Great moments in engineering

I’m not getting invited back to the engineering department any time soon.  In fact, I suspect they may have posted my picture on the wall with a sign saying “Don’t let this smartarse back in here.”  All because I tried to be helpful.

My reasons for being in this unfamiliar building aren’t important (also, I don’t want to give too much about my job away – I’m trying to be anonymous remember?)  One thing I noticed while I was there was a range of what was obviously sensitive equipment mounted on the walls.  I say “obviously” because each of these sensor thingies had a sign on top of them saying “WARNING: Do not rest items on top of this cabinet.”  The signs had simply been printed out on the laser printer, probably after someone had fucked up the equipment by resting stuff on top of it. 

I noticed something seemed a little… wrong with the sign so I had this conversation with one of the engineers (who turned out to be the one who had put the signs up):

ME: So I’m guessing this equipment is sensitive?

HIM: Great guess.

ME: Did somebody break something by stacking things on top of it?

HIM: Yeah, it interferes with some of the readings, plus that wall can’t hold too much weight.

ME: Did you have some problems with the signs blowing away?

HIM: Yeah, how did you know that?

ME: I noticed you’ve weighted the signs down with block of wood.

HIM: Because of the cooling fans here, every time someone opens a door we get a surge of wind so yeah, I had to weight them down.

ME: So you’re holding the “don’t stack things” sign in place with bits of wood?

HIM: Yeah.

ME: Heavy bits of wood on the sensitive machinery holding down signs saying “Don’t put heavy things here”.

(pause while this sinks in)

HIM: What the fuck do you want here anyway?

Like I said, I’m not getting invited back any time soon.



Filed under Work

12 responses to “Great moments in engineering

  1. ALL HAIL BLU-TAC (except engineers, cos that stuff might put them out of a job, especially when combined with silicone, and wood putty- you can build just about anything with just those three items)

  2. And duct tape, don’t forget duct tape. That stuff can do anything.

  3. hellboy

    hhmm you must be super genius, next goal must be nobel prize 🙂

  4. tom

    first rule of software engineering – if it works, woah, cool. whatever!

  5. You are of course correct. I forgot the duct tape.

    Yup- I am a doofus…

  6. Don’t mock Blue Tac, I’ve worked at a place selling devices costing well into the tens of thousands which were made using Blue Tac.

    And Aryldyte.

    No Duct Tape though, perhaps if they’d used Duct Tape they’d have been worth millions.

  7. LMAO! now THAT is funny! 😀

  8. Engineers don’t believe in tape.

  9. What’s wrong with just writing on the thing with waterproof markers?

  10. @Massif- I myself am a big fan of blu-tac. You see, I live in a house made mainly from cardboard, blu-tac and hairspray. 🙂 but no duct tape. If the house had duct tape in its construction, I would be paying too much in rent.

    @ Michelle- Logic? Logic from engineers (in Melbourne)? Shame on you, girl! 😉 you should know better…

  11. Hellboy: Nobel prize sounds good

    Tom: First rule of analysis – work out when it’s going to stop working 😉

    range: duct tape is modern science’s greatest achievement

    Massif: Araldyte is good for permanent stuff, duct tape rules when improvising

    Sandra: and unfortunately true 🙂

    engtech: agnostic engineers aren’t sure whether or not tape tape works while evangelical engineers believe duct tape created the world in seven days.

    Michelle: You have a great future as a consultant

    Gruntski: Your house sounds like a marvel of Aussie engineering.

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