Friday, August 24, 2012

Computer problems update

So, as mentioned, the computer that I am on at the moment is my mother's old laptop.  The reason that my mother has a new laptop is that this one is both broken and past the expatriation date (no warranty.)

Now sometimes it works pretty well, as with when I made the announcement that I'd be off my normal computer, sometimes, as today, it feels like a punishment out of the depths of Tartarus.  I spent much of today engaged in the seemingly herculean effort to make it stop resizing the screen at psudorandom.  Still have the problem of the mouse which will choose a place that it likes and remain in that place regardless of what input is used upon it until, apparently at random, it will allow itself to be moved, thought not always very far.

So, yeah... that could be a problem when it comes to content production.  As could the fact that the keyboard is smaller than most of the ones I am used to so it sometimes takes several times for me to type a single word correctly.  (Or I hit the wrong letters without realizing it, see yesterday's "will bit be..."rather than "will not be..." but look quick because I intend to fix that.)

The plus side is that this is not the only broken expired computer in the area, and some of the rest might be more useful placeholder's for the broken one.  If I can dig them up, and if I am lucky.

But the truth is that I have no idea what this will mean for posting going forward, and I'm tired as all hell on top of that.


  1. On the mouse issue - have you cleaned the mouse rollers? (Pop open the bottom, take out the ball, scrape the gunk off and blow it out.)

    I can't be sure that it will help, but that always fixed the problem you describe for me, at least on older mice (before I started using an optical trackball).

  2. Thanks for the advice, but it's the built in touch pad of a laptop. So no such solution can be attempted.

    1. If budget and available sockets allow, USB mice/trackballs and keyboards can be a relatively cheap way to extend a machine's working life, and can still be useful later. Just don't bother to install any drivers that are supplied; they aren't needed for normal functions, and usually only make things more fragile. (The display is more of a problem.)

    2. Ah, built-in touch pads? Those are so universally bad I tend to forget they exist!

    3. Actually, mine works pretty well - that is, until I loaned it to my mother earlier this week, and she spent half an hour trying to figure out how to get it to work. But, then, I've apparently learned how to work around all its quirks.

      Best wishes to you, Chris. I'll second Firedrake's recommendation if you've got the budget. Otherwise, there might be some operating system setting you can tweak (try "Mouse" under Control Panel?) - but, then, that might not be what's wrong after all.

  3. I've been having mouse problems too. It's a laser mouse, and the laser won't lase. it's intermittent, sometimes it won't work for days, but right now it's working again.

    the solution i've found in the interim, which may or may not work for you (are you allowed to install software?) is this little program called "keynav". it lets you move the mouse with the keyboard and once you get the hang of it, it's pretty fast. it's a linux program, though, so i don't know if that'll help you. (googling "keynav" gives the github site for it which links to another page that explains it's featurse in detail if you're interested).

    while i was looking for a linux program to move the mouse with, i found some windows programs which i didnt look at it in detail, but if you're on windows, you might try googling around.

    i control the computer mainly by keyboard anyway, just using the mouse for some flash games and as a convenience here and there, so i haven't minded the lack of mouse too much, but it does make it hard to play bloons, and with keynav i am able to play bloons.