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Posts from — April 2010

Well, that was fun.

The more complex a system becomes, the more interesting it is likely to be when a catastrophe strikes.

Take, for example, a cup of water on an empty table.  When the cup gets knocked over, the water spills out on the table and isn’t terribly exciting.  Let’s replace the water with some Hawaiian Punch.  Now you knock it over and you get a red pool on the table and a red stain left behind once you clean it up.  See?  More interesting.

So let’s add a bit more to it.  Like, say, a computer.  You know, keyboard, mouse, tower.  Stuff like that.  And speakers.  And a rat’s nest of cabling to connect it all together.  Change the table to a computer desk.  Put a nice light colored carpet underneath all of it.  We can’t forget the power strips on the ground behind the set up, either.  And, oh yeah, a slight incline making the desk higher in the front.

Now tip over the cup.

The mouse pad, keyboard, speaker cable, and tower effectively contain all of the liquid in a small space on the desk.  Nothing spills out the front, nothing spills out the side.  However, let’s not forget the incline.  The incline causes what would be a containment fence on a level surface to become a funnel, which swiftly and efficiently drains the pool of sugary liquid through a narrow space between a section of the desk and the computer tower, and out the backside of the desk, where it produces a red cascade directly onto the rat’s nest of wiring, the power strips, and the white carpeting below.

Yeah.  That was -AWESOME-  You just can’t anticipate that kind of failure.

April 17, 2010   No Comments