Last year, I came into work to find my main desktop machine off. Now, this machine had been misbehavin' for the last few weeks, but this was a new behavior. I sat down, pressed the power button, and sat back as I listened to the disks spool up, and the case fan spool up. and up. and up. and up, until it was spinning at approximately 12 million RPM and sounding very much like a 1800watt Clairol hair dryer (without a diffuser attachment).

The problem was easy to repro, and after showing it off to a few of my co-workers, I called up our helpdesk. After the initial preliminaries (verifying who I was and what my phone number is), the tech asked me to describe my problem, and I said, "my computer is having a fan problem."

"What sort of fan problem?"

"Well, I start up my computer and.. well, I'll let you listen to it"

I pressed the button, and held the headset near the system. As the fan passed "hair dryer" and was rapidly approach "leaf blower", over the din I heard the tech yelling

"Turn it off! TURN IT OFF!"

Which I did, though I didn't understand his anxiety. It's not like it was leaking magic smoke or anything.

And the computer got fixed through a simple motherboard swap.

And I hadn't thought about it for many months, until...

Last weekend I was at the end of a bridge, standing in the shadows while I moved slowly back and forth, looking for the right time to toss a grenade or go for a headshot. And then suddenly, my world froze, and I was back to keeping my couch from floating away.

A quick test showed that my controller was lifeless, and from the component cabinet in the corner, I heard a loud sound, which became a very loud sound when I opened the cabinet up.

My 360 had decided to destructively test my Halo 3 DVD. I hit the eject button (which spit out a still-spinning dvd), and now have a console that is no longer literate (think about it).

The good news is that the warrany expires a month from now, but my presence seems to be having a bad effect on speed controllers...

Alternate post titles I considered. Did I make the right choice?

  1. Prepare for liftoff...
  2. I feel the need - the need for WHAT IS THAT NOISE?
  3. Captain, if you keep this up, I cannot be responsible for the safety of the ship...
  4. You know, plastic is stronger than it looks...