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My computer

Like it's not been a hectic enough weekend. Friday evening was hanging out with Carol and eating venison hearts, she was visiting from San Francisco. It was good to see her. And then I was to shoot a volunteer thing, and then bring home Miriam who is visiting from the bay area too.

But my computer stopped working! At first I panicked at the thought of having to redo the last wedding edits. And then I realized I had uploaded the final edits to my online proofing site. Phew. (I had 2 copies of the raw files in saperate media). I managed to get the computer up long enough to backup a bunch of stuff, but now it's done. It doesn't want to turn on. Peter is coming on Sunday to help me tweak around with it, but I went ahead and bought a new computer.

I was wanting a new computer anyways, since I realized graphics processing is really intensive, I was running out of space and had to transfer files offline, and also Lightroom and Photoshop are memory hogs. My computer was paging a lot. So I ordered a new system with 12 GB of memory, but it has the ability to upgrade to 24 GB at some point. I used my corporate discount and got 17% off, it's an intel quad core: Intel® Core™i7-930 processor.

Andy was like, maybe you should wait till November. And I was like, umm.. No. I have an engagement shoot to edit (which thankfully I said I was going to take 3 weeks, always give buffer time). Yesterday's show pictures. Today I'm shooting a wedding. Even ordering the computer today it's going to take some time to process and deliver it to me. Computing is a necessity to a computer scientist and photographer.

I also realized that let's say you say your baseline expenses is $X. It's good to have a $1000 buffer income over that per month. Cos sometimes you need a new computer, or a car repair. There is almost always an "unexpected" expense each month. I knew I was going to have to get a new computer, but I was thinking some vague time later.

Anyways. Now I'm on Andy's laptop, he's sleeping. And Miriam is here so I better hang out with her.


Oct. 20th, 2010 07:01 am (UTC)
Sure, even if your baseline expenses are $X, you can't count on being able to spend $X every month. It's unavoidable that some irregular larger, unexpected expenses show up, and these need to be covered somehow.

$baseline + $1000 sounds reasonable.

Though, I'd say if there are "unexpected" expenses "almost every month", then perhaps the budget is a little too optimistic; if one owns a car, for example it's overoptimistic to budget that repairs will cost $0. If one owns 3 computers, 2 digital cameras, a tv and half a dozen other expensive electric machines, it's overoptimistic to budget that repairing or replacing them will cost $0.

We pick a number, based on past experiences (repairs for our 2 cars: $2000/year - replacing/repairing electronics: $1500/year) - this ends up being sometimes too low, and sometimes too high, but on the average, close to correct.

Some years nothing breaks. Other years the dishwasher, tv, dust-sucker, digital camera and washing-machine all break down in the same half-year. That's just life.

Thus additional to buffer-income, it makes sense to have aproximately 2 months income as buffer-capital. Because even with $1000 in buffer-income, you're in trouble when the car breaks down, and it turns out that the repair costs $3000.