Homework Night -- 01/12/00
Trying to do a bunch of stuff at work, but my main idea was to try to work on studying java programming... I think I may have mentioned last week that I had wanted to take a java class that is being given in New York City on the week of the 24th, taught by the same instructor from that java class I took just after Thanksgiving, but it was full. I had wanted to sign up for it in December but had to wait until we could decide if I should be going to Toronto to take a course in UML, etc... and in the meanwhile the class filled up. This same java class is also being taught down in Virginia (somewhere around Arlington, I think) at the same time... but that section filled up before I could get that organized. I think there is a lot of pent-up need for training that was postponed due to work on Y2K (and a lot of need for new systems development, etc. that was also postponed) and now that things did not fall apart, people are dashing off to get caught up on training needs. So, anyway, I've been attempting to retain the knowledge I picked up in that first course and to expand on it a bit. Those two java books I ordered last week from Fatbrain came today, so my plan is to work from home tomorrow, spending the day studying java.

Meanwhile, tonight was spent as homework helper at home. Jennifer had to finish that sociology paper and I am the official family Lotus Smart Suite expert. She learned the Mirosoft products at school (Word, Access, etc.) but we have Lotus on our home computers -- (1) because they are IBM Aptivas so they come with Lotus and (2) because that's what I use at work. She can handle WordPro, but I'm needed to provide consultation on 123 and Approach and how to best get charts into WordPro. Our printer has been acting up and tonight it was a real pain. It is a very good printer (HP DeskJet 870Cxi) but we have had it for about three years now and it has printed a lot of pages and I think the little tractor wheels or whatever that advance the paper have gotten worn down. Very often the paper does not feed. You can hear the little wheels spin and various thing click and clunk but the paper just sits there unless you give it a little tap. Sometimes you just have to feed a sheet manually... and if you aren't careful when you do that, the sheet might not be aligned correctly and your print is a little bit off. But... how do you fix a printer? Yes, I plead guilty to certain lack of mechanical ability (my slogan is "I do software, not hardware.") However, when you wander into OfficeMax or CompUSA you see displays of ink cartridges, etc., but no little replacement wheels (or whatever)... and the shop rates for computer work are rather steep... although I would willingly pay for good work that fixed the problem, I don't want to drop a hundred bucks on some turkey who doesn't know what he's doing and fails to fix it or even makes it worse. So I guess we will just have to put up with having to assist the paper feed process and if anyone in the family writes a novel we'll worry about that print job when we get to it.

Sean had a short essay due in English. (Actually, I think that was due yesterday.) He wrote it out by hand in a (paper) notebook in his unique scrawl but wanted to print it out. Since the main computer was in use by Jennifer, he thought maybe he could use Jennifer's machine but that was being used by Nancy. So then he asked if he could borrow my laptop, but then decided that it would take forever for him to type it on a small keyboard. What he was looking for, of course, was for me to offer to type it for him... which I did once Jennifer's paper was finished and printed.

Which means it then got to be almost midnight by the time all of this homework was finished and printed. Then I needed to go to bed but first I wanted to check email and get this journal entry in and check a few other websites...

*yawn* Goodnight.

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