Above is a screenshot of the restoration of files from Crash Plan Central to my late 2008 Macbook Aluminum Body laptop. I had taken said laptop into the the Apple Store last week after it had failed to reboot following a simple “update all” in the App Store. I was doing those updates in preparation for upgrading to Yosemite. The Genius that helped me had to reformat my hard drive and reinstall Mavericks. I took it home and upgraded to Yosemite without a hitch, but all of my data was gone. I had no recent Time Machine backup. I thought I was out of luck, but then I remembered my Crash Plan subscription. In fairness I have to point out that I never bothered much with backup on the laptop because it was a secondary device, and anything of real importance was in Dropbox. If this restore doesn’t work I will not have lost much other than a second Aperture library and some miscellaneous files scattered across the hard drive outside of the Dropbox folder.

I’m getting ready for my setup session of my “One-to-One” subscription, which I ordered as part of my new Macbook Pro purchase. I intend to take the old Macbook in and have them use it to set up the new machine. once I get the files restored from Crash Plan I should be good to go.

You are probably thinking that this blog post is off topic, but it really isn’t. I’ll explain. While this blog is about my second act in fiber arts, and while this post has to do with technology, my technology purchases influence how much money I can afford to spend on my quilting habit. This post is as much about Quiltcon 2015, and my conflicts over attending, as it is about the Macbook Pro purchase.

I was sitting on the fence about whether or not I would attend Quiltcon 2015. I really wanted to go, but I had reservations about it from the start. I booked a room for it even before registration opened in June. After seeing the price for the room, and estimating the other expenses involved I figured that Quiltcon 2015 would set me back at least $2,000 if I decided to attend. One of the reasons this was going to cost me so much is that I didn’t know anyone to share a room with, so the hotel was going to be a major expense.

I also had some fears of being a social wallflower since I don’t know people on the web yet to meet up with in Austin. I also have not broken the ice yet with the members of the local guild who might be attending. As a result of that I wasn’t sure that I would have people to hang out with. I’m actually pretty independent, having attended Photoshop World on my own without knowing a soul, but it can be lonely to be at a convention on your own, and it’s more fun if you can share the experience with others.

A couple days after registration opened for Quiltcon 2015 I decided to bite the bullet and just go ahead and register even though it would be a major expense, and I might be alone. I logged in, filled my cart with lectures, and went to pay. There was a glitch with my credit card. I could have whipped out another card and paid, but I took it as some sort of a sign. I logged out, and sat on the idea. That was in June. I’ve been sitting on the idea for four months now. Between now and June I’ve been back and forth a few times about whether I should go or not.

At the last CJMQG meeting someone mentioned that air fares to Austin are very good right now. I checked them out and decided to register for the event before getting the air fare. I started to register, but it was the day of the Apple event where they would be presenting the new retina display 27 inch iMac, and I wanted to see the live stream of the event, and the time for event was approaching. So I waited.

Coming away from the Apple live stream I was very conflicted about where my money was going to need to go in the next couple of years in terms of my upgrade cycles for Apple devices. I have an iPhone, an iPad, a notebook, and a desktop to think about. The retina display iMac was looking very tempting, but it had an entry price of $2,400, which was just about what I expected to drop on Quiltcon 2015 if I went.

I had some serious thinking to do.

In the meantime I started to get my laptop ready for Yosemite. In the process my laptop refused to boot up from an “update all” of standard minor apps before the big OS upgrade. I scheduled an appointment at the Genius Bar of my local Apple store for my 5 1/2 year old aluminum body macbook. They tried to repair my hard drive first and boot it up with the contents intact. That didn’t work. They then reformatted my hard drive and installed Mavericks. It came up and I was told that I could install Yosemite at home. If the unit did not boot up that would mean that my hard drive had failed and would need replacement. If it booted back up it was good for now, and the drive could be replaced at a future date if necessary. However, I’d need to get it from Crucial, or New Egg or Radio Shack because the computer is so old that Apple no longer provides parts for it. They don’t provide parts for units over six years old, and even though I had the laptop since Spring 2009, it was a late 2008 unit, making it over six years old.

The really good news is that Apple charged me nothing to scan my drive, reformat it, and install Mavericks even though my laptop was no longer under Apple Care. Since The things that they did for me fell under the category of diagnostics, and since I hadn’t needed any hardware replacements there was no charge to me. (Well, if i had needed hardware replacements I would have been out of luck because of the age of my unit, so I was really lucky.)

While I was at the Apple Store I looked at the new retina display iMac. It is beautiful, but I am not sure that I need it. I looked at the retina display Macbook Pro units, and they are nice too, but I don’t think I need one of those either. I took a fresh look at the lowly 13 inch Macbook Pro with the mechanical hard drive and the Optical Drive. It’s the only notebook left in the line that can accommodate an optical disk without an external drive attached.

I formulated an upgrade plan right then and there. I would max out the lowly Macbook Pro with non-retina display in every way possible… processor, ram, hard drive. I would make it my primary machine. I would hook it up to my 3 1/2 year old iMac when I want a larger display. I would downgrade my desktop unit to the status of an external monitor and file backup system. Two years later I would revisit the idea of a retina display iMac, but I would probably get a non-retina display iMac, and the cycle would be in place where I would upgrade my laptop and desktop using a four year replacement cycle. Or I would forgo a desktop altogether and get a cinema display when the desktop finally died and upgrade the laptop every three years.

Minimally, I would not need to think about a retina display again for another two years, and that would be a relief.

I had my plan formulated. If I did not attend Quiltcon 2015,  I could just move forward with the plan because I had enough money saved for the new laptop. I figured I would wait until Saturday to make a final decision about Quiltcon because I would be spending the day at the Pennington Farmers Market with members of the CJMQG. I’d have a chance to speak with the president of the guild about Quiltcon. As it turned out I had a chance to speak with a few other women about Quiltcon too. What I discovered is that the workshops and lectures are mostly filled at this point. There are some lectures still available in the evening, but many people will be out socializing at that time, and I will miss out on a lot of social aspects of the convention if I register for the evening workshops that area still available.

So the decision about Quiltcon was made for me by my own procrastination in registering. I don’t regret it though. I remember actually feeling relieved when I realized that I shouldn’t go to Quiltcon this year. It’s the right thing. The first time I attend Quiltcon I should be looking forward to meeting people I’ve met on the web through my blogging activities. I hope that will be the case for the next Quiltcon.

The maxed out Macbook Pro is ordered, and I am glad. I am having it delivered to the Lawrenceville Apple Store where I will pick it up on November 6th. I ordered a year of one-on-one instruction for the first time ever. I’m really looking forward to learning as much as possible from the people at the Lawrenceville Apple Store. For the first time ever I live close enough to an Apple store to take advantage of “One-toOne”.