IN OTHER NEWS: El Reg has been throwing intermittent 524s for the last 90 mins. On call engineers are unavailable for comment :-(
Welcome agin to On-Call, The Register's weekly column in which we share readers' stories of being asked to achieve the improbable, by people who are impossible. This week, meet “Richard”, who wrote to share a story from his time working at a healthcare provider at which he “received a call from someone who was demanding that …
524: an error code indicating that you're using Cloudflare and ought to switch to something else.
Wonder if they'd spot me making a pile of extra accounts to give you some much deserved upvotes?
I understand El Reg's need for stuff like clodfool, but I'm sure there are better options out there. If not, maybe El Reg's commentards could band together and build something?
"No homophobia here please. Kindly report to your nearest re-education camp."
Oh AC, you poor sweet soul, when they talk about objects in cavities, they don't mean penises (which, after all, are supposed to fit in another human's body), they're talking about all the random objects that medics have to remove from people after they "slipped and fell".
Actually I guess they might also be talking about removing penises from other objects, like vacuum cleaners.
Chat to someone in an A&E department and you'll be amazed at the number of "naked vacuuming" and "I slipped coming out of the shower and somehow this courgette ended up in my..." type of injuries!
> Chat to someone in an A&E department and you'll be amazed at the number of "naked vacuuming" and "I slipped coming out of the shower and somehow this courgette ended up in my..." type of injuries!
At first glance, I read that as "corgette" and was afraid it was some sort of miniature corgi.
In the US, I think it would be called a zucchini, which is an even funnier word.
Zucchini is the Italian word, courgette is the French, which the Brits use for the immature variation of what they call a marrow.
Elsewhere, you'll no doubt have spotted a reference to an "Aubergine". That's the French word that the Brits use instead of the English word "Eggplant".
Hopefully these fine examples of the ongoing mutation of the English Language are clear as mud, and have enhanced your reading pleasure.
"Elsewhere, you'll no doubt have spotted a reference to an "Aubergine". That's the French word that the Brits use instead of the English word "Eggplant"."
The original word is aubergine and as jake says, French. It was a variant of alberge which is a variety of peach. All aubergines used to be purple, but plant breeders being the breeders they are, bred a white variant. This latter was called an egg-plant to distinguish it from the purple aubergine.
"Hopefully these fine examples of the ongoing mutation of the English Language are clear as mud, and have enhanced your reading pleasure." © jake™
No homophobia here please.
Oh purleeese! There is no homophobia present in the sentence you quoted.
In a previous job as a medical professional I had to assist with the removal of a number of unexpected items from bodily orifices of both male and female patients, including a champagne cork, a gerbil, a gear-lever knob, and the business end of a toilet-brush.
I did a stint in A&E for a while. We had a few. My favourite is...
"I was cleaning the bathroom using limescale remover and a bleach spray, and I'd taken all my clothes off so I didn't ruin them. I started getting dizzy so I sat down on the nearest thing, which happened to be a crate which was part full of cucumbers; I work at Covent Garden Market. Anyway the top of the crate broke and I fell right in, and..."
Then of course, hats off to the guy who came straight out and said from the off that the curtain ring currently generating something that looked surprisingly like an aubergine in the guy's lap was put on there deliberately in a crazy act of foolish sexual experimentation and that's the truth, no funny story to laugh at, so just get on with getting the fucking thing off there NOW! Please! PLEASE!
"In a previous job as a medical professional I had to assist with the removal of a number of unexpected items from bodily orifices of both male and female patients, including a champagne cork, a gerbil, a gear-lever knob, and the business end of a toilet-brush."
The gear-lever knob just cracked me up, when I was drinking my coffee. But you own me a keyboard ...
As for the gerbil, I googled the term, is it like .... an animal, of the mouse family ????? Seems sick to me ....
SO, after 30+ years of uncorroborated internet rumors of gerbil stuffing, and after the same 30-odd years of people trying and failing to track down even ONE case that can be confirmed, here on ElReg Alister can finally point us at the hospital and exact time where it happened for real. But wasn't written up in The Lancet or The NEJM "due to patient confidentiality", despite any number of other cases of miscellaneous stuff recovered from various human orifices somehow managing to get around the confidentiality problem on both sides of the pond.
Colo(u)r me skeptical ... but I'm willing to be convinced. Name the hospital, and the date, I'll make the necessary calls myself. If it happened, somebody will talk.
Actually, somebody would have already talked. It's human nature to gossip.
Colo(u)r me skeptical ...
Given some of your past claims, from wealth to power (including getting CxO level people "fired" for going against your policies) and experiences, well.. That kettle looks a little burnt, don'tchathink? ;)
('tis said in jest, but if anyone wishes to take it another way, there's options both for "downvote" and "report abuse")
"surely medical professionals, of all people, should know that just because something fits in a cavity that doesn't mean it belongs there"
"No homophobia here please. Kindly report to your nearest re-education camp."
Um mate Why would that make you think of gay people ? Have you not read the articles on El Reg about metal rings around men's toddgers or seen the show sex sent me to the ER? There have been plenty of cases of me and women that stock things in their bodies that don't belong, but some how you read that to mean a guy guy with stuff up his bum, No my friends it's you that just might need the re education camp.
"No homophobia here please."
What's "anal play" got to do with being gay? You're missing out, it's a bloody good fun and I say that as a happily married man in a loving hetro relationship where both myself and the missus enjoy it! When you have the time I suggest you take a good look at the items on Lovehoney, plus the wonderful sales ladies who do the videos with dead serious faces while talking about anal lube and other assorted toys! Ha ha!
I did once have a professor when I worked at a University that didn't know about the "next page" / "previous page" buttons in Outlook Web Access, he thought that the webmail interface could only show his most recent 25 e-mails. For months when he needed to access older e-mails from different machines that didn't have Outlook set up for him, he'd delete items from his inbox to bring older e-mails onto the front page, do what he needed to do, then restored his e-mails again from Deleted Items.
You'd have thought he'd ask about this. I only spotted it after helping with a different issue on a lab PC that required him to open an old e-mail...
I agree that its not obvious due to OWA's bloody awful layout, but that is beside the point.
Several times I have observed that something is so dumb / obvious / such a basic fucking requirement that there is no way anyone, competent or otherwise, could have designed it that way and that there must be a proper / better / easier way to do something. Mostly I have been right and a look at the manual or asking someone in possession of a clue will reveal it.
The problem is a whole class of users who accept not just what is given to them but what they see in front of them without question.
best one we've had (actually had it twice in 19 years) A Prof at our lab came down to say the toner cartridge on the printer in his corridor was out as it was printing very faint. Now as we all know give the toner a good shake and its good for a few '000 more pages.
ME "Ok could you give it a shake and it'll be good for a few '000 more pages"
Prof "what the printer?" (in a slow Irish accent)
ME "ermmm no just the toner cartridge"
Now this printer was a HP LaserJet 4300DTN so not only is that pretty big for starters it also has not one but two 500 page paper trays, so its FECKING BIG and b'stard heavy!!! I can just see him there picking up and shaking a 20+ Kg laser printer!
The same user also had a bit of an issue involving the insert key and all his text being over written as he kept pressing it. He never did get the hang or concept of the insert key!!
Over the last few decades we seem to be breeding a special kind of 'dumb'. This does not bode well for humanity's future.
El Reg: Your flakiness is clearly down to cheaping out and using (badly) recycled electrons, so to be helpful I've sent you a few packets of brand new ones down the interwebby tubes.
"Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning."
I think my emacs signature was at one point:
"Make it idiot-proof, and the Universe will build a better idiot"
Unfortunately the dumb is on the design side. The industry needs to design for people as they are, not as they'd like them to be, and it needs to design for a larger chunk of the bell curve. What was acceptable when IT users were a selected and trained cadre doesn't cut the mustard for a universal utility.
The industry needs to design for people as they are, not as they'd like them to be, and it needs to design for a larger chunk of the bell curve.
NO! Think for a moment about what you're saying!
You want even dumber people to easily get on teh interwebs!?
Reading this straight after the posts about Laserjet 4300DTN's did make me boggle.
If some can insert a LaserJet into somewhere it's not meant to go, I'd have to salute them... while running to minimum safe distance. I suspect it would involve a steam hammer and a very large amount of Vaseline.
We used to send them to Stores and ask for a Long Weight.
Never saw them again for hours.
Once, one of our mechanics sent a prentis to town to buy him a right-handed spanner and he came back with a massive 35mm/40mm spanner which cost the mech £5.00 which was a lot of money in 1974 ...
Well, they tend to be labeled as Exabyte 8mm drives, so, no problem, just that you have to know the cross-reference.
I have to disagree. I never had any issues with 8mm Exabytes. Always were very reliable with old SunOS 4 boxen. If you had said DDS then that would be entirely different matter and I would wholeheartedly agree.
"I have to disagree. I never had any issues with 8mm Exabytes."
There were several product lines - classic Exabyte drives like 8500 (up to 5 GB), intermediate XL versions, Mammoth drives, and finally the VXA design they bought in. No prizes for guessing which lineage was the reliable one.
This page lists 8mm formats up to Mammoth
and this has formats after Mammoth
Had a very attractive young lady coworker tell me she could never remember which connector was the male and which was the female. I am a 60 something male engineer and I was at a loss. I managed to set her straight without getting HR involved, but I'll be damned if I can remember how!
This post has been deleted by its author
Other one's I've heard:
* Fallopian tubes for the CVRT (good one because they go to stores, wait, then medical & wait)
* Keys to the outdoor firing range
* Tartan paint for the last post
* Camouflage paint
Another good one is to give the new person a chainsaw and a sealed note and tell them to take it to the RSM (Regimental Sergeant Major) - the note would say something like "Give me the wages or I'll cut your F&*("%^ head off!"
We had great fun aboard ship [aircraft carrier] one day sending a so-new-that-he-squeaked seaman all over the ship for a Box of Fallopian Tubes. The ships phone system was buzzing for several hours as each location would report back where they had sent the poor sod next in his quest to bring back this item that he was informed was desperately needed for a critical repair.
"She's using the new Clinical Administration Package,” David explained.
In her past working life my better half used to have to cross swords (scalpels?) with something very similar. Quite quickly it got slightly more accurately named to "Clinical Records Administration Package", although the acronym was all that was ever used when referring to it or describing it.
This reminds me of my first brush with the legal / forensic side of the IT dodge.
As a junior site service monkey I was sent over to the office of a company that owned a lot of car yards in Adelaide. I was handed a carton of Pentium CPUs and a big bag of DIMMs and told to go replace the ones onsite. No reason was given, so off I went in my little noddy car.
I arrived to find the police winding up their crime scene. It seems that overnight someone had broken in and removed all the CPUs and RAM from a dozen brand new machines. Now these things had intrusion alarms so the cunning buggers had gone in through the front panels and stripped the machines to their motherboards without tripping the alarms. All the bits were neatly stacked, along with the screws next to each machine.
A rather attractive DC asked me what I thought of it. I replied that whoever did it clearly knew exactly how these boxes were assembled, where they were and how to to them without tripping the building alarms. In short, its an inside job.
These days I'd know better than to volunteer such an opinion. I'd offer to write it up in a report and charge a fee.
I did discover just how loud those little bastard sirens are when I failed to get the disarm key in and turned fast enough...
A note for those under 40: back in the early to mid 1990s CPUs, RAM and HDDs were hell expensive. Also highly portable, easily concealed and readily disposable due to a combination of tight supply and system builders with lots of orders and few morals. There were cases of Intel freight getting hijacked at gun point. Most disties kept this stuff in a locked cage that wouldn't look out of place at a crack dealers' premises.
It turns out that a USB plug fits perfectly into an ethernet port.
Not only that, it also rakes about the right amount of pressure, ie it feels like a USB socvket when you're reaching over/behind a desk to put on in.
Not that I've ever made that mistake, repeatedly, while wondering why the drive no longer works, honest!
Spanner the level of vitriol was sickening. Any one that dared suggested twitter had a use was down voted. That if you lost some thing on twitter it was your fucking fault. You are the product(cause its free) and you are an idiot because you should know nothing in life is free so you must be giving some thing up.
Welcome to El Reg..
This is how it works...
Make a story about a subject, and the haters descend, so anyone talking positively about the subject will get downvoted to hell.
Talk about it offhand in a non-related story, and well, you are dealing with normal regular readers, not so many of the haters.
It's a weird phenomenon, but not restricted entirely to El Reg..
He also dispensed some advice to the effect that surely medical professionals, of all people, should know that just because something fits in a cavity that doesn't mean it belongs there!
Well, knowing the way some of them provide wrong medications to their unfortunate victims, they don't know what shouldn't go into mouths!
Great comment though :)
I remember sirens like the ones mentioned for vcr's/tv's etc. Bit of a bugger when you forget, go to move the tv, and the thing screams at you and you drop your expensive, heavy tv!
Didn't some of those things have an issue where a judiciously placed drop of super glue would forever silence them?
Friend from school became a nurse, she told me of many, some already aired in this thread.
The one that lingers to this day was an admission with a navel orange and vaginismus, all the nurses took a peek as the spasms juiced the thing through the navel, stung her stretched ladycache and the cycle repeated.
The doctor on shift suggested applying cheap sparkling wine because it was Essex (and you can work out the implied spoonerism). They did irrigate it with water to reduce the pain until it sorted itself out.
I remember D`s comment that orange juice on my gash would be like chilli on your cock seeping into your Jap`s eye.
Ah.. nurses, they have a way with words
On Call "Because that's how we've always done it" is a mantra we've heard all too often. But what happens when you suggest something different? Take a trip back to the days of carbon paper with On Call.
Today's story comes from "Dan" and takes us back to the early part of the 1990s. The Hubble Space Telescope had just been launched, but the Euro had yet to grace the currency markets.
Dan was working in IT support for a UK local authority. "IT support," he told us, involved "anything with a plug on it." It was fortunate therefore that there were only three sites in the borough, "one of which was small and parochial," he said.
On Call A tale of theft, fraud and understanding the meaning of "Delete" to end your working week. Welcome to a legally questionable episode of On Call.
Our story is another from a reader Regomized as "Ellen" and once again concerns Digital Equipment Corporation's finest. In this case, DEC's ALL-IN-1 office automation suite of the 1980s.
ALL-IN-1 was quite the thing back in the day. By modern standards it was pretty rudimentary, but with its email and word processing functionality it must have seemed like a whole new world. It was also highly customizable.
On Call Sometimes it just works. Sometimes it just doesn't. And sometimes users do the most curious of things. Welcome to an Apple-tastic episode of On Call.
On Call Welcome back to On Call wherein a Register reader accidentally improved an airline's productivity by the simple virtue of knowing their stuff.
"Eric" (for that is not his name) spent much of his career working on systems in the airline industry. "Since airlines were the first commercial organisations to use large-scale transaction processing systems, many of their features date back to the late 1950s," he said.
"Some of them were surprisingly sophisticated for the period. In the IBM mainframe world, each user terminal could support up to five simultaneous sessions which were designated by the letters A through E."
On Call Sure, you might use words like "boom" and "explode" when it comes to errors with your system. But could a whoopsie have the potential to render a chunk of a country uninhabitable? Welcome to On Call.
Our story comes from a reader Regomized as "Ellen" who spent the early part of the 1980s toiling away in the IT department of a company producing software responsible (in part) for running nuclear power stations.
A brand new system was in the process of being rolled out, which would keep track of which stations were online, how much power they could provide, and so on.
On Call This week we bring you a shocking incident for a Register reader who was party to an electrical engineer's earthly delights.
"Andrew" takes us back to the 1980s, the days of DECNet, DEC Rainbow PCs, and the inevitable VAX or two.
Back then, DECnet was a big noise in networking. Originally conceived in the 1970s to connect PDP-11 minis, it had evolved over the years and was having its time in the sun before alternative networking technologies took over.
On Call In this week's episode of our On Call column, an exasperated Register reader nearly walks the plank after failing to break the laws of physics.
Our tale comes from "Rob" (not his name) and concerns the time he was working for an ISP that sold satellite connectivity to the super-rich on their super-yachts.
He had an issue with one customer regarding iffy service at sea. "It was an ongoing case that had resulted in replacement of lots of expensive hardware for stabilized satellite platforms and DVB-S modems over the course of the last couple of weeks," Rob recalled.
On Call There was a time in IT when "brute force" meant something other than guessing at passwords while wearing a favorite hoodie. Welcome to an edition of On Call that really pulls out some memories.
Today's tale comes from the era of coaxial cables and thinnet. "Ben" (most definitely not his name) was working on the campus of an educational institution. "We got a call that the network in a building out on the edge of campus was 'flaky'," he recalled.
"Some machines were working, some weren't, especially the department director's."
On Call Modes of operation always present a challenge for users. Especially when they invent their own. Welcome to a mysterious On Call with an all-too-obvious solution.
Today's contribution comes from a reader Regomized as "Ivor" and concerns a particularly puzzling support call from a customer struggling with Ivor's software.
It was regarding a PC setting he'd never heard of. We should explain that Ivor worked as a developer and development manager for his employer for well over a quarter of century and would be forgiven for thinking he'd heard it all. But there's always that one ever so special case.
On Call We take a trip back in time to the era of floppy disks and cabinets of PDP-11 hardware for an On Call where knowing the difference between hard and soft makes all the difference.
Our tale comes from a reader Regomised as "Don" who describes himself as "an electrical engineer with credentials dating back to HP 2114 16-bit rackmount computers." Ah yes, the 2114. Not, we suspect, the tediously modern Pavilion model but something a good deal more historic, replete with knobs, switches and flashing lights.
It would be fair to say that Don enjoyed the golden age of computing. He told us he used a Digital PDP-LSI11/03 as his "desktop" until the era of the PC dawned. It also meant he was (and is) blessed with a lot of experience, something that came in handy when he decided to pay a visit to his wife's workplace over a lunch break.
Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022