Crazy Rich Asians

Posted September 20, 2018 by joebowker
Categories: Movies, Reviews

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Crazy Rich AsiansWednesday night was date night again. This time Paula and I decided to go see “Crazy Rich Asians” still playing at the AMC in Torrance. It stars Constance Wu and Henry Golding. Been meaning to go see this movie but didn’t quite have the time or baby sitter availability.

The movie is based on the best-selling novel of the same name.

This is a story of a young Chinese woman, Rachel Wu (played by Constance Wu) who travels with her boy friend from New York City to Singapore to meet his family. So you get the impression from the get-go that his family is very rich

He is in Singapore to be best man at his best friend’s wedding. They travel first class all the way.

The story begins with a scene where Eleanor Young travels with her three children to the Calthorpe Hotel in London where she is told that she doesn’t have a reservation (for obvious racist reasons). She is turned out in the rain to call her husband who proceeds to buy the hotel. She returns triumphantly to have the manager clean up the mud on the floor.

It was a fun movie. There was lots of pomp and rich trappings displayed. Major friction between son and mother. Go see the IMDB page for the full plot synopsis.

It was nice to get out without Mary. We stopped for KFC chicken on the way home.

New Laptop

Posted September 13, 2018 by joebowker
Categories: Laptop, Windows

Tags: , , , ,

Well on Tuesday my new laptop arrived from HP. Ordered on Sept. 1, arrives on Sept. 11. I requested priority shipping. The website said 2-4 days for extra $40. I hate to think what regular, non-priority shipping was like.

The laptop is an HP Spectre series with 15″ screen, 8Gb of Memory and 500Gb Solid State drive. Old computer was also HP but with 13″ screen. I still get my employee purchase discount which is about $250 off the price.

So it arrived by FedEx. I had to sign for it which was to be expected. After all, the box says “Intel Inside” which translates into English as “Steal Me”. They tried to deliver on Monday, but no one home. I told the driver that you said it was going be delivered on Tuesday so I wasn’t going to be home all day Monday. Driver tried to deliver during the 1.5 hour that I was out.

So the laptop has 2 USB-C ports, 1 USB-A port (the old fashioned kind) and a HDMI port to connect an auxiliary monitor. Also, it has headphone port and power connector.

I’ve been setting it up over the past few days. Took over an hour for the first boot and load of Windows 10. I had considered buying a Mac, but decided that it would have cost me over $1000 more to get a Mac laptop similarly configured.

First steps were to download the Dropbox app and login and find my files that were stored in the cloud. Then loaded Chrome browser from Google. Logged into Google and magically all of my web shortcuts reappeared. I was impressed.

Then logged in to Microsoft and downloaded MS Office. I have subscription to MS Office, so no additional fees.

Next, I was looking for a PDF editor. First try was PDF Suite. They added a couple of other utilities that I thought might be useful, but when I tried to load them. Loader says “Virus Detected”. Not good. The loaded the PDF editor. That didn’t go well either. App locks the file and prevents my ability to change file name. Support person argues no viruses. I tell her if Windows says virus on my computer, then it doesn’t get installed, PERIOD.

Call support and tell them I want money back. She tries to get my to take 50% discount. No dice, I tell her. I want 100% back. I stood firm and said I want 100% back. Eventually I got my way. Received email confirming refund. Will need to check credit card account to see if the refund was really done.

I found another PDF App called PDF Pro 10. Works much better. Two major things that I do with this app. First is to reorient pages from portrait to landscape. Second is to delete pages that I really don’t need to save.

Next step is to get copy of NoteWorthy. This is an app for editing sheet music. I have been using this for about 8 years. Email to support with license info. They immediately sent me a link to download the app. No muss, no fuss, no money. Happy customer. For anyone that does any work with sheet music, this is a great app.

Next step was to install drivers for audio interface that I use at MA Grand Chapter OES and the Mixcraft recording app. All set for next May.

Final step was to download HP software to connect to my HP printer. This allows me to scan files directly to my laptop. Connect to HP support site. No fee.

Annenberg Space for Photography

Posted September 7, 2018 by joebowker
Categories: Art, Los Angeles, Pictures

Tags: ,

Paula and I had a day off from caring for Mary on Friday. We arranged for a sitter then we headed north to Century City to the Annenberg Space for Photography. Annenberg has been having an display called “Not an Ostrich” that ends this weekend. Admission and parking was free. All we had to pay was our fee to Dawn to take care of Mary.

Dawn took Mary to get her hair done at “The Mane Place”. Then got her her usual chocolate shake. Mary was a happy camper.

So Century City is up near Hollywood. It is home to several TV and movie studios including Fox Studios and Sony Studios. One can tell that it’s a movie studio because it occupies an entire city block and the buildings are about 50 feet high with absolutely no windows. Usually there is a guarded fancy gate near the middle.

So we arrived at noon in the parking garage under the building where we found out that the museum was closed until 2 pm for a private showing. Boo-Hoo! So we stayed anyway and went to have some lunch. There were several lunch places with various cuisines (Mexican, Chinese, Burgers, etc.). So we had a slow quiet lunch and hung out for a while waiting for 2 pm. The area outside the building had lots of chairs and places to sit and watch people go by.

So the museum had a small set of the huge collection at the Library of Congress in Washington DC covering from the Civil War to the present. One can browse the collection online at http://loc.gov/pictures

Here is a sampler (a very small sampler) of some of the pictures. There was a wide variety of American.

Happy Birthday Neil

Posted September 3, 2018 by joebowker
Categories: Uncategorized

Today is our son Neil’s 36th birthday. We didn’t get to spend any time with him. Perhaps, we can get together in the next month or two. Neil lives in Salt Lake City with his lovely wife Laura.

So we went to church this morning. After church, we all went to the Pacific Diner for brunch. This is one of our favorite places for Sunday brunch. The diner is on Pacific Ave at 38th street. Always good food.

Here is a picture that we took of the rest of the family.

The little rascal in the right side of the picture is our grandson Jonathan. All together four generations sitting at the table.

BSOD Final Chapter

Posted September 1, 2018 by joebowker
Categories: Laptop, Windows

Tags: , ,

Well, I received the recovery thumb drive from HP. I managed to boot the drive okay. But only got 20% into the recovery before the process came to a halt with a fatal error.

Called HP support. Support guy said would have to ship the laptop to repair center for repair. Estimated cost was going to be about $400. My guess that it’s the hard drive.

I told him I would get back to him on repair. I figured that for not much more than $400 I could get a new laptop that was better, faster, cheaper. (Well, maybe not cheaper).

Looked at Mac’s but would cost at least double what a comparable Windows laptop would cost.

Ships tomorrow. I’ll post pictures when I receive it.

TTFN,

Joe

1SE for month of August

Posted August 31, 2018 by joebowker
Categories: 1 Sec Every Day, 1SE

Tags:

BSOD Update

Posted August 30, 2018 by joebowker
Categories: Technology, Windows

Tags: ,

Still dead but making progress. I talked to nice fellow in India this afternoon about the problem. He was very helpful. He walked me through running diagnostics.

So the hard drive and memory are fine. He offered the link for downloading the recovery disk. I told him that wouldn’t work because I had no other computer (other than my iPad) to create the thumb drive.

So he ordered up a recovery thumb drive for me. Shipped out via FedEx this afternoon. I should receive tomorrow afternoon. He was nice enough to waive the fee (about $50). I had told him that I was a retired HP employee. Maybe that helped.

Unfortunately, I will end up scratching my hard drive. Not to worry, 95% of my files are stored in the cloud (Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.). I will have to reinstall a bunch of apps that I use, but that’s easy.

Should be a reminder to everyone. Do your backups.

TTFN