Does anyone here feel familiar with this scenario?: You are in front of your PC, working on something important, when suddenly it froze and stays like this for minutes, while you look with cold eyes as your important work, which you have been working for hours, it’s at risk of disappearing because your computer started to go crazy?
Or maybe you are relaxed in your bed, watching a movie, enjoying a well-deserved night of leisure, and suddenly the fabled blue screen of death appears, o maybe something ever rarer and worse than the blue screen of death, the mythical orange screen of death!
Maybe you are a gamer, and you have had the experience of seeing how your favorite game, which you can hardly run with decent fps, suddenly begins to lag more than normal, to the point that it becomes unbearably slow, so much so that you end up stop playing it just to not give you more headaches?
If you identify with any of these scenarios, or have similar ones that you could calmly tell anyone who wants to hear them, then you will know how annoying it is to depend on a slow and faulty computer. And as you can imagine, this is exactly what is happening to me.
My name is Alejandro, and I live in Venezuela. I think that by now, most of the people in the world know the situation we have to deal with on a daily basis in my country, so delving into it is not what I am trying to say here. It goes without saying, however, that life here is not easy, and everything costs more work and more effort than normal.
Getting a good computer was an “easy” thing years ago. With a good job, and saving a little, could you afford certain luxuries and tastes. In current times, with a minimum salary that does not exceed $5 a month, saving becomes increasingly complicated, and unless you are a wealthy person, have contacts with those in positions of power or have the fortune to get a good job to make a lot of money, believe me, it is going to be very difficult to spend the little money that you saved every month on anything other than the daily priorities of life, such as food, basic services and the like.
Now, I am not suggesting that it is impossible. Working hard, and knowing how to take advantage of the opportunities that comes in your way, progress can be made in Venezuela, as many Venezuelans can assure you. The point is… that the best opportunities usually come over the Internet, and for this it is necessary to have a computer capable of supporting the pace of life that is required to get ahead in this country, and as you would imagine, if you don’t have a decent PC, things get complicated for you.
And it is that when you have a laptop that crashes when you try to learn programming courses, that gives you errors when you open photoshop, that lags if you open a videoconference when you try to have a job interview, among a long list of cases, having the calm for not going crazy about it requires a zen mindset hahaha!
My laptop is an i3-4000, 2.40Mhz with 4gb of RAM and Intel HD-4600 graphics. For anyone who knows anything about computers, it will be evident that my laptop is, from every point of view, an almost obsolete instrument by current standards.
The problem for me is that my laptop is my everything. It is my tool for work, entertainment, communication with my family and with those friends who no longer live in the country. With it, I educate myself, through all the courses that I can get and study, in the absence of TV service this also acts as my entertainment system to watch movies and series, and although it may surprise you, given its specifications, even I use it for gaming (at least those few games that can run it).
That is why it is hard to realize that every day something new seems to happen to my laptop that cuts off his useful life. Either the lack of more RAM, or the HDD defects, or problems with the Fan Cooler. In short, every day I have to deal with something new that makes it slower and laggy and that slowness only causes that all the things that I need to do daily on my laptop even more complicated.
You may wonder: Why don’t you work to buy a new one, then? Well, it’s what I’ve been doing! But I always end up spending every penny saved on things that end up being more urgent. There is a very famous comic book character in South America, called Mafalda, who used to say a phrase that since I read it the first time it stuck with me, “Lo urgente no deja tiempo para lo importante”, which in English is “the urgent does not leave time for the important”. A new PC it’s important to me, but I cannot afford to ignore the urgency for food, and the food of my cats, and the urgency to pay for services (that being Venezuela as it is right now, if they cut you some important basic service, the chances of restore that service quickly are not very high, at the very least), and of course, the urgency that comes with every health issues. All these emergencies, for obvious reasons, are necessary to attend immediately, and each one, being the cost of living so high in my country, are obviously expensive.
That’s the reason I present myself here, hoping that whoever reads these words, either because they are lived experiences similar to mine, or because their charitable and kind souls leads them to help a stranger, help me afford enough money to buy a new PC. In fact, I would not be disappointed at all if instead of a new and powerful PC I end up getting enough to buy a used PC, as long as it is still capable of performing well for a few more years. Anything that is a significant improvement to the laptop that I own right now will be welcome, and I will be grateful for it with all my heart.
And I know it very well that in comparison with the needs of thousands here, who need help to take care of difficult and expensive diseases, or need to care for their sick pets, or those with true altruistic thoughts who enter here looking for help for projects that will benefit communities in positive ways, Me, a simple individual who only asks for help to be able to have a decent PC, understand that I will not be (nor do I hope to be) a priority for those people looking to reasons to donate. But if you’ve been reading this far, and you have some money to spared, and you think that we all deserve help as long as we’re honest about asking for it and grateful for every little help we get along the way, then well, here I am, with my potato laptop, hoping for the best.
I finally, I’m sorry for the obvious lack of good grammar and syntax. English is not, as you people realized, my first language, so I end up writing this using some of my knowledge on English, and a lot of Google Translate xD
Thanks to everybody who took the time to read me, and have a nice day!