This in the first in an undoubtedly infrequent series of ramblings from Michael Morris, unsuccessful amateur astronomer and prog rock fan.
I thought I start off with a success story of sorts (lap it up now as there won't be many of these!).
A couple of years ago my youngest daughter upgraded her old Windows Vista (spit) laptop to a Macbook. The old laptop sat around nontionently being a laptop for a few months before, in a desparate attempt to stop having to run Windows Vista, decided to start overheating and turning off after five minutes of running. And for three years it sat at on shelf in the study doing a really good impersonation of a somewhat odd-shaped paperweight.
Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when I decided I could do with a second computer in the observatory for running the all sky camera.
I decided that, in my own mind being a minor deity, I would attempt try a Lazarus-like reanimation of the Vista paperweight.
Remarkably, I managed to diagnose the problem as a non-functioning fan.
After toying with various ideas,including strapping a fan on the outside or throwing it under a train, I decided to go the whole hog and replace the fan. Looking on Youtube I discovered to do this I would have to dismantle the entire laptop! In a fit of uncharacteristic electronic confidence I spent last night dismantling the laptop and fitting a new cooling fan.
Putting it back together didn't go entirely to plan as I have four very small screws left over!
Then came the moment of truth ...
... it only went and worked!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've tested every function and socket and all seems okay.
So now I have a working second laptop with all my astro programs loaded. Success? Well, NO.
I made the mistake of sharing my surprise success with the gorgeous Ilona, my wife of 30 years and mother to my three children, Being the kind, thoughtful and generous sort that she is, her reaction to my good news was "Well done, that's great. Eliza (the older of my two daughters) needs a new laptop as her old one has died. She's a bit broke at the moment so you could give her the one you've just fixed."
Drats, foiled again.