Short blog posts, journal entries, and random thoughts. Topics include a mix of personal and the world at large. 

Saving up for my first DIY computer

Writing about AutoCad yesterday and how it’s best run on Windows PC brought me back to my early years of high school. I was super into computer games but as of sophomore year lacked a proper gaming computer. By then I’d already hacked together my first computer but being that it was the first computer I got blindsided by the components learning curve. 

What constitutes a decent computer processor was easy because it’s revealed in the Gigahertz number (multi-core processors wasn’t a thing yet), but I had no clue that graphics cards too carries a hierarchy. Deficient of that specific knowledge I bought just about the worst graphics card possible. Needless to say playing games on my first computer was far less than ideal, often times impossible. 

Growing up my family wasn’t made of money so they weren’t going finance yet another built computer in such a short period of time. Typing word documents and surfing the web hardly requires the latest and greatest so my parents were adamant that I continue to use the computer I’ve already got until college. Obviously then if I want a new one to game on I would have to pay for it myself. 

Which meant getting a job and saving up gradually, and I mean really gradually. I interned for a department at San Francisco City Hall and the monthly income from that was in the single hundred, often times less. The sum total of the parts I was looking to purchase amounted to well over a thousand dollars so saving was quite the long project, ending up over a year. 

The gaming computer was my first instance of setting a financial goal and actively working towards it. The experience taught me the value of working for money and the patience to wait for the rewards. For motivation I had printed out the list of components on a sheet of paper and stuck it in the top of my school binder. Funny how that habit have continued on: when I was saving to buy my first car I had the WRX STI set as my laptop wallpaper as a reminder to keep going after it. 

As for the present time: