* Posts by diver_dave

90 posts • joined 2 Sep 2009


Seriously, you do not want to make that cable your earth


Re: From the domestic side

I know it sounds silly but maybe more electricians would sleeve if you didn't have to buy 100m looms or pay through the nose for short lengths.

I go through 200-300m of earth sleeving a year and probably 5m of brown and blue.


Friday, clear weekend, pint o'clock.


Re: From the domestic side

Oh yes....

Take the ceiling rose out and both 2 way switches. Chaos ensues given you can almost guarantee that the N cores have been used for switching.

It's a joy to take 2 continuity readings and put it back together working, then listen to SWIMBO lecture husband.


Re: What On "Earth"?

Potential disaster.

I see what you did there!!!


From the domestic side

50v L-E is something I see regularly. Normally a fluorescent fitting died


Having worked both sides I'm always very very careful with Band 1 and Band 2 cable separation.

On the earthing side. Several times I've seen the earth used instead of fitting 3 core cable for 2 way lighting. Plus I had the delights the other week of tracking a fault following Easter DIY work. Somehow client had managed to feed all the upstairs lighting from one of the 2 way strappers. Obviously, in the loft, on a hot day and under 3 layers of insulation.


Great weekend all.



Re: Of earths

Big TT spike.

Always a good time move!

Buying a USB adapter: Pennies. Knowing where to stick it: Priceless


Re: As an ex

I actually draw a line here.

As far as I'm concerned it's an SEP.

I had one where I quoted jus over 4k to replace 136 lighting panels in a small supermarket. Very narrow time window.6pm Sunday to 6am Wednesday.

Asked if I could price match £600. I declined.

Called 10 days later as nothing switching correctly. Seriously, it's panel down, 3 wires, panel up.

Quoted original price as I was pissed by their nerve. Client declined....



As an ex

Telephony guy turned electrician I get this alot.

1) well YouTube said..

2) but all you did was reset the RCD after unplugging the kettle. (I did ask you to do this on the phone before coming out)

3) Mr I know 'bout lectrics it must be something other than plugging the multiple 4 way blocks into themselves. (Regular Christmas lights problem)

4) Why £60 to connect my cooker? It's only 5 minutes work and Dave down the pub will do it for £20 [1]

The joys. Aaargghhhhh

Pint day all....


PS:. First! (Nearly)

[1] yeah but is he going to continuity, IR and Zs test it?

NASA will award contract for second lunar lander to a biz that's not SpaceX


I'm reminded of

Both Star Cops and Lunar Descent by Allen Steele.

Surely two companies providing the service is actually good. With the proviso that the priority is safety and there is adequate oversight.

Obviously with the latter being NASA I'm not convinced that's enough. Especially given how vested Boeing are in ULA and NASA hardware in general.

BOFH: Gaming rig for your home office? Yeah right


Oh please please...

I want to see Simon handle an actual wannabe Influencer.

That would be a joy.

Tell me more about this collaboration and exposure idea. Prey do...... Please

BOFH: The Geek's Countergambit – outwitted at an electronics store


Has ....

The BOFH met his match?

I'm expecting an electrified doorplate

Crypto outfit Qubit appeals to the honour of thieves who lifted $80M of its digi-dollars


Err... I think

I think you managed to miss a certain Mr N Tesla

Bouncing cheques or a bouncy landing? All in a day's work for the expert pilot


It is almost as if the company does not test things properly before unleashing them on the world.

To be honest.

With the RJ problems at least they are identical

You want a reboot? I'll give you a reboot! Happy now?


Re: Longest wait

Is that you Dave?


Longest wait

I PM'd our project to change our call recording system. 500+ users.

Was updating some permissions and accidentally deleted the source permissions file by uploading a completely blank table.

Stage 1: Panic.

Stage 2: Panic some more.

Stage 3: Try and find backup. No joy.

Stage 4: Ring supplier, who managed a remote restore.

Stage 5: Dent wallet badly at project end buying copious amounts of beer for tech who not only restored but forgot to document said restore.

I do like working with Business Systems.... Lovely company and oh so discreet!

Should have added, this was a parallel run to old system before switching over.

Docking £500k commission from top SAS salesman was perfectly legal, rules judge


See it elsewhere

I know a diving shop owner in Lanzarote who used to sell industrial air con.

Pulled in a deal to supply, fit, comission and a service contract for Aldi Süd in Germany.

Management baulked at paying his comission as he would have earned more than the CEO that year.

He, along with the entire sale team walked. He's happy now doing something he loves but is still a little bitter about it.

DBA heroes don't always wear capes. Sometimes they just have a bunch of forgotten permissions


Re: Ouch. Memory trigger


Having the only working phone line does lead to your desk becoming very very popular.


Ouch. Memory trigger

Mentioned it before I think.

The great Manchester Comms fire.

I was first in that day and couldn't reach anyone on the DR teams.

So took the decision myself to shift all linklines to other offices then waited for the fallout.

Luckily we were trialling Sametime so at least had some semblance of real time Comms given even mobile networks were down.

All worked out in the end.

By lunchtime I had a single working phone line courtesy of Otis lifts the floor below who were on what's now Virgin with a cable strung out the window to the floor below.

2 days later my colleague at our main site in Bournemouth had to crash a DR meeting to explain that just because the Manchester office could call ourselves didn't mean we could move everything back!

Happy days. Not...


'I'm telling you, I haven't got an iPad!' – Sent from my iPad


Re: Which is why I always turn off email sigs...


Learn something new every day!


Re: Yeah. Been there..

Oh I wish. I wish...


Re: Yeah. Been there..


The Nortel 3820 was the fixed line equivalent of the Nokia 3310.

I once dropped an unboxed one down the center of the stairwell. 3 floors...

Only damage was a few scratches.

You have to really try to kill one.


Yeah. Been there..

Telecoms again.

Called by one of our more technologically challenged users.

Phone turret not working. One of the almost indistructable 3820's.

Get down to client [1] Ask usual questions.

Client had of course done nothing that may cause the issues. However, turret is total Dodo.

Pick it up... And.... Get a cup of cold coffee down my shirt.

Fairly simple diagnosis from that point.a few choice words were exchanged. Well actually the conversation was one sided.

She did offer to get my nice CT shirt dry cleaned.

Roll on pint time....

Have a good weekend all...


[1] Same client who took recabling every desk to the board as it was obviously cr*p because pushing her bag right under her desk was pulling extension leads apart regularly.

Gaffa tape fix.

What evil lurks within the data centre, and why is it DDoS-ing the ever-loving pants off us?


Re: That said

IIRC Jones Cable /VM disconnected an office block in centre London.

By basically driving a JCB through the incomer shed.


Re: That said


Strange as this was behaviour that technically shouldn't have been possible.

I've always sworn the damb thing was Maliciously sentient!


That said

I've been headscratching with an old Meridian switch before.

Getting multiple capacity drop outs that gave every indication of a card fault. Very very intermittent...

So after hours myself and Big Dave from BT have the panels off and start testing. Nothing. Anywhere.

Fault keeps reoccurring on and off.

Eventual diagnosis and all round circular arse kicking.

We had two sites. North and South.

One team split across the two sites. North forwarding phones to South hunt group. And.. Yep Vice versa.

Telephony equivalent of the old mail out of office auto response.

Nightmare to chase down. Only found it after some very careful traffic analysis.

Pint o'clock.


Snapchat domain squatter loses comedy £1m URL sellback attempt


I seem to remember a BOFH where this was the PHB's idea.

Unsurprisingly a merry jape followed.

Where's the best place to add Mentos to Diet Coke for the most foam? How big are the individual bubbles? Has science gone too far?


To protect...

The victim of his own (suggest suitable word here)

A colleague of mine once tried dissolving solpadine in diet coke.

This resulted in much swearing, soaked laptops and three of us announcing we were going for lunch and would, maybe, be back later depending on how long it took him to clean up.

Effervescent tablets plus coke = wooshh

NASA mulls restoring Saturn V to service as SLS delays and costs mount


Re: I've read that story

Orphanage by Robert Buettner.

Fun series.

Adapting 767 fuselages as dropships.

Take DOS, stir in some Netware, add a bit of Windows and... it's ALIIIIVE!


That said

Anyone know how to get Day of the Tentacle running in W10???



64k for a flight sim

Zx81 did it in 1k


BOFH: Judge us not by the size of our database, but the size of our augmented reality


Happy Friday

I regret I only have one beer to pay down for the author!

Traffic lights worldwide set to change after Swedish engineer saw red over getting a ticket


Re: Show this to the Mexican police

Woebetide you being on the Tulum to Cancun road on a Saturday morning.

The amount of hire cars pulled on their way to the airport is astounding.

Of course. Quick donation required to a trapped motorist rushing to catch a flight.

When the satellite network has literally gone glacial, it's vital you snow your enemy


Re: Battleship!

Not if a candle charge goes in after the pigstick.


Right-click opens up terrifying vistas of reality and Windows 95 user's frightful position therein



Once was asked to double check some figures as 18 out of 24 didn't "feel" like 75% to the user.

Too early for pint o'clock?

From pen-test to penitentiary: Infosec duo cuffed after physically breaking into courthouse during IT security assessment


Re: I can't help thinking

Where are Woodward and Bernstein when you need them?

Operation Desert Sh!tstorm: Routine test shoots down military's top-secret internets



You are so much closer than you think!



The day it started I was first in at 7. By the time anyone from the DR team was in I had already arranged the Linklines to be pointed at another office. That a communication went out internally and recorded a temp message for the top level IVR to explain to customers any delays. I'd also arranged a single temp line by virtue of dropping a cable out of the window to Otis who had the floor below and were on a dedicated C&W system. No idea why they were still running as I thought they used the BT backbone. System D in action.

Fortunately we were running a beta of Sametime so had some additional real time comms

Head of DR rolled in at 9:30. I paged them at 7:10.

My colleague and I came out of it quite well despite steamrollering the DR process. DR did not exactly cover themselves with glory that week.



During the Manchester BT fire one of my colleagues gatecrashed a DR recovery meeting to TRY and point out that just because our Stockport office could call it's own lines didn't necessarily mean that the whole system was back up. Mentioning that if the whole system was available we should be able to call BETWEEN offices.

He was reprimanded for being negative.

Ah., Joy...

Pints all

Good weekend.


Having bank problems? I feel bad for you son: I've got 25 million problems, but a bulk upload ain't one


Re: A fine wunch


Mention BNC...

Ruin my Monday..

Back to therapy!


Re: 10 minutes, not a second more...


A friend of mine working on a large development in central London had a rather interesting experience.

He actually padlocked the cabinet closed and placarded after isolating the 3 phase supply. Went up two floors to continue installing busbars and starting termination. About 20 Min later he dropped a bar bolt. Which apparently then proceeded to short the bars with much banging, flashing and smoke.

Rather rattled (possible understatement warning) he flew back down to the plant room to find the Architect, site manager and owner had cropped the lock off so they could look at the lighting on a finished floor.

There was a subsequent "free and Frank expression of views and opinions management".

Followed by the culprits having a rather large whipround.

According to him he made more in 5 minutes than he normally made in a month as a third year apprentice.

He still talks about it 30 years later


Idle Computer Science skills are the Devil's playthings


Re: what would you have done with a student who managed to take down the mainframe?

I'll see your Black Monks and raise you a Technomage.

He he...

Could you just pop into the network room and check- hello? The Away Team. They're... gone


Not MY Daftness

Got back from dinner in Tulum after a day cave diving.

One of our party had swopped batteries on their charger just before we went out. EXCEPT.....

Instead of plugging flat battery into charger flat was connected tp freshly charged unit.

Who says you can' make a battery pack look like a 200 year old church candle. Would have been hours of work for a skilled dribbler. [*]

Smell was interesting too!


[*] I feel a TP ref appropriate.

Canadian woman fined for not holding escalator handrail finally reaches the top after 10 years


Re: Other escalator laws


Suunto settles scary scuba screwup for $50m: 'Faulty' dive computer hardware and software put explorers in peril



The whole 10 day cave syllabus is designed around accident analysis. This boils down to three main causes (omitting stupidity)

1- incorrect gas planning. Law of thirds. One third in. One third out and one third reserve.

2- failing to mark lines/visual rather than phsically linked jumps.

3- failure of light source.

Again, like flying it is another swiss cheese.

Unfortunately I was right in the middle of one in 2016 in Tulum. Having to do a body recovery after someone who should have known much better screwed up. Very unpleasant.



Gas calculations

Oddly enough.

I do that in my head constantly throughout the dive. Although I admit I cannot dive in Imperial.

I know my tidal rate is 18l per minute. So 36l at 20m.

I then double it to allow for increased workload.

My normal buddy (SWIMBO- has a much lower rate than me and normally dives a smaller tank.

Our predive planning aleays includes my gas failing amd us bailing out onto her tank. Again allowing for deco and increased consumption.

Always plan plan plan...



Dive computers aren't a replacement for a brain.


With OC cave diving I carry with manifolded twins. 2 computers and an independent SPG that gets regularly checked.

Dive plan and turn pressures are also on a arm slate so I don't fumble or them in an emergency. Additionally, I have a nice Dive Rite slate that has 2 layers so I also do a sketch map of the cave.

Interestingly. You missed the fact that over half the rebreather course is spent in emergency drills and driving the unit manually.

Still sticking with OC I think...





Watches are very rarely as waterproof as they say. There is a massive amount of fiddle room when it comes to exactly HOW water tight they are.

Computers give you essentially:


Dive time elapsed

Time until you need to make decompression stops.

If in decompression. What stops you need to make to offgas.

In my case my computer also shows, via a little wireless transmitter, the remaining contents in my tank.

Essentially.... It is telling you how to not die.

Now, I actually had a problem with a different brand.

With these computers they tend to decide your battery life is not allowed to go below 55%. After that the unit shuts down.

On a dive a few years ago I had the unit suddenly start displaying very odd content readings. 180bar suddenly dropped to 130 then 45 then back to 150 and the unit locked up. Dive aborted after 5 minutes.

I now have a seperate contents gauge as well.

However, you still need time and depth as well.

Especially in a cave in Mexico.

Safe diving all..


Montezuma's Revenge can finally be laid to rest as Uber AI researchers crack the classic game


Other challenges

How about giving it a crack at Starquake.

Very different every time. Goal objects change every game as do key locations....

I love my Speccie EMU.....


The best way to screw the competition? Do what they can't, in a fraction of the time


Non IT angle

Several years ago I was teaching for a dive school in Malta.

One of the dives, the Um El Faroud, is spectacular. However given Maltese traffic upto an hours drive.

We get there and one client has forgotten his BCD. Now I love the Faroud and this was also to be a proper push dive right into the engine room.

No problem says I... Customer Service time. Lend the customer my BCD and sit out the dive.

50 minutes later the group surface.

Customer hands me my BCD back. I ask how dive was.

"Yeah.... Noce dive but the Jackets a bit sh*t...."



Overexcitable UK ads regulator gabbles that Amazon broke EU law



Or hammers...

Nothing that can't be fixed with a bigger hammer.

Spent your week box-ticking? It can't be as bad as the folk at this firm



Sounds like a well known large telecommunications company who quoted £400+vat to add one field to a custom report they had built for Symposium [×]

Ended up scripting a merge for the two reports that would then give the required output. Sum of 2hrs work....


[×] May have given it away there!



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