Short stuff here, alas - have to write a column, and have been dealing with computer problems all night. OH TELL ME MORE, you say, suddenly breathless. Nah. Or rather, NAS: I have two Network Attached Storage devices to back up the backups. Well, that’s not entirely true, and there’s the problem. I have all my movies on a 4 TB drive that uses about 2.5 TB, so far. Ditto with another drive for other types of data. Both back up to a 2 TB NAS, which means I have to be selective about what gets mirrored. I offload other backups on to other hard drives periodically, and while it’s not as simple as I’d like it - the NAS units should have two sets of 4 TB drives , so I can sleep - there’s nothing mission-critical that I’d lose, and I have too damned much data as it is. (There’s something you never tell yourself after you’ve lost data.)
One of the drives failed on the NAS, which means I’m just hanging out there naked in the wind without redundancy. I ordered another drive, and plugged it in. Nothing seems to be happening; the RAIDar panel that tells you the status of the drives doesn’t see the new drive. Because I inserted it wrong? Yes. So fix that. Still doesn’t see it. Well, let’s go into our Admin panel, which is not only no help with the new drive but informs me in an interminable series of scrolling alerts that A) the temperature variance was out of norms for ten minutes a month ago, and B) there are daily warnings that the FIRST drive is showing the sort of errors that are likely to indicate a failure.
Well, this requires action of a drastic nature. Of course the problem with getting the second drive up and running is forgotten. I do a search to see which old retired hard drives are used to back up this particular NAS, and find them. Plug one into the cradle, call up a program that automates copying of folders so I don’t have to pick and choose, and walk away. Come back five minutes later: WARNING I/0 ERROR
The good drive in the NAS, which is now the Almost Bad Drive, has crapped out on the copying process. I reboot EVERYTHING and discover, hello, that the drive light for the Previously Good drive is now dark.
As Jimmy Stewart said in “It’s a Wonderful Life,” well what do you know about that.
This really isn’t something I wanted to spend time on; who does? Even if this is your job it’s a pain. If I’ve lost anything, it’s about three months of raw footage, which I save to make life even more complicated because I have to keep schlepping it from disk to disk. Eh. There’s a reason I have edited versions of the things I’ve done: it’s what mattered. The raw stuff is interesting only if I want to revisit the moment, which I’ll never do, and NO ONE will do, because there’s just too much data and most of it doesn’t matter.
Or does it? Is there an obligation to save even the raw video, the unchosen pictures, the first few iterations of a design that you abandoned? I have ancient prototypes for lileks.com graphics I can’t throw away, because, well, storage is cheap, and what’s the problem? It almost seems like wanton destruction to throw away an idea when it was young, because it reminds me what the site was like 10 years ago, what I was thinking. On the other hand, there’s too much data and most of it doesn’t matter. It’s not as if Daughter will find this stuff some day and learn something new, or want to recut her life in videos of her design. (Don’t think that wasn’t my original idea when I started saving raw footage - which, I should add, involved digitizing about 100 tiny 8mm cassettes. All of that stuff I still have. But oh no I might lose some Fair 2015 footage that was useless and didn’t make it into the final movies.
It’s ridiculous. And it’s egomaniacal to think that this site should be preserved, that I should convert every page into a pdf and store my core work on an SSD in the safe deposit box or send it to the Internet Archive with a check for $100 and say “could you just hold on to this, put it in the Wayback Machine? Thanks, A Guy on the Internet.” But it weighs on me. Not the impermanence of life. But the fragility of your life’s work.
By God, these sarcastic remarks about Jell-O cannot be allowed to perish.
Just took a break; picked up the iPad, which one of my domestic associates had dropped. Big crack lengthwise on the screen, but it still works. I picked it up by the corner, felt some thing crack, and a web of fissures spread across the screen. All the words, all the sites, all the pictures - everything now looks as if it’s frozen under a bolt of lightning.
Construction update: went back to the old Strib site, where the rubble is still be scraped up and carted away. The apartments are almost finished. This is my old parking lot.
The name pays homage to the newspaper heritage of the site, of course. Nice touch. Cue the journalists bitching they couldn't live there.
The stadium looms. To give you a sense of its scale: this is TWENTY BLOCKS AWAY!
Kidding. It's just two blocks away. But it's just immense. I like it. I don't love it, but it's distinct without being showy. It's quite simple in its own way, and that prow is visible from blocks away.
Which might have been the point, eh?
As usual for Friday, the Music Cues. Of course we begin with the Couple Next Door, with its cheerful soundtrack of the mid-century domestic scene. Actual bits of script are left in now and then for surreal effect.
CND Cue #590 I really want to hear the entire movement.
CND Cue #591 Whoa: the crazy discordant cue goes over the top.
The PSA of the week: An Armed Forces Radio PSA for the existence of Vermont.
This is what radio sounds like when there aren't ads for anything anyone wants.
Finally, our ad of the week: dull talky de-stinker.
Ban Roll-On. A new concept in 1975, I think.
As I noted last week, this stuff haunts me. And not in a good way.
It's what you hear when you've left your body and you're heading for the light, that's my fear.