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Randomness: the 18th sequel


Chaoswolf
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1 hour ago, SparrowMarie said:

Woke up with a headache. Waiting for husband in the bank because FIL needed a check deposited and couldn't do it yesterday before they left. I'm supposed to meet my friend at her house in like 40 minutes. Going to be late because we need lunch. Should be fine to get to the airport on time though.

 

Safe & fun travels!!!!

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1 hour ago, SparrowMarie said:

Woke up with a headache. Waiting for husband in the bank because FIL needed a check deposited and couldn't do it yesterday before they left. I'm supposed to meet my friend at her house in like 40 minutes. Going to be late because we need lunch. Should be fine to get to the airport on time though.

 

Have a great journey!

Hope you'll like it here, do try the stroopwafels!

If you like fried snacks, do try the Frikandel!

 

 

59 minutes ago, Corsair said:

Relax, it's not a glitterbomb... 😇

 

It's a video I'm sure @TGP would like, I laughed at it!

 

As for Glitterbombs?

 

 

 

Gl bo.jpg

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19 hours ago, TheAuldGrump said:

Oh, dear Jesus.

Our neighborhood is cordoned off.

A shooting - at least two dead and a hostage situation.

 

The Auld Grump

https://www.wmtw.com/article/westbrook-shooting-maine-police-man-woman-killed/44272101

 

I knew Cockrell, not well, but to say 'hi' to in the street.

 

Her two kids witnessed the shooting.

 

The Auld Grump

I'm using Brigid's fire, just read the.article.

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On 6/7/2023 at 2:31 PM, Green Eyed Monsty said:

This one's for @kristof65:

 

Honest-Car-Wash-Sign.jpg.05d77cdee2c3635d36654ab0a6c356a4.jpg

 

GEM


There's a lot of that in the industry. At least those owners are honest about it ::D:
 

On 6/10/2023 at 9:30 AM, Chaoswolf said:

I hate that phrase and everything it stands for. I understand businesses need to keep selling product to continue making money, but if you make an excellent product that I DON'T have to replace every other year, I'll tell everyone who'll listen how awesome your doo-dad is and how they should buy yours instead of somebody else's.

I also 100% agree with you.

The company I contract to would support everything for ever, if we could, according to the owner. Most of the things we have to obsolete is not because we planned it, but because we can't get the parts to make/repair things any more. 

Back when I first started working on this equipment back in 2002, the distributor I worked for had acquired 25 of these brand new credit card readers to test out. We were desperately searching for something reliable, because most sites were replacing their card readers every three to four months.   The new card readers cost 3x the price of the old card readers, so it was a bit of a gamble - they needed to last at least three times as long just to break even.   After six months, we hadn't replaced a single card reader, so we ordered another 25, and at 9 months, again, not a single one had failed, so another 25, at a year, another 25, etc  By the end of the first 18 months since we started testing them, not a single one had failed, and we had over a hundred in service.  Many had been sent out as warranty replacements on production units that shipped with the old card reader.   Sow e convinced the equipment manufacturer to start shipping them with production units. Everyone was happy - we were, cause fewer warranty replacements, our customers were because they worked reliably, and fewer replacements, etc.  The manufacturer started ordering them 100-200 at a time.  Our competitors notices, and started using the same card readers. 

By the end of the third year, things were looking good, when all of a sudden we started having credit card reader failures again.  Turns out the card reader manufacturer could no longer meet demand in their own factory, and so had started outsourcing parts to factories in the Phillipines.   They struggled to return to the quality they had before, and before they could resolve the issue, the company I contract to now figured out how to build their own card reader. 

The customer we sold most of those original 25 card readers to is here in Iowa.  About 7-8 years ago, they were replacing their oldest tellers, and I happened to notice that one of the tellers still had one of the old card readers - one of the original 25 that was sold - and it still worked!.    Got over 12 years out of that card reader in the field, and I took it back to my office and installed in on my test set, where I got another 2-3 years out of it before it finally failed. 

Those are the card readers I want to sell my customers. 
 

On 6/10/2023 at 9:34 PM, sumbloke said:

I'm not saying that those further checks aren't needed. Just that they come after step 2. I've heard of some IT support people using similar methods to make sure it's plugged in without specifically calling it out. Like turning the ethernet cable around the other way, or shaking the stuck messages out of the ethernet cable then plugging it back in.


Part of being a good support person is figuring out how ask/eliminate the simple things without offending people.  And even sometimes that doesn't work. 

Back when I worked for Jim Dunlop Mfg (guitar accessories manufacturer), a really common service call was for the Crybaby wah wah pedal making a squealing noise when you rock the pedal back.  99% of the time this means that the guitar was plugged into the pedal output and the amplifier was plugged into the pedal input (so backwards).   It's a simple problem and fix - just unplug the cables, and plug them back in correctly. 

I can't tell you the number of calls I got from mothers of teenage boys chewing me out because the expensive pedal their son just bought/rcvd as a gift was "defective" for this reason, and then would curse me out even more when I politely told them it was plugged in backwards, usually using some variation of "Are you calling my child stupid!?"

I figured out the best response was "No Ma'am, it's an easy mistake to make.  I plug these pedals in over a hundred times a week, and it's something I do 2-3 times a week."  That would usually mollify them, but occasionally not - and I'd issue an RMA number for a return that would almost never be used.
 

On 6/18/2023 at 2:14 PM, Green Eyed Monsty said:

Doubtful.

It's likely every one of those machines, and the trucks as well, are keyed alike, where every truck key will start every truck and every machinery key will start any piece of machinery.

The company I used to work for had every truck keyed alike, and they had 5 terminals in three states.  When I was running the Coin-Op route a lot of the equipment was keyed alike, both the access doors [barrel keys] and the padlocks on the security hardware [three different sizes each with it's own key across the entire set].

GEM

I am amazed at the number of operators in Coin-op & car wash that will blindly use the locks & keys that ship with the equipment.    In Car Wash we're one of the few manufacturers that doesn't just provide generic locks - every site gets their own key code or three.  It's a pain to do sometimes, but it's been worth it on more than one occasion where an owner thought the theft was because of generic keys only to find out it was because they lost track of one of their own keys. 

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3 hours ago, haldir said:

@Green Eyed Monsty

 

Look out!!

 

https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/blood-red-crickets-invade-nevada-town-residents-fight-100246938

 

Elko, but they could learn to drive a vehicle & drive down US 80. ::P:

On the other side of the state, fortunately.  Also Southern Idaho.

One of those critter infestations that happens on a regular basis every few years.

Been on the news here in Nevada for the better part of a week.  People just have to endure and deal with it as best they can.

As far as coming down I-80, more likely they would just start hijacking vehicles and forcing people to drive them to other population centers.

We are having unseasonably cool weather, with freezing temps overnight in many areas affected by these crickets so maybe there is some relief there.

GEM

Who just had a mental image of these things heading west into California and overwhelming the Agricultural Inspection Station near Truckee, colloquially known as "Bug Check", Alfred Hitchcock style.

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4 hours ago, PaganMegan said:

https://www.wmtw.com/article/westbrook-shooting-maine-police-man-woman-killed/44272101

 

I knew Cockrell, not well, but to say 'hi' to in the street.

 

Her two kids witnessed the shooting.

 

The Auld Grump

I'm using Brigid's fire, just read the.article.

This is why we have a legal system, and a court system, because if we didn't, people like me would do bad things to people like that.  Give BD a hug from all of us tonight. 

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48 minutes ago, kristof65 said:


There's a lot of that in the industry. At least those owners are honest about it ::D:
 

The company I contract to would support everything for ever, if we could, according to the owner. Most of the things we have to obsolete is not because we planned it, but because we can't get the parts to make/repair things any more. 

Back when I first started working on this equipment back in 2002, the distributor I worked for had acquired 25 of these brand new credit card readers to test out. We were desperately searching for something reliable, because most sites were replacing their card readers every three to four months.   The new card readers cost 3x the price of the old card readers, so it was a bit of a gamble - they needed to last at least three times as long just to break even.   After six months, we hadn't replaced a single card reader, so we ordered another 25, and at 9 months, again, not a single one had failed, so another 25, at a year, another 25, etc  By the end of the first 18 months since we started testing them, not a single one had failed, and we had over a hundred in service.  Many had been sent out as warranty replacements on production units that shipped with the old card reader.   Sow e convinced the equipment manufacturer to start shipping them with production units. Everyone was happy - we were, cause fewer warranty replacements, our customers were because they worked reliably, and fewer replacements, etc.  The manufacturer started ordering them 100-200 at a time.  Our competitors notices, and started using the same card readers. 

By the end of the third year, things were looking good, when all of a sudden we started having credit card reader failures again.  Turns out the card reader manufacturer could no longer meet demand in their own factory, and so had started outsourcing parts to factories in the Phillipines.   They struggled to return to the quality they had before, and before they could resolve the issue, the company I contract to now figured out how to build their own card reader. 

The customer we sold most of those original 25 card readers to is here in Iowa.  About 7-8 years ago, they were replacing their oldest tellers, and I happened to notice that one of the tellers still had one of the old card readers - one of the original 25 that was sold - and it still worked!.    Got over 12 years out of that card reader in the field, and I took it back to my office and installed in on my test set, where I got another 2-3 years out of it before it finally failed. 

Those are the card readers I want to sell my customers. 
 


Part of being a good support person is figuring out how ask/eliminate the simple things without offending people.  And even sometimes that doesn't work. 

Back when I worked for Jim Dunlop Mfg (guitar accessories manufacturer), a really common service call was for the Crybaby wah wah pedal making a squealing noise when you rock the pedal back.  99% of the time this means that the guitar was plugged into the pedal output and the amplifier was plugged into the pedal input (so backwards).   It's a simple problem and fix - just unplug the cables, and plug them back in correctly. 

I can't tell you the number of calls I got from mothers of teenage boys chewing me out because the expensive pedal their son just bought/rcvd as a gift was "defective" for this reason, and then would curse me out even more when I politely told them it was plugged in backwards, usually using some variation of "Are you calling my child stupid!?"

I figured out the best response was "No Ma'am, it's an easy mistake to make.  I plug these pedals in over a hundred times a week, and it's something I do 2-3 times a week."  That would usually mollify them, but occasionally not - and I'd issue an RMA number for a return that would almost never be used.
 

I am amazed at the number of operators in Coin-op & car wash that will blindly use the locks & keys that ship with the equipment.    In Car Wash we're one of the few manufacturers that doesn't just provide generic locks - every site gets their own key code or three.  It's a pain to do sometimes, but it's been worth it on more than one occasion where an owner thought the theft was because of generic keys only to find out it was because they lost track of one of their own keys. 

First time I've made this info public but the company that made the Pac-Man/Ms Pac Man games in the USA used the same key number on every single back door on every machine for a couple of years.  Popular games could run into production runs in the thousands.  This is a company well known in the slot machine field for many decades, so it isn't like high security on such things isn't something they weren't aware of.

Once the back door is opened/removed [it was just a plywood or fiberboard panel with a lapped grove bottom and a single lock at the top the entire interior of the machine was accessible, including the coin vault which could be opened/removed by unfastening four fasteners of a common type and size.  Common operator practice was to run wallboard screws in either from the side of the cabinet near the back or install a strap metal bar on the back of the machine.  This only slows down a determined thief but was usually enough of a deterrent for most locations.

What's even more insane is the back panel keys were shipped on a hook right next to the coin mechanisms, two keys with each machine,  as an industry standard practice.  If one knew how to pop the coin mech. doors you could easily grab the back door keys.

GEM

GEM

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6 hours ago, PaganMegan said:

https://www.wmtw.com/article/westbrook-shooting-maine-police-man-woman-killed/44272101

 

I knew Cockrell, not well, but to say 'hi' to in the street.

 

Her two kids witnessed the shooting.

 

The Auld Grump

I'm using Brigid's fire, just read the.article.

I knew both of the victims, I just never knew his name. She was the one I would say hi to.

 

The Auld Grump

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