont and then Twilight (series, not just the first book).

Here's the thing, the first chapter of my thesis is due a week from today and I've not gotten as much work done on it as I probably should by this time. I don't have to have all of these books done before I can write it, but I do have to have them done so that I can take my comps in 5 weeks. Besides, when it comes time to write my second chapter, which I think I have due in August, I'm going to need to have all of those books digested. So, I've been reading my face off! While it has been fun, it's also been work. There are moments when I'd like nothing more than to put Udolpho down and play RIFT, or Scrabble, or anything else, really. Alas (yes, dramatic, I know), I've been steadfastly sticking it out with this monster of a book. I'm totally patting myself on the back, here.

Oh, and speaking of my first thesis chapter, I've put a new meter on my sidebar (over there, see it, on the right?) to track my thesis progress. It's above my Love's Daughter bar, because it's more important right now, although I've written several thousand words on LD lately, too! It's set at 80+ pages because 80 pages is the bare minimum on this project. Right now, I'm planning for 6 chapters, two of which will be somewhere around 15-17 pages, while the other four will weigh in at 22-25 pages. If they're 15 and 25 pages, respectively, then the thing will go a good 130 pages, but we'll see. It's possible that those four chapters might only be 20 pages each. *shrug*

I did laugh a little when I put that meter over there and they say "Radcliffe's Daughters..." and "Love's Daughter". I started to feel a little self-conscious about the daughter's thing. Of course, that's not my whole thesis title, but when I tried to put "Radcliffe’s Daughters: a Study of Gothic Motifs, Female Authorship, and the Gothic Heroine in the Romantic and Modern Periods" it took up a whole lot of space, so I shortened it down. So, I'll just have to deal with the daughters, daughter thing. I was just happy when I realized that the plug-in that allows me to add those meters, Dave's Scribometer, was updated at some point allowing multiple instances of the widget (like an eternity ago, I'm so behind the curve). Before, you had to chose one project, but not anymore. Awesome!

Okay, I'm done yammering on and on about my thesis. I have to get back to reading, but Matt's working and put on Star Wars. I think his intention was to deter me from reading until he's done working so I can read to him. So, for now, I think I'll make lunch before I start wilting from the heat... again.