Another one bites the dust — or not

The programmer’s national anthem is ‘AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH’.
Weinberg

Shortly after I bought my fourth computer, back in the days when a Pentium processor was state of the art, I had an experience that I can only describe as eerie.

I was changing which power cords (of the appliances I use) were in which power outlets. My computer was running at the time when I accidentally pulled its power cord. I noticed the mistake immediately and stood up cursing. But when I looked at the computer with the power cord in my hand, I saw that the computer was still running!

Eerie — isn’t it?

Not really, it was my fourth computer, but it also was my first notebook and I had completely forgotten that notebooks come with their own battery and are supposed to stay on even if you pull the power cable. What is normal today was new for me then and it took me a few seconds to get from a goosebumps-“What the hell …” to an deep “AHHHHHHHHHH!”.

I had a similar experience yesterday. A short while ago, one of my external hard drives did not start again. After plugging in the USB cable nothing happened. I pulled the power cable and put it back in and the light flickered for a few seconds, the drive started but stopped immediately again. And the drive simply did not appear on my desktop. I tried it a couple of times until I came to the conclusion that the drive was simply gone.

It happens and it did not come unexpected, after all, that’s why you keep multiple backups.

So I ordered a new external hard drive, and when the new drive came in the mail, I wanted to remove the broken hard drive from my desk. Which was when I noticed that the USB-cable of that hard drive was not on my desk, but behind it. What was on my desk was the USB cable from my printer, something which I rarely use. So, instead of plugging in the cable of my external hard drive, I plugged in the printer cable — again and again, wondering why the external hard drive did not work.

When I realized this mistake, I plugged in the right data cable and “AHHHHHHHHHH!” my external hard drive started working again.

I am usually very good with technology, but there are moments when fuck-ups happen. In both cases it were the expectations that did me in. I expected my notebook would react like a regular desktop PC and was surprised. And I expected that my external hard drive would break soon.

Well, a needed reminder to check the basics first — and another external hard drive is always a good thing.

Anyway, time for backups.

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