Wednesday, April 10, 2013

When things break

First, it was my 46" HDTV. The left side of the screen began flickering intermittently, making it difficult to watch anything.

Not a big deal, because there are two TVs in this household and Game of Thrones is just about the only thing I'm watching right now anyway. So we swapped Michelle's TV for mine in the living room and put mine aside until I have the time and money to get it fixed. Which will probably not be until right before football season starts.

Then, the air conditioning in my car quit working. One day it was blowing cold air, and the next day it wasn't. It's possible that a coil got punctured and the freon leaked out, but given that I've already had one electrical issue with this car, I'm willing to bet that this is an electrical problem as well.

Again, it's not a big deal. The AC at least decided to quit now, while it's still relatively cool outside, as opposed to, say, August, when its failure would have been truly traumatic. More importantly, the car is still under warranty. I'll get it fixed when I take the car in for its 30,000-mile servicing in a few weeks.

(Since this is the second problem I’ve had with this relatively new car, I’m reconsidering whether I want to keep it once the lease is up. But that's a discussion for later.)

But then, last week, almost six years to the day since I bought it, my iMac quit working. As in, it wouldn't turn on at all. No screen, no fan, no hard drive. Nothing. Power simply wasn't getting to the computer.

I can live without a TV. I can live without air conditioning in my car, at least for now. But I cannot live without a home computer.

I lugged the non-functioning machine to the Apple Store in Highland Village. The guy at the Genius Bar diagnosed the problem as a bad power supply unit, but said that they no longer carried replacement parts for my particular model of iMac. I would need to take it somewhere else to get it repaired, and that would cost several hundred dollars (assuming that the correct PSU for my particular model of computer could be found at all).

Which left me to think: do I really want to spend money to get an increasingly-obsolete six-year-old computer fixed, or should I just go ahead and get a new one? One with a faster processor, more memory, a larger hard drive, and a bigger screen?

I have to admit, it wasn't a hard decision to make, even if the hit to my savings account was somewhat painful.

Say hello to my new 27" iMac, and another six years of happy computing.

If it is true that bad things happen in threes, then hopefully my stuff will stop breaking for awhile.

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