Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Needs & Wants

What you want and what you need are 2 different things, though you may confuse them for the same. You might want a lot more than what you really need.

Over 2 years ago my computer kept getting stuck at startup. I called in an expert. He told me it was a problem with my RAM. And replaced my 3 year old 512 MB RAM card with a new one for almost Rs. 2K.

The same thing began happening in July 2010, almost exactly 2 years later. I called the same expert. Same cause, he said. This time, I had him upgrade to 1 GB RAM for almost the same price.

A couple of months later, the computer kept restarting itself at sudden moments, which I assumed was a problem with the motherboard, and a few weeks after, the monitor went black, though it was still receiving power (the monitor light was on, and I could hear the sounds of the computer starting, but nothing was registering on screen. I assumed the motherboard and monitor problem were connected, that my computer was finally dying, and was about to replace it with a new Rs. 12K (at least) desktop, when I had second thoughts, and decided to call a new expert for help, to look at the monitor only.

I did this because a new system would cost me a lot more money than a quick fix, and my ROI with a quick fix would work out better, as opposed to a new system, when you considered that I only use my desktop for basic stuff.

The new guy fixed the monitor for Rs.1K, telling me it was a transformer problem. That done, I did a little research online and then fixed the computer-continuously-restarting problem by buying a new motherboard battery for Rs. 25. Turns out you need to replace these every 5 years anyhow.

But a whole new problem cropped up. My internet/LAN cable stopped being registered on the computer. The internet cable worked on laptops, so I figured it was a problem with my computer onboard modem/LAN card. I went out, bought a new LAN card for Rs. 300, plugged it into a PCI slot in my CPU, switched my computer on, copied the IP settings to the new card, disabled the old one, installed the driver CD for good measure, plugged in the cable, and I had my internet back on again.

Now, I could have just bought a new 12K PC, or a 40K laptop, but I guess that's what I wanted, not what I needed. Don't get me wrong. I still want a fancy laptop, but what I really needed and got was a basic desktop, money saved in the bank, and a little knowledge about basic computer maintenance.


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