Posts Tagged floppy disc

August 25, 2004 – First USB memory stick

Today is hopefully my last day at the internet cafe. I am downloading some drivers to make the ethernet card in my new computer work. Once that is done, I will be able to subscribe to a service provider and have internet in my room at Hello House.

I have also upgraded my file transfer system. Instead of the box of 3.5″ floppy discs, I am now using a USB memory stick. It is about the size of a keychain and can store 128mb, compared to the 14.4mb that my entire box of floppies can hold. My USB key cost 3500 yen at Yodobashi camera. Technology rules!

Also, congratulations to Jamie and Jessica on their engagement!

(2014 Update) Yes, technology has changed a lot in the past 10 years. I just checked Yodobashi Camera‘s website. They are selling Buffalo 8GB memory sticks for about 800 yen. For the record, that’s about 64 times the storage space for less than a quarter of the price. And I was excited about upgrading from my box of floppies…

I didn’t end up getting an internet connection at Hello House. I would have needed to borrow a native Japanese speaker to help with the paperwork, and since I had requested a transfer I was not sure how much longer I would be in Kawasaki.

For those keeping track, Jamie and Jessica have been happily married for just over 9 years now and are proud parents.

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July 21-23, 2004 – The saga of the new computer

July 21, 2004 (day 1) – I used a shift swap with Jem today in order to get a break from my 20 days of work in a row. I ate breakfast outside of Hello House, and had a pretty relaxing day. In the evening, I went to pick up a used computer in central Tokyo. My sister’s ancient laptop is just not enough for me anymore. I searched English language ads online, and found someone selling a used desktop tower for 15,000 yen (about $150). It isn’t the world’s greatest computer, but it is a huge step up from the laptop.

Zoe and Lux came with me to pick up the computer. The seller was a Malaysian man with a fantastic apartment. He seemed nice, but Zoe and Lux were getting a creepy vibe from him. We tested out the computer and it seemed to work well, so I handed over the cash and we were on our way. I didn’t realize how big and heavy the computer was until about 5 minutes into our walk back to the subway station. The tower was huge, so it was awkward to get a grip on. I am very happy that I brought friends with me to help with the keyboard and doors. Carrying a desktop computer through busy, massive Shinjuku station is NOT fun.

On the way home, Zoe almost got into a fight with a salaryman on the train. He was sleeping while standing and kept inadvertently hitting Zoe with his umbrella. She responded by kicking him every time the umbrella hit her. Good times!

When I got the computer home, I formatted the hard drive so I could install a fresh copy of Windows. I rebooted after formatting and I couldn’t get the computer to work! F**K!! The rest of my evening was very frustrating.

July 22, 2004 (day 2) – I bailed on Thursday night karaoke to spend time working on the computer. It still isn’t working correctly. I ended up watching The Shield in the Hello House common room while grumbling about wasting 15,000 yen.

July 23, 2004 (day 3) – I got some ideas on the computer from my more tech savvy coworkers. The main problem is that the CD-Rom is on a SCSI interface, which won’t work without drivers. Windows has appropriate drivers, but my Windows 98 install disk is on CD-Rom. I ended up making a simple boot disk on floppy so I could get the new computer running. I then used my box of floppy disks to slowly copy the Windows install files from the CD-Rom on the laptop to the hard drive on the new desktop.

Once all the install files were finally copied, I was able to run Windows installation from the hard drive on the desktop. When Windows finally installed, it recognized the CD-Rom and everything started working! It took forever, but the new computer is finally running! Victory!

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