The Computer Gods Frowned, Then Smiled Upon Me



The manufacturer has all but abandoned my netbook (XO-1 from OLPC) because they’re busy with the next version. I’ve been computer shopping because it’s shortcomings are too much of pain while learning Linux and Python. Hua Hin doesn’t have much to choose from, but at least it’s expensive.

OLPC’s latest customer, Uruguay, decided not to accept the crappy features in the operating system (OS) and built a new version with the OLPC foundation. Linux geeks and gurus successfully installed alpha and beta test versions and some common Linux software that Uruguay didn’t want for their school kids. They say it’s the best OS yet for XO-1, better than any of the other Linux distros they’ve managed to get running on the box.

I know it’s stupid to install a beta OS because of how little I know about Linux. But I gave into temptation. Or tried to. The moment the context menu popped up after I positioned the mouse on the download link there was a hick-up in the power, crashing my computer.

It’s the only power outage I’ve experienced since coming to Thailand. It lasted only a few seconds, but made it’s point. The universe was telling me not to download it, so I obeyed. I’ll wait for the official release.

A few hours later I walked into a building, then turned, doubled back to reread a new sign. What is “IT City”? The third floor has been closed for remodeling for months, the escalators are working for the first time since I came to town, oh you don’t mean ….

Too eager to walk to the escalators, I took the nearby stairwell to find the top floor has two big computer stores, smaller stores selling related stuff and a few cell phone stands. Turns out IT City is a nationwide player and considered an anchor tenant for a landlord who wants to fill a floor or two (or five in Bangkok) with all computer stores, all the time.

Made a quick check of laptop brands, selection and prices. No need for a Bangkok computer shopping trip. Still, will wait until after the 17th, the first day I can apply for a one year visa extension. Should be no problem, but, as the saying goes when things inexplicable happen, ‘This is Thailand.’.

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