Posts Tagged ‘plucker’

November Novel

2 November 2008

Dear J-

Well, that was pretty painless:  the secret to getting Plucker books onto the Palm is apparently not, as you might think, downloading and converting it yourself, but letting Project Gutenberg itself do it.  The die is cast; Junior and I will break from defectiveyeti’s denizens this year and attempt to read Bleak House.  Me, I approach it with a little trepidation, as I’ve only attempted to read one of Dickens’ novels before — A Tale of Two Cities — and I know how your heart melted over Sydney Carton, J-, I just don’t quite feel the same way.


To be truthful, I think that my brother’s experience didn’t help; of all the assigned reading in high school, that was the one novel he never really finished, and when it came my time to try it, three years later, I couldn’t outrun that spectre of intimidation — if he couldn’t finish it, what chance have I?  Reading about Mr. Dickens now — how he was considered a bit low and vulgar, almost the Stephen King of his time — massively popular yet somehow eluding critical (“serious”) literary acclaim.

Other distractions will be competing for attention too; the fifty-hour weeks at work, playing with new gadgets (ever so slowly, I’m beginning to be able to fill the frame with a wide view; also, assuming I have the technical wherewithal, I’d like to set up the thrift-store wireless router and DSL gateway I picked up a month ago), and, thanks again to my brother’s influence, that shiny little white Nintendo box that cries out for another game of tennis or bowling, despite our tiny, antiquated television set (though as a thrift-store connoisseur, I’ll tell you that they don’t make ’em like they did in 1988).



Plucker Fail

28 October 2008

Dear J-

I’ll keep trying, but it becomes increasingly clear to me how little technical skill I actually have; here I am trying to convert some books off the Baen CDs using Plucker, and there I go, showing off how poorly I actually follow directions (to be fair, although the site and desktop file both have excellent directions, it may be the timing — doing this sort of thing late at night — that makes it impossible to understand).

It frightens me a little bit; I remember how simple it was to set the VCR clock, and I’m not too intimidated by the TiVo, but am I already reaching my VCR clock-setting point?  I doubt it, but the more I flail and fail at getting what seems to be a simple task accomplished, the more I have to doubt whether I was actually competent at all.  Meanwhile, I contemplate all kinds of tech-y projects like setting up a Linux MythTV box, and I wonder how much of that is a pipe dream.

I’m sure that I can find some way to make it just work.  All the same, I think I’d better stick to the things I know — buttons to press, you know.


P.S.  Well, at least it’s not just me.  First I updated the engine, then I found out it just doesn’t work on Intel Macs, at least not through the desktop GUI.  If I must, I’ll struggle on with the command line.  Or maybe it’s irrecoverable?