Beep Beepity Beep

The telephone rings.

“Angry Technician, please state the nature of the IT emergency.”

“BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP I think there’s something wrong with my computer BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP it’s making some kind of alarm noise BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP I was just rebooting it and BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP”

Let’s back up a little.

Years ago I attended a call where the user had reported that every time they clicked on a menu – any menu – it flashed up for a fraction of a second and then vanished. When I arrived and sat down at the workstation, the problem was gone.

It took a few moments for me to realise that when I had sat down, I had almost unconsciously cleared the clutter on the desk from around the keyboard, and in doing so, had removed a binder that had been resting on the Esc key.

I never fail to be astonished by how often this sort of thing happens.

“BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP”

“Sounds like you’ve got something resting on the keyboard to me.”

“BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP Oh, hang on, maybe I have BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BE-“

Silence.

“Yep, that was it.”

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.

5 responses to “Beep Beepity Beep”

  1. Jamie Stephenson says :

    A user at a remote site could not login. He’d enter his user name & password into an application, but the dialog’s “OK” button remain resolutely disabled.

    The problem went round the office as one after another the support guys rang him puzzled over the problem and gave up. Finally it was my turn to hear the familiar story.

    Eventually we got down to checking every detail of the minor data entry required to login and, finally, I cracked it. The user was using the numeric pad with Num Lock off to enter his numeric staff id into the app. The application, expecting a number, just ignored the keystrokes. Why didn’t the user spot the problem? He’d assumed the failure to display his staff id in the edit control was a security feature.

  2. JoshuaW says :

    I’ve had the binder-on-the-keyboard situation. I also had a similar situation where the person was eating tortilla chips at their desk, and a corner broke off and fell between the keys. That didn’t cause problems until they pressed one of the keys it was between. The key got wedged down and was repeating. Not sure why when the screen just says “ssssssssssssssssssssssssssss” they don’t think to look at the S key, but instead call the helpdesk (me).

    Recently, we received a call that a teachers’ mouse wasn’t working. You could click, but the cursor wont move. The computer teacher took them a different mouse, and still, same problem. They decide to call the helpdesk. The call went a little something like this:

    Me: “Is there anything leaning against or touching the SMARTboard?”
    Teacher: “A chair.”
    Me: “Go ahead and move the chair.”
    Teacher: “Hey, my mouse works!”

  3. Victor Mildew says :

    “My mouse isn’t working!” [For ‘mouse’ read cursor, controlled by laptop trackpad]
    “It’s just stuck at the bottom of the screen and won’t move.”
    OK, let’s take a look. Well it seems to be OK. Look, it’s moving around as I move my finger on the trackpad.
    “Well it hasn’t worked for me since I switched it on this morning!”
    Were you by any chance wearing gloves?
    “Err …. “

  4. SamD says :

    “I can’t select a printer. Honestly, these computers drive me up the wall”

    You know what drives me up the wall? When people leave a stack of paper on their escape key and blame it on my computers.

  5. Squeeky says :

    Just been reading though your blog its pretty funny. I dont know if you have come across this. “My mouse wont move and I cant click on anything”. Naturally like many schools IWBs are in most rooms. You walk in remove the chair that has been pushed back in to the IWB and is making a constant point of contact and then walk back out again. Job done