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Had to happen eventually

(Fri 5th Jun 2015, 14:21, More)

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» Amazing Projects

A brilliant project thwarted
Our bedroom is empty awaiting the arrival of the fitter to install new furniture. Emptying it involved removing clothes from wardrobes, cupboard, chests etc. I couldn't help noticing that Mrs AgeingGeek's clothes, once extracted and decompressed, filled the whole of our spare bedroom. Several bags have been disposed of but I suggested that when the remainder are returned to the new wardrobes I could fit RFID tags. With a reader by the door I could produce monthly reports thus assisting with rotation, identification of unused items etc. Instead of being congratulated on visualising the future of wardrobe management I was shot a high power laser vision stare and it is probably lucky no blunt instruments were to hand.

Perhaps female B3tans can explain why my idea is apparently less than brilliant?
(Sun 20th Nov 2011, 13:26, More)

» Money-saving tips

Two words
Poundland & Wilkinson. In Luton, conveniently located next door to each other and the nearest shops to where I park. Only go to Wilkinson if you can't find it in Poundland.
(Sun 13th Nov 2011, 18:12, More)

» My First Experience of the Internet

Indeed I remember when the Internet was all text
Archie and Gopher anybody? Then word reached us at the office that there was something miraculous out there. It just needed me (as the Unix bod) to install something called Mosaic on a nearby SPARCstation. And lo, we could behold the graphical marvel that was cisco.com. Followed shortly after by the less salubrious sites that mushroomed in those untamed and uncensored days of http version 1.0. (It's my SPARCstation, get your hands off and go wait for somebody to invent Netscape).
(Fri 23rd Mar 2012, 17:33, More)

» Road Trip

T'was easy in the olden days
Two families travelling from Essex to summer hols in Norfolk. Four adults, three smallish kids, one 1960 Ford Popular, easy! Adult at each corner, kid in the middle at the back, another on a rear seat passenger's lap, and me proudly astride the handbrake on a cushion in between the front seats. Not especially epic, but started with a steady 60 mph up the A12, great journey. Now when we run out of seat belts I am told I have to stop loading.
(Fri 15th Jul 2011, 14:52, More)

» IT Support

Fire! fire!
1. I am working for a customer at an un-named hospital. The IT office is like an ante-room to the server room, visible through a window.

During the morning I see a building services guy coming and going to the server room with a small vacuum cleaner. The room is a bit dusty apparently so they are having a clean up. You are by now way ahead of me.

After lunch the IT team heads off to a meeting, leaving me under the supervision of a lowly tech who whiles away the time playing solitaire.

An hour passes, IT team leader is first to return from meeting and goes straight into the server room, from which he emerges a few seconds later with a face like the proverbial. "Have either of you two been in here?" "No." "The air conditioning is off!" This was confirmed after another few seconds when the heat tsunami rolling out of the server room door hit me. Of course the dust had triggered the smoke detectors which turn off the air con but other than that do nothing (sounding the fire alarm might have been good you'd have thought).

Never mind, both aircon and fire detector control panels are in the IT office. Just a matter of pressing a reset button. But the system had been changed recently (perhaps explaining non sounding of alarm) and the panel was new and there were no instructions. Half an hour later everybody from IT and building services, including management was assembled in the room, scratching their heads and unable to work the panels. Fans were deployed to try and suck the hot air out of the room and non essential servers had been powered down, including mine, so I had the rest of the afternoon off (result!).

I arrived the next day to find that it was late evening before they had managed to get everything switched on again. Except for the couple of external aircon units which had failed to power back up again, never having been switched off before, ever.
The vacuum cleaner bod was banned until the smoke detection problem could be solved - which it was by temporarily taping hospital issue latex gloves over the detectors.

2. We are monitoring equipment at an un-named council and see it disappear off the radar. We phone the customer who advises "we are having problems with false fire alarms, leave it with us". A day later no change and customer calls us: "Can you have a look at our servers, they keep setting the fire alarms off" (which in this server room causes the servers to be shut down). Our engineer toddles off to site. Draws customer's attention to sulfurous haze enveloping the machine room. "Could this be anything to do with it?" he enquires, pointing to the UPS with the fault light (and the gently bubbling acid). "Ahh...". Meanwhile all the manual switching on and automatic switching off of the servers had wrecked half a dozen power supplies and even spreading the redundant ones around left at least one server powerless until spares could be ordered (from a 3rd party support outfit who was rather suspicious of the quantity of simultaneous failures...).
(Mon 28th Sep 2009, 11:50, More)
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