As you may know, the main Microsoft campus is spread out over a number of different buildings. All buildings have a steady stream of visitors - maybe people from another building are visiting for a meeting, or a candidate comes for a job interview, or my wife is dropping by over lunch.

For your convenience, each building lobby has at least one old, low-spec PC with a small, yellowing screen and a fancy mouse and keyboard. You can use these machines to Remote Desktop to your own computer or connect to a massive Terminal Services cluster somewhere in a vault twelve stories below the ground [or that's how I like to imagine it anyway] to check your mail, read the paper or whatever else you might want. The lobby-machines is a good idea; it's convenient, and shows how well TS works even on aging hardware.

Now the funny part. In my building, there's the yellowing screen, the fancy keyboard and a nice mouse, but no computer. Instead, on the screen there's a sticky note that says "Kiosk Upgrade - Helpdesk". It's been like that for at least a week now. As though throughout this campus, with probably a hundred thousand computers [just my guess], there's not one computer to spare to put in the lobby while the usual one is being "upgraded".

This cracks me up every time I go through the lobby. Simple problem, simple solution. It reminds me of my days in Dublin. If someone spilled milk in the super market, nobody would wipe it up - instead they'd put up a "Warning - wet floor" sign...


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