Mac Lab Report

Mac User Resolutions for 2004

- 2004.01.08

As the new year approached, I look back on all my unfinished projects and tried through various means to forget all about them for a few days. Then, halfway through winter break, I came upon piles of yellow sticky-pad notes where the sticky stuff is worn out and covered with fuzz. These contain lists of things to do which I never did, and it comes back to me - oh yeah, I have got to do that one thing I told someone I would do sometime.

Since a lot of what I do revolves around Macs, I culled my weighty pile to present to you, Constant Reader, the Mac Lab Report's

Mac User Resolutions for 2004

#10. Stop writing lists in place of well-composed prose.

#9. Save up money and buy an iPod just before the new, cheaper iPod mini comes out.

#8. Drop my TiBook on the floor (again), jacking the lid loose and cracking the frame so I can pay for a new case that eliminates all those little scratches in the paint.

#7. Upgrade to Panther without first verifying that all of my mission critical software is compatible.

#6. Buy a new mouse and wind up giving it away (again) to some poor sap who never uses their computer, thus encouraging their students to steal the mouse.

#5. Start cashing in on the sweat equity I have built up for fixing people's computers. I really like Little Debbie Nutty Bars. (Little Debbie Swiss Rolls are the preferred snack at LEM headquarters.)

#4. I'm procrastinating getting Microsoft Office for OS X until they incorporate some more of that digital-rights management stuff. Wouldn't want to miss out.

#3. Buy an album on the iTunes music store for a group that sounds like someone else and try to return it for a refund.

#2. Decide whether or not to give my old beige G3 computer to my sister, who cannot manage to bring herself to spend more on a computer than she spends on her car. Which says more about her car than it does about her computer.

and my #1 Mac-related resolution for the new year is:

#1. Hook up a Mac SE to the school network and use it to display the current position of the planets all the time as a display. Every time some kid asks how old the computer is, say: "Older than you, kid," and leave it at that.

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is a longtime Mac user. He was using digital sensors on Apple II computers in the 1980's and has networked computers in his classroom since before the internet existed. In 2006 he was selected at the California Computer Using Educator's teacher of the year. His students have used NASA space probes and regularly participate in piloting new materials for NASA. He is the author of two books and numerous articles and scientific papers. He currently teaches astronomy and physics in California, where he lives with his twin sons, Jony and Ben.< And there's still a Mac G3 in his classroom which finds occasional use.

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