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lake_wrangler
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Re: More Stuff

Post by lake_wrangler » Tue Jul 02, 2019 8:29 am

Here's a weird quote from my wallpaper changer:
Goebel's Law Of Computer Support: Troubleshooting a computer over the telephone is like having sex through a hole in a board fence. It can be done but it is neither EASY nor PLEASANT.

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AnotherFairportfan
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Re: More Stuff

Post by AnotherFairportfan » Tue Jul 02, 2019 8:59 am

lake_wrangler wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 8:29 am
Here's a weird quote from my wallpaper changer:
Goebel's Law Of Computer Support: Troubleshooting a computer over the telephone is like having sex through a hole in a board fence. It can be done but it is neither EASY nor PLEASANT.
Having done computer phone support, i can attest that that's pretty accurate.
Proof Positive the world is not flat: If it were, cats would have pushed everything off the edge by now.

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lake_wrangler
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Re: More Stuff

Post by lake_wrangler » Tue Jul 02, 2019 1:56 pm

I've done computer phone support for a few years, while studying computer science in college... and while some of it was unpleasant, I would have no idea about that specific comparison... :?

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AnotherFairportfan
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Re: More Stuff

Post by AnotherFairportfan » Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:42 pm

lake_wrangler wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 1:56 pm
I've done computer phone support for a few years, while studying computer science in college... and while some of it was unpleasant, I would have no idea about that specific comparison... :?
Were you working on a help desk where most of the users were more-or-less computer-literate?

I was doing support for home users on NEC computers ... and my first day on the phones was the day W95 went live.

And the Boca combination sound card/modem was a nightmare.

{Boca was a company started by former IBM engineers - the same team who had been responsible for the PCjr...}
Proof Positive the world is not flat: If it were, cats would have pushed everything off the edge by now.

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lake_wrangler
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Re: More Stuff

Post by lake_wrangler » Thu Jul 04, 2019 8:07 am

I was doing tech support for the Canon BubbleJet printers. Started in the Win 3.1 era, and continued into the Win 95 era.

Most memorable call? A call from someone who knew just enough about computers to get himself into trouble... (You know, the old give him enough rope and he'll hang himself with it...)

A man called, asking which printer to install in Windows, for his BJ200. He was in the process of installing windows, and could not find his printer in the list of printer drivers available in Windows. I told him he could either install the BJ300 driver, which would be compatible, or wait until Windows was done installing, and use the BJ200 driver diskettes to install the actual BJ200 driver.

Not long after that, he asked, in passing: "By the way, is it bad, to type "format C:" ? It turns out that he was at his friend's place, and had "accidentally" (?) formatted the hard drive. And instead of unformatting the drive before it was too late, he ended up reinstalling DOS and Windows, thereby losing everything that was previously on that drive.

His friend (I wonder what happened to their friendship, after that...) came back from wherever he was, while I was still on the phone. So I explained to him what had taken place. It turns out he had a whole bunch of AutoCAD files on there... All gone...

Just before hanging up, he swore to his friend (?) that he was going to kill him!


I never heard from him again...

...

Draw your own conclusion... :P

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GlytchMeister
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Re: More Stuff

Post by GlytchMeister » Thu Jul 04, 2019 11:45 am

...

Justifiable.
He's mister GlytchMeister, he's mister code
He's mister exploiter, he's mister ones and zeros
They call me GlytchMeister, whatever I touch
Starts to glitch in my clutch!
I'm too much!

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Dave
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Dave » Thu Jul 04, 2019 12:11 pm

AnotherFairportfan wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:42 pm
And the Boca combination sound card/modem was a nightmare.

{Boca was a company started by former IBM engineers - the same team who had been responsible for the PCjr...}
I had my own nightmare with a Boca Ethernet card, years ago.

I chose it because it used a very good Ethernet chip (AMD PCNet) which had excellent Linux driver support. The card worked but was unreliable... some network sessions would just freeze up completely while transferring files, while others would continue working at the same time. Very frustrating. The system error log showed that packets were being dropped with a "CRC error" notice... they had been corrupted somehow.

I studied the card and found that the card design was flawed. Boca's engineers had ignored the AMD data sheet recommendations for power-supply bypass capacitors... they tried to save money and eliminated about half of the caps, including one that AMD said was crucially important. As a result, certain patterns of data in a packet would induce "ground bounce" in the chip's Ethernet receiver and it would misread a bit.

After several attempts to get Boca to repair or replace the card (their attempted "fix" was a botch) I took the card back to the store I had bought it from and demanded a refund.

Haven't bought another Boca product since (20 years). Never will again.

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Dave
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Dave » Thu Jul 04, 2019 12:17 pm

lake_wrangler wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 8:07 am
His friend (I wonder what happened to their friendship, after that...) came back from wherever he was, while I was still on the phone. So I explained to him what had taken place. It turns out he had a whole bunch of AutoCAD files on there... All gone...

Just before hanging up, he swore to his friend (?) that he was going to kill him!
With friends like that, who needs an asteroid falling on your house and wiping out everything for a hundred miles?

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Bookworm
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Bookworm » Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:23 pm

Dave wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:56 pm
Bookworm wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:26 pm
Um.. Query and Very _do_ rhyme, unless you're from Glasgow or a Geordie.
I've always heard it as "kwee-ry" (which doesn't theme with "veh-ry"). I'm a Philadelphian by birth, a Rochesterian (upstate New York) during college, and a Californian thereafter.

https://www.macmillandictionary.com/us/ ... an/query_1

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/pro ... lish/query
I've always heard it as 'Quehr-ee'. The only other way to pronouce it, I believe, would be 'kew-ry', as 'Queue' is pronounced 'Cue'. (And Que is 'pronounced 'Keh') (similar to 'Quay')
I'll get a life when it's proven and substantiated to be better than what I'm currently experiencing.

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Dave
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Dave » Thu Jul 04, 2019 8:32 pm

Bookworm wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:23 pm
I've always heard it as 'Quehr-ee'.
Interesting. I've always thought it that as being a British variant pronunciation... haven't heard it used in the U.S. as far as I can recall.

However... I believe I recall that some of the Appalachian accents in American English are derived pretty directly from some specific regions in England and Scotland, so maybe that's a connection that's still linguistically active?

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AnotherFairportfan
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Re: More Stuff

Post by AnotherFairportfan » Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:52 pm

In Britspeak "quay" is pronounced in a manner very like "key" - not surprising, since it shares a derivation with "Key West" - originally "Cayo de Los Huesos" and mangled by English speakers.
Proof Positive the world is not flat: If it were, cats would have pushed everything off the edge by now.

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lake_wrangler
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Re: More Stuff

Post by lake_wrangler » Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:07 am

This quote made me laugh, just now...
“I love deadlines. I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by.” - Douglas Adams

Typeminer
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Typeminer » Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:08 am

Dave wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 8:32 pm
Bookworm wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:23 pm
I've always heard it as 'Quehr-ee'.
Interesting. I've always thought it that as being a British variant pronunciation... haven't heard it used in the U.S. as far as I can recall.

However... I believe I recall that some of the Appalachian accents in American English are derived pretty directly from some specific regions in England and Scotland, so maybe that's a connection that's still linguistically active?
I grew up about 90 miles southeast of Pittsburgh, in Northern Greater Appalachia. I pronounce it "kwery," rhymes with very. I think Bookworm is saying the first syllable the same, with a long E ending.

Disclaimer: I can spell all kindsa shit that I probably don't know how to pronounce, if I didn't learn it from television. I've written bazillions of queries, but that doesn't help. :mrgreen:
Saccharomyces cerevisiae is the linchpin of civilization.

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Re: More Stuff

Post by Typeminer » Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:10 am

Dave wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 12:11 pm
AnotherFairportfan wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:42 pm
And the Boca combination sound card/modem was a nightmare.

{Boca was a company started by former IBM engineers - the same team who had been responsible for the PCjr...}
I had my own nightmare with a Boca Ethernet card, years ago.

I chose it because it used a very good Ethernet chip (AMD PCNet) which had excellent Linux driver support. The card worked but was unreliable... some network sessions would just freeze up completely while transferring files, while others would continue working at the same time. Very frustrating. The system error log showed that packets were being dropped with a "CRC error" notice... they had been corrupted somehow.

I studied the card and found that the card design was flawed. Boca's engineers had ignored the AMD data sheet recommendations for power-supply bypass capacitors... they tried to save money and eliminated about half of the caps, including one that AMD said was crucially important. As a result, certain patterns of data in a packet would induce "ground bounce" in the chip's Ethernet receiver and it would misread a bit.

After several attempts to get Boca to repair or replace the card (their attempted "fix" was a botch) I took the card back to the store I had bought it from and demanded a refund.

Haven't bought another Boca product since (20 years). Never will again.
Boca Burgers are okay. I'll pass on the chips. :mrgreen:
Saccharomyces cerevisiae is the linchpin of civilization.

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Bookworm
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Bookworm » Fri Jul 05, 2019 1:29 pm

Dave wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 12:11 pm
AnotherFairportfan wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:42 pm
And the Boca combination sound card/modem was a nightmare.

{Boca was a company started by former IBM engineers - the same team who had been responsible for the PCjr...}
I had my own nightmare with a Boca Ethernet card, years ago.

I chose it because it used a very good Ethernet chip (AMD PCNet) which had excellent Linux driver support. The card worked but was unreliable... some network sessions would just freeze up completely while transferring files, while others would continue working at the same time. Very frustrating. The system error log showed that packets were being dropped with a "CRC error" notice... they had been corrupted somehow.

I studied the card and found that the card design was flawed. Boca's engineers had ignored the AMD data sheet recommendations for power-supply bypass capacitors... they tried to save money and eliminated about half of the caps, including one that AMD said was crucially important. As a result, certain patterns of data in a packet would induce "ground bounce" in the chip's Ethernet receiver and it would misread a bit.

After several attempts to get Boca to repair or replace the card (their attempted "fix" was a botch) I took the card back to the store I had bought it from and demanded a refund.

Haven't bought another Boca product since (20 years). Never will again.
Don't blame Boca. That's a habit that goes all the way back to Madman Muntz (look him up on Google). He used to start cutting components off of boards until the item stopped working, then said something like "I guess we'd better put that back." Antec does it, motherboard manufacturers do it. It's REALLY common, especially with capacitors. They build a good base board, then start pulling caps off until the board destabilizes, then add the last one back on. I've actually repopulated boards with extra capacitors to fix issues.
I'll get a life when it's proven and substantiated to be better than what I'm currently experiencing.

Alkarii
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Alkarii » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:02 am

Meanwhile, I'd never even heard of Boca.
There is no such thing as a science experiment gone wrong.

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TazManiac
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Re: More Stuff

Post by TazManiac » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:45 pm

It took me a min, but every time you guys type BOCA, I see/read it as

https://www.google.com/search?q=Ossobuco

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Dave
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Dave » Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:07 am

Bookworm wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2019 1:29 pm
Don't blame Boca. That's a habit that goes all the way back to Madman Muntz (look him up on Google). He used to start cutting components off of boards until the item stopped working, then said something like "I guess we'd better put that back." Antec does it, motherboard manufacturers do it. It's REALLY common, especially with capacitors. They build a good base board, then start pulling caps off until the board destabilizes, then add the last one back on. I've actually repopulated boards with extra capacitors to fix issues.
At, but I do blame Boca... because they overdid it to the point that the product was not reliable in operation. This wasn't a flaw that was hard to demonstrate... it should have shown up in testing. They destabilized the design, sold it in that unstable form, and failed to correct it when I called it to their attention.

There's a basic principle in commerce... that a product be fit for the purpose for which it is sold. That's something that purchasers have a legal right to expect. Boca, and other companies which cut costs too far, violate this expectation.

Once I know of such a company, I avoid doing business in the future if I can. I'd rather spend a bit more if necessary, and buy from a company whose products I can trust to work. "Cheap is often very expensive."

I did hear a story about Boca, years later... that many Boca employees wouldn't buy Boca products for their own personal use, even at the discounted employee price. They'd buy a competitors' products instead... because those would work better.

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Atomic
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Atomic » Tue Jul 09, 2019 4:54 pm

The stories about removing parts until they (sort of) work remind me of a Navy Electronic Technician story I heard:

Seems the new guys were troubleshooting a radar system which was behaving very badly. They'd get one module tuned up and another would fail - fix that and a third would go sour, popping fuses along the way. They were suspecting some parts were ageing out and transients were taking them over their load limits, thus destabilizing the system. At wits end, they ask the old Chief ET about it.

He considers the issue, grabs a hand full of 20 amp slow blow fuses and replaces all the various 1 and 5 amp instants with the 20 amp ones. The system is turned back on, warms up, and crackles, pops, and smokes to a noisy electrical death. "OK - now you know which parts were failing. Fix those."
Don't let other peoples limitations become your constraints!

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Dave
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Re: More Stuff

Post by Dave » Tue Jul 09, 2019 5:16 pm

Atomic wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 4:54 pm
The system is turned back on, warms up, and crackles, pops, and smokes to a noisy electrical death. "OK - now you know which parts were failing. Fix those."
"But that's a priceless Steinway!" (the hapless onlooker)

"Not any more." (Inspector Clouseau)

or, in electronics boat-anchor-nerd terms,

"Ok, thanks, Chief. Counting the collateral damage, we need.... well, I count it as 45 different matched pairs of tunnel diodes. This will prove to be interesting."

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