I went ahead and ordered a new computer. I was just browsing Dell's website and decided why the heck not? Just look at those prices! Four years ago, if you had told me I could get a computer for half of what mine cost and with maybe 6-8 times the power and 10 times the storage capacity, I'd have thought you were nuts. If there are mid-level home computers below $1,000 already then there's no point in continuing to maintain and repair the one I have. That's just not going to be a good investment of time. Shipment will be in about 10 days.
Anyway, I got to thinking... Gateway has those Gateway Country Stores. Essentially, those are computer showrooms with bales of hay and white picket fences -- a farm theme. What if Dell had its own country stores. They could have one guy in plaid and overalls walking around in there. He'd be the farmer in the dell.
The real reason why I rarely upgrade is that's a lot of work and I'm lazy. This evening, I had to round up all the software installation CDs. What a mess... it looks like I haven't sorted those out in... uh... a number of years. I needed Lotus Smartsuite, Quicken, Acrobat, Photoshop, Painter, Fireworks, Streets & Trips... each one in a different corner of the room. In fact, I couldn't find the Smartsuite CD and thought I had left it at work, but no... there it was under a pile of comic books inside a storage box. Hardware drivers can be downloaded from the web and that's a good thing because I don't think I'll be able to find the driver CDs for some of these peripherals. I'm planning to move the secondary hard disk over to the new computer so that should help a bit.