May 29th, 2012

#3400: Critical Need Detector Triggered Error

...went to print the novel out, so I could get it bound Tuesday morning (or early afternoon).

Printer cranked out 185 of 316 pages...and then quit, wanting toner.


So I tried the old printer tech trickery first: I pulled the cart out and shook it back and forth in an attempt to redistribute the toner that was left; no dice. (I think I've already done this once, though.)

Second idea: borrow the toner cart from the other Brother laser printer I've got. No go: they're different. One's a 2040 and the one I normally use is a 2170W. (I thought these two printers used the same engine; now I know better. *sigh*)

Third idea: duhh....

Well, after thinking it over for a few moments, I made up my mind:

Third idea: swap printers until I can get a toner cart for the 2170W.

See, what happened is I--in 2007 or 2008--finally convinced Mom to get a laser printer, and the 2170 was on sale for a good price; but there was a problem. See, she insisted on keeping her old crummy Compaq Presario. That was a good computer in 1998, but by 2007 it needed replacing...and she refused to get a new computer.

The 2170 doesn't have a parallel port, and her arthritic old machine REFUSED to print via USB...and since the 2040 had a parallel port, I got the new printer and Mom got the 2040. (She didn't really care; she was happy just to be able to print again.)

This being the case, the 2040 has sat--unused--since December of 2010. I had offered it to my sister, who declined taking it, so it's been sitting there all this time; and since I need to print--well, the solution was obvious.

"Now watch--this thing doesn't have USB," I said with some apprehension. See, my computer--new in March of 2007--doesn't have a parallel port in it, so I've got to print via USB.

...but the 2040 does have USB as well as I plugged it in, and mirabile visu the drivers were already on here. (Tardily I remembered that the 2040 had been plugged into this computer before we got the 2170.)

So I printed the rest of the story, and covers, and an extra table of contents so both halves of the thing will have one. I even have the two halves pre-separated and held in that state with binder clips. All I should have to do tomorrow is go to OfficeMax and say, "Spiral bound, black vinyl rear cover, clear front cover."

Oh, and the toner? $12 from Amazon, plus shipping. It's not official Brother toner but it's compatible. And if I buy another one and maybe a book, too, I'll get free shipping.

"Aren't you worried about it not working?" Well, the longest computer tech job I had (1992-1997) was for a company that got its start remanufacturing toner cartridges; I never put a real HP toner cart into any HP laser printer after 1992 and never, never, ever had a single problem whatsoever.

Anyway, the real Brother toner cart is a minimum of $58. Yeah, that's not a hard choice to make.

So the printing is done and it's almost 3 AM and I need to go to bed.

#3401: The Tuesday that feels like a Monday

Man, last night I did it again: went out to check the temperature, decided on opening the house up...and it got cool after I went to bed. And it's still pleasant outside to boot; can't beat that.

Once this post is done, I'm going to take a shower, and then set out to do my errands. Whee! It's a never-ending cavalcade of fun!


* * *

Grade inflation in the humanities.

* * *

Karl Denninger says Citibank is "a zombie".

* * *

Today, I went to visit my husband's grave. I was unable to mourn in peace because some teenagers were smoking pot and talking about a government conspiracy "to change the way gravity works" on the next grave over. FML"

...and they say that pot doesn't have any ill effects on people.

Here's a clue: if the best place you can find to smoke your weed and get high is a cemetery, you have a problem.

(And if you then get so baked that you're worried about the government changing gravity you really have a problem....)

* * *

This post is amazingly lame because I just don't have any motivation today. Well, there are worse things, and it doesn't mean I'm not going to go run my errands.

#3402: Done and done.

I'm back from running my erands, and I'm kind of scared at how smoothly everything went.

First stop: K-mart, to return the still wrong trimmer line that I exchanged the original one for--and anyway, while swapping the printers last night I found the whole pack of line that came with the trimmer and the associated manuals. Also, I bought cat food.

Second stop: OfficeMax, where I not only got my novel bound, but also picked up a nice desk lamp for $13 and tax. I had wanted to look at K-mart for one and had forgotten; but this one is pretty nice, at a good price, and it even came with a CFL bulb.

Instead of turning on the floor lamp on the far side of the room, and have five big (100w incandescent equivalent) CFLs going in order to get enough light over by my desk, I figured something like this would be a better idea. On its minimum setting the floor lamp illuminates two bulbs; and the bedside lamp is a 100w incandescent and doesn't throw enough light by itself.

I've only needed a desk lamp for a couple of years, since I broke the architect's lamp I used to have.

Third stop: emissions station. No waiting, and the test took five minutes.

Fourth stop: Wendy's, for dinner (3 double stacks, no cheese).


Tomorrow I'll take the motorcycle over to village hall to get the Jeep's city sticker; and then I just might stop in at the Yamaha dealership to ask about chains, master links, et al, et cetera.

* * *

Toner for the 2170: $44 if I use the OfficeMax brand; $48 if I use the Brother brand. I think I'll order one or two from Amazon.

The only thing is, though--the 2040 is a lot quieter and it's also a lot nicer about how it suspends. The 2170 has a big BRIGHT illuminated button on it; if the printer is on--even on standby--and I turn the lights off in the room, I can nearly read by the damned thing, so I have to put something over it. When it comes time to print, of course I must remove whatever-it-is, because it gets in the way of the paper. Then I must put it back when finished, because otherwise I'll go to bed, turn out the light, and have to get right back up to cover that F-ING BUTTON. Argh etc.

2040: four status LEDs, all of which shut off entirely when the printer is in standby. (In fact, just now I checked to confirm that, and thought the printer was off entirely. It wasn't.)

So, what I could do is to take the 2170 and put it in a central location, and set up its WiFi connection, so that anyone who's visiting here who needs to print something can do it. Just turn the thing on (I'm not leaving it on all the time when I won't use it hardly ever) and print away!

...once I get toner for it, that is.

The 2170 is a little faster than the 2040 is. The print quality is identical. The only thing the 2170 has that the 2040 doesn't is the wireless printing capability I don't use anyway.

* * *

I was thinking about cutting the grass--and realized that it hasn't rained here for a while. I'm trying to remember when it last rained, and I'm drawing a blank.

Despite washing the Jeep last Friday. Dang.

Anyway, the grass is turning brown and not growing, because like all plants grass needs water. So I don't need to cut it.

Now that I have string for the damn thing I might get the weed trimmer out and go trim everything; but that's optional at this point because the grass is not growing.

Good chance of rain later this week, though, so that's fine.

...last night I took a ride on the motorcycle. I threw caution to the wind by going down a dead-end side street to watch a thunderstorm. It was enormous and far away, and it didn't come anywhere near the Fungal Vale. We could have used some of that rain.

(No, the police didn't follow me and then threaten me with a parking ticket or anything else stupid like that. I was able to sit and look at the t-storm unhindered by jackbooted thugs.)

Weather looks to be all over the place in the next 10 days--hot and humid, stormy, cool and dry, cool and wet, etcetera. Well, that's spring early summer in NE Illinois for you.

* * *

I guess I should do something other than sit here and stare at the monitor.