So Grammy wants to buy a computer. "Just to use the Internet," she says, "so I can send a letter to Jonathan, send a letter to Jimmy, and it doesn't take seven days to get there." Her sister Edie has a Compaq 7500, I think, and Grammy likes it: the keyboard pulls out on a little sliding tray, and everything is very neat, with no messy cords. I should probably tell her that she can get all that with any computer, provided she gets a nice computer desk as well.
I told her that she could save some money and buy a used computer, since it doesn't take anything fancy to run an e-mail program. She mentioned "upgrades," how computers get replaced with different models every year. I said, "Yeah, but the old ones work fine. It's just that over time, when newer computers come out, the people who make computer programs make them so that they run only on the newer models." Oh, she did not like that. "They force the market, then. That's not very nice." I smiled. "No, it's not, but you can still find copies of the older programs that work on the older computers." Still, she has decided to do some more thinking on the matter.
Joe's recent Daily Orange rant reminds me of a quote from a letter to the editor last year:
"Yes, everyone has freedom of speech, but this is a college campus."
-Bob Fiato, Letter to the Editor, The Daily Orange, Nov. 10, 2003
It's almost as funny in context.
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