This disc will self-destruct in 5 seconds

The ticket came in just as I returned from break.

“Just inserted a disc into machine – made awful noise and ejected the disc with it in 2 pieces!”

They weren’t kidding. This is what the disc looks like now:

100 All New Broken Maths Lessons

The more seasoned among you will probably already have spotted how this happened. Take a closer look at the centre of the disc:

See the fractures around the inside of the centre hole? Well, just like cracks in a car windscreen, they only get bigger with use. When you put a CD like this into a 52x drive, the stress from being spun at around 10,000RPM causes those cracks to creep larger, until… well, they get very large indeed, and your disc doesn’t really work any more.

And also scares a new teacher who only started yesterday.

About The Angry Technician

The Angry Technician is an experienced IT professional in the UK education sector. Normally found in various states of annoyance on his blog. All views are those of his imaginary pet dog, Howard.

12 responses to “This disc will self-destruct in 5 seconds”

  1. Daniel Beardsmore says :

    The bonus is that it should now fit into the 3.5″ drive should the software ask for the disk to be inserted into A:

    It’s also probably too late to see whether it ships with a version of Adobe Reader newer than 4.

  2. Mark Scholes says :

    Still using discs? How quaint.

    Not logging in with twitter because it wants to post tweets, read tweets, update my profile and follow people?!?

  3. Daniel Beardsmore says :

    Yeah, where are our isolinear rods?

  4. Simon Hales says :

    I remember when I was working as a tech in a school and RM sent us a bunch of metal strips to fit into the front of all the school CD-ROM drives. This is because there were reports of CDs shattering in the drives with such force that flying bits of shrapnel could take out the front of the drive and scare the s&!t out of anyone sitting in front of the PC:)

    • ScottishTech says :

      Dear me, I’d forgotten about those sticky-backed-plastic metal shields as well.. Good times! [cough]

      Changed days now when I now yank the power cable out the DVD drive of of any new PCs which arrive :)

      I had asked if the new PCs could be shipped from HP with a blank plate so I could remove the DVD drive completely, allowing me to use them as spares. Apparently HP can’t supply those.. HUH?!?!

      • Amadeus Phoenix says :

        In my experience, all the drives get used for is playing pirate DVDs the teachers have brought in…

      • AngryTechnician says :

        I actually buy all the Dells for our labs without optical drives. The classrooms get to keep them, but there’s no need for them in a lab these days (except sometimes on the teacher workstation). Saves a few quid per unit too.

        • ScottishTech says :

          Yep, I think our purchasing people will be doing that next time round.

          The problem we have had is that we have somewhere in the region of 120 classrooms with PCs for classroom attendance and interactive boards where watching DVDs is a nigh-on daily event.

          Unfortunately, when it came to supplying these 120 PCs, our local authority – erm – didn’t, basically. So traditionally, these PCs are the absolute oldest out of the school.

          Each year we get a certain amount to replace the 4 year old ones normally in the ICT suites (Scottish Exec rules about pupils using 4 year old PCs), so every year these 4 year old ones replace – where possible – the aging ones used by the staff for teaching(!)

          So ordering new ones without DVDs would bite us on the bum eventually since the little darlings would inflict all manner of suffering on the new PCs – the kind that a 25p belt from CPC ain’t going to fix.

          Now that this year has seen me hobble them from day 1, I should have a nice stockpile to fall back on…

  5. ScottishTech says :

    Gah – software which requires a CD to be installed and has copy protection so you can’t emulate it… How I loathe thee!

  6. Ric_ says :

    What are they going to do without those 100 all new maths lessons?!? :-o